Tesla fire kills man because door handle could not be opened, the lawsuit claims

That's because the car's pull-out door handle, which is supposed to "auto-present" when they discover a key board nearby, malfunctions and first responders were unable to open the doors and save Awan, the suit claims. [19659002] "The fire engulfed the car and burned Dr. Awan without recognition – all because the Model S has inaccessible door handles, no other way to open the doors and an unreasonably dangerous fire hazard," the complaint reads.

"These Model S defects and others," the suit says, "made it a death trap."

Awan, a 48-year-old anesthetist and father of five, rented the Model S for two reasons, family lawyer Stuart said Grossman: He was environmentally sensitive and safety conscious.

Tesla, the manufacturer of electric vehicles, has also claimed that the Model S once achieved "the best safety rating for a tested car." So Awan, who had been able to afford a Mercedes or another luxury vehicle, joined the 201[ads1]6 Tesla. And that killed him, Grossman said.

"These things they love to burn," he said. “The car is so overengineered. It is so technical that it makes you want to buy a Chevy pickup. "

Tesla's public relations team did not respond to a request for comment on the lawsuit, filed this month, and the company's attorneys have not yet responded in court.

Shortly after the crash in February, a Tesla spokeswoman told the Florida Sun- Sentinel that "We are deeply saddened by this accident", but that "Tesla vehicles are designed to be the safest cars in the world and Tesla drivers have driven more than 10 billion miles to date. ”

Awan's death is one of a string of recent incidents that have been blamed on Tesla's innovative technology. A lawsuit stemming from a May 2018 crash that killed two teenagers also blamed a battery fire for at least one of the deaths. (Grossman represents the car's third passenger, who survived the crash after being thrown from the vehicle.)

In April, surveillance footage from a Shanghai parking garage revealed smoke from a Model S moment before the car caught fire. The widely shared video prompted Tesla to open an internal investigation.

Several other suits have attributed deaths to Tesla's "Autopilot" system, an automatic driver assistance feature.

"There are several of these cases," Grossman said. "What the hell is going on?"

In Awans case and others, the carmaker has claimed that high speeds can cause fires whether the car is powered by gasoline or batteries. But Awan survived the crash, and he could also have escaped smoke and fire, Grossman said – if only the police officer who arrived at the scene could have opened the car's doors.

The lawsuit claims that the features rendered the car "defective" and "dangerous" – the door handles the compound problem of an "inherently unstable" battery.

"Tesla failed to warn users of the extent and extent of the defective and unreasonably dangerous conditions in Model S," the complaint states.

The Broward County autopsy report, obtained by The Washington Post, lists Awan's cause of death as "inhalation of combustion products with a contributing cause of thermal injury."

The medical examiner responding to the crash wrote that Awan "was not identifiable at the scene." His clothes and hair were burnt and a yellow metal ring was found on the left ring finger.

After the crash, and after firefighters extinguished Avas & # 39; Tesla was transported to a rope workshop. Once there, it reigned and burned again.

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