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Cause of Tesla fire at Richmond mall under investigation

Social media was abuzz with videos of Saturday's fire.

A Tesla went up in flames in the parking lot of a Richmond mall over the weekend.

A video posted on Chinese social media platform Little Red Book on Saturday, April 20, shows a black Tesla's front hood engulfed in flames in the parking lot between Yaohan Centre and President's Plaza.

In the video, fire crews were seen extinguishing the flames on the black vehicle, resulting in plumes of smoke. 

Richmond Fire-Rescue deputy chief Grant Wyenberg told the Richmond News crews received a call about the fire around 4:20 p.m. on Saturday and arrived on scene "shortly after that."

By the time crews arrived, 50 per cent of the car was engulfed in flames.

"(Crews) used large volumes of water to put it out... and then some foam concentrate, because the fire was starting to extend into the bushes and the shrubberies around it," Wyenberg explained.

He estimates the fire took about 15 minutes to put out as more water and time are required when attending to electric car fires.

The front of the Tesla appeared to be completely destroyed in photos submitted by community members to the News.

No injuries were reported from the incident but one of the vehicles next to the Tesla did sustain heat damage as well.

The cause of the fire is still under investigation by Richmond Fire-Rescue and Richmond RCMP and Wyenberg cautions against jumping to conclusions.

"Electric cars have got kind of a bad rap right now with spontaneously catching on fire and things, but sometimes there's a lot of contributing circumstances that can make a car go on fire," he told the News.

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