In the early hours of Monday, a Tesla Megapack battery caught fire at a major energy storage facility in California, the state’s largest utility said in a statement to londonbusinessblog.com.
According to PG&E, the utility became “aware of a Tesla Megapack fire at its Elkhorn Battery Storage facility” around 1:30 a.m. in Moss Landing, about 25 miles south of Santa Cruz, in Monterey County. The site is home to a facility that houses 256 Megapacks and is capable of up to 730 megawatt hours of energy… when not on fire. Such facilities support the crucial transition to renewable energy sources by storing clean energy for use when the sun is not shining.
At the time this story was published, the facility was disconnected from the electrical grid as firefighters worked to “stop the spread of the fire and provide a safe space for emergency personnel.” The fire closing part of Highway 1 and sparked a on-site advice from the county sheriff’s office. The office warned local residents of an “ongoing hazardous material incident” around 9:00 a.m., stating, “Please close your windows and turn off your ventilation systems.”
PG&E said in the statement that its safety systems “worked as designed when the problem was discovered” and there were no on-side injuries. The utility added that the incident did not lead to “customer power outages” at this time.
When asked about the extent of the fire, a utility spokesperson declined to share additional information.
While not tethered to Tesla, lithium batteries in storage sites in Moss Landing repeatedly set on fire in recent years. And last year a Tesla Megapack caught fire in Geelong, Australia during the first tests on the Victorian Large Battery storage place.