A hot potato: Texas Motor Speedway's admission really gets you thinking about just how many local drag strips actually have the equipment necessary to put out an EV fire. Have officials at other tracks even considered the differences in a gasoline fire versus an electrical fire? How about local fire departments and volunteer outfits, how equipped are they to put out an EV fire when being called to the scene of an accident on the streets?
The drag strip is the ultimate proving ground for vehicles that are quick off the line and excel in going fast in a straight line.
Racing at your local track is far safer than doing so on the streets as event staff have the proper equipment on hand to keep participants as safe as possible and handle accidents in an appropriate and timely manner. Or at least, that’s what we’re led to believe.
Texas Motor Speedway recently hosted its finals for the Friday Night Drags series and Teslarati couldn’t help but notice that electric vehicles were not allowed to participate in the event. It’s not that electric vehicles afford some sort of unfair advantage or that organizers believe they are faster than gasoline-powered rides; rather, it comes down to safety.
In a statement issued to the site, Texas Motor Speedway VP of Public Relations David Hart said the reason for the exclusion is that, in the event of a crash and possible resulting fire, their emergency vehicles do not carry the specific equipment required to suppress EV fires.
“As I’m sure you’re aware, conventional extinguishers are of no use in fighting lithium-ion battery fires,” Hart said.