Fact Check

Is This an Authentic Video of a Tesla Catching on Fire?

Videos of Teslas catching on fire are often shared on social media, though some of them might be misleading.

Published June 26, 2023

 (Twitter user @Alphafox78)
Image courtesy of Twitter user @Alphafox78
A video tweeted on June 26, 2023, authentically showed a Tesla catching on fire.

The video was taken on June 13, 2013, and showed an explosion of a truck in Russia.

On June 26, 2023, Twitter user @Alphafox78 posted a one-minute long video, claiming that it showed a Tesla catching on fire. While the video is authentic, it has nothing to do with Tesla vehicles. A reverse image search revealed that it was captured on July 13, 2013, when a truck on a Russian highway carrying over 30 propane bottles collided with a preceding van "leading to spillage of engine fuel, ignition, engulfment of truck in a developing diesel pool fire and occurrence of multiple BLEVEs and fireballs."

(afru YouTube channel, @Alphafox78 Twitter user)

The date of the accident was also confirmed by dashcam footage date from one of them. What's more, multiple BLEVEs (boiling liquid expanding vapor explosions) caused by the collision lasted over 5 minutes, gaining much attention from social media users.

Similar videos were uploaded and re-uploaded many times after the collision, often without stating the original date of the event. The video was also miscaptioned by other social media users that claimed it showed what "green transportation" looks like. Social media is full of videos and alleged reports of Teslas catching on fire, so it's highly possible that similar false rumors will appear in the future.

It's not the first time we have fact checked news regarding Tesla. In November 2022, we investigated a "verified" Tesla parody Twitter account that sought to troll Twitter's new owner, Elon Musk. Moreover, in May 2023, we debunked false rumors that Twitter became profitable after Tesla committed to spending $10 billion on Twitter ads.


"Chaos: Gas Cylinders Explode after Truck Catches Fire | Amazing But True - Times of India Videos." The Times of India, https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/videos/amazing-but-true/chaos-gas-cylinders-explode-after-truck-catches-fire/videoshow/81044834.cms. Accessed 26 June 2023.

Gas Car Exploded. www.youtube.com, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6WaTS_no7dE. Accessed 26 June 2023.

Hazmat Highway to Hell with High Pressure Gas Cylinders (No Music). www.youtube.com, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FG1LGKieTxY. Accessed 26 June 2023.

Heilweil, Rebecca. "Why Teslas Keep Catching on Fire." Vox, 17 Jan. 2023, https://www.vox.com/the-highlight/2023/1/17/23470878/tesla-fires-evs-florida-hurricane-batteries-lithium-ion.

"https://Twitter.Com/Search?Q=tesla%20on%20fire&src=typed_query&f=live." Twitter, https://twitter.com/search?q=tesla%20on%20fire&src=typed_query&f=live. Accessed 26 June 2023.

"Hazmat Highway to Hell." Military.Com, 25 Feb. 2014, https://www.military.com/video/explosions/blast/hazmat-highway-to-hell/3257343694001.

Truck Full of Gas Cylinders Explode in Highway, Russia | Firefighting. www.youtube.com, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lBqZZ177Q9I. Accessed 26 June 2023.

Aleksandra Wrona is a reporting fellow for Snopes, based in the Warsaw area.