Electric Volt car catches fire after test

Nov. 11, 2011 at 2:41 PM
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WASHINGTON, Nov. 11 (UPI) -- A Chevrolet Volt that had its lithium-ion battery damaged in a U.S. government crash test caught fire after sitting in storage for three weeks, officials said.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said Friday it had investigated a fire that occurred this spring after the Volt extended-range electric vehicle underwent testing for its five-star crash safety rating, the Detroit Free Press reported.

The fire damaged property but there were no injuries, the newspaper said.

General Motors spokesman Greg Martin said the company believes the fire occurred because NHTSA did not follow GM's recommended safety protocol for a post-crash Volt, spokesman Greg Martin said.

"Had those safety protocols been followed for this test, this incident would not have happened," he said, noting this is the only crashed Volt ever to catch fire.

The NHTSA did not immediately respond to Martin's statement about protocols but said it planned more testing of the Volt's battery, the Free Press reported.

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