Tags: police | tesla | electric | vehicle | high-speed chase

Tesla Police Car in High-Speed Chase Nearly Runs Out of Power

the tesla hood ornament in chrome on a black car
(Frank Hoermann/AP)

By    |   Thursday, 26 September 2019 11:29 AM

A Fremont police officer had to back off from a high-speed chase after his Tesla electric squad car nearly ran out of power.

The incident took place Friday night. The officer, Jesse Hartman, was in hot pursuit of a suspect wanted for an unspecified crime committed in Santa Clara when he noticed that the department’s Tesla Model S patrol car he was driving was running low on battery power.

"I am down to six miles of battery on the Tesla so I may lose it here in a sec," he said to dispatch, according to audio obtained by East Bay Times. "If someone else is able, can they maneuver into the Number One spot?"

Other nearby units took over the chase but their pursuit had to be called off after determining that the way the suspect was driving was unsafe. They later found the vehicle abandoned in San Jose but the driver was nowhere to be found.

When Hartman started his shift at 2 p.m., the Tesla was not fully charged, Fremont police spokesperson Geneva Bosques told NBC Bay Area. And the pursuit began nine hours later, at 11 p.m.

Usually toward the end of a shift, a Tesla cruiser that started with a full charge would have about 40% to 50% of battery power left. It is unclear why the vehicle was not fully charged in this specific incident.

"It happens from time to time, especially if an officer returns to the station to take a report and then they never go back out in the street," Bosques said.

The department obtained the Tesla six months ago and have been using it as part of a pilot program to determine whether or not the vehicle is fit to serve law enforcement.

This is the second time the Tesla has been used in a pursuit and Bosques said the incident did not alter how the department felt about the vehicle's performance.

"So far the car is meeting or exceeding our expectations," she said.

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A Fremont police officer had to back off from a high-speed chase after his Tesla electric squad car nearly ran out of power.
police, tesla, electric, vehicle, high-speed chase
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2019-29-26
Thursday, 26 September 2019 11:29 AM
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