Tesla electric patrol car runs out of battery life during pursuit

FREEMONT, Calif. – A Tesla electric patrol car with the Fremont Police Department in California was forced to back off from a pursuit after the vehicle’s battery ran low in the middle of the chase.

“Just slowed down to six miles of battery on the Tesla, so I may lose it here in a sec,” the officer in the pursuit said, according to police radio transmissions obtained by KPIX 5.“ “If someone else is able, can they maneuver into the No. 1 spot?”

Other officers then took over the vehicle pursuit. However, the chase was terminated after it was deemed unsafe because of the reckless driving of the suspect. The suspect’s vehicle was later found abandoned in San Jose.

The department is in the midst of a pilot program using 2014 Tesla model S 85 vehicles as part of Fremont’s push to cut greenhouse gas emissions by 25 percent from its 2005 baseline by 2020.

“The Tesla wasn’t fully charged at the beginning of the shift,” a Fremont police spokesperson told KPIX 5. “This, unfortunately, happens from time to time, even in our vehicles that run on gas, if they aren’t refueled at the end of a shift.”

Fremont Police spokeswoman Geneva Bosquez told CNN the general guideline for electric vehicles is that they should be at least half-full at the beginning of the shift, as this particular vehicle was.


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