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The Ranting Room Got a gripe about life? Want to sound off about the unfairness of the universe? Does something just REALLY piss you off? Well, come on in and talk about it!

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Unread 05-05-2023, 08:28 AM   #1
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Default Electric vehicles? Not just no but.....

While I have never been a fan of electric vehicles, I presumed they were just another thing we would all learn to live with. Much like girls with pink hair or nose rings, or guys with man buns. If that's what floats your boat, have at it. just don't try to tell me why I need one or why I should like it. Well, after an incident last week I can tell you that I have a new found dislike for anything containing a lithium battery. As most of you here know, my wife and I drive a truck. We had an issue with one of our work phones where the apps would work sometimes and not other times. We originally attributed this to the app or the service area. But after contacting our companies IT division they told us to remove the battery and inspect it as rebooting had made no difference. Taking the back of the phone off was no problem but the battery itself was stuck in the phone so I used my pocketknife to pry it out right there in the truck sleeper at the table. It popped right out alright, but undoubtedly in the process of prying it, I knicked the thin metal covering on the case of the battery. As soon as it landed on the table it started spewing a black ash and then flames were shooting out of it. This happened incredibly fast and, fortunately, we have a rug on the floor there in the sleeper and I guess I scraped it onto that rug (not really sure as it happened so fast but I sustained no burns) and was able to throw it and the rug out the door of the truck that my wife was sitting at. All this happened while the IT guy was on the speaker phone and I unleashed a flurry of very un-Christian like expletives during the encounter which lasted mere seconds. The IT guy was freaking out, as was myself and my wife. Once we determined that the truck wasn't going to burn down and we had no injuries the IT guy said he had experienced these batteries swelling once they were a couple of years old and that he had also had to use a screwdriver to remove several of them himself. He did state that this practice would no longer be employed and made a note that in the future a plastic knife would be the tool of choice to remove them.

It was an extremely hot fire with ashes melting into the plastic table top in the truck. Some actually fell onto a blanket on the bed leaving black melted spots in the fabric. We could have easily lost a $200K Peterbilt along with the $200K refrigerated trailer that was attached had things gone sideways in the hastily contrived removal of this incendiary device.

So, with this knowledge burned into my brain (almost literally) I can certainly imagine the outcome of a major crash in an EV and let me tell you, I will walk before I'll get in one of those things.

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Unread 05-05-2023, 11:32 AM   #2
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Man, glad that didn't prove more damaging. Those things can really burn HOT!

First I ever heard of this problem with lithium batteries was in relation to drones. There have been cases of people losing their homes from fire when the stored batteries would sometimes ignite without even being damaged. As they age, they can swell, and as some people have found out, spontaneously burst into flames.

And yes, drone crashes sometimes resulted into a fiery death of the drone too.

Rule of thumb has been that ANY minor damage to a lithium battery, even just suspected, meant discarding and safely disposing of the battery.

Many such batteries have electronics on board that will discharge them to 30 to 50 percent of full charge after a period of unused time to try to reduce the "flame on" problem. I guess a little fire is better than a big fire.

A little while back I was going to switch out the batteries on my camera flashes, and noticed that one of the new ones to go in was giving some resistance. Luckily I didn't press it all of the way in place, otherwise I never would have been able to get it back out. Inspection showed that this battery was swelling up, making it a very tight fit. Had this happened while the battery was in the flash, well, that would have meant I would have had to dispose of the flash and buy a new one. The flash only had a spring in the well to pop out the battery, and that wouldn't have been sufficient with an overly tight fitting battery.

So ANY lithium based battery is dangerous as a fire hazard. Which is why USPS will NOT accept them in shipments. And honestly, they should be stored in something fire proof such that if they do happen to erupt into flame, they won't burn your house down on you. It CAN and HAS happened.

As for vehicles with these things in them, well, thanks, but NO thanks. Being burned alive from a battery fire is not going to feel any better than being burned alive via a gasoline based fire.

And just wait for the stories about electric vehicle batteries swelling up and being unable to be replaced, resulting in a trashed vehicle (out of warranty, of course) that needs to be replaced instead of just the batteries. Not that "just" a battery replacement won't be expensive enough as it is.

Nope, not sold on the idea, neither. That and my suspicions is that this is just a ploy to reduce the mobility of people in general. I sure don't want to be limited to a radius of the half way discharge point of the EV battery for whenever I just want to take a drive. Imagine if your truck was an EV. How would that work out for you?

I believe there are notable videos on YouTube about lithium batteries that could be eye opening. If I remember correctly, there were even cell phones spontaneously bursting in flames for some people. Not fun if it is in your back pocket at the time.
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Unread 05-05-2023, 01:19 PM   #3
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I'm wondering if insurance companies have a clause that gets them off the hook if they suspect a fire caused by lithium. I can see that being somewhere in the fine print.

As for electric class 8 trucks, I personally don't see that as plausible. Especially for those that run over the road in teams. Back when we were doing that we only stopped for fuel once a day and to change drivers. 15-20 minutes for each stop unless we had time for a shower. But the situation with truck fueling and parking is already at its limit now. having to install infrastructure for these trucks to sit in a "charging line" that would take at least 45 minutes to get a 75% charge.....It won't work. There isn't enough real estate to have trucks lined up that deep. If you think there's a supply chain issue now?!

It's impressive that Elon Musk has been able to do what he has, both with the cars and the trucks that he has created. But in a real world application, we are light years from that being possible, especially with the trucks. They might be ok for day drivers that can park them back at their lot overnight and provide their own place to charge them but that's going to come at a serious cost to install chargers. That's IF the power grid will even support it. The democrats that are pushing so hard for this are truly clueless.

And like it's being revealed now, the fire hazard they represent may be their undoing. When one of them catches fire, or say the lot they park at floods, POOF! There goes the whole fleet? Or worse, the whole warehouse?
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Unread 05-05-2023, 01:24 PM   #4
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This is literally what happened inside of our truck in the same time frame.


https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q...tail&FORM=VIRE
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