This morning, L.A.’s La Brea Avenue was closed down, after a stolen Tesla car ended a police pursuit by catching fire and eventually splitting into two. The chase, which took place early Friday morning and ended in West Hollywood, was reported by Eric Spillman for KTLA 5 Morning News. At the time of the news report, it was yet unclear whether or not the car had been stolen, but the authorities eventually managed to identify the vehicle. According to their reports, the car had been illegally removed from a nearby car dealership.
The authorities also reported that several people were injured in the accident. The driver himself suffered severe injuries and was transported from the scene in critical condition. The police closed down both directions of La Brea Avenue in West Hollywood for several hours. The pursuit involving the vehicle ended with it jammed between two buildings at La Brea and Fountain avenues in West Hollywood. The crash took place on La Brea Avenue, in the Lexington Avenue area, at around 12:30, say witness reports. Other sources explained that the electric car in question was lodged in between two walls of a synagogue.
Additionally, a witness told KTLA News that the car literally split into two, as an effect of the impact it suffered during the crash. Several other cars were damaged in the process and, according to a statement made by the Los Angeles County sheriff’s Lt. Michael White to KCAL-TV, the Tesla was traveling at a speed of over 100 mph when the crash occurred. During the chase, a traffic sign was also wrecked. After it hit the pole, the Tesla electric car split in half, a part of it landed on top of a white car, and several firefighters (25, according to the reports of a witness), circled the white car with the “Jaws of Life” in hand, ready to intervene.
A man who was on the scene at the time of the accident recorded everything. The video he shot shows the car’s burning debris as it explodes, in a very similar way to fireworks. Additional footage from the scene of the accident shows that one half of the car crashed into the building on the corner, while the other half was left behind, in the roadway. Police sources say the car was stolen from a nearby dealership in Los Angeles, only a few minutes before 1 a.m. According to Police Office Christopher No, the authorities chased the car very briefly, before their patrol car also crashed.