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Hot Metal Spill at Tesla Plant Injures 3


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Tesla Motors, Inc. (TSLA - Analyst Report) seems to be suffering an ominous time of late. Following three incidents of Model S catching fire, this time the automaker had to witness a hot metal spill at its San Francisco Bay Area factory.

The accident was caused by failure of an aluminum casting press, injuring three employees. One of them was seriously injured and the other two suffered minor injuries. The seriously injured worker suffered burns on the chest and upper body. All three employees were admitted to Santa Clara Valley Medical Center in San Jose with second-degree burns.

However, there was no report of fire in the plant. The San Francisco Bay Area factory was formerly jointly-owned by General Motors (GM - Analyst Report) and Toyota Motor (TM - Analyst Report).   It was taken over by Tesla four years ago and was transformed into a state-of-the-art facility.

This accident happened just after Tesla’s third Model S vehicle was reported to have caught fire on Nov 7, 2013. The incident occurred near Smyrna, Tenn., after the vehicle hit road debris. The collision led to fire in the front portion of the vehicle.

Separately, Tesla announced that it is considering developing an electric pickup truck within five years. The truck will be modeled after Ford Motor Co.’s (F - Analyst Report) best-selling F-150 pickup. It is expected that the company will launch the new pickup truck after introducing Model X in 2014 and a third-generation electric car for the mass market in 2017.

Pickup trucks are a profitable venture for automakers in the U.S. Both Ford and General motors have recorded strong profits in this segment. It is expected that this new launch will have favorable impacts on Tesla’s results in the long run.

Tesla currently retains a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

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