Are Electric Cars More Prone To Fires And Try To Separate Fact From Fiction?

Electric cars have been around for a few years now and many people have made the switch because of their numerous benefits including being environment-friendly and cheaper to fuel up. 

However, one of the concerns that still linger in people’s minds is the safety of electric cars. Specifically, do electric cars pose more of a risk of fire than traditional petrol or diesel-fueled vehicles? In this blog post, we’ll explore the issue of Electric car fires and try to separate fact from fiction.

All cars have the potential to catch fire

Firstly, it’s important to note that almost all cars have the potential to catch fire. Even petrol and diesel engines, which we have used for over a century, have been known to catch fire. According to research conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), vehicle fires are a common occurrence and account for about 17% of all vehicle crashes. Additionally, between 2014 and 2016, there were around 174,000 vehicle fires each year in the United States alone. 

However, the probability of a fire occurring in electric vehicles (EVs) is lower than that of traditional cars. In fact, according to a National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) report, electric cars accounted for only 4% of all car fires in the United States between 2012 and 2015.

Why do electric vehicles fire?

Secondly, the reason why electric vehicle fires occur is different from traditional car fires. Traditional car fires mainly occur due to fuel leaking or overheating, but electric vehicle fires happen because of faults in the lithium-ion battery pack. Lithium-ion batteries are found in many consumer electronics such as laptops and smartphones, and they are also used in EVs. 

The batteries in EVs are more powerful than those found in consumer products, and if they overheat or if there’s a faulty charging mechanism, they can catch fire. However, it’s important to note that EV batteries are equipped with various safety features, including cooling systems and sensors that can detect potential problems before they occur. Use Car accident calculator to know claim process and when to hire a lawyer!

It’s important to note that electric car fires are not entirely impossible, but the rate of occurrence is significantly low. Research shows that the likelihood of an EV catching fire is one in ten million miles driven, compared to the one in every 19 million miles driven for a gasoline vehicle. Additionally, manufacturers have taken steps to make EVs safer, including installing fire-suppression systems that can put out a battery fire in seconds.

Another aspect to consider is that electric cars have fewer flammable liquids onboard than gasoline vehicles. 

The main reason gas cars catch fire is due to the presence of flammable liquids such as gasoline and oil. EVs, on the other hand, only have a small amount of flammable liquid in their batteries. The battery is highly compact and enclosed, significantly reducing the chance of a fire incident.

Catching Fire In Electric Car

Thirdly, the chances of an electric car catching fire can be further reduced by taking proper care of the vehicle. This includes regularly servicing the car to ensure that the battery system is functioning correctly. It’s also important not to tamper with the battery system as any modifications could compromise the safety of the vehicle. Additionally, EV owners should be informed about the warning signs that indicate a potential problem with the battery system, such as unusual noises or smells.

Furthermore, the design of EVs is such that they are less likely to catch fire than traditional vehicles. EVs have a lower center of gravity, which makes them less prone to rolling over in an accident. Additionally, the battery system is usually positioned to minimize the risk of a puncture during an accident, further reducing the probability of a fire starting.


While electric car fires do occur, they happen less frequently than fires in traditional cars. Additionally, the probability of an electric car catching fire can be reduced through proper maintenance and care. As with any vehicle, it’s important to be informed about warning signs of potential problems, and to take proper safety precautions. In summary, as long as EV owners take care of their vehicle and follow safety guidelines, there’s no reason to be overly concerned about electric car fires.