Driver Of Stolen Tesla Model S Dies From Earlier Horrific Crash


Tesla Model S Crash via NBC LA

Tesla Model S Crash via NBC LA

Cut In Half Tesla Model S

Cut In Half Tesla Model S

Bloomberg is reporting the following:

“A man who stole a Tesla Model S on July 4 in Los Angeles died this week from injuries sustained in a high-speed crash that hurt at least seven other people.”

This marks the first death for an occupant of a Tesla Model S.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk had previously stated that there had been no serious injuries or fatalities in a Model S after 344 million miles of driving, a fact he stated was “…certainly one of our proudest accomplishments.”

Bloomberg reports on the deceased driver:

“Joshua Michael Flot, 26, of Inglewood, California, died on July 7 at 2:23 p.m. local time, Ed Winter, a spokesman for the Los Angeles County Coroner’s department, said in a phone interview today. Flot’s identity and death weren’t disclosed until today to allow time to notify family members, Winter said, who confirmed Flot was the driver of the car.”

Tesla spokesperson Simon Sproule offered this comment on the situation:

“We are saddened by the harm that resulted from the July 4 theft and crash.  We are assisting the authorities as needed as they continue their investigations.”

Sproule added that “Flot’s death is the first for a Model S driver involved in a collision that Tesla is aware of,” according to Bloomberg.

According to the latest sheriff and fire department reports, the Model S was traveling at a high rate of speed.  It struck a steel pole and then split in two.  Soon after, it ignited.  At some point in time, the driver was ejected from the vehicle.

No other fatalities have been reported from this wreck.  The innocent people who were injured are expected to make full recoveries.

Model S

Model S

Source: Bloomberg

Categories: Crashed EVs, Tesla


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28 Comments on "Driver Of Stolen Tesla Model S Dies From Earlier Horrific Crash"

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He didn’t technically die INSIDE the Model S…

+1 I agree

+1 Yep, no seatbelt.

If he didn’t reproduce, and no one else dies, I hereby nominate him for a 2014 “Darwin Award”:


All yield to the mighty Darwinism.

I think you guys are making light of a very serious situation here.

After all, A Tesla died here….

It had to happen eventually. “I’m invincible in this stolen Model S! No one has died in one. Watch, I’ll play chicken with this concrete and rebar pillar at 100mph and I’ll be fine!”

He took off at 100 mph. No one knows at what speed he hit his final obstacles. It could vbe just 30-40 mph.

Um, no.

a) people don’t ‘take off’ at 100mph – they start at zero and accelerate to that speed.

b) yeah, right – the rear half of the vehicle flew up and got wedged into the side of a building from a 30-40mph impact? your moniker is more accurate than you seem to realize….

Do we know if he was wearing a seatbelt? If he was then he should not have gotten ejected from the car. If not, then I don’t see how the car can be blamed at all.

I was wondering the same thing

I don’t think anyone besides a diehard Tesla hater is going to seriously blame the car for this one.

Darwin award.

While we shouldn’t be mocking the guy so soon, but I must admit that it was rather poor of him to think that you can actually get away with a Model S (provided if you lost the police). Tesla will find you. This stupidity unfortunately has made a huge impact on himself and several victims.

Pretty simple to disable a Tesla Model S wireless antenna and/or drive it into a shipping container. Not so simple to fix stupid.

Not blaming the Tesla for the death, but just curious if the airbags went off? Hard to tell from the pic. Maybe when you slice a car in half, that prevents them deploying.

I’m curious to know how the Tesla hit the pole so that the unbelted driver ended up wedged between the building and the rear half of the car. Did the roof of the Tesla hit the pole first and eject the thief through the shattered panoramic sunroof?

The driver went through the windshield (there’s a big hole in it from media pictures), not the roof. The physics of it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, but perhaps after the police report is out it’ll bring some clarity.

There’s a giant gaping hole where the panoramic sunroof used to be, but in the pic below the windshield appears to be intact during the fire. Perhaps the fire caused the windshield to pop.

Aren’t you the guy who claimed that Paul Walker’s Porsche was only going 40 mph when it took out two lamp posts, then wrapped itself around a tree. The police report eventually concluded that the Porsche was going over 90 mph. Accident reconstruction is not your forte. 😀

“Aren’t you the guy who claimed that Paul Walker’s Porsche was only going 40 mph when it took out two lamp posts, then wrapped itself around a tree” Ah, you were the guy who got on my case for citing NBC and Jalopnik. We do agree the sources say the Porsche approached the 15mph curve at 40-45mph. “The Porsche that actor Paul Walker was riding in when he died on Saturday was traveling at approximately 40 to 45 mph when it came to a bend in the road where the speed limit drops to about 15 mph” You are saying that the car must have accelerated even higher than that to take the curve (which does not make sense to me, as people typically slow down to take a curve and then accelerate afterwards, not speed up right before it). “The police report eventually concluded that the Porsche was going over 90 mph” No, there was no police report that clarified the speeds. It was a coroner report that cited officer Kelly at the scene during preliminary investigation who visually guessed that the speeds were “approximately 100+mph”. It does not refer to any follow up measurements or deeper investigation… Read more »

As for the hole in the windshield, you can see it here (first image):

Here’s another at a different angle:

And another:

I don’t think it takes an accident reconstruction expert to clearly see it’s a human sized hole from the driver’s seat.

Also all the reports I have read said the driver exited through the windshield, not through somewhere else.

“No, there was no police report that clarified the speeds.”

There is a final police accident investigation report by the LA County Sheriff in addition to the coroner’s report. According to CNN: “The high-performance 2005 Porsche Carrera GT was going ‘between 80 and 93 mph at the time the car impacted a power pole and several trees,’ the final report said…. The sheriff’s conclusion is no surprise, since the coroner’s report previously estimated the car was speeding at 100 mph.”

“Investigators calculated that Rodas was driving between 81 mph and 94 mph when his 2005 Porsche Carrera GT began to drift as it lost control after coming out of a curve.”

The pic I posted above shows the Tesla on fire after the driver allegedly went through the windshield. There are no flames or distorted heat wave above the driver’s side windshield because there is no hole in the windshield. At some point, the intense heat from the fire popped a hole in the windshield.

“Flotting: The desire or act to terminate one’s self using the latest technology as irresponsibly as possible; regardless of how safe designers made the product.”

Usage: “He was flotting fate when he drove that Tesla into a concrete reinforced pole at over 100 mph, sans seatbelts…”

There’s no way in logic that he went through the windshield at 100+ wearing a seatbelt.

He did not die because the Tesla couldnt protect him, he died because his dumb*ss couldn’t take 3 seconds to put on a seatbelt.

Among other bad decisions.

While cooperating with the police, Tesla is most likely proving telemetry data. I hope they release that data to the public, as It shoul show exact timings, speeds, and if a seat belt was engaged or not.