Not to question what was said here, but:
> Had I not been in a Tesla, that object could have punched through the floor and caused me serious harm.
How is that the case? There are cars that are higher off the ground than a Tesla (where it wouldn't have a chance to punch through the floor) and most cars have material in the undercarriage to protect against small blows like this ...
That's never going to happen with a Tesla S. (Read that both in a good and bad way.)
Now, if Tesla S floor pans never rust, then I'd agree with your conclusion.
> In 2004, a AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety study revealed that vehicle-related road debris caused 25,000 accidents—and nearly 100 deaths—each year. At highway speeds, even small debris can be deadly.
With the small sample size so far, we could chalk it up to a statistical anomaly (repeated "unlucky" events do happen, and are expected with natural random sampling), or an actual engineering problem.
My bet is low clearance. It would be interesting to compare these accidents against all cars with similar bottom clearance.
In that case, it's just a physical dimension problem combined with a bit of a poor consequence of battery damage...
This is a general trend though: Tesla's overreach regarding the NHTSA rating was on the front page for more than a day, whereas NHTSA's statement regarding Tesla's misinterpretation was not even on the front page for a few hours.
And before that... (26 points, flagged < 1hr)
Last press release: (567 points, #1 front page)
The flamewar detector brings the story down if it has a lot of comments, and if not paired with lot of upvotes, takes it quickly off the front page. So, while you're right about the HN bias(lack of upvotes), you're wrong about the reason(flamewar detector rather than flagging).
It also tends to happen to Gruber articles, articles positive or neutral about Microsoft, and anti-Samsung or anti-Google articles.
Here's a couple of examples.
MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA. HN headquarters was forced to shut down earlier today when a Tesla Model S (discussion) spontaneously caught fire. Responding the the event, the mountain view polic chief was on the scene within minutes. According to source, PG tried to put out the fire using water (in line with TSLA protocol), but the stubborn flames kept re-igniting. Finally, he had to revert to "flipping the server over" and drilling a hole in the bottom to finally douse the flames. No injuries were reported in the incident, and PG will be writing an essay later this week on the subejct. Extolling the cirtues of the Flamewar detector, as well as the excellent design of the electronically powered server at the heart of the matter.