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BYD investigation clears exploding battery

Investigators from the Shenzen Academy of Metrology and Quality Inspection held a press conference on 3.8.12 to release their findings into the explosion following the crash on 26.5.12. It was caused by a sports car travelling at 242 km per hour and collided with the e6 taxi that was travelling at 81 km per hour in the same direction.


The fatal accident, reported on this blog on 15.6.12  occured in Shenzen when a BYD taxi was involved in a high speed collision with a sports car that was travelling at a reported speed of 180 kilometers per hour. Witnesses said that the sports car collided with two  EV taxis, one of which exploded causing two fatalities.

Investigators found that the EV had no ‘design flaws affecting vehicle safey’  and went to say that the BYD e6 taxi had passed government required tests on vehicle and battery safety, and met National Standards’.

It was claimed that 72 of the 95 batteries in the pack did not explode, and that the battery system had a ‘safe and rational design’

BYD made a formal announcement to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange about the investigation on 3.8.2012. The report was prepared by a team comprising 13 experts from various insitutions who considered 5 areas including ‘completed car, car collision, power, battery. fire and traffic accident investigation’. The Report made the following conclusions:

1)    The sports car was travelling at the approximate speed of 242 km/h, when it collided with the e6 electric taxi in front of it, which was travelling at 81 km per hour in the same direction. The taxi hit a tree and burned.

2)Three passengers inside the e6 suffered fatal injuries.

3)The e6 had two severe collisions.   The rear end of the vehicle and the battery compartment were seriously deformed, the battery power pack and high voltage switchbox were severely compressed causing damage to part of the power batteries and short – circuit. High voltage distribution box and the body of the car short circuited, producing electric arc which ignited combustible material including the interior materials of the vehicle and part of the power batteries.

4) The vehicles passed tests by the ‘relevant state test authorities’ and 75% of the single cell batteries did not catch fire. The designs of the battery system in relation to the installation layout on the vehicle, the insultation protection and high voltage system are reasonable. No flaws in the safety design of the vehicle were revealed.

Futher, part of the aluminium alloy casting and battery plate of 24 single cell batteris were burnt by fire.


The Shenzen Academy of Metrology and Quality Inspection has recently been certified by IECEE ( the Worldwide System for Conformity Testing and Certification of Electrotechnical Equipment and Components as a National Certification Body to undertake CB testing.

UK importers often question whether or not they should place reliance on test certificates that have been obtained from reputable Test Houses in the Far East. Although there is no legal reason why it would not be right to rely on such a certificate to demonstrate compliance with UK safety legislation, a cautious approach would dicated that an independent report should be obtained in the UK for a numbe of reasons:

  • many test certificates have been requested by suppliers of components rather than the factory that assembles the products, so it can not be demonstrated that the certificate relates to the product in question
  • there have been a disturbing number of forged certificates in circulation
  • questions have been asked on occasions as to whether or not the test regime has been conducted with the necessary degree of independence and scrutiny required of an EU test house, where rigourous compliance and benchmarking occurs.

The Shenzen Academy offers a comprehensive service in Testing Certification Services, Quality Inspection, Toys Testing, Food and Chemical Testing, Textiles Testing and Electronics and Electrical Testing – click here for a link to their website.


Originally posted 2012-08-23 00:00:00.

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