Watch a car crash spark a spectacular electrical fire


No applause at the end? Some people are impossible to please.


We were bushwhacking in the Adirondacks once and saw smoke and flames coming from a tower on the high tension line to Tahawus. It was a mile away across a valley and we watched it for 10 minutes and it was still going when we continued on.


Was it Chekhov who said “Don’t show a gas station in the first act unless it’s going to explode in the 3rd”? #disappointed


The sideways Jacob’s Ladder is a marvelous thing. I assume that the arc travels to the left because the two lines are suspended in such a way that the gap between them is less at the left. Each arc appears to be struck by the conductive surface path on the pole to the right.

It’s luck that the geometry conspired to produce this effect. You would have some work to attempt to recreate it.

And no, it didn’t trip a breaker because it’s just another electrical load, like a really big fluorescent lamp, which works on the same principle.


Cool show. This should be the standard state of most hanging wires.


hey! i clapped. ( no standing ovation though without more fire. )




would be some great movie footage!


Sort of, well, yes, but it’s more complicated. :stuck_out_tongue:
The air all around is heated.
The ionization creates lower potential.
As long as the arc is travelling in a particular direction it will tend to continue in that direction.
In this case I’m going to guess that the fireball at the pole gave the arc enough of a nudge to start the ball rolling.


London Ontario FTW!

posted from London, Ontario


I’ve always loved the color of electrical arcs. “Electric Blue” doesn’t do it justice given how many shades have been called that over the years. It’s simply magnificent. In my youth I left behind a trail of useless electrical devices, each of which died in a shower of the same glorious color.


I thought it was going to be an electric car crash…

Has anybody submerged a Tesla, yet?

What happens?


I also dimly remember reading something about a Tesla crashing in a river and demonstrating rudimentary floating abilities. But I might be confusing this with something else.
However, Elon Musk did buy the submersible Lotus Esprit from The Spy Who Loved Me (well, the movie prop, anyway).

EDIT - Seems like I got it halfway right:


Here be dragons.


It also started after a van creamed an electric pole. Hats off to the onlooker who instead of fleeing the scene had the presence of mind to capture them with a camera. At the least, he could make use of some safety alarm app. But he is much better than the police officer who is seen backing off than alerting the concerned authority.
Spectacular show (apart from its danger aspect) of fireworks. Thank God! All are safe.


Pretty sure that was Sulu.


Oh my! GT’s career has consisted of an introduction in the first act and going off in the 3rd.


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