Truck Driver Sees Tesla Semi for the First Time, Instantly Disappointed Over What Was Behind It

This is a big story. Or not. I’ll report; you decide. It involves the tractor unit of a Tesla Semi, Tesla’s 18-wheeler over-the-road battery-powered electric truck, apparently involved in a mishap with a conventional 18-wheeler. A trucker and YouTuber known as Serge the Car Hauler spotted the Tesla Semi tractor parked on the side of a freeway ramp with a Tesla service vehicle behind it and the nearby conventional tractor-trailer rig with a heavy-duty tow truck behind it. In posting a video of the event, Serge the Car Hauler interpreted the accident to have been caused by the Tesla Semi stalling. And he seemed to delight in seeing an ailing Tesla, his reaction buttressed in a follow-up video where he expressed skepticism of the electric Ford F-150. Combined with a trailer, the Tesla Semi is supposed to be able to handle 82,000 pounds gross weight as it runs 500 miles between charges and is able to be recharged up to 70 percent in 30 minutes, according to company promotional material. Tesla Semis recently went into production. The first buyer, Pepsi, takes delivery of the new vehicles in December. But what happened in Serge’s video? Did he find a Tesla truck unable to do its job? Electrek, a publication that favors electric vehicles, seemed to interpret it that way. Electrek writer Herb Lambert opined that there’s nothing unusual about a new product having bugs to work out. “[Serge the Car Hauler] seemed really excited about the Tesla Semi breaking down,” Lambert said. “I understand being skeptical about electric trucks, but I don’t understand rooting for them to fail,” Lambert continued. “Also, this is not exactly a failure either. It is to be expected that early in the program there would be a few issues to iron out. “Obviously, we don’t know exactly what is happening in this scene here, but we know that early Tesla Semi customers are going to have to deal with some issues first before they can fully benefit from their electric trucks.” So what did happen? As Lambert said, it’s unclear. But a look at Serge’s videos shows police are on the scene, the tow truck is servicing the conventional tractor-trailer rig and the Tesla Semi and its service vehicle are next to the conventional rig. [firefly_poll] It looks like the conventional truck may have swerved trying to avoid the Tesla tractor and gone off the edge of the ramp, becoming stuck and requiring a tow. But the mystery remains. Was there a trailer behind the Tesla that was already removed when Serge came on the scene? Did the Tesla stall and cause the accident? Serge thinks a stalling Tesla is what caused the problem. Perhaps Serge’s interpretation is correct — he’s a truck driver, so his professional eye may be providing the best assessment. Electrek writer Lambert seems to agree. And while I’m as skeptical as Serge about electric vehicles, Lambert has a point about problems typical of new products. And nobody wants new technology to fail if, all things considered, it can do the job. So, regarding electric trucks, is this a big story? Maybe. Maybe not. You decide. This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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