eli5: How do Tesla cars not instantly kill every in there when driving through moderate to large amounts of water to the level of floods

594 views
0

eli5: How do Tesla cars not instantly kill every in there when driving through moderate to large amounts of water to the level of floods

In: Engineering

Water isn’t nearly as good a conductor of electricity as copper. The “path of least resistance” (which is a simplification I admit, but ELI5) causes the electricity to flow through the wires, turning the wheels, paddling the mostly-floating/slowly-sinking vehicle across a short region of water until the tires can get traction of the road on the other side.

While I object to the term [Tesla swimming](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cBYFo6fXPvU ) is a thing.

A few things.

* Water on it’s own isn’t a great conductor of electricity.
* The wiring, particularly on cars, is usually well insulated and protected.
* Even if water creates a path for current outside the wiring, the current is not going to follow a long path through the car: it will likely just go to the metal frame of the car, which is a good conductor. This might damage the battery or wiring, but it wouldn’t electrocute anyone.