CORVALLIS, OR (KPTV)- A wrecked Tesla became a launching pad for fiery projectiles after a high-speed crash in Corvallis Tuesday night sent hundreds of batteries flying in every direction, including nearby homes.
Corvallis Police said the driver, 21-year-old Dylan Milota, was stoned and going more than 100 mph just after 10 p.m. when he lost control of the Tesla, hit some trees, a power pole, and a phone box before coming to a stop on an embankment along Northwest Walnut Blvd.
Investigators said that hundreds of the Tesla’s hot batteries were thrown from the vehicle, and two of them crashed through windows at separate homes, starting small fires.
“It was a real scary-looking wreck,” said nearby neighbor Jeffrey Bailes.
Bailes said he was home watching TV when he heard loud scraping and crashing sounds.
He grabbed a flashlight and went to have a look after he saw emergency responders go flying past him.
“There were down power lines everywhere,” Bailes said.
“It’s a lot of crazy chaos,” he added.
The chaos extended well beyond the road and shoulder, including right into Everett Bazurto’s lap.
“I was just sitting in my chair watching television,” Bazurto told FOX 12. “I jumped up because a piece of the car, it fell in here.”
It was one of those batteries, and it left a burn mark on Bazurto’s arm, smoldered his chair and even damaged his floor, and that’s all after it came crashing through the front window.
“I was fortunate (the wooden blinds) took the major blow,” Bazurto said.
Across the street, another neighbor ended up with much more of a mess.
“Somebody had a tire come crashing through their wall,” Bailes said.
The tire left a gaping hole in the side of an apartment building.
Police said the tire broke a water pipe and flooded the apartment.
Just next-door, another window was broken by another flying battery.
The family who lives there didn’t want to go on camera but shared photos of the damage and said the hot battery started a small fire in a son’s bed. Fortunately, he wasn’t sleeping there at the time.
Police said Milota took off after the crash and was found a few blocks away.
Milota was taken to the hospital for minor injuries.
He faces charges of DUII, second-degree criminal mischief, reckless endangerment and reckless driving.
Milota was not taken to jail because of current COVID-19 policies.
Wednesday afternoon, the cleanup continued as crews used a wood chipper to shred the broken trees.
During filming, FOX 12 found four additional batteries scattered near the sidewalk.
Police are warning people not to pick up or touch the batteries, as they could be hot for up to 24 hours. The batteries can also leak harmful substances and toxic fumes, according to police.
Anyone who finds batteries is asked to contact the Corvallis Regional Communication Center at 541-766-6914 so firefighters can respond to collect the batteries for disposal.
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