Tesla taxi crossing 200,000 miles – maintenance costs, battery life, impressive!

Click to enlarge

Tesloop, a Tesla-only intercity shuttle service for Southern California and Las Vegas residents, has just surpassed the magical 200,000 mile marker driven in a Model S. The achievement goes down as one of the highest mileage Teslas we’ve ever heard of which is notable in itself.

The folks at TechCrunch had the chance to catch up with Tesloop CEO Rahul Sonnad to find out more about what it’s like behind the wheel of a high mileage Tesla. When asked about whether there were any concerns over battery degradation as the vehicle continued to tack on hundreds of thousands of miles driven, Sonnad indicates that the Tesloop Model S, which reached the 200k mile marker in one year, has lost only 6% of battery range.

Sonnad tells TechCrunch, “For your daily driver, you don’t fully charge unless you’re doing a long trip, We’re doing a long trip every day. We save, like, three minutes in charging in Barstow if we fully charge beforehand. We decided that we’re gonna suck it up, fully charge, and let it degrade. We figured that if it degraded enough, we could take it off a Vegas route and put it on a local Orange County route.”

Even more noteworthy is the fact that Tesloop’s Model S has had little to no maintenance costs. Aside from replacing tires and the 12V battery, the car has never gone through a set of brake pads, nor experience any major issues…

Tesloop’s remarkable achievement in crossing 200,000 miles and counting further validates why Tesla owners embrace having a high mileage car and treat it as a badge of honor. Free long-distance travel courtesy of Tesla’s growing Supercharger network, combined with virtually no maintenance costs, is a win-win no matter how you look at it.

Nothing to add. If you can afford it up front, nothing wrong with owning one of the best and saving money at the same time.

My wife and I are both retired. Couple years ago, she got the last new car we’ll have in the family from here on out. Between the two of us, we drive about 2000 miles/year, now. Otherwise? If we were still a few years away from the end of commuting, electric is the way we’d go.

BP will settle 25,000 lawsuits over toxic Texas refinery

Click to enlargeAP/MSNBC

BP is poised to settle a mass tort lawsuit with more than 25,000 people who were exposed to toxic emissions from its southeast Texas refinery.

A common sight in Texas, flares intermittently crown refineries and chemical plants like huge Olympic torches.

Flares are as a last-resort pollution-control measure. They burn off excess gases that can’t be recycled. They are also deployed during power outages or when plants are shut down for maintenance.

The BP litigation arose from a faulty flare at its Texas City refinery…

More than 40,000 residents of Texas City and neighboring La Marque sued BP, claiming that over 40 days in April and May 2010 the company released more than 500,000 pounds of toxic chemicals, including carcinogenic benzene, after diverting the compounds to the flare that was only 33 to 66 percent efficient…

Due to the volume of cases, they were funneled to Galveston County Judge Lonnie Cox by the Texas multidistrict litigation panel, to streamline pretrial proceedings, which is regularly done for asbestos cases…

Cox dismissed about 20,000 claimants from the case Monday, granting a motion for summary judgment in which BP claimed the litigants had no evidence of damages caused by the toxins.

Anthony Buzbee represents dozens of the more than 25,000 remaining plaintiffs…“These were mostly people who didn’t respond to repeated requests for information. That is common in a mass tort with this many plaintiffs,” Buzbee said…about the dismissed cases…

Buzbee, a high-profile Houston attorney, is very familiar with BP, having represented litigants who sued the company over the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

BP attorney James Galbraith declined comment and the company has not publicized the amount of the impending settlement.

Texas City refining has a long and dangerous history, disasters have claimed anywhere from dozens to hundreds of lives each time. While the Oil Patch Boys lead the world in whining about over-regulation, this history makes clear that the lives of workers in these facilities means next to nothing to the owners – or state officials who bear much of the responsibility for death and destruction. Whether it was eventful and grabbed headlines – or destroyed the lives of thousands of families over decades.