Walmart settles lawsuit with Tesla over solar panel fires

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Walmart has reportedly agreed to drop a lawsuit against Tesla over a rash of solar panel fires filed in August, according to a new filing with the New York State Supreme Court.

Walamart claimed that years of gross negligence by Tesla — and its solar panel subsidiary, SolarCity — led to fires on the roofs of at least seven of its stores, causing millions of dollars in damage, and resulting in Walmart having the solar panels deactivated.

In a joint statement the companies said: “Walmart and Tesla are pleased to have resolved the issues raised by Walmart concerning the Tesla solar installations at Walmart stores. Safety is a top priority for each company and with the concerns being addressed, we both look forward to a safe re-energization of our sustainable energy systems.”

Walmart’s lawyers had accused SolarCity of adopting an ill-considered business model that required it to install solar panel systems haphazardly and as quickly as possible in order to turn a profit in the explosive complaint.

They argued SolarCity relied on contractors and subcontractors who were not been properly hired, trained, and supervised.

The lawyers also alleged in the lawsuit that Tesla did not properly handle Walmart’s complaints about the fires.

In August, Walmart spokesperson Randy Hargrove said that the companies were working towards a resolution, before adding that if you were to characterize that as a settlement, we wouldn’t dispute it.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk also said in a recent court deposition that he spoke to Walmart’s CEO shortly after the lawsuit was filed, and the two figured out a resolution.

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