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Black smoke coming from a garage in the Formula E paddock
The fire started in the pit garage occupied by WAE.

Formula E paddock evacuated after fire breaks out at pre-season testing

The cause of the fire is currently under investigation

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The afternoon session for day one of the Formula E pre-season test has been cancelled. 

Black smoke in the Formula E paddock.
The fire broke out shortly after 1pm local time.

All teams and personnel have been evacuated from the paddock at the Circuito Ricardo Tormo in Valencia.

The cause of the fire is currently unknown. However, initial reports suggest that the fire began in the WAE garage — formerly known as Williams Advanced Engineering.

Although initially thought to have been caused by a new fast charging technology, it’s believed that the fire was started by a battery taken out of the DS Penske car driven by rookie Robert Schwartzman.

Schwartzman’s car had been recovered earlier, after it had stopped on track during the morning’s running.

A statement released by Formula E states that one person has been taken to hospital for “precautionary checks” following an assessment by medics. There are no other reports of injuries.

Formula E further stated: “In a break between practice sessions, a fire was detected in the pit lane and garage area which has been contained.”

It added: “The on-track incident Response Team acted immediately to contain the incident while the main pit building and garages were quickly evacuated.“

Formula E has confirmed that, along with the FIA and local authorities, it is “investigating the cause”.

As the investigation gets underway, the afternoon session has been suspended. Afternoon testing was scheduled to begin at 2 pm local time.

Formula E have since confirmed that the afternoon session has been cancelled. Further details regarding the remainder of the pre-season test are expected to follow in due course.

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