Car problems are always scary. However, when a car ignites and a car fire starts, it can be downright frightening. Motor vehicle fires are fast moving, hot and unpredictable. They can cause grave injuries including severe burns. Therefore, motorists should be aware of how to protect themselves when a motor vehicle fire occurs.
Why Vehicle Fires Are Dangerous
Vehicle fires can be more dangerous and can expand more quickly than other types of fires because of the many types of flammable fuel such as gas and oil that are present in the vehicle. Other combustibles are also present in the vehicle. That, together with the numerous sources that can ignite a fire in the carís electric system, combine to make a dangerous situation.
How Car Fires Start
Vehicle fires are very common and are most often not the result of car crashes. Of the fires that are not a result of accidents or arson, the most common causes are manufacturer defects. These defects include problems with the electrical system, ignition and fuel leaks. Fuel leaks is probably the single greatest cause of fuel fed fires.
What to Do When Your Car Is In Fire
A car fire most often starts in the engine. Typically, a motorist will see smoke coming out of the sides of the engine and may notice that the gauge that measures the engine temperature is elevated. If either of these things occurs while you are in your vehicle, then the best thing to do is to pull over and stop the car. Then, get out of the car, move far away from the vehicle and call for emergency services. Never open the hood of the car as the oxygen from the air could cause an explosion or rapid expansion of the fuel fed fire that is particularly dangerous.
Can the Car Be Saved?
Many people worry about whether their car will be saved if there is a car fire. Property damage is certainly a concern and the truth is that most cars that experience a fire are destroyed. As inconvenient and financially painful as that loss may be, it is insignificant compared to the bodily harm that can come from a vehicular fire. Third degree burns that require skin grafts are common, assuming that the driver and passengers survive the accident.
For these reasons, it is important to follow all safety precautions when it comes to dangerous fuel fed fires and to let the authorities do their job.