Vehicles catching fire can be one of the scariest incidences that anyone can experience on the road. What’s even scarier is a car catching fire after an accident, in which case the usual thought that comes to mind is an explosion. No, it is very unlikely that your expensive car will explode in a spectacular Hollywood-style scene, but it can catch fire and cause irreparable damage.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), around 33 car fires are reported every hour across the US, and 18% of total reported fires both occur on the highway or the road, and involve another motor vehicle.
Causes of car fire after an accident
Fire requires three things – fuel, oxygen, and an ignition source. Since the time the burning Pinto issue appeared in 1978, car manufacturers have taken steps to ensure that these three components do not ever occur together inside vehicles. Cars bursting into flames, however, are very rare events, and only 3% of vehicles of total cases were a result of a rollover collision.
Most of the causes of fires were due to old or worn out parts, mechanical failure, or leaks of any kind. 23% of the fires were caused by electrical issues. This means we can rule out the widely propagated myth that a car will definitely catch fire after a crash of an accident.
If the fire does occur, we can partly put the blame on petrol/gasoline as these are highly flammable substances that can easily catch fire in the presence of a spark that may happen during a crash. It’s important to remember that cars run because gasoline burns inside of the engine, therefore things get quite hot in the normal process.
A lot of design elements and engineering goes into making that the heat created inside of the engine are distributed safely. However, it’s difficult to rule out the fact that a lot of things can go wrong due to the heat of running an engine. While there may not always be fire, even smoke is enough to scare the living daylights out of many people.
Standard auto insurance generally doesn’t cover vehicle fires, so you may have to get in touch with a reputable car accident attorney to get compensation. To find out why you should contact an attorney and how they can help, visit here.
Fire safety and prevention tips!
Dirty filters are dangerous, so make sure you replace them frequently to minimize the likelihood of your car catching fire. Also, tend to fluid leaks as soon as possible, be it brake/steering fluid, oil, and transmission fluid as they’re all flammable at high temperatures. Be aware of leaking fluid lines and wipe up any spills without delay.
It’s also important to make sure that no foreign object gets lost under the exhaust manifold, engine compartment, or between the valve covers. While this may not lead to a fire, you’ll see a lot of choking smoke that also stinks. By following this simple advice, you can reduce the chances of your vehicle catching fire and suffering irreparable damage for any reason.