How to prevent car fire and save someone from a burning car

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2014-06-12

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Cars can catch fire for many reasons, mechanical or electrical issues are the most common cause. A car can also catch fire as the result of a bad crash. If you see smoke or flames or smell burning rubber or plastic, respond immediately.

How to prevent a car fire

• Have your car serviced regularly by a professionally trained mechanic. If you spot leaks, your car is not running properly, get it checked. A well-maintained car is less likely to have a fire.

• If you must transport gasoline, transport only a small amount in a certified gas can that is sealed. Keep a window open for ventilation.

• Gas cans and propane cylinders should never be transported in the passenger compartment.

• Never park a car where flammables, such as grass, are touching the catalytic converter.

• Drive safely to avoid an accident.

Know the danger signs

• Cracked or loose wiring or electrical problems, including a fuse that blows more than once

• Oil or fluid leaks

• Oil cap not on securely

• Rapid changes in fuel or fluid level, or engine

temperature

Save Someone From a Burning car

It’s late, and you’re driving on a desolate highway. You see an orange glow in the distance‚ fire. Soon, you arrive at the scene. A car with a crushed front end has flames spilling from under the hood, and someone’s trapped inside. You call the fire brigade and….create a safe zone.

▪ Several people die every year because of secondary collisions. So block the site with your own car and flip on the hazards.

▪ Arm yourself with a tire iron and, if possible, a fire extinguisher, and don gloves and protective clothing.

▪ Walk‚ don’t run‚ toward the crash. Running can cause an adrenaline and endorphin rush, and kill clear thinking.

▪ Fight the fire. Stand uphill and upwind of the flames and discharge your extinguisher along the base of the fire. No extinguisher? For a small blaze, scoop up snow or dirt to snuff the flames.

▪ Gain access. If the doors are locked, smash the window farthest from the victim by striking it low in the corner with your tire iron.

Free the victim. Normally, you shouldn’t move a crash victim, but if fire still threatens, hook your hands under his armpits, cradle his head and neck in your forearms, and gently drag him to safety. Keep the victim’s head and torso aligned as you move him, in case of a head or spinal injury. resqme3

On TV, when a car catches fire you usually get this huge explosion. Reality is less dramatic: When fire builds up pressure in the fuel tank, the valve shoots off and a jet of fuel comes out and catches fire, but the car won’t explode.

 

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