You are on your way home after picking up your kids from school, when all of a sudden your engine starts to smoke. You don’t want to worry your children, so you slowly pull over to the side of the road. However, before you can put the car in park, your hood explodes into the air, and dozens of sparks fly out of the engine compartment.

Your children start to scream as you turn off the engine and unbuckle yourself. As you turn to calm your babies down, the engine smoke starts to funnel in through the vents. In a matter of seconds you can barely see anything.

What do you do? Your children are sobbing between violent coughs, your eyes are watering from the smoke, and you can feel the heat of the fire getting closer and closer to your back. How do you get yourself and your family to safety?

Vital Safety Tips to Use When Trapped in a Car Fire

Throughout the United States, nearly 300,000 vehicle fires are reported annually, according to the National Fire Protection Association. These fires, caused by various types of accidents, account for over 400 roadway deaths, and an estimated 1,500 civilian injuries every year. This is why it is extremely important for you to not only know your car fire risks, but also how to protect yourself if you become trapped within your burning vehicle.

By following the below checklist, you can help prevent a car fire tragedy:

  • Turn off your engine. Fumes, an overheated engine, and sparks can help feed a fire.
  • Ventilate smoke. If your car is filling up with smoke, open a window to introduce fresh air and prevent yourself from passing out. However, before opening the window, be wary of any flames within the car—as excess oxygen could cause a flare up.
  • Unbuckle yourself first, then help passengers. Even though your immediate reaction may be to save your family, you can’t properly do so if you are still restrained. Free yourself first, then attend to your family.
  • Exit the car as quickly as possible and help your passengers do the same. If for some reason the doors are stuck or blocked, break the window furthest away from the fire and exit that way.
  • Get as far away from the car as possible. Fumes, gasoline, and upholstery can ignite very quickly and cause explosive results. Don’t attempt to go back for anything, and keep your family and bystanders away as well.
  • Call emergency services. An ambulance may be required for smoke inhalation or burn injuries, and fire fighters are equipped to properly extinguish the fire’s threat—never assume that your injuries aren’t severe enough to require medical attention, nor try to control the fire yourself.

Protecting Yourself After the Fact

Getting yourself and your family safely away from a car fire is only the first step in protecting them. How did the fire begin? Whose actions put your family at risk? How will you pay for any sustained injuries? You have questions—and we have answers. Contact us today for a free consultation and review of your case. We can help you understand your rights, file an injury claim, and get the answers and justice you seek. You survived the fire, now get the help you need to survive the aftermath.

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