(Photo Credit: Flavio Gasperini on Unsplash)
Car fires can be a terrifying experience for those that are unprepared. If not handled properly, it can greatly endanger the lives of vehicle occupants as well as bystanders.
Usually caused by overheated engines or fuel system leaks, car owners must always act quickly to prevent injuries. If your car ever catches fire, here are the things you should do.
1. Signal Your Intentions and Pull Over to the Left Lane
If you smell something burning or see black smoke coming from your car hood, quickly signal and pull over to the left side of the road.
2. Switch Off Your Engine
This step is vital as it stops the flow of fuel to your engine. If your engine isn't switched off, a full-blown fire could occur.
3. Get Out of the Car and Distance Yourself from Your Vehicle
Get yourself and all passengers out of the vehicle and move to a safe location. Avoid grabbing personal belongings as fires can be rather unpredictive and might spread quickly.
4. Call the Singapore Civil Defence Force (995) for Assistance
Once you’re in a safe location, quickly call the Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF) for assistance. They have the necessary equipment to put out the fire if it gets out of control.
5. Warn Other Road Users to Stay Away
If you have an emergency warning triangle, be sure to place it 100 metres away from your vehicle to warn other motorists of the situation. The last thing you want is for other cars to go crashing into the back of your burning vehicle.
(Optional) 6. Use a Fire Extinguisher to Put Out the Fire
If the fire is small and manageable, you could try to put it out yourself—provided you have a fire extinguisher at hand.
However, if the fire is coming from the rear of your vehicle, DO NOT attempt to put it out. Instead, you should quickly evacuate your car and distance yourself away from your vehicle as soon as possible. A fire from the rear could indicate a burning fuel tank.
When faced with car fires, it’s important to remain calm and act quickly. Personal safety is the utmost importance. Always remember that cars can always be replaced, but human lives can't.
We hope you found these safety procedures useful. Who knows, it might save your life one day. As always, we hope you all stay safe on the roads!
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