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Over 20% of all fires in the United States are under the hood.


Step 1 - Get your oil changed every 4,000 miles. The service people can then spot any oil or gas leaks.

Step 2 - If you smell gas and you didn't just spill it while filling your tank, stop immediately. Do not drive to the nearest station - STOP and turn off the engine.

Step 3- If you add your own oil, don't spill it on the engine.

Step 4 - Keep preventive maintenance up-to-date per your owner's manual. It's called "preventive" for a reason.

Step 5- Keep gasoline away from your hot engine.

Step 6- Smokers, BEWARE! Many car fires start from carelessly handled cigarettes.

(where there's smoke, there is, or soon will be, fire.)

Step 1 - Pull over - NOW!

* On a freeway, exit immediately when you sense anything out of the ordinary.

* Or, second choice, pull to the right shoulder.

* Or, third choice, the center divider. Don't cross the freeway on foot.

Step 2 - Get everyone out of the car - NOW! All passengers should get as far away from the car as possible. Behind a guardrail, if there is one.

Step 3 - If you don't have a fire extinguisher in hand, don't open the hood. If the fire starts while the hood is open, don't close it.

Step 4 -If you have a fire extinguisher which you already know how to operate, give it a try. That's why you bought it. If the fire continues to burn or you don't have an extinguisher . . .

Step 5 - Get away from the car - as far as you can get. And don't go back for your stuff.

Step 6- On a freeway, get behind the guardrail.

Step 7- Stand up-wind (so the wind is blowing from behind you toward the fire).

Step 8- Don't breathe the smoke and don't stand in a puddle of melted car - it's poison.

Step 9- Call for help. 911 on your cell phone and the freeway call box both are routed to the CHP automatically, regardless of where you are.

Step 10- Never take your eyes off the traffic.

Step 11- Wait for help to arrive - patiently. You wanted a new car anyway.

For more information regarding car fires check out this.