Because most cars on the road today have internal combustion engines that run on flammable fuel, a car fire may become catastrophic quickly. According to the National Fire Protection Association, firefighters responded to more than 212,000 vehicle fires in 2018 alone. That year, 560 civilians died and 1,500 sustained injuries in motor vehicle fires.
Modern cars, trucks and SUVs have dozens of safety features to help prevent fires. Sometimes, though, vehicle designers and manufacturers inadvertently turn cars into fire hazards. That is the case with more than one million Hyundai, Genesis and Kia vehicles.
A fire-related recall
Recently, Hyundai announced a safety recall of 100,000 additional Hyundai and Genesis vehicles, bringing the total number of fire-related recalls for Hyundai and Kia vehicles to 1.5 million. The affected vehicles, some of which are electric, may have faulty brakes or batteries that may cause them to burst into flames.
If you own a recalled vehicle, you should take it to a dealer for free repairs. Until then, you should not park near buildings or other structures.
Your safety plan
Even if you do not drive a recalled Hyundai, Genesis or Kia vehicle, you should have a plan for dealing with a car fire. After all, fires may start in any motor vehicle because of either an accident or a mechanical failure.
Fires can spread quickly inside vehicles, so you should exit a burning car as soon as it is safe to do so. You may also want to carry a fire extinguisher in your car to put out small blazes. Of course, if you see smoke or flames, you should call 911 immediately.