If you’re involved in a crash, one of the risks is that your vehicle could catch on fire — particularly in a high-speed, high-impact wreck.
In 2018, 560 people were killed and 1,500 people were injured in vehicle fires. Around 212,500 vehicle fires took place that year, many of which happened on highways around the country. Most often, they were a result of mechanical failures, electrical failures and collisions.
Trucks aren’t as safe when it comes to vehicle fires
Unfortunately, while trucks are safer in most kinds of crashes, that doesn’t hold true when there’s a fire. Large trucks were found to have a higher rate of death per 1,000 fires than other types of vehicles.
Trucks, buses, cars, motorcycles and recreational vehicles accounted for the majority of the fires studied by the National Fire Protection Association and released in its March 2020 data release. In many cases, mechanical or electrical failures were the cause. For example, older vehicles may have had poor wiring. Vehicles that are 10 or more years old are at a higher risk of having fires occur due to mechanical problems.
What about fires in collisions?
Fires may start after collisions for a few reasons, such as because of high-speed impacts and high-force impacts. Trucks were most at risk of significant fires because of larger fuel tanks and the potential for greater force when a crash occurs.
Overall, it’s important to note that speed and force play a significant impact in the likelihood of a vehicle fire in a collision. Slow down to minimize that risk. If one does break out, get out of the vehicle as soon as possible and move to a safe location.
If you were injured in a wreck, make sure that you get experienced representation on your side to protect your interests.