Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Hey, those flames aren't painted on!

Last night around 11:30 PM I heard the fire alarm go off in the neighboring apartment building. I went outside and at first didn't see anything, but then I noticed some black smoke. So I went back in, grabbed my camera and went out into the parking lot.It was a Ford F-150 on fire. This is the first shot I took, although the flames didn't seem that big at the time. Soon after, the front tires of the truck exploded. The owner of the truck was there and had pulled the fire alarm because he didn't have a cell phone on him. Someone called 911.
The owner had tried to put out the fire with a small extinguisher. It didn't work. We waited and watched the flames get larger. There were vehicles parked on either side of the F-150: an Accord to the left and a new Jeep Grand Cherokee to the right. At this point they look ok. (See the bright lit-up side of the Jeep, not burning at this point.)
Over the next two minutes the flames spread rapidly over the F-150 and more tires exploded. The flames flared up and began to spread to the Jeep on the right.
The Jeep caught fire very quickly. I had been watching the F-150 burn for about 3-4 minutes, but after the Jeep caught on fire it was burning rather well after only 30-45 seconds. I moved to the other side of the building and got this shot, where you can see the Jeep going up. At this point we heard the fire engine sirens in the distance and presently the engine went by on Eldridge toward the apartment complex entrance.
The fire truck pulled in and the firefighters walked right up to the burning vehicles.
Within two to three seconds, the main part of the fire was out as the three firefighters sprayed water on the blaze. At least, it looked like water and not foam.
They continued to spray water and smashed out the windows to spray water inside the Jeep. Then they opened the hoods and doors one by one, unleashing little pockets of flame and hosing them down.
It was all over that fast. Unfortunately it turned out that the Accord and Jeep both belonged to the same guy. The Accord suffered some burn damage on the headlights but otherwise looked driveable. The Jeep was probably totaled. The engine had burned extensively and the hood had a large hole in it. The F-150, also "totaled", looked relatively intact despite the fact that it had burned five or six times longer.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Be careful where you park!