Serious car accidents can result in damage ranging from a mangled bumped to a totaled vehicle. They can also result in the vehicle catching fire, a hazard for both the passengers and any onlookers. A violent impact can easily loosen wires and cables, causing electric sparks to fly. If fuel is present, this can cause ignition. Overheated radiators or engines can produce enough heat to ignite leaking fuel, oil, or other flammable gases that have been released during a collision. Even if your gas tank isn’t leaking, gasoline vapor is still combustible. The smallest spark can trigger a fire in these cases. In other cases, especially cars that have lithium-ion batteries, a serious collision can cause the battery to ignite, which can quickly spread to the passenger area of a vehicle.
CBS 12 reports that a local man has died after a crash that resulted in a car fire in Fort Pierce. 23-year-old Wilkens Chery was driving a 2010 Toyota Camry north on U.S. Highway 1 near St. Lucie Boulevard. According to a Florida Wildlife Commission officer who was driving southbound, Chery was driving recklessly.
Chery made a U-turn, cutting across a grass median at an unsafe speed. He then traveled onto the sidewalk and partially into a parking lot. The FWC officer turned on his lights and attempted to execute a traffic stop. However, Chery failed to stop and continued driving. The FWC officer lost sight of Chery’s vehicle.
At some point, Chery lost control of the Toyota, hit a guard rail, followed by a fence and multiple trees. The car then overturned onto its right side and caught fire. Chery was rushed to a local hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.
The Florida Highway Patrol is in charge of the accident investigation.