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'Excuse me, your car's on fire' -- then boom

Original post made on Nov 17, 2007

A woman barely escaped serious injury this morning after parking in front of the Palo Alto Post Office in downtown Palo Alto when a bystander warned her that her car was on fire just before it exploded in flames. (Photo by Norbert von der Groeben.)

Read the full story here Web Link posted Saturday, November 17, 2007, 11:33 AM

Comments (10)

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Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 17, 2007 at 5:57 pm

Hopefully, there were no injuries.


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Posted by just here
a resident of Midtown
on Nov 18, 2007 at 12:38 pm

Yikes! what caused her car to catch fire?


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Posted by Bikes Don't Catch Fire
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 18, 2007 at 2:19 pm

Exactly! I would also like to know the make, and model of the car. This may be a congenital problem with that model - best to check out whether this has been a problem with that make/model.


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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 18, 2007 at 8:44 pm

It was a fairly recent Volvo.


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Posted by Toyota's don't catch fire
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 18, 2007 at 8:51 pm

Bikes don't catch fire,

It's a 2004 Volvo, from what the Weekly says. I don't know the model, never had any interest in Volvos.

Everyone else, sorry I just can't resist the temptation to respond. I buy cars for efficiency, value, and longevity. Not for Political Correctness.

A self-immolating Volvo...... Perfect put down to the shallowness of their PC marketing, and the useless liberal dupes who fall for it....

Read this one quick folks, Big Brother will pull it from Town Square faster than you can say "Volvo for life"......



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Posted by "O" baby
a resident of Palo Verde
on Nov 18, 2007 at 8:54 pm

1O:21 a.m.? Is that a new number? Is the zero key not working on the keyboard? Weird!


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Posted by PANDA
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Nov 18, 2007 at 9:37 pm

It may be splitting hairs, but we learned from the FD in PANDA training that cars don't "explode" as in films when their fuel tank catches fire. They may burn intensely, but, according to the trainers, would not "explode and blow out the windows", although the heat of a fire could destroy the windows. The takeaway would be that one should be cautious if attmepting a vehicle rescue, but that the car concussivley exploding is not a realistic scenario.


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Posted by Proximal Pedestrian
a resident of Downtown North
on Nov 19, 2007 at 8:14 am

I watched the whole thing from beginning to end. There was no explosion other than some minor ones, probably the tires or shock absorbers. The fire started underneath the car and spread fairly quickly to the rest of it. After they put it out, the firemen smashed all the windows to make sure there weren't any hidden pockets of fire. Fireball explosions of gas tanks are figments of the movie industry's imagination.

Initially, the woman driving the car was revving the engine without moving the car very much, which caused me to look her way. You could see that she was dragging something, either a component of her car that had fallen down, or maybe something she had run over that started the whole thing, and by this point fuel was dripping off the undercarriage and burning. A man much closer to her went over to her window and got her attention and convinced her to get out of the car. Within a couple of minutes the police and fire departments where there and the fire was out.


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Posted by Typist
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 19, 2007 at 9:46 am

O baby

In the days of yore when I was taught to type, most manual keyboards did not have a 1 or a 0. We were taught touch typing using capital O for zero and small l for one. It is a habit which I had to work hard to lose when I started using computers and occasionally find myself still reverting back to the old habits.

PS that was not my post about the time, so others have the same methods as me.


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Posted by Typist
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 19, 2007 at 9:49 am

That looks strange on the different font the post used so I will state my remarks again, we used upper case O (as in mnop) and lower case l (as in jklm) although looking at the post, the lower case l seems to appear the same as the upper case I (as in hijk).


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