A fire occurring in a race situation is very different from one happening out on the open road. The actions that should be taken are also completely different.

In a race situation, there will be marshals present so the key is to get out. The marshals will take care of other racers by putting the whole track under a yellow or red flag so it is only yourself you need to consider. As you are unlikely to have passengers or luggage the aim is simply to get out of the car and get away from it.

If a fire happens on public roads in a day to day situation the rules and actions needed are equally as simple but may have more serious repercussions.

  • It may seem obvious, but the first thing to do is pullover! Do it safely, causing a crash while trying to get to the side of the road certainly won’t help!
  • Turn off the engine. A simple thing to do but often forgotten during the rush to get out.  The ignition off may even be the cause so turning it off, though not stopping things, may slow them down.
  • Get everyone out of the car! Do this quickly and safely, be aware of passing traffic when passengers are trying to leave the vehicle.
  • Do not return to the car for anything. No matter what precious possessions you have in the car, never go back.
  • Make sure you and your passengers move at least 40 meters away from the car.
  • Call 999

There are, of course, a few things to consider to avoid some of the simpler types of car fires.

  • Keep your car in good order. Have it serviced by a professional and have any recommended work done.
  • Be aware of your car, check under the bonnet from time to time. Look for loose wiring, loose caps and hoses; generally, cast your eye over the engine bay and underneath the car and be on the lookout for the unusual.
  • Be aware of fluctuations in temperature and fluid levels when driving. A sharp increase in temperature or a drop in oil pressure would indicate something is wrong!


Of course, having a fire extinguisher on board is always a good idea but you should always be careful if you attempt to tackle a fire. Contact us for more information about all types of car fire extinguishers.