Donahue, Michael L. and Campbell, Colin A. Investigation of Motor Vehicle
Fires. Firehouse. August, 1990. pp. 58-60.
Abstract: This is Part One of a two-part article. Part Two appears
in the November, 1990 issue of Firehouse.
The National Auto Theft Bureau has conducted several tests to determine
the combustibility of different materials found in cars. The NATB simulated
the most common vehicle fires reported by owners. The results found that
an accidental automobile fire is rare in a properly functioning vehicle.
Accidental fires are slow burning and are usually extinguished before the
entire car is burned. This results in localized damage. Most arsonists use
an accelerant, which will ignite the entire vehicle. The vehicle will usually
burn evenly from front to back in a shorter amount of time. This article
provides a list of the different items tested and how much damage would
result from each type of fire.
The article also provides a list of outside variables that could indicate
arson. The list includes: the time and place of the fire, the insurance
coverage of the vehicle, and the financial situation of the owner.
For more information, contact:
PTN Publishing Corporation
445 Broad Hollow Road, Ste 21
Melville, NY 11747
Phone: (516) 845-2700