It’s good for vehicles to carry portable fire extinguisher, say experts

It’s good for vehicles to carry portable fire extinguisher, say experts

The lorry was parked for about 10 minutes when its driver, who was sitting by the roadside, smelled something burning.

He was horrified to see smoke emerging from the engine before it burst into flames, causing the used goods dealer to lose several thousand dollars when the incident happened in January.

He isn't the only one whose vehicle had burst into flames.

There were 218 such vehicle fires last year, up from 202 in 2012. And to combat these fires, the National Fire and Civil Emergency Preparedness Council (NFEC) said it encourages drivers to equip their vehicles with a fire extinguisher.

An NFEC spokesman said: "Most vehicle fires start small, but can spread rapidly due to the presence of flammables such as petrol, diesel and lubricants."

Some experts whom The New Paper spoke to agreed that it would be good for vehicles to carry a portable fire extinguisher.

One of them is accident reconstruction engineer Kelvin Koay, who has been dealing with road accidents for 40 years.

He said: "It's useful to have one in your car. In the event of a small non-electrical fire, the driver can take action and put out the fire before it spreads.

"It gives the driver confidence and allows him to protect himself.

"You don't have to wait till the Singapore Civil Defence Force gets to you. By then, the fire could have become huge."

Likewise, the director of fire solutions company 5 Ways Engineering Services, Mr Derrick Ng, said having a fire extinguisher in the car would allow the driver or passengers to act fast.

Said Mr Ng: "There's no harm in keeping a portable fire extinguisher in your car boot or mounted near the engine.

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