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Family escapes injury in car fire near Rogue River

A family of four is safe after stopping and exiting their vehicle shortly before it burst into flames.

Posted: Apr. 24, 2019 4:42 PM
Updated: Apr. 24, 2019 4:50 PM

ROGUE RIVER, Ore. — A family of four is safe after stopping their vehicle shortly before it burst into flames on Wednesday, according to Rogue River Fire District (RRFD).

Fire officials said that the family had been driving south on I-5 when they began to smell something burning and experience "some transmission problems." They pulled over at the Valley of the Rogue rest area — where a trooper from Oregon State Police (OSP) happened to be stopped at the time.

The family reportedly got out of the car, and the male driver took a look under the hood alongside the OSP trooper. They saw smoke begin to billow from the engine compartment and tried to use a fire extinguisher to keep a fire from springing up. Instead, flames began licking from the underside of the car.

By the time firefighters arrived on the scene, the car was fully engulfed in flames.

"The gas tank had ruptured and not only was the vehicle on fire, but a pool of gasoline under the vehicle was also on fire," the agency said in a statement.

RRFD Incident Commaner James Chapmen made the decision to use foam mixed with water "to act as a smothering agent to extinguish the gasoline fire."

The agency said that the car was a total loss, but there were no injuries to the family or firefighters.

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