Many vehicles explode or catch fire during the fueling process due to manufacturing and vehicle design defects, manufacturing flaws, or negligence. Simply stated, fuel tank fires and vehicle fires do not happen on their own.
Causes of Gas Station fires
Surprisingly, there has been a sharp increase in motor vehicle refueling fires and explosions over the last couple of years. The Petroleum Equipment Institute as well as automobile manufacturers started documenting and investigating refueling fires approximately 15 years ago. Generally, a refueling fire or explosion is caused by a spark of electricity that can be caused by static electricity or an electrical short or defect. The Petroleum Equipment Institute has noted that many refueling fires are caused by a transfer of static electricity, which can be caused by a cell phone, ungrounded fuel pump, getting into the automobile, or sliding across the seat and grabbing for the fuel pump. Many times a refueling or fuel fed fire will lead to catastrophic injuries and wrongful death. Most gas stations require the operator shut off the vehicle’s engine while fueling and to avoid smoking while in the vicinity of fuel.
Post-fueling fires can also occur due to defects in the fuel lines, fuel pumps, or electrical system of the vehicle. It is a basic principle of automotive design and crashworthiness for fuel systems to be properly designed and remain secure and intact. However, oftentimes, fuel tank design defects and defects in the placement of fuel tanks can cause a leak during a collision or due to violent forces, which may cause an explosion and resulting fire. In a fuel injected vehicle, significant pressure forces fuel through the fuel lines and into the engine. Proper design would require the system to shut off properly after an accident so that gasoline does not circulate through the fuel lines and fuel system.
Call the Refueling and Gas Station Fire Attorneys at Reiff & Bily for Help With Your Case
If you have been injured during a fire or explosion while refueling a vehicle or due to a fuel fed fire in a vehicle, please contact one of the experienced fuel fed fire lawyers of Reiff & Bily. Our skilled Pennsylvania trial lawyers have over three decades of experience representing generations of individuals and their families who have suffered catastrophic injuries and wrongful deaths due to negligence, design defects and flaws, failure to warn, and premise liability in relation to vehicle refueling accidents and fires.
We always offer free, no obligation consultations and never charge a fee unless we make a successful recovery. Please contact us toll free at (215) 274-0072 online by filling out the confidential contact for above.