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Investigating Why Some BMWs Are Catching Fire


In an ongoing report, ABC News World Tonight has been investigating why certain models of BMWs are suddenly catching fire. The investigation began on May 11, after correspondent Brian Ross reported that “dozens of BMW owners” have been reporting that their vehicles have been catching on fire “while parked and turned off for hours.” Ross also reported that after learning of the fires, BMW issued a report claiming their “investigation shows no problem or defect, and that such cases are rare” and that “outside factors could be a cause, including poor maintenance or rodents’ nests.”

Collaborative Investigation Found Surprising Results

ABC News followed up with Ross’ story by working with ABC satellite news stations across the county in cities including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, and Raleigh. Together, these stations found that more than 40 BMWs across the country inexplicably caught fire while parked over the last five years. None of these 40 plus vehicles had open recalls for fire safety issues. So the reasons for the sudden combustion still remains unsolved.

The NHTSA Responds

ABC reported their findings to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that oversees manufacturer safety and vehicle inspections. They investigated the issues and have not identified a potential safety defect in BMWs that creates a fire hazard. However, the NHTSA advises that anyone that experiences a sudden fire with their BMW, should report the incident on their website.

What You Need To Know About Vehicle Fire Safety

Cars catching on fire presents a serious danger to those around them. If your car catches on fire while parked, here is what you need to do to stay safe.

1. Clear the area. Make sure all passengers and bystanders are at least 150 feet away from the vehicle.
2. Call 911 immediately. Do not try to put the fire out yourself.
3. If possible, alert any oncoming traffic or businesses in the area about the fire.
4. Ask the firefighters, if and when it is safe to approach the vehicle.
5. If the firefighters say it is safe. Take a lot of pictures of the vehicle and fire damage. If you need to, ask for help from the firefighter to remove any personal items in the vehicle.

You will then need to report the fire to your insurance agency, the vehicle manufacturer, and the NHTSA.

What To Do If Your BMW Catches Fire

Though BMW has not issued a vehicle recall, 40 vehicles spontaneously catching on fire while parked is a concern for any BMW owner. You need to be prepared for the worst to keep yourself and your family safe. First, make sure to always maintain your vehicle with a certified BMW mechanic. If you have a record of proper maintenance and your car catches on fire, it is clearly a manufacturer’s issue. Secondly, you will want to talk to a lawyer. Your car catching on fire spontaneously is a serious hazard and between the risk and the property damage you need to make sure that you are protected.

BMW is a very popular make of vehicle in Florida. Nearly 14% of all vehicles sold in Florida are luxury brands like BMW. So if your BMW catches on fire, you need to speak with a personal injury attorney to ensure you are fairly compensated for the damage. Since BMW has yet to issue a recall, it may be difficult proving that your vehicle caught on fire because of a manufacturer’s defect. Fortunately, the attorneys at , Goldman, Babboni, Fernandez, & Walsh can help. We have over 150 years combined experience helping Florida residents get the compensation they deserve from vehicle malfunctions. If your vehicle has caught on fire, contact us today for a free consultation to see how we can help.

Michael J. Babboni's wide-ranging legal career is based on the strong belief that everyone should be treated fairly and have access to effective legal help. Michael began putting his beliefs in action by helping the people of St. Petersburg Florida get what they are owed in civil trials fighting to protect families by making corporations pay, and honor their obligations.

Investigating Why Some BMWs Are Catching Fire

Goldman Babboni Fernandez
Murphy & Walsh




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