FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — An electrical issue likely caused a truck to catch fire yesterday afternoon, says Fire Prevention Officer Curtis Redpath.
“The truck was plugged in at the time of the fire, into the block heater. It was also running, so something happened, what we think is electrical.”
The Fort St. John Fire Department responded to a call yesterday, saying a truck was on fire at Valiant Oilfield Hauling. Redpath said the truck was being run to prepare for moving trailers, and a malfunction caused a fire.
The blaze was taken care of within half an hour, but the truck — a flatdeck Peterbilt — was damaged beyond repair.
Redpath says block heaters have caused many fires in vehicles here in the winter. He advises drivers to not slam the cord — the block heater’s cord or the extension cord — in the hood of the vehicle.
“It damages the wires,” he said. “Just keep an eye on the cord for any damage, and if you can, run the cord through the grill rather than the hood.”
Unattended idling has also resulted in some vehicle fires, as he recalls another recent vehicle fire in which a car was left running while the owner left in another vehicle — only to become full engulfed and have to be extinguished by the fire department.
The fire happened around 2:30 yesterday afternoon, and no injuries were reported.