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Sep 18, 2018

NEVER Leave Water Bottles In Your Hot Car… Here’s Why!

US firefighters are alerting drivers to the risks of leaving bottled water in their vehicles, warning that they could pose a potential fire hazard.
“The sunlight will come through, when it’s filled with liquid, and act as a magnifying glass as you would with regular optics,” David Richardson of the Midwest Fire Department told KFOR News.”It uses the liquid and the clear material to develop a focused beam and sure enough, it can actually cause a fire, a combustion,” Richardson said.
And while the likelihood of a fire occurring is low, it does happen – just ask Idaho battery technician Dioni Amuchastegui.

In a video posted to Facebook last month, Amuchastegui shared that he was on a lunch break when he saw smoke coming from his truck. “I looked over and noticed that light was being refracted through a water bottle and was starting to catch the seat on fire.” Two burn marks were left in the seat cover.
After the close call, Amuchastegui explained that he and his colleagues conducted another test and registered the temperature. At 99 degrees celsius, it was “hot enough to burn a hole through the seat”.
When Midwest City Fire Department shared the video to their Facebook page, firefighters explained in more detail, exactly what conditions would be necessary to start a fire in a vehicle.
“The ignition point of paper is around 450 degrees (232 degrees celsius),” they wrote. “The conditions have to be just right. The bottle has to have liquid, the liquid has to be clear, the bottle has to be clear, and sunlight has to pass through it (once you have all three conditions above) at such an angle that it creates a focused point of light similar to a magnifying glass and against generally darker than white material.
“These conditions likely cannot be met in a moving vehicle or one with dark tinted windows unless it comes through the front window and the bottle is set such to meet the above conditions.”
Nevertheless, as the weather heats up, it’s certainly a good reminder to err on the side of caution and take your water bottles with you when you leave your car.

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