Good thing it was a pretty relaxed weekend with a lot of sleep as last night (sunday) I got paged out to a car fire around 3:30 AM. I got to the firehouse and there was no one there yet. I geared up and only two more guys came. One drove, I took the officer's seat and the third jumped in the back. We could see a tower of smoke in the sky as we got near. It was a parking lot of a Shoprite and the car was cranking with fire blowing out of the engine, both wheel wells and the interior seats were burning pretty good.
I jumped out of the engine and Jay pulled the front hoseline off and stretched it out for me then handed me the nozzle. As I got closer to the car I put my mask on, since the Chiefs are big ball busters about being on air if getting close to a car fire, both for respiration reasons as well as face protection. The water came just as another engine pulled up, and one of their guys ran up to back me up on the line. I started hitting the front wheel well, which had fire blowing out of it at this point, and I shot at the side windows quickly as I wasn't sure if they were still there or if they were broken through yet, but the water reached far so that answered that question.
I shut down the water as someone came with a K12 saw and made a horizontal cut right across the hood of the car to get to the engine compartment. Finally opening that up like a sardine can, I got water on the burning engine before walking to the rear of the car and shooting water up into the rear wheel well in an attempt to keep the gas tank cool. Me and the backup guy musta walked around the car 3 times, putting water on whatever was burning, before the fire finally dimmed down. I then looked to the right and there was another black SUV pretty close with some burning crap down by the tires, so I hosed the truck down just to keep it cool.
Finally someone took the saw to the trunk and we got that open, and the fire was finally out. Looking into the car, I saw that the steering column actually melted away, as well as the rubber on the steering wheel, leaving a bare metal circle sitting on the floor. Looking back, it would have made a great souvenier for the firehouse had I thought about grabbing it.