In a recent blog, we mentioned the merits of good practices when plumbing or wiring a modified car but the safety aspect needs to be addressed as well. Fuel and oil lines are not places to save money on cheaper parts, they are not places to save time while building, and attention needs to be paid to how these systems are routed and secured. Too many times have we found loose oil or fuel lines in a vehicle that were about to cause an issue. We even had a problem during our Drakan testing when an OEM fuel connector came off the hard line it was attached to because too much movement was allowed. A simple ziptie fixed any future problem.
Below is an example of what a fuel fire can look like inside a car. This video shows the speed at which a fuel fire can start, the importance of safety gear (it is not all created equally by the way) and the importance of practicing getting out of your car in an emergency. While we do not know the cause of the fuel fire in this vehicle, it is a very eye opening look at the seriousness of a fuel fire, no matter the cause.
This is especially relevant to the Lotus Elise and Exige community because the design of the stock fuel tank allows the engine to be fuel starved in left hand turns when low on fuel. In our opinion, there are two ways to safely take care of this issue.Scary moment today as my car caught on fire after a fuel leak. Lucky to walk away and most importantly I am okay, with only a few blisters. pic.twitter.com/Q8MunMyuK2— Ben Waddell (@BenWaddell) October 23, 2016
- Keep your tank topped up.
- Use a baffled fuel tank like our V2 Tank .
Here another video of a Lotus Exige on fire:
Here is less alarming (actually quite funny) video from another fire. This one is more likely oil related than fuel, but the lessons still apply.
So please remember:
- Pay attention when modifying fuel, oil, or wiring systems.
- Wear your safety gear!