Woman in Germany sets car ablaze with a gas-huffing vacuum cleaner
15 August 2019 - Autoblog
She attempted to remove fuel from the tank of her VW Passat after filling it with gas instead of diesel.
File this one in the "don't ever do this" category. A 55-year-old woman is under some heat after she and a gas station attendant attempted to siphon fuel out of her tank with a vacuum cleaner, setting the car ablaze. The incident occurred in the town of Eschborn, Germany just west of Frankfurt after the driver of a Volkswagen Passat wagon accidentally filled the car up with gasoline instead of diesel.
To pump out the incorrect fuel, one of the gas station attendants helped the woman push the Passat to the station's vacuum cleaner. Then, according to the Westhessen-Wiesbaden police press release, they stuck a garden hose in the tank and then tried to use the vacuum to start siphoning the gas out.
That's when the flames erupted, setting the Passat wagon ablaze.
Fire crews arrived shortly after and were able to get the blaze under control. Once extinguished, the fire resulted in over 30,000 euros, or $33,427 USD worth of damage. The 20-year-old station attendant suffered a minor burn while the woman walked away uninjured.
We shouldn't have to say this, but using a vacuum cleaner to move highly combustible fluids is a strict no-no. Not only are vacuum cleaners not meant to suck in a volatile liquid, there are several ways in which a vacuum could cause the fuel or vapors to ignite.