The color of my car is GM Torch Red

When I ran out of gas driving the ’57 Chevy to see my brother in Brookings, my fuel gauge said I still had 1/8 tank. The first thing I did was pull the fuel filter off to see if it was plugged. If the car hasn’t been driven in a day, I have to crank the starter quite a while before it fires up. I wonder if it’s getting fuel. Because of times like these, I wanted a fuel filter I could see through. I got one. It was on the wall with many others in the fuel filter section of the auto parts store. It was plastic, and maybe that’s why it came off. When I installed it, it was on solid with the same screw down hose clamps that held the previous filter.

I was backing out of a parking space at the hospital. The car began acting like it wasn’t getting fuel. I pumped the gas peddle a couple times and I heard a pop sound, like when the propane in a barbeque ignites. I thought, “Great, I’ve backed over something or a part fell off,” but suddenly a path of liquid flames was streaming away on the pavement in front of my car, and the Torch Red paint in the center of the hood was literally dancing. Instantly smoke and flames were pouring out of every escape from the doors forward.

I quickly turned the key off, got out, opened the trunk, grabbed the fire extinguisher (that had been waiting for this moment for 10 years), opened the hood and sprayed the fire out. It was an adrenalin powered moment. Without that extinguisher I would have been able to do nothing but stand and watch it burn. A couple guys rushed over to see if they could help, someone called the fire department but the flames were out long before they arrived.

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The smoke cleared and the dust settled. Things were burnt and things were melted, but after removing what was left of the air filter and reconnecting the fuel line, I was able to start it up and drive it home.

It was a stark reminder that this car is a thing and not a loved one. It’s a thing I enjoy very much, but a thing just the same. And as I was reminded, things can unexpectedly be gone in an instant, but things can be repaired and things can be replaced.

Loved ones can be gone in an instant. People can not be replaced. I am so thankful for treasured moments and precious memories with friends and loved ones in my life. These are gifts from God, and are infinite blessings to me.


10 comments on “The color of my car is GM Torch Red

  1. Don MacDonald says:

    Hello Scott Glad your car and you are ok  I know your car was  a hot rod  but you don’t have to have a flame out to prove it .;-))   OK just joking with ya . Ya not fun at all.!!

        BOY you were very lucky to have the exteneter with ya . I can relate to ya  in one way.      Many years ago with the 4 door we started out ! -5 just hit the ramp to go on and all of a sudden smoke started coming out of under the  dash. I was able to get off the side  ran out pulled the battery cable off and it was out  but  just at the same time Diane was going for our exteneter. TO hit the dash.     I was able to stop her and I save the inside of the dash for I knew what had happen and it was over no smoke. I had a short .  I saw it so I just pulled the wire  back and tape it off  Re hook the cable and made sure nothing more was going to go wrong..     I was lucky I had some tape from doing some wiring the day be for .  YA your right you can loose something with out any warning.   Afterwords I pulled off of the ramp compleatly and made sure of no more problems and we took off .    I was lucky myself that day for we had to be some wear and the rambler was the only thing we had going at the time.    Happy you were able to get it under control  NOT fun to see or smell smoke in  car. I know that feeling.     We woke up to another surprise this morning. at about 3 i woke up and went up stairs to take care of mother natural as I walk the our laundry room I felt me foot get wet .  O now what I turn on the lights to see water. O no  my first thought was I had a wall leaking for our walls leak many years ago when we first move in. BUT wait it is not raining THEN I started looking HOT water heater  was leaking out the top.  Wear the over flow  vlave  is . It was leaking at the of top pipe.   Long story short . water heater is now drain and in the morning I  go looking for a new one.  I had no warning at all.  So again It shows any thing can happen with out any warning .  I had no problems at and it was working fine until this morning.   ONE thing for sure I was glad to have to have the net that was  I got my information on what to do. Cant really call any one at 3 am in the morning for a water leak problem. I could have but did not want to .        Glad your ok and it was only a  under the hood fire.  YOU Could have compleaty lost the chevy .  BUT Your like us we all traval with safty in mind.     SO how you doing other wise.?? Been thinking of ya  and was planning on calling soon.   OK get back in touch when you can thanks for the compleat story of what happen .  So now  what do you have to replace and how much wireing I hope not much.   That is one sweet 57 . MY best to both of ya     Ya you know your better half Diane. Tell her we say hi ..           DON 

    • scanfie says:

      Thanks, Don. If a pilot says any landing you walk away from is a good landing, is any car fire you can drive away from a good fire? Maybe it was good that it wasn’t real bad. Anyway, it sounds like we’ve both had that experience. Good luck with the new water heater. I must have replaced three or four here, but in 40 years, that’s not bad.

  2. Tamara Wright says:

    Yikes….so glad you’re okay!! I guess I’ll leave the various fire extinguishers scattered around, right where Jerry put them! Yes, these experiences leave us with the distinct impression that “stuff” isn’t as big a deal as we once thought. And thanks again, Scott, for taking the time to forward recent pictures….the whole family is enjoying them 😊

  3. Ruth says:

    Excitement is the spice to life! Or so they say…. So glad to hear you are all right. Thanks for inspiring me to get a fire extinguisher in our cars!

  4. Jon says:

    Hey Scott, You are so right about people being more important than things. So glad to have you as a friend. Jon

  5. Bo's says:

    People are definitely more important than things – they are one-of-a-kind while cars can be repaired or replaced. It is also a good reminder to put a fire extinguisher in the car.

    • scanfie says:

      Bo, I’ve learned that if you are going to put a fire extinguisher in your car, a BC type extinguisher is likely a better choice than an ABC type and will cost about the same. The BC will be less corrosive, which will be a bonus if you do successfully get the fire out before it does serious damage.

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