Cigarette Sparks Explosion Inside Dodge Charger, Starts House Fire

Cigarette Sparks Explosion Inside Dodge Charger, Starts House Fire

A woman hopping inside a Dodge Charger for a cigarette sparked an explosion that destroyed the car, burned down a significant portion of her home and left her with third-degree burns. How could a cigarette cause so much destruction while sitting in a driveway? A propane tank was being stored in the back seat with the windows rolled up.

Rashanda Broome walked out of her home in Charlotte at around 1:30 p.m. Monday afternoon. She stepped into a Charger, and 30 seconds later there was an explosion. A neighbour described what happened right afterwards to WSOC, “The car was just on fire at one point in time. And then the car led to the house being on fire. It made a big noise. It shook everything and everything came out of the wall and the house.”

Immediately after the blast, Broome opened the door and escaped the fire. Video footage also shows a man running out of the home and attempting to put out the fire. According to WSOC, she lit a cigarette. Normally, that wouldn’t be an issue, but there was a crucial difference. A propane tank was being stored inside the car. The cigarette ignited the trapped vapours.

The fire would completely consume the Charger and then spread to the home. The Charlotte Fire Department was quick to respond and arrived in a minute. Broome suffered third-degree burns and was transported to the Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Burn Center. The blaze was contained to the front portion of the home and the attic. The heat was so intense that it melted the vinyl siding on an adjacent home.
Safely storing fuel is important. Canisters and other containers aren’t completely airtight and will give off vapours. If propane or any other fuel isn’t stored in a well-ventilated area, it can’t be a recipe for disaster.


Want more Aussie car news? Here’s every EV we’ve reviewed in the last two years, all the EVs we can expect down under soon, and our guide to finding EV chargers across the country. Check out our dedicated Cars tab for more.

The Cheapest NBN 50 Plans

It’s the most popular NBN speed in Australia for a reason. Here are the cheapest plans available.

At Gizmodo, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. We have affiliate and advertising partnerships, which means we may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. BTW – prices are accurate and items in stock at the time of posting.