Neatoramanaut Zavatone, spell checker extraordinaire and all-round good guy wrote me about his recent misadventure involving his car, electrical short, fire, and halon fire extinguisher:
Today, I had the pleasure of venturing back, driving from building to building, taking care of this and that and finally was ready to sit down and get to work with one of my coworkers when a frightened friend of mine ran into our cube and hurriedly stated "black Audi A6 out front?"
Now, I should stop right there, leaving you to guess at all my potential replies, but that would be mean and since it would be mean to be mean after a Monday like I just had, I just won't do that.
Simply, calmly and with refined grace I replied, "yes?" After which I kindly tilted my ear to hear his response which was, "It's on FIRE."
Chaos rapidly ensued involving lots of running and glorious clouds of halon*.
Suffice it to say, that my car (while innocuously parked in the OFF position) decided that it no longer approved of its left headlight assembly and proceeded, with sole intent, to burn it off the face of this planet. While this determined vehicle was partially successful, the two of us chaotic running people had to take it upon ourselves to ruin its fun with ample amounts of halon while the rest of the office stood way too close behind us, obviously cheering our efforts or chanting for our demise.
While we did win (I think), this inconvenience certainly dampened my goal of uneventful productivity for the day, but I did learn one thing. That thing is to remember to check if the model of car you drive has any recalls issued by the factory for reasons of "electrical system will likely catch on fire while you are trying to work."
Check your car to see if there are any pending recalls on it. Please.
Note by Alex: *That's not halon, which has fallen out of favor because of cost and environmental concern (the bromine in halon depletes ozone layer). It is no longer produced in the United States as of 1993. Halon doesn't leave residue. Zavatone probably used a regular dry chemical fire extinguisher. Still, his point remains valid.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has a webpage where you can check if there's a recall on your car.