12 OYS: Woman's Ford Focus bursts into flames; vehicle on recall list

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News 12 at 6 o'clock / July 9, 2014


HEPHZIBAH, Ga. (WRDW) -- Jamie Evo said she barely escaped with her life after her car caught on fire while she was driving to work. She found out after the fact that it was on a recall list.

Not much is left of her 2001 Ford Focus after it went up in flames.

"It started smoking. Everything went on. I got out the car. By the time I got out the car, it was in flames," Jamie Evo said.

She said moments before the fire, the car stalled on the road. She was able to restart it and pull it to the shoulder just before smoke and flames burst from the engine.

"I had the keys in my hand, and the car is starting. Trying to start on its own," Evo said.

Back in March she paid $2,000 to buy the car as-is from a local car lot.

"When I purchased the car at the beginning I did smell fumes," Evo said.

She took the car somewhere else to get it looked at and said everything checked out okay.

While that may have been the case, we did some digging and discovered that Evo's Ford Focus was on a recall list in 2001, because of a defective windshield wiper switch that could start a fire. While it is unclear if that defect is to blame, Evo said she does not hold the car lot responsible.

"I don't think that it was basically their fault, that if they knew there was a recall that this would happen," Evo said.

While there is nothing she can do now with the charred hunk of metal, Evo said she will do more legwork and check for any recalls the next time she buys a car, so she will know what she is getting into.

"I would check the list, and really do my research," Evo said.

So, before you buy your next used car, you will want to check its recall history at www.recalls.gov. Just put in the make, model and year of your vehicle.

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