Woman blames oil change for car fire in middle of traffic

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Woman blames oil change for car catching fire, Kaitlin McCulley reports. (KTRK)

A young mother wants answers after her car caught fire on the Beltway last month.

Rosa Joseph said she took her car to North Freeway Auto Service on October 6 for an oil change. A few hours after she left, she said her 2013 Ford Fusion caught fire.

She recorded the incident on Facebook Live, saying "I was driving and it just started smoking."

"I'm hurt at the fact that my car is gone," Joseph said. "At a time like this, I don't want to have to deal with it. Christmas is around the corner."

Inspection papers show the car passed its inspection this year. Also, there are no recalls associated with the vehicle identification number.

Rosa said the auto shop owner, Cesar Hernandez, did not return her call for three weeks. She said he has not taken responsibility for the car fire.

Eyewitness News spoke with a store manager, Javier Gallegos, at North Freeway Auto Service and asked him what went wrong with Joseph's car.


"All that's being taken care of by our corporate office and I'm pretty sure they talked to her already about it, so there's nothing that I know after that point," Gallegos said.

ABC13 eventually reached Hernandez by phone. He said North Freeway Auto Service has hired an investigator to determine if the car fire could have been their fault. He said if it is, then the company will "do the right thing."

Rosa says without a car, she walks 20 minutes to the bus stop each morning and rides the bus for an hour to and from her job. She is depending on relatives and friends to help her with her children, ages four and eight.

The fire incident report from the Volunteer Northwest Fire Department did not list a definitive cause of the fire.
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