Car explodes in B&Q car park after cigarette lighter ignites air freshner

Exploding car at B&Q

A car exploded after a cigarette accidentally ignited gases from an air freshener, firefighters have said.

One person was taken to hospital with minor injuries after all four doors and the windscreen were reportedly blown off the Ford Focus in the car park of B&Q in Southend, Essex.

An Essex County Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said the accidental blast followed a build-up of gases from an aerosol air freshener and caused "significant damage" to the vehicle.

""Incidents like this are extremely rare, but it is important for everyone to be aware how flammable aerosol cans, such as air fresheners and deodorants, can be. We strongly advise you not to use an aerosol in a confined space, and also you should not be smoking during or shortly after use."

– Justin Benson-Ryal, Temporary Assistant Divisional Officer