Pick-up truck fire extinguished at Baiting Hollow house

PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | Riverhead firefighters douse a burning pick-up truck that caught fire while its owner was making repairs with a cutting torch Friday morning.

Riverhead firefighters put out a vehicle fire at a Baiting Hollow residence Friday morning after the pick-up truck burst into flames while its owner was working on it with a cutting torch.

No one was injured in the incident, fire officials at the scene said.

Baiting Hollow resident Jon Fliedner said he was working on his Ford F-250 pick-up truck with an acetylene torch in the driveway of his Wyl Lane home about 11:15 a.m. when the truck caught fire.

The truck, which was parked near an open-air shed about two dozen feet from Mr. Fliedner’s home, was quickly engulfed by the fire.

Riverhead firefighters arrived on the scene and had the fire under control by 11:45 a.m. Fire officials said the exact cause of the fire, which melted one of the truck’s tires and left the truck a charred metal hulk, is still under investigation.

Mr. Fliedner said he’s owned the truck for the past 15 years, adding that it’s become one of his projects to fix up.

“Every year I go in, add something, make it better,” he said. Both Mr. Fliedner and fire officials said he was lucky that the fire didn’t spread to his home or the nearby awning which held another of the man’s projects, a 1964 Lincoln Continental.

By noon, firefighters had left the scene and the Riverhead Fire Marshall was investigating the fire.

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