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Car charred after smoking driver tried to sanitize hands

(Photo Provided/Pete Piringer of Montgomery County Fire & Rescue Service/Twitter)

ROCKVILLE, Maryland (WISH) — Today’s coronavirus health alert: Smoking a cigarette and using hand sanitizer don’t mix.

An adult driver who tried it Thursday afternoon in a car in Rockville, Maryland, ended up with minor burns not believed to be life-threatening, according to the public-information officer for the Montgomery County Fire & Rescue Service in Gaithersburg.

The car was left charred in a parking lot outside a grocery store and restaurant in a busy commercial area about 2 miles north of Washington, D.C.

The public-information officer, Pete Piringer, shared photos and a news helicopter’s video of the burning and charred car. He also suggested if you do use hand sanitizer while smoking — “a bad combo” — it should probably be in a ventilated area.

Now, for that health alert: Alcohol-based hand sanitizers contain ethyl alcohol, which readily evaporates at room temperature into an ignitable vapor, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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