UPDATE 4/24/13 @ 8:10 p.m.
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) -- Somewhere in the black soot on a driveway along Baer Street is all that's left of Paul Elliott's hybrid car.
"I loved that car. It had almost 300,000 miles on it," Elliott said. "It looks like it just caught fire while I was asleep."
Elliott had a hybrid. Huntington Fire Marshal Steve Ellis said he's doesn't see fires involving hybrid vehicles. This is one of just a few in his career.
"It's requires a different approach for first responders at fires and accident scenes," Ellis said. "The battery technology has the potential to provide added risks."
West Virginia University actually provides a hybrid simulator in WVU's Fire Service Extension Program. The simulator was brought down to the Sissonville Volunteer Fire Department in March 2013.
Wednesday, that simulator traveled to Indianapolis, which has the nation's largest expo and training conference for firefighters.
The National Alternative Fuels Training Consortium (NAFTC), a program at West Virginia University, develops and offers training on alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles to technicians, fleet managers, the general public and first responders.
The NAFTC is currently working through FEMA to offer this first responder training on electric and alternative fuel vehicles throughout the country, including in California, Maine, Oklahoma, West Virginia and Delaware.
To learn more about the NAFTC and the hybrid simulator, click on the Featured Links tab here at WSAZ.com.
The fire happened a little before 1:30 Wednesday morning in the 100-block of Baer St. in Huntington.
A neighbor reported hearing an explosion and seeing a car on fire. He woke up the homeowner, who attempted to douse the flames with a garden hose.
The fire destroyed the garage and spread to the home, causing some damage. There was also heat damage to the home on the other side of the garage.
The homeowner suffered a minor burn on the hand, but there were no serious injuries.
Neighbors say the car that caught fire was a hybrid. The fire marshal is investigating.
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