MERRIMACK –– A vehicle fire on the F.E. Everett Turnpike North caused a temporary lane closure on Tuesday as Merrimack firefighters, police, and New Hampshire State Police responded to the emergency near mile marker 13.8.
Upon arrival, Merrimack police reported a Toyota Camry fully engulfed in flames, with the occupants safely outside the vehicle.
Firefighters promptly stretched hose lines and managed to subdue the majority of the fire. However, the blaze continued to burn between the car’s engine compartment and interior.
Attempts to open the car’s hood for better access to the fire were initially unsuccessful due to a faulty hood latch.
Firefighters resorted to using saws to cut through the hood, which ultimately enabled them to fully extinguish the fire.
The vehicle’s three occupants informed state police that they had pulled over after detecting an unusual smell, only for the car to catch fire shortly afterward.
Both the right travel lane and the breakdown lane were closed for approximately an hour as crews worked on the scene.
The vehicle, which was subsequently towed away, appears to be a total loss.