The Word: Dick Van Dyke’s car bursts into flame

Dick Van Dyke jaguar
Dick Van Dyke’s Jaguar, post-inferno. Credit: Dick Van Dyke’s Twitter

Dick Van Dyke had a narrow escape last night after his car caught fire on the freeway. The 87-year-old “Mary Poppins” star was on the Ventura Freeway in Calabasas, Calif., when flames began shooting out of it, according to CNN. He pulled over but had difficulty freeing himself from the vehicle until passing drivers helped him out.

Luckily, Van Dyke was uninjured in the incident, and was soon feeling well enough to joke on Twitter about the scary event. “Used Jag for sale REAL CHEAP!!” he tweeted, along with a horrifying photo of the burnt car. Van Dyke’s wife Arlene Van Dyke also posted a Vine of the aftermath. “He’s fine thank God!” she assured fans.

Speaking as a New Yorker and a non-driver, this terrifies me. It’s not like he was driving a junker; it was a Jaguar, for heaven’s sake, which I understand from magazines is a very nice car. Is this something that just happens sometimes? Perfectly nice cars are just like, “Time to be on fire,” menacing your favorite childhood chimney sweep?

Wait, maybe that’s the issue. Jaguars are British. Perhaps the car objected to his unrealistic Cockney accent.



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