Aussie mum rescues kids from car seconds before it explodes into ball of flames
She was so brave!
Editor / April 07 2019
A brave mum, who grabbed her two small children from the back of her car seconds before it exploded into a fire ball, is shocked the whole family made it out alive.
Catherine Mayes, from Canberra, says the whole experience was "the ultimate wake up call" after she realised her four-year-old Mazda CX-5 was about to catch fire as it filled with smoke.
The whole incident was caught on camera and showed the vehicle explode and become engulfed by flames just moments after the family ran for their lives.
In an emotional Facebook post on Saturday evening, Ms Mayes talked emotionally about her near-death experience.
'I had a guardian angel looking after me and my boys today that's for sure,' she wrote.
'This was the ultimate wake up call that life is short and can be over in a matter of minutes, that lives are so much more important than possessions.'
Ms Hayes was having problems with her car battery so she carried a spare battery in her boot.
However, when the young mother pulled up to a park at Gordon Adventure Playground in Gordon, Canberra, with her four-year-old and five-month-old, the battery pack 'popped open and made a fizz sound'.
'I quickly got Tommy out and as I was getting him out it exploded and let out a crazy amount of smoke and started to catch fire so I raced to get Hunter out,' Ms Hayes wrote on Facebook.
Seconds after she grabbed both boys and ran away as fast she could from the smoke, the car exploded into flames and was caught on nearby CCTV.
The young mother's panic was caught on voicemail to her partner John Stasik, where Ms Hayes can be heard saying 'We gotta get away bubba' to her panicked children.
'I was just like autopilot, like I need to get my babies out,' Ms Hayes told Nine News.
The battery pack is made by the brand Boxo and carries a warning on the pack about not being left in the sun for too long.
Although Ms Hayes says the 'what ifs are overwhelming', she knows both she and her family are extremely lucky.
'I am so lucky that it happened while I wasn't driving, and that I went into auto mode and got my boys out of the car and away from danger,' she wrote.
Frances Sheen has been a magazine and website journalist & editor for the last 20 years - both in Australia and the UK. She's appeared on countless TV and radio shows to discuss parenting and launched her own social media parenting brand. She's the mum of two little girls and juggles that with a busy working life.