Homeowner David Whitesides was working on his vehicle in his garage when he caught a whiff of smoke.
"When (the car) caught on fire I hit it with water and stuff, trying to get it knocked down, and realized that it wasn't going to do it, so I immediately called 911," he said Sunday, standing in a neighbor's driveway while firefighters doused his garage. "If my battery wasn't unhooked I could've shoved it out of the garage, but with my battery unhooked I couldn't get it out of park."
That small vehicle fire turned into a blaze that took five fire engines to battle, resulting in $35,000 in damage to the home at 607 State Highway Z. The garage's roof collapsed and its walls were charred and blackened.
"My girls and our animal made it out," Whitesides added.
No injuries were reported among the home's occupants or the 17 personnel fighting the fire, according to Fulton Fire Department Chief Kevin Coffelt.
The fire department arrived on scene at about 3:40 p.m., finding flames and smoke emerging from the garage.
"Crews were able to bring the fire under control in approximately 20 minutes with an aggressive fire attack," Coffelt said.
State Highway Z in Fulton was blocked for several hours while emergency personnel worked.
Fulton Fire Department investigators determined that, as Whitesides suspected, sparks managed to ignite the car while he repaired it.
In addition to the Fulton Fire Department, Central Callaway Fire Protection District provided aid. The Fulton Police Department assisted with crowd and traffic control, and the Callaway County Ambulance District was on hand for firefighter rehab.