Diesel give you a scare in the car

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS -

CARS are claimed to be ‘un­der at­tack’ from poi­sonous fuel-sniff­ing spi­ders des­per­ate to get into their petrol pipes.

The North Amer­i­can yel­low sac spi­der is par­tic­u­larly known for build­ing its nest in­side the fuel vapour lines of cars.

This par­tic­u­lar creepy-crawly is ven­omous and they have been known to bite hu­mans.

Fe­males are known to be more ag­gres­sive than males, but ei­ther way it is the last thing you want crawl­ing out of your car’s airconditioning vent while you are at the wheel.

Last month, a deadly black widow hitched a 5,000-mile transat­lantic ride in a Volk­swa­gen camper van.

It had gone undis­cov­ered for 11 months, while the camper van had been kept in stor­age.

The prob­lem has be­come so bad that car-maker Ford says its engi­neers have been forced to de­velop a spe­cial plas­tic screen de­signed to block the un­wanted visi­tors from get­ting in­side the cars.

The spi­der blocker will be fit­ted to all of its new Fo­cus RS cars.

“These par­tic­u­lar arach­nids are not seden­tary – they are hun­ters and con­stantly roam­ing,” said David Gimby, a fuel sys­tems engi­neer at Ford.

“When it’s time to build a birthing co­coon or an over-win­ter co­coon, they seek a cav­ity or a de­pres­sion, like a fuel vapour line open­ing, which al­lows them to max­i­mize the use of their silk.”

The spi­der is na­tive to North Amer­ica and is cur­rently not known to pop­u­late Europe – but car im­porters now have an ex­tra rea­son to check un­der the hood.

n FUELLING FEARS: The North Amer­i­can Yel­low Sac Spi­der is ven­omous and has been known to bite hu­mans

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