‘The sunlight will come through, when it's filled with liquid, and act as a magnifying glass as you would with regular optics,’ said MCFD's David Richardson.
‘It uses the liquid and the clear material to develop a focused beam and sure enough, it can actually cause a fire, a combustion.’
One victim of a water bottle-related car fire revealed how he was on a lunch break when he noticed smoke coming from the console of his car.
‘I looked over and noticed light was being refracted through a water bottle and starting to catch the seat on fire,’ said Dioni Amuchastegui revealed.
Several more victims of similar incidents have taken to Facebook to reveal their shocking stories.
Said one: ‘I was in my car less than 10 minutes when I noticed smoke on my middle console. The sun was reflecting through my water bottle causing my console to burn. It left a one-inch melted circle. I couldn't believe the fast intensity of what happened.’
Said another: ‘This is no joke!! I was in my car getting ready for work and had a bottled water on my lap. The sun hit the water just right like a magnifying glass and burned my leg!!’
Moral of the story? Take your bottle of water with you - or at least out of the direct sunlight. You can never be too careful ...