Skateboard legend Tony Hawk films rats causing car fire

NEW YORK -- Rats are everywhere in New York -- but more abundant in certain areas.

An interactive map can help figure out where rat sightings are the worst, and it could have helped Alec Steinfeld.

Steinfeld, who lives in Brooklyn, came in contact with his own rat problem when he tried to drive his car to work after it sat for a week on his block.

“When I started driving initially I smelled roadkill,” he said.

But Steinfeld said he kept driving from Brooklyn into Manhattan. His car troubles became much more serious around Rivington and Essex Streets on the Lower East Side.

“It seemed like my engine was overheating and then all of a sudden it started catching fire,” he told PIX11 News. “I tried to open up my hood and there were two baby dead rats on the ledge so there was a lot of confusion.”

Steinfeld called 911 and the New York Fire Department responded a short time later.

“By the time the fire department came they actually had to smash open my windshield," he said.

Before Friday, Steinfeld's car was parked in the same place for a week. It appears several rats made themselves at home below the hood of his Volkswagen and then started chewing.

Steinfeld believes “rats ate through the engine.”

And just when you thought this story was already crazy ...

"So I am watching my car get mauled by a rat fire seeing Tony Hawk capture this across the street," Steinfeld said.

Skateboarding legend Tony Hawk recorded the insane rat inferno and shared it on Instragram. Next, Hawk snapped a selfie with Steinfeld.

Then Steinfeld had to figure out what to do next. Once the fire was extinguished, Steinfeld said he waited for four hours for a tow truck to come.

One of the ravaging rodents was still hanging on, ready for a ride.