By Katie Brace

BOSTON (CBS) – The driver whose car went up in flames on I-93 South in Somerville said he was able to save a valuable prized possession.

“I was in a bit of a daze,” said David Kieller when he realized his 2000 Ford Taurus wagon was on fire.

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“I heard a grinding sound and a little bit of a pop and then car stalled,” said Kieller. “I went and checked under the hood and there was a fire.”

David Kieller's car caught on fire on I-93 in Somerville (WBZ-TV)

David Kieller’s car caught on fire on I-93 in Somerville (WBZ-TV)

As the smoke grew and before the flames became overpowering, Kieller grabbed his portfolio from the back. It contained one of his paintings called “Purple Shirted Buster.”

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Kieller is an artist specializing in watercolor paintings of people. He was battling the evening rush hour to attend an art show on the South Shore. The painting is all he was able to save.

David Kieller's

David Kieller’s “Purple Shirted Buster” painting saved from burning car (WBZ-TV)

“I didn’t want to take any chances after that,” said Kieller.

He was not hurt and waited with first responders as they put out the flames. Traffic slowed down to one lane. Kieller hopes no one holds that against him.

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Firefighters said an electrical malfunction started the fire. It was so intense the pavement under and next his car has to be repaired.