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RandyA

Trailer Fire - need some help please.

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I notice in the picture above, there's a prop holding the window.  One more thing to fumble for, or knock out while trying to escape.  Doesn't the window fall out if it's raised past a certain position?

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You mentioned a place to post more pics, then I thought I remembered reading a blog post series on one of your trips and a couple of clicks later I found out google remembered too.  http://randyandnancy95.blogspot.com/  maybe when you get settled you could post your pictures there along with any other thoughts you might have on the event over there then post a link back over here.

 

Edited by Jmorris

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14 hours ago, noteven said:

I took Jack Mayer’s advice to have a fire bag.

A fire bag can be a convenience, but it has to be someplace that is not on fire, or right by your escape window. Or you will not have the forethought or time to "fetch" it. Also, it can be a combination function bag....ours stays in our truck. As Randy so painfully knows...there is NO TIME when a fire starts in a rig, and you will not be thinking of all the little things that you think about when planning for this event. You have to go by "muscle memory" and your training....just like with firearms. In the "situation" you will not be thinking clearly, no matter who you are.

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1 hour ago, Jack Mayer said:

A fire bag can be a convenience, but it has to be someplace that is not on fire, or right by your escape window. Or you will not have the forethought or time to "fetch" it. Also, it can be a combination function bag....ours stays in our truck. As Randy so painfully knows...there is NO TIME when a fire starts in a rig, and you will not be thinking of all the little things that you think about when planning for this event. You have to go by "muscle memory" and your training....just like with firearms. In the "situation" you will not be thinking clearly, no matter who you are.

x 2.  Best advice yet

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Extinguishers are for incipient fires . What Randy experienced is *NOT* an incipient fire!! 

Lots of fertile minds here.  Next time you are in a restaurant, look at the hood system over the cooking surfaces. Besides being activated by a fusible link, there will be a manual "pull".  Could be modified for a RV - only problem - expensive, and the extinguishing agent is usually dry chem - - think -   choking on dry chem!

Now if the agent was CO2.......

BTW - an FYI - Mac has retired.  No idea if someone took over his business.

 

 

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Fire safety?

My 1st advice would not park anything that could start a fire externally next to or under an RV.  Golf carts, motorcycles, gas grills, motor scooters, etc.  Especially with Li-Ion batteries from a wrecked Chevy Volt as I had in my GC.

I have 30+ years behind me as a EMT/Paramedic and in the end as part of Fire/EMS.  I know the rules, how a fire spreads, all about toxic particles in the air, heat, smoke alarms, escape plans and such but I was STUPID because I somehow believed it could not happen to me - only others that neglected basics.  WRONG.  It can happen to anyone - even the most careful.

We also have a fire bag and it is in the truck.  Some items in a locked safe in the truck.  Thankfully we did NOT loose IRS stuff, titles, insurance info, checkbooks, unused credit cards, passports, dog papers and such.  I need to expand the contents.

For a blog I will go with one that has email and picture hosting and will gladly pay for it.  We leave Monday heading for Virginia before going to the ECR.  Time here has been totally taken up with preping the new fiver and packing.

I did buy one of the Kiddie escape ladders shown in the Fire Guy pic but it will need modification to work properly in our fiver.  The hooks are cumbersome and need to be modified for our use.  I want to point out that this escape ladder is for one-time use, which we hope use will not be a common occurrence.

Jack did some super good seminars on refrigerator fires a few years back.  The information dovetails with our experience and should be revived/reviewed.  I believe he still has it on his website?

Fire alarms are great warning devices but may not give enough warning for an external fire ready to flash inside.  They do not give the warning in an RV one would expect in a brick and mortar residence.  Neither of us remembers ever hearing a fire alarm.

I have put both an 8# and a 2.5# (2# standard equipment) extinguisher in the bedroom, a 2# and OEM unit in the kitchen area and a 2# in the basement.  There are two 5# units in the Volvo.  More may be added.  The ones in the bedroom would be there to aid in escape if fire blocked the door from the inside.  Kitchen is for stove, dryer, living area fires that are observed when one is awake.  Basement extinguisher is for fires around the RV while observing, like BBQ, campfire sparks, etc.

Carl, I would like to think we will be OK on clothes and "incidentals" once we get back to our stock of items in Virginia.  All but small tools were in the Volvo - rest were in the truck so they are OK.  We've spent a wad of money buying the replacement fiver, clothes, kitchen wares, shoes, eyeglasses, prescriptions, computers, and more.  Our $7,000 personal effects coverage from National General was less than half of the coverage we needed.  But, at least we had coverage!  Will be checking with our Home Owner's insurance to see if there is anything there.  The final value of the burned fiver is still under negotiation. 

Posting photos is still a problem with changes at Photobucket over 3rd party hosting.  I want to post some more pics here.  The link Jack gave doesn't give me the info I need to use his suggestion.  I may be overlooking or not seeing something to make it work.  I am close to throwing in the towel and paying Photobucket $99 for a year of third-party hosting unless I can find a personal website that allows direct photo posting without links.

Most important item I can stress is an RV fire does not fool around.  It moves super fast, faster than most of us can move.  Toxic smoke and heat appear in less than 5 seconds.  Getting out before this appears is a matter of life or death.

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Randy,

Still thankful you guys got out under the worst of circumstances.  While sleeping and no alarms.  Made me think of some of the little things most folks forget.  Clean dryer hoses and vents at least once a year, make sure all the lugs on your electrical power box are tightened to prevent a spark.  Your idea of multiple extinguishers in different areas is great.  Make sure if you have a deadbolt on your door it is not keyed on both sides.  I’m also rethinking my “Go” bag.  Considering how and where to mount a  fireproof safe in the truck to duplicate important info.

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Randy, thanks for being very honest about your feelings of "it would never happen to me".  That was probably the most valuable information that could come out of a tragedy like this.  We should all learn from this situation.

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3 hours ago, RandyA said:

Fire safety?

Fire alarms are great warning devices but may not give enough warning for an external fire ready to flash inside.  They do not give the warning in an RV one would expect in a brick and mortar residence.  Neither of us remembers ever hearing a fire alarm.

Most important item I can stress is an RV fire does not fool around.  It moves super fast, faster than most of us can move.  Toxic smoke and heat appear in less than 5 seconds.  Getting out before this appears is a matter of life or death.

 

Amen!

Again -  thank you for sharing/posting.

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Just thinking outside the box a little.  If you were specing a new trailer, why not run some pex line or pvc in the ceiling and install a sprinkler system.  Hide a shut off valve in a cupboard or closet.  At least might give you a little more time and despite its appearance shouldn't add that much to cost.  Plus bet the heads could be camouflaged some way.

Edited by SuiteSuccess

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RandyA,

Don't know if you are following the TRAILERSAVER Maintenance thread.

I posted some info there that seemed more appropriate to that thread.

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4 hours ago, NeverEasy said:

RandyA,

Don't know if you are following the TRAILERSAVER Maintenance thread.

I posted some info there that seemed more appropriate to that thread.

Just read it and posted a reply.  WOW!  Thank you.

Edited by RandyA

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Randy, I use this link for photo-posting  http://photoposting.is-great.net/?i=2   I believe that is what Jack is suggesting, but I couldn't make his work when I tried it.

Paste it in google and their site comes up, unlike photobucket you do not have store your pictures with them to use it. You go find the picture IN YOUR COMPUTER, ANYWHERE,  and grab it (Sect it) with their control. They grab it temporarily and instantly give you the image code, which you copy and paste into the thread, done! You can go then to the next picture, the next picture, etc. Couldn't be easier. 

I still have a photobucket account but it's a PITA by comparison. The only money they got out of me was $14 bucks to avoid million of their stupid ads trying to use it, but I haven't been back with them since I discovered http://photoposting.is-great.net/?i=2

H

Edited by phoenix2013

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On 3/16/2018 at 9:20 AM, RandyA said:

Fire safety?

My 1st advice would not park anything that could start a fire externally next to or under an RV.  Golf carts, motorcycles, gas grills, motor scooters, etc.  Especially with Li-Ion batteries from a wrecked Chevy Volt as I had in my GC.

I have 30+ years behind me as a EMT/Paramedic and in the end as part of Fire/EMS.  I know the rules, how a fire spreads, all about toxic particles in the air, heat, smoke alarms, escape plans and such but I was STUPID because I somehow believed it could not happen to me - only others that neglected basics.  WRONG.  It can happen to anyone - even the most careful.

We also have a fire bag and it is in the truck.  Some items in a locked safe in the truck.  Thankfully we did NOT loose IRS stuff, titles, insurance info, checkbooks, unused credit cards, passports, dog papers and such.  I need to expand the contents.

For a blog I will go with one that has email and picture hosting and will gladly pay for it.  We leave Monday heading for Virginia before going to the ECR.  Time here has been totally taken up with preping the new fiver and packing.

I did buy one of the Kiddie escape ladders shown in the Fire Guy pic but it will need modification to work properly in our fiver.  The hooks are cumbersome and need to be modified for our use.  I want to point out that this escape ladder is for one-time use, which we hope use will not be a common occurrence.

Jack did some super good seminars on refrigerator fires a few years back.  The information dovetails with our experience and should be revived/reviewed.  I believe he still has it on his website?

Fire alarms are great warning devices but may not give enough warning for an external fire ready to flash inside.  They do not give the warning in an RV one would expect in a brick and mortar residence.  Neither of us remembers ever hearing a fire alarm.

I have put both an 8# and a 2.5# (2# standard equipment) extinguisher in the bedroom, a 2# and OEM unit in the kitchen area and a 2# in the basement.  There are two 5# units in the Volvo.  More may be added.  The ones in the bedroom would be there to aid in escape if fire blocked the door from the inside.  Kitchen is for stove, dryer, living area fires that are observed when one is awake.  Basement extinguisher is for fires around the RV while observing, like BBQ, campfire sparks, etc.

Carl, I would like to think we will be OK on clothes and "incidentals" once we get back to our stock of items in Virginia.  All but small tools were in the Volvo - rest were in the truck so they are OK.  We've spent a wad of money buying the replacement fiver, clothes, kitchen wares, shoes, eyeglasses, prescriptions, computers, and more.  Our $7,000 personal effects coverage from National General was less than half of the coverage we needed.  But, at least we had coverage!  Will be checking with our Home Owner's insurance to see if there is anything there.  The final value of the burned fiver is still under negotiation. 

Posting photos is still a problem with changes at Photobucket over 3rd party hosting.  I want to post some more pics here.  The link Jack gave doesn't give me the info I need to use his suggestion.  I may be overlooking or not seeing something to make it work.  I am close to throwing in the towel and paying Photobucket $99 for a year of third-party hosting unless I can find a personal website that allows direct photo posting without links.

Most important item I can stress is an RV fire does not fool around.  It moves super fast, faster than most of us can move.  Toxic smoke and heat appear in less than 5 seconds.  Getting out before this appears is a matter of life or death.

You think Chevy Volt batteries dangerous? Asking because of your statement. Some are using them and I have plans too. 

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3 minutes ago, GlennWest said:

Especially with Li-Ion batteries from a wrecked Chevy Volt as I had in my GC

Glenn, notice the word wrecked in his statement.

I believe Randy is thinking maybe the batteries were damaged in the wreck.

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On 3/16/2018 at 8:31 PM, phoenix2013 said:

Randy, I use this link for photo-posting  http://photoposting.is-great.net/?i=2   I believe that is what Jack is suggesting, but I couldn't make his work when I tried it.

Paste it in google and their site comes up, unlike photobucket you do not have store your pictures with them to use it. You go find the picture IN YOUR COMPUTER, ANYWHERE,  and grab it (Sect it) with their control. They grab it temporarily and instantly give you the image code, which you copy and paste into the thread, done! You can go then to the next picture, the next picture, etc. Couldn't be easier. 

I still have a photobucket account but it's a PITA by comparison. The only money they got out of me was $14 bucks to avoid million of their stupid ads trying to use it, but I haven't been back with them since I discovered http://photoposting.is-great.net/?i=2

H

That is what the sticky directions use....they work for me...if the directions are wrong let me know how to correct it and I will....

 

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The Fire presentation I give at the National Rally covers the basics (and more) of fire awareness for RVs. It is not a comprehensive fire course....it is meant to make you think about things.   HARD. 

All of the things Randy has noted I think are covered in the presentation, with the exception of a fire blanket - which I am adding. 

I strongly urge anyone with a lithium chemistry bank to put in an auto extinguishing system.  This may be a waste of money, or it may give you the time you need to get out and save your life. There are Halon and foam systems available that are intended for engine compartment fires. They are pretty large systems. The $1000 or less you spend on this is just like any other insurance policy - I hope you never need it.

 

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On 3/17/2018 at 10:55 AM, GlennWest said:

You think Chevy Volt batteries dangerous? Asking because of your statement. Some are using them and I have plans too. 

 

I plan to get another golf cart but will not use batteries from a wrecked Chevy Volt unless I can see the car they are coming from and the overall condition of the entire battery pack that holds the 48-volt batteries.  No rear or side collision and the entire battery pack must be intact and undamaged.  I bought both of my batteries on eBay and have no clue how severe the wreck they came from was or where the impact that totaled the donor car was located.   I now believe any of us that want to use the Chevy Volt batteries should know more about the car they come from.  They were safe in a car before a wreck but may not be after a wreck.  Damage to a battery from a wreck could be sort of like a concussion suffered by a football player.

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28 minutes ago, Jack Mayer said:

I strongly urge anyone with a lithium chemistry bank to put in an auto extinguishing system.  This may be a waste of money, or it may give you the time you need to get out and save your life. There are Halon and foam systems available that are intended for engine compartment fires. They are pretty large systems. The $1000 or less you spend on this is just like any other insurance policy - I hope you never need it.

 

 

Jack, having experienced first hand the explosive power of a lithium chemistry battery and the extreme heat instantly generated I have serious doubts that any of the available fire suppression systems you mentioned would put out the "battery".  Any of those systems would be beneficial in slowing the spread of fire to other flammable materials.  One must keep in mind a large Li-Ion battery that develops an internal short that avalanches between adjoining cells will instantly explode into a ball of fire like a military incendiary bomb.  The results of the instantaneous current flow make an electric welder look like a wet match.

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12 hours ago, RandyA said:

Jack, having experienced first hand the explosive power of a lithium chemistry battery and the extreme heat instantly generated I have serious doubts that any of the available fire suppression systems you mentioned would put out the "battery".  Any of those systems would be beneficial in slowing the spread of fire to other flammable materials.  One must keep in mind a large Li-Ion battery that develops an internal short that avalanches between adjoining cells will instantly explode into a ball of fire like a military incendiary bomb.  The results of the instantaneous current flow make an electric welder look like a wet match.

I totally agree. The best you can hope for is some additional time to get out. It is better than nothing. 

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Randy,

The military in tank design isolates the projectiles to cover such events.  I’m not an engineer but do you think such a containment box is feasible?  Especially in trailers like Steve’s or David’s.  Would a simple steel enclosure suffice or would it just create a bomb?

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Randy. Thanks again for keeping us up dated with your information.

Others. Chevy volt batteries are liquid cooled in the car. must be a reason. Please do not experiment with any Li chemistry except LiFePo. The only chemistry proven safe for now.

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