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Author Topic: Prevost conversion burns near Mt Vernon,Texas Friday afternoon.  (Read 4584 times)
DMoedave
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« Reply #15 on: January 24, 2011, 02:52:30 PM »

Same issue with boat fires. the foam is very expensive and they rarely use it if everyone and property is safe. David i was thinking the same thing as you with the cheepo tire fire water to the wheel wells. It could buy some time. The morning before we got to Arcadia we had spent the night at the Sprawl-mart in Savannah and a beautifull S&S rig with matching trailer took off right befor we did. No walk around,visual or even a basic tire check. Less than 40 miles down the road he had lost the driver side steer. Did a good job to get to the center median but i would bet it was underinflated tire. In the summer this could have been a tire fire.
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« Reply #16 on: January 25, 2011, 05:17:33 AM »

I would guess that it would probably take a thousand gallons of water to extinguish a tire fire.  Once they get burning, they are difficult to put out.
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« Reply #17 on: January 25, 2011, 05:24:41 AM »

Not sure how much water would be required, but Jim Shephard's extinguisher's use a "wet water" solution. This allows the water to absorbmuch more heat. Lowering the temperature to below the temperature needed to susutain combustion is how it puts out the fire. I do know a given amount of "wet water" can put out a much larger fire than plain water.  We frequently used "wet water" on fires that involved a large amount of class A combustibles such as a barn full of hay or a large pile of tires.  Jack
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John316
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« Reply #18 on: January 25, 2011, 05:48:34 AM »

Jim,

Can you post the link to where you showed pictures of the tire fire control? I thought I saw them on your website, but it may have been another site. However, I thought you got a tire burning, while floating in a mixture of oil and diesel, and you put the fire out like three time with the one extinguisher...

Link?

God bless,

John
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« Reply #19 on: January 25, 2011, 06:36:39 AM »

John, here is the link to the page:

http://www.rvsafetysystems.com/Handheld%20Fire%20Extinguishers.htm

I want to put the actual video on the site, but that project seems to get lost in the list.

A couple of additional thoughts.  Water is not all that great of a fire suppression material.  It is used in house fires because the supply is very large and the firefighters have access to fogging nozzles.  In our RVs, we have very limited water supply and no good way to of distributing it.

Like others, I am concerned about tire fires.   We have quite a few of them in CO, but they almost always result from overheated brakes which kill the oil seal on the axles.  That, in turn, starts the tire on fire.  All of that suggests that good driving practices can virtually eliminate that cause of the fire.  Another source is dragging brakes and that can be prevented by good maintenance.  Lastly, a problem with one of the duals (low pressure in one tire or an undetected failure of one tire) can cause the good tire to carry too much weight and that can cause a fire.

When you think about it, WE can reduce the probability of a tire fire.  I will not drive a mile without my tire pressure monitor system working AND with the knowledge that I do a reasonable job of inspecting my brakes.

If I have a tire fire, for whatever reason, I have a chance of extinguishing the fire with my 2.5 gallon extinguisher -- IF i catch it early enough.

One final thought.  I have never heard of a blowout causing a fire.  My guess is that the tire was very hot from under-inflation or the brake was dragging.

Jim

BTW, I show the video of the test at trade shows  and am often asked if the white material is foam.  Nope that is snow! Grin
« Last Edit: January 25, 2011, 06:43:04 AM by rv_safetyman » Logged

Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
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« Reply #20 on: January 25, 2011, 09:07:28 AM »

  We add some fire retardent to the water to make it foam called F-500 IIRC, but everyone says its just real expensive liquid soap. And plain old soap will work, just add enough Dawn or whatever to make it foam up. One of our more frequent calls out here are brush fires. Our brush trucks carry 250 to 300 gallons of water mixed with retardent, and its almost always more than enough.

  I agree that a tire fire is more likely from the brake overheat or running low pressure, a simple blowout, hitting debris, isnt normally going to generate enough heat before you notice the problem. Drivinghabits and maintenence would probably prevent most any tire fire. But once the tire is burning, your only hope is to get the heat down, and water could do that. A fine wide pattern spray is more effective and uses less water.

  In a large RV, most of us are carrying a load of water. I would guess we all have at least 20 gallons at any given time, and often a bit more. Its possible we could install a higher flow, higher pressure pump, and using an injector, be able to pump a water/soap mix onto a fire. From any one location, we wouldnt need more than 75 feet of hose. In fact, using quick couplers located around the Bus, one 25 foot hose could reach any area. I believe a simple system could be fabricated quite inexpensively.

  I know there are some who would argue that as long as its insured, just let her burn. But if any are like me, out on the road that RV is our home. There is nothing wrong with having better equipment, and nothing wrong with being proactive. If you have the means, there is no reason not to try and save your home, why would your rig be any different. Just use common sense and know when to run. If the tire fire begins to expand beyond the wheel well to inside the Bus, IMHO its time to back away.

  It really is amazing to see so many dragging their brakes on long grades, even semi trucks. You would think they would teach against that in school.
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rv_safetyman
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« Reply #21 on: January 25, 2011, 01:08:54 PM »

Well, I guess that the theme of this board is: "do it your way".  I abide by that philosophy and even participate in it most of the time Wink

However, when it comes to safety, I really struggle with "your way" when it involves fire suppression.  I would not even begin to think about trying to fight a tire fire with 100 gallons of water (let alone 20).  This is especially true when you think about having to drag the hose out of the bay and then use a pretty poor excuse of a "fogging system" garden nozzle. 

Then we have the good old thought that you can add soap to water and fight a big fire.  I challenge anyone to present objective test data that supports that theory.  I have been in quite a few fire stations and I have yet to see the shelves stocked with Dawn bottles!!!

I was going to add to my previous post and tell the rest of the test story.  As Jack and other trained fire fighters will acknowledge, they are fascinated with fire and ways of fighting it.  At the end of my tire tests (later I learned that that violates EPA or some other type of law) Roll Eyes), I asked if it would be OK to test the Cold Fire on a magnesium fire.  Their eyes lit up.  I have a good friend who machines a lot of magnesium racing parts and he sent me a whole box of magnesium chips.  We made a pile about 12 inches in diameter and 6 inches high and set it on fire (not an easy task!).  After we got it going, we let it really cook.  Then I hit it with a 1.5 gallon extinguisher with Cold Fire.  It took the whole can, but we got it out.  Trained firefighters can attest to how difficult it is to extinguish a magnesium fire.

OK, since I have my  dander up, I will challenge anyone to put their soap concoction up against a good professional fire suppression material in fighting a magnesium fire.  I will match their money up to $50. 

Please understand, Cold Fire is not the only fire suppressing material that does a fantastic job.  It happens to be the single approved fire suppression material in the IRL pits and is one of two material approved by NHRA for their horrendous fires.  I have read the SFI regulations (17.1) many times and simply can't find that Dawn is an approved product.

I was at the NHRA race where the Cold Fire factory representative presented the material to NHRA management.  The rep and I had a long discussion and I told him he was pi**ing in the wind if he thought he could replace Halon.  I worked in the shut-down area for several years (for Gates -blower belt research) and I witnessed first hand how good the material is.  After significant testing, SFI/NHRA approved Cold Fire and Halon is almost non-existent.   Even thought I had the first hand experience with my racing involvement, I had to do my own testing per the link I posted above.

Jim

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Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
85 Eagle 10/Series 60/Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission
Somewhere between a tin tent and a finished product
Bus Project details: http://beltguy.com/Bus_Project/busproject.htm
Blog:  http://rvsafetyman.blogspot.com/
John316
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« Reply #22 on: January 25, 2011, 01:54:58 PM »

OK, since I have my  dander up, I will challenge anyone to put their soap concoction up against a good professional fire suppression material in fighting a magnesium fire.  I will match their money up to $50. 

Jim

Come on Jim. I want to be on the Cold fire side. You can be on the Dawn side, and then we can do it. After all, I brought it up Grin Grin Grin

Just kidding...

I doubt if anybody will take you up, but if they do, you will be $50 richer.

God bless,

John
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« Reply #23 on: January 25, 2011, 03:49:56 PM »

 Grin
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Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
85 Eagle 10/Series 60/Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission
Somewhere between a tin tent and a finished product
Bus Project details: http://beltguy.com/Bus_Project/busproject.htm
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« Reply #24 on: January 25, 2011, 09:57:40 PM »

   I was going to say a lot more, then I found this on a fire fighter forum discussing water based foam fire retardents and just decided to paste it.

     "We use dish soap. We used to put foam in, but one time someone put too much in and it gumed up the extinguisher. Was a major pain to clean out. dish soap works fine anyway, cant tell the difference
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   If a trained fire fighter/fire marshall/safety officer says they use dish soap and cant tell the difference, whats that tell you? They also use dish soap in the foam they drop from aircraft to fight forest fires. Its cheap and effective.  As for Cold Fire, it does work, but its just expensive soap.
  
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« Reply #25 on: January 26, 2011, 08:56:23 AM »

rv-safetyman, so that's why the T/F & F/C drivers are all wet after a fire.  I just started to notice that in the last couple of years.  If Cold Fire works on a Funny car fire, it ought to work on a bus.

On a side note, you must have either been the most loved or most hated guy at the end of the drag strip.  A lot of races won or lost on the blower belt. 

John M.
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John M.
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« Reply #26 on: January 27, 2011, 02:05:42 PM »

Well John since this thread has "slipped" a great deal (yes, pun intended), let's talk about drag racing.  Like always, I could take up a ton on bandwidth, so I decided to do a bit of documentation at:

http://beltguy.com/blowerbelt.htm

In the early years of the project (mid '80s), the racers were not happy with anything/anyone connected with blower belts.  Later, we all learned to work together and make the product work.  Still have some good friends from that project.  On that page, there is a link to a National Dragster article that details the field and lab test program.  

You mentioned the driver being wet.  This is partly the result of the fire suppression system, but also a result of the chase truck.  They will always spray the driver first to cool him down and then work or the car fire if it is still going.

I have also documented another fun project: an amazing Bonneville team that I worked with - The Phoenix LSR Diesel Truck:

http://rvsafetysystems.com/The%20Phoenix%20LSR%20Truck.htm

OK, in an attempt to get this thread back on subject, the terrible fire that occurred is a reminder that we all need to be very careful about monitoring our tires for aging and pressure and carry a ***good*** fire extinguisher with fire suppression material you are comfortable with (please do not consider a dry powder extinguisher as being much of a fire fighting tool - too small and not good suppression material for larger fires).

Jim
« Last Edit: January 27, 2011, 02:13:56 PM by rv_safetyman » Logged

Jim Shepherd
Evergreen, CO
85 Eagle 10/Series 60/Eaton AutoShift 10 speed transmission
Somewhere between a tin tent and a finished product
Bus Project details: http://beltguy.com/Bus_Project/busproject.htm
Blog:  http://rvsafetyman.blogspot.com/
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