1. #1
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    Jun 2008

    Default Mobile/ manufactured home fires

    Can anyone direct me to some resources regarding fires in mobile homes?

    I am looking for info on fd strategy and tactics

    Survival in a mobile home fire

    Structural integrity after a fire in a mobile home

    Cause and investigation of mobile home fires

    Thank you

  2. #2
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    KevinFFVFD's Avatar
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    Jun 2006
    Vicksburg, Mississippi, USA


    I once had a person describe to me the difference between a single family wood frame structure and mobile home fire. A wood frame structure is like catching a 2x4 on fire and waiting for it to burn completely. A mobile home or trailer is like catching a piece of tissue on fire.

    We have actually saved trailers before, contained to one room. How this happened I have no idea. 75% when we arrive on scene its 80%+ involved.

  3. #3
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    Mar 2007
    Jacksonville Fl


    Watch your step or youll step through the floor

    if the roof collapses, squat next to the refrigerator.

  4. #4
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    Jun 2008


    I did some reading on the topic.

    What I have found is very interesting regarding the construction, materials, size etc....

    Could be considered a "deathtrap"

    Is it safe to say that if approx 1/3, maybe even less of the STRUCTURE (and contents) is burning, that based strictly on structural integrity issues that the home is a complete loss?

  5. #5
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    ffpedro's Avatar
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    Sep 2007


    Are modern mobile homes that different from many of the lightweight construction builds we see? I know people who have built brand new homes two and three stories that are constructed little better than a house trailer. I have seen the mfg. process for both and struggle to see alot of differences. I will say that the mobile homes I have seen have been customized slightly and they opted for better construction, but ultimately it was gusset plates, pre-mfg. trusses, wooden "I beams" glued floors, etc. What are some of the more stark differences that I am missing?
    "The one man engine company...tough as hell cause we have to be."

    "What we have here is a Charlie Foxtrot of the Mongolian persuasion."

  6. #6
    cubbie's Avatar
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    Jan 2007

    Default Manufacture home vs Site built home

    Manufactured homes can easily be compared to site built residential homes in this way. The older they are the more dangerous they are. The codes for each are improving all the time. A newly built manufactured home can be safer for firefighters than a 20 year old site built home. Simply because the codes are better today than they were 20 years old. Safety comes down to training and the ability correctly judge risk verse gain. You have to study and learn building construction. You have to be able to look at the structure and understand how the fire is attacking its integrity. Manufactured home or site built home makes no difference the risk are the same for both. You have to learn to recognize the indicators of pending structure failure. You have to turn your ego off and accept the fact that you will sometimes have to fight the fire in the defensive mode. I good fire is one that all firefighters leave on the same apparatus they came on.

    To answer your question on fire investigations you should start with NFPA 921 “Guide for Fire and Explosion Investigations”. It discusses at length what is called the scientific method. The scentific method is the standard by which all fire investigations are completed. There is nothing done differently in a fire investigation of a site built home or manufactured home. The scentific method equally applys to both.

    When fire is cried and danger is neigh,
    "God and the firemen" is the people's cry;
    But when 'tis out and all things righted,
    God is forgotten and the firemen slighted.
    ~Author unknown, from The Fireman's Journal, 18 Oct 1879

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