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    Angry USS George Washington Fire

    I just read the article on FH.com about the GW fire. It shows several reasons why I left the USN after 9 years. The CO and XO were relieved of command which, may or may not, end their careers. The real stickler is the article read "Willard recommended disciplinary action against 11 officers and 12 enlisted...... Ultimately only 6 ENLISTED members were punished". How about the Chief Engineer, who according to the artice, found the fuel prior to the fire?? Of course is states the investigators "praised the ships firefighters despite their criticisms". What a bunch of BS.

    The ship's Chief Engineer and Damage Control Assistant whould have been at the top of the list but somehow thier "fellow Officer's" found a way to solely blame the enlisted man and woman. What a disgrace!!!!!

    Anchors aweigh to all those enlited men and women who continuously get craped on and to those in "Officer Land" who make an attempt at being a "True Officer" by leading their sailors!!!!

    Be safe to all!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by rfdmn09 View Post
    I just read the article on FH.com about the GW fire. It shows several reasons why I left the USN after 9 years. The CO and XO were relieved of command which, may or may not, end their careers. The real stickler is the article read "Willard recommended disciplinary action against 11 officers and 12 enlisted...... Ultimately only 6 ENLISTED members were punished". How about the Chief Engineer, who according to the artice, found the fuel prior to the fire?? Of course is states the investigators "praised the ships firefighters despite their criticisms". What a bunch of BS.

    The ship's Chief Engineer and Damage Control Assistant whould have been at the top of the list but somehow thier "fellow Officer's" found a way to solely blame the enlisted man and woman. What a disgrace!!!!!

    Anchors aweigh to all those enlited men and women who continuously get craped on and to those in "Officer Land" who make an attempt at being a "True Officer" by leading their sailors!!!!

    Be safe to all!!
    Well, if it matters to you, which I know it won't from the tone of your post, the 11 officers involved all received letters or reprimand in their service jackets. Which as you should already know will effectively END their career. The six enlisted members punished will have the chance if they so choose to finish a career in the Navy.

    Having been involved first hand with the preparing of that ship for its transfer to Japan, testing their SCBA equipment prior to leaving, the ship did have problems. Is the report accurate? Don't know. Haven't read it, haven't seen the post fire pics yet, or the shipyard briefs. But being in a shipyard they should be coming around soon enough.
    Co 11
    Virginia Beach FD

    Amateurs practice until they get it right; professionals practice until they cannot get it wrong. Which one are you?

    'The fire went out and nobody got hurt' is a poor excuse for a fireground critique.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DocVBFDE14 View Post
    Well, if it matters to you, which I know it won't from the tone of your post, the 11 officers involved all received letters or reprimand in their service jackets. Which as you should already know will effectively END their career. The six enlisted members punished will have the chance if they so choose to finish a career in the Navy.

    Having been involved first hand with the preparing of that ship for its transfer to Japan, testing their SCBA equipment prior to leaving, the ship did have problems. Is the report accurate? Don't know. Haven't read it, haven't seen the post fire pics yet, or the shipyard briefs. But being in a shipyard they should be coming around soon enough.
    it would be interesting to hear more about this, when you get the info. the article said it took a day plus to find the cause of smoke onboard? that seems like a long time. i know carriers are huge, but still wouldnt the ships captain want to know why his ship was smokeing??? sounds a little fishy to me.

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    Here's the official investigation report of the fire onboard the GW..

    http://www.cpf.navy.mil/content/foia...estigation.pdf

    -Damien

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    Default Incompetent report written by incompetent well intentioned people

    I am a certified fire and explosion investigator and retired U.S. Navy veteran.
    My comment is that this investigation was completed by people who know nothing about fire investigations. I have already sent a letter to the Admiral challenging the validity of this report as it relates to the origin and cause of this fire. The way they claim the fire started is not possible based on well documented scientific testing. There are tests using cigarettes and ignitable liquids such as gasoline. You can take a lit cigarette and drop it in a pool of gasoline. The gasoline will extinguish the cigarette. There will be no fire. This is not to say that cigarettes can't start fires. They can but the conditions have to be just right. The conditions describe in the report would not have started the fire. That test data is well documented too. When compressor oil burns it produces black smoke from the time of ignition. The crew only saw white smoke for a long time before they found a fire.
    The U.S. Navy Jag report for this fire would never be admitted as evidence in any state or federal court.
    This report reminds me of a gun turret explosion on a Battle Ship were the U.S. Navy placed the blame on the crew. When the smoke cleared it was found that equipment failure caused the explosion not the crew’s actions.

    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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    Quote Originally Posted by ryguy1 View Post
    it would be interesting to hear more about this, when you get the info. the article said it took a day plus to find the cause of smoke onboard? that seems like a long time. i know carriers are huge, but still wouldnt the ships captain want to know why his ship was smokeing??? sounds a little fishy to me.

    Having been a Damage Controlman on a carrier I can say that it would take some time to find the cause of the smoke, or even locate the source of the fire as it was descibed in the article. First of all, there are only about 30 DC assigned to the ship, even though everyone is a firefighter, I have seen many who waited for DC to take charge. Much like you do see in the civilian world. As for the fire itself, the articles state the fire was spread through the ventilation etc.

    Even in my job today we can get a smells and bells call or smoke call and it can take awhile to find the source, granted not hours. The difference here is I can picture someone calling a report of smoke in one compartment, and then another call elsewhere on the ship and so forth. Typically on a carrier the At Sea Fire Party will respond to an ioncident and try to handle it before the ship goes to general quarters. Not sure if the ship went to GQ right away or if the fire party found themselves chasing smoke. Either way it could take some time to locate the source. I do commend the efforts of the sailors here.
    The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

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    The report can be viewed at www.uniontrib.com/more/carrier

    Notably one part of the report mentions the XO noticing smoke emitting from the O3 level. Additionally the EOOW received report of white smoke coming from a ready room on the O3 level. Also important to note was that the GW was in position to do, or in process of doing an UNREP when the first reports of smoke came in.

    Anyone who has served on a carrier should understand the distance in difference from the O3 level, being below the flight deck and the orgin of fire being the 6th deck. There is a 9 deck difference in reports and multiple reports of smoke and heat. There was also almost an hour lapse time before the ship went to GQ.


    Here are some notable excerpts from the report:

    66. At approximately 0745, GEORGE'WASHINGTON's Executive Officer, Captain Dober, reported to the OOD that he had observed white smoke aft of th~ island from his vantage point on the Auxiliary Conn located on the 07 level, starboard side.


    68. When the EOOW was informed by the Bngineering Watch Supervisor that the incinerator was still in operation, he ordered it secured. Before the EOOW reported this information to the OOD, he received a report of white.smoke in Squadron Ready Room #5 (03-HI5-0-L)

    70. Around 0745, while retrieving an IPOD from his locker in the Air Conditioning'and Refrigerant (AC&R) Division Office (6-185-0-Q) on the 6th deck, MM2 noticed a wisp of white smoke coming from the manhole access cover to the Auxiliary Boiler Exhaust. and' Supply space (6-189-1-0). MM2 called Damage Control Central to report the smoke, but stated that the line was busy.MM2 departed the space to report to the At-Sea Fire Party (ASFP) without contacting DCC.

    71. At 0747, the EOOW announced nsmoke; smoke, smoke, in compartment 03-185-0-1" on the IMC and directed the ASFP to respond from Repair Locker 7B.

    Between 0747 and 0820, DCC received at least eight reports of smoke in various locations from the 6u deck to the flight deck in the vicinity of Frame 180. There were several early reports of Class Bravo fire in the JP-5 pump room based on observable black smoke

    At approximately 0800, the ASFP investigators reported heat, smoke, but no flames during a search of the area in and around 03-18S-0-L.

    At 0816, Repair 7B reported to Dec that there was bubbling. paint in passageway Ol-185-1-L.



    External inspection, assessment, and evaluation reports on the training and readiness of the GEORGE WASHINGTON generated as part of the Fleet Readiness Training Plan (FRTP) from 12 June 2007 to 18 March 2008 consistently pointed to weaknesses in the Damage Control Training Team's (DCTT) ability to train the crew and significant weaknesses in the Damage Control Petty Officer
    (DCPO) program. An INSURV and 3M inspection also validated weaknesses in the DCPO-program.
    The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

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    Doc,

    All I was going by is what the article read. According to what I had read, and I know it isn't always the WHOLE truth, the only persons punished were enlisted. Yes, an enlisted person can try to salvage thier career after being demoted but, if the Navy is anything as is was back in 99 when I got out, it's extremely hard to advance.

    Seems like lack of leadership, direction, training, and control is what happened here. Which all starts at the top. Then, when it came time for someone to fry, the enlisted man got it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rfdmn09 View Post
    Doc,

    All I was going by is what the article read. According to what I had read, and I know it isn't always the WHOLE truth, the only persons punished were enlisted. Yes, an enlisted person can try to salvage thier career after being demoted but, if the Navy is anything as is was back in 99 when I got out, it's extremely hard to advance.

    Seems like lack of leadership, direction, training, and control is what happened here. Which all starts at the top. Then, when it came time for someone to fry, the enlisted man got it.
    Leadership, direction and training comes from the top, hence the reason the CO and XO were relieved from command.

    If you look at the link I posted it gives the disciplinary recommendations at the bottom of the fire investigation report. The names are blacked out, but you can basically see, those getting disciplined primarily are the MM's in charge of the space the fire originated. If they were told to get the hazmat out of the space and didn't, that is violating a direct order and they are subject to punishment by the UCMJ. Also involved were the personnel handeling the HAZMAT program for the ship.

    Going further, it does mention training and the possibly the ship's Fire Marshal and the senior DC are also disciplined. On a carrier, it is the Fire Marshal who is in charge of training, not necessarily the DCA. Of course there could be other factors like if the DCA was new to the job etc. It is hard to tell if the CHENG was disciplined because it only gives rank, but not the title, especially concerning the DCPO and HAZMAT programs. I believe the CHENG is the one in charge of the HAZMAT program on a ship.

    Basically, I think you should look at the report because things start to make sense in the reasoning for discipline. This doesn't look like some type of coverup or pinning this only on enlisted.
    The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jccrabby3084 View Post
    Leadership, direction and training comes from the top, hence the reason the CO and XO were relieved from command.

    If you look at the link I posted it gives the disciplinary recommendations at the bottom of the fire investigation report. The names are blacked out, but you can basically see, those getting disciplined primarily are the MM's in charge of the space the fire originated. If they were told to get the hazmat out of the space and didn't, that is violating a direct order and they are subject to punishment by the UCMJ. Also involved were the personnel handeling the HAZMAT program for the ship.

    Going further, it does mention training and the possibly the ship's Fire Marshal and the senior DC are also disciplined. On a carrier, it is the Fire Marshal who is in charge of training, not necessarily the DCA. Of course there could be other factors like if the DCA was new to the job etc. It is hard to tell if the CHENG was disciplined because it only gives rank, but not the title, especially concerning the DCPO and HAZMAT programs. I believe the CHENG is the one in charge of the HAZMAT program on a ship.

    Basically, I think you should look at the report because things start to make sense in the reasoning for discipline. This doesn't look like some type of coverup or pinning this only on enlisted.
    The fire did not start the way they claim that it did. Its scientifically impossible based on hundreds for lab test conducted by the federal government long before this fire occurred. The oil was not the first fuel ignited. The smoke would have been black from the beginning not white as reported for over an hour in the early stages of the fire. This could have been an accidental fire resulting from equipment failure based on the report. For some reason they felt is was more important to rule the cause of the fire as negligence without evidence to support it. Maybe it was easier to punish people if you called it negligence and not accidental.
    They got it wrong and some of the people punished maybe Innocent

    Retired USN

    Currently Working as a Private Investigator
    Internationally Certified Fire and Explosion Investigator
    Internationally Certified Fire Investigator Instructor

    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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    Quote Originally Posted by cubbie View Post
    The fire did not start the way they claim that it did. Its scientifically impossible based on hundreds for lab test conducted by the federal government long before this fire occurred. The oil was not the first fuel ignited. The smoke would have been black from the beginning not white as reported for over an hour in the early stages of the fire. This could have been an accidental fire resulting from equipment failure based on the report. For some reason they felt is was more important to rule the cause of the fire as negligence without evidence to support it. Maybe it was easier to punish people if you called it negligence and not accidental.
    They got it wrong and some of the people punished maybe Innocent

    Here are the facts as stated by the report. The HAZMAT stored in the space was found on a spot check and was ordered out of the space. It was not moved. There were issues with the HAZMAT program and those in charge of checking the materials. Either way the HAZMAT was never removed form the space AS ORDERED.

    Now, you claim that a cigarette can not just start this HAZMAT on fire. OK, fine, however a cigarette CAN start a rag on fire etc and spread the fire. The fire could have been accidental as well. There is absolutely no doubting that a small fire could in fact ignite the HAZMAT. There is no doubting that the HAZMAT can intensify an otherwise small fire and spread it. In the end, the HAZMAT should not have even been stored there and those sailors are just as subject to failure to obey an order under the UCMJ, whether there was a fire or not.

    The fire, actually revealed more issues with training, the DCPO program and HAZMAT etc. Had there had been no fire, the sailors could still be subjected to discipline. It was because of the fire that more people were disciplined as well. I can say that because of this fire, the rest of the fleet will be taking notice and will be scrutinizing and working on their own programs.

    It doesn't take science to realize that there was a failure to obey an order. I think the Navy got it right.
    The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

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    Default Navy Got it Wrong!

    Quote Originally Posted by jccrabby3084 View Post
    Here are the facts as stated by the report. The HAZMAT stored in the space was found on a spot check and was ordered out of the space. It was not moved. There were issues with the HAZMAT program and those in charge of checking the materials. Either way the HAZMAT was never removed form the space AS ORDERED.

    Now, you claim that a cigarette can not just start this HAZMAT on fire. OK, fine, however a cigarette CAN start a rag on fire etc and spread the fire. The fire could have been accidental as well. There is absolutely no doubting that a small fire could in fact ignite the HAZMAT. There is no doubting that the HAZMAT can intensify an otherwise small fire and spread it. In the end, the HAZMAT should not have even been stored there and those sailors are just as subject to failure to obey an order under the UCMJ, whether there was a fire or not.

    The fire, actually revealed more issues with training, the DCPO program and HAZMAT etc. Had there had been no fire, the sailors could still be subjected to discipline. It was because of the fire that more people were disciplined as well. I can say that because of this fire, the rest of the fleet will be taking notice and will be scrutinizing and working on their own programs.

    It doesn't take science to realize that there was a failure to obey an order. I think the Navy got it right.
    I do not disagree that there were problems with improperly stored hazmat. There were problems with training noted. These are not uncommon problems in any Navy command. This is why supervisors conduct zone inspections on regular basis. This is why active duty personnel are always training.
    In this JAG investigation the Navy started out looking for someone to blame. They started out with preconceived notions that somebody has to be responsible. A simple accident from equipment failure was not going to be accepted as the cause of a 70 million dollar fire.
    They did not conduct the investigation with an open mind. If they had they would have used science to valid there conclusion. It can't be done because science would have shown them their conclusion was wrong.
    Having a cigarette and a rag starting a fire is almost impossible. Again based on science. It is possible but the conditions would have to be just right. I am not going into a long scientific explanation. There have been several engineers that have written books on the subject. (Dr. Babrauskas, Dr. DeHann, Dr. Icove, and Dr. Quintiere just to name a few.)
    The issue I have is that they have dismissed the cause of this fire as negligence when their own report does not eliminate all other accidental causes. There own report doesn’t support their conclusion that a discarded cigarette ignited the improperly stored oil. There is no scientific validation to support their conclusion. Their conclusion is based on the Myth that a cigarette could have started this fire. The Navy got the origin and cause of the fire wrong. If that error resulted in personnel being punished then innocent people were disciplined.

    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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    Quote Originally Posted by cubbie View Post
    In this JAG investigation the Navy started out looking for someone to blame. They started out with preconceived notions that somebody has to be responsible. A simple accident from equipment failure was not going to be accepted as the cause of a 70 million dollar fire.
    They did not conduct the investigation with an open mind. If they had they would have used science to valid there conclusion. It can't be done because science would have shown them their conclusion was wrong.
    Having a cigarette and a rag starting a fire is almost impossible. Again based on science. It is possible but the conditions would have to be just right. I am not going into a long scientific explanation. There have been several engineers that have written books on the subject. (Dr. Babrauskas, Dr. DeHann, Dr. Icove, and Dr. Quintiere just to name a few.)
    The issue I have is that they have dismissed the cause of this fire as negligence when their own report does not eliminate all other accidental causes. There own report doesn’t support their conclusion that a discarded cigarette ignited the improperly stored oil. There is no scientific validation to support their conclusion. Their conclusion is based on the Myth that a cigarette could have started this fire. The Navy got the origin and cause of the fire wrong. If that error resulted in personnel being punished then innocent people were disciplined.

    Look. I have been through three courses with Dr Quintere's text books. Yada yada yada.

    You start out saying you KNOW the "tone" of the investigation? Were you even asked to be a member on it? Um, No? So STFU about the "attitude" and "bias" of the Board. Maybe you are right, maybe you are wrong. But not being a member of said Board, do you hear me making comments about it? NO. Why not trying to do the same and not attacking people's attitudes. Besides if you are retired USN, you would know that every Investigative board is never headed by a person with a background of what they are investigating. Provides for an outside perspective and fresh set of eyes. Therefore no Carrier officer, former carrier commander, carrier battle group commander would be asked to head it.

    Second, you go on to contradict yourself. First you state emphatically that it is IMPOSSIBLE for the fire to start the way the Board determined it. Less than five sentences later you said it is possible if the conditions were right. Well which is it? Make up your mind. Do you KNOW the conditions of that space at the moment of ignition? Um, no. So see paragraph above.

    Third, having been on as an IMA and conducted repairs, and been involved with inspecting and testing of Damage Control gear, and most importantly seeing the conditions on the ship both before and after the FMA at NNSY I can say that I achieved a good understanding of the crew's attitude regarding safety procedures and damage control. I will not dime out anyone, I will not say to outsiders my opinion of the ship.

    I will say, that if you do not have the knowledge of the conditions, discipline and training on board that warship..you should state your OPINION. I do not normally defend the Navy in this way. I am far from Joe-Navy. But your posts on this topic are completely out of line.
    Co 11
    Virginia Beach FD

    Amateurs practice until they get it right; professionals practice until they cannot get it wrong. Which one are you?

    'The fire went out and nobody got hurt' is a poor excuse for a fireground critique.

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    While not agreeing at all with Cubbie, I can see a portion of his point.

    I'm new to the investigation aspect, so if I am wrong, please let me know...nicely though.

    As part of any investigation, shouldn't ALL possible causes be either proven or disproven. If said is not done, then how can you arrive at a cause??
    A Fire Chief has ONLY 1 JOB and that's to take care of his fireman. EVERYTHING else falls under this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JTFIRE80 View Post
    While not agreeing at all with Cubbie, I can see a portion of his point.

    I'm new to the investigation aspect, so if I am wrong, please let me know...nicely though.

    As part of any investigation, shouldn't ALL possible causes be either proven or disproven. If said is not done, then how can you arrive at a cause??
    Make no mistake, I am not saying that the findings of the Investigative board were correct or incorrect. My beef is with the whole "I KNOW it went like this....they ramrodded these people etc etc." I have fought enough fires in the Navy to know that POOR HOUSEKEEPING (IE- Cleanliness) can create conditions that would otherwise NOT be conducive to the ignition process. Been involved with the repairs to an entire engine room because a small pool of fuel oil came in contact with welding lag and splatter while in the yards. Poor housekeeping, improper attention to HazMat controls and lack of discipline create the potential for fires

    The USS George Washington had issues. It had issues while it was at NavSta Norfolk and was a tended unit. There exists the possibility that those issues were corrected.
    Co 11
    Virginia Beach FD

    Amateurs practice until they get it right; professionals practice until they cannot get it wrong. Which one are you?

    'The fire went out and nobody got hurt' is a poor excuse for a fireground critique.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DocVBFDE14 View Post
    Look. I have been through three courses with Dr Quintere's text books. Yada yada yada.
    You start out saying you KNOW the "tone" of the investigation? Were you even asked to be a member on it? Um, No? So STFU about the "attitude" and "bias" of the Board. Maybe you are right, maybe you are wrong. But not being a member of said Board, do you hear me making comments about it? NO. Why not trying to do the same and not attacking people's attitudes. Besides if you are retired USN, you would know that every Investigative board is never headed by a person with a background of what they are investigating. Provides for an outside perspective and fresh set of eyes. Therefore no Carrier officer, former carrier commander, carrier battle group commander would be asked to head it.

    Second, you go on to contradict yourself. First you state emphatically that it is IMPOSSIBLE for the fire to start the way the Board determined it. Less than five sentences later you said it is possible if the conditions were right. Well which is it? Make up your mind. Do you KNOW the conditions of that space at the moment of ignition? Um, no. So see paragraph above.

    Third, having been on as an IMA and conducted repairs, and been involved with inspecting and testing of Damage Control gear, and most importantly seeing the conditions on the ship both before and after the FMA at NNSY I can say that I achieved a good understanding of the crew's attitude regarding safety procedures and damage control. I will not dime out anyone, I will not say to outsiders my opinion of the ship.

    I will say, that if you do not have the knowledge of the conditions, discipline and training on board that warship..you should state your OPINION. I do not normally defend the Navy in this way. I am far from Joe-Navy. But your posts on this topic are completely out of line.
    It’s very clear that you should take a few more classes because you clearly do not understand the science that says the fire couldn’t have started the way they claim. Science has proven that you can take a lit cigarette and drop it into a pool of gasoline. The gasoline will extinguish the cigarette. Science has proven that in order for a cigarette to be the ignition source it has to be insulated (it has to be covered). When sufficient heat has built up to the point to bring the insulating material to its ignition temperature then you have a fire. Science has proven that a cigarette lying in the open on top of rags (oily or otherwise) will not cause a fire. The heat dissipation rate prevents the surrounding materials from reaching their ignition temperature.
    In the Navy report they claim the fire was started by an improperly discarded cigarette in a ventilation duct that blew into the compartment where the oil stored an ignited the oil. Science does not support this conclusion. The Navy got the origin and cause of this fire wrong. I think it’s wonderful that you have a tremendous knowledge of shipboard operations. However you have no knowledge in the science of fire investigations.
    Its great that you have taken three classes with Dr Quintere's BOOKS. I have taken dozens of classes taught by Dr, Quintere's. Yada yada yada

    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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    Yes, as usual another self appointed expert. I am sure you were the first one that the US Navy contacted for your immense wealth of knowledge.

    I am sure that because you know the conditions of that space, what was going on in that space, what equipment was in that space, and all the other factors that you can sit in Georgia and make the claims you are making.

    You contradict yourself, as I pointed out. You keep claiming it is IMPOSSIBLE, but go on and say that if conditions were right it is possible. Pick a side.

    If you are so sure of EVERY factor that will prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the Navy is conducting a cover-up of some fault with a warship that could in the future cost sailors their lives, then stand up in front of the press and Congress and make your case. If you are unwilling to do that, STFU. Notice- I was not on the investigating board. I have made NO claims that they were right or wrong. Notice I've SHUT UP about their findings.

    And please, don't give me the USS Iowa crap. I am well aware of what was going on with that. I am well aware that the situation between that investigation and this one are vastly different. The Navy was fighting to keep the Iowa and her sisters in service and had very lax training at the time on the ships operations (being that any sailor who had manned them was well over at least 40 years old and retired).

    I am sure you are willing to stand up and confront this vast cover-up. Aren't you?
    Co 11
    Virginia Beach FD

    Amateurs practice until they get it right; professionals practice until they cannot get it wrong. Which one are you?

    'The fire went out and nobody got hurt' is a poor excuse for a fireground critique.

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    Post GW Fire

    Now that I have read the report. I do stand corrected that some of the appropriate personnel were held accountable. I hope that the CO, XO, Cheng, DCA, the many chief's and PO's were held accountable for their misactions. It shows what laziness does to a person. As prevously mentioned by someone, housekeeping does wonders.

    I DO NOT support the idea that an improperly discarded cigarette started the fire. I don't think a cigarette placed in the ventilation was blown into the room where it ignited rags, papers, or whatever. What did start the fire??? We will never know.

    Hopefully this will be used as a for the "bootcamps" just reporting to the ships and a reminder for all that laziness shoutd NOT be tolerated.

    I can say of the 5 ships I was on, my first, USS Simon Lake AS-33 (Now decommed) was the most in depth DC training I had. DCC was breathed and lived Damage Control. Repair 5A was for engineering personnel only in case of a "Main Space" fire. One of my duty days a "class C fire was called away and I watched him rip into a PO2 whom had taken an FFE away from me. The PO2 should have gone to a different locker for the "back up" team but decided to report to 5A instead. It was his last day on the in port fire party.

    When I saw the DCC 2 years later when I was on board a CG and he was then a DCCS on an inspection team, I had to thank him. He smiled and gave me a few more words of wisdom before he left.

    Be safe everyone and BUCKLE up!!!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by cubbie View Post
    In this JAG investigation the Navy started out looking for someone to blame. They started out with preconceived notions that somebody has to be responsible. A simple accident from equipment failure was not going to be accepted as the cause of a 70 million dollar fire.
    They did not conduct the investigation with an open mind. If they had they would have used science to valid there conclusion. It can't be done because science would have shown them their conclusion was wrong.
    Having a cigarette and a rag starting a fire is almost impossible. Again based on science. It is possible but the conditions would have to be just right.
    Their conclusion is based on the Myth that a cigarette could have started this fire. The Navy got the origin and cause of the fire wrong. If that error resulted in personnel being punished then innocent people were disciplined.
    Do you know with absolute certaintity that this investigation was looking for someone to blame? Do you know for absolute certainty that other possible cause were NOT investigated? Do you know with absolute certaintity that the cigarette theory was the ONLY theory the Navy went on? If the answer is yes, then you should not be spending your time here.

    I'm not an investigator, but I have seen a cigarette start a fire which lead to a room and contents. I have seen hot embers start fires. What we don't have access to here is the statments, maintainence recors, repair records, watchstanding readings etc from before the fire. I have been involved in Navy investigations and other options do get ruled out. I can't guarnatee anything here, but there is nothing to say that other causes were not looked at. Perhaps it was determined quickly that those causes weren't the cause.

    Just like a structure fire where it is started with a kid playing with matches, who admits to it, other causes are ruled out first. You don't see all the reasons for the fire not to be accidental, but doesn't mean they are not investigated. When making the report an investigator may say that other sources of ignition were ruled out and then supply their conclusions as to the cause. They don't typically go into scientific detail on a report as to why something was ruled out. We don't know what was observed before the fire, or if there were other causes ruled out first.


    In the end, I don't see anywhere where innocent people were disciplined. The same people who were disciplined could have been disciplined had a fire occured or not. Because a fire occurred, other people were disciplined for other reasons directly related to the fire. That would have happened even if the fire was ruled undoubtly accidental. There were issues with training, the DCPO, the HAZMAT and the failure to obey an order. I don't see how innocent people were disciplined here. We also don't know the extent of that discipline.
    The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rfdmn09 View Post
    I DO NOT support the idea that an improperly discarded cigarette started the fire. I don't think a cigarette placed in the ventilation was blown into the room where it ignited rags, papers, or whatever. What did start the fire??? We will never know.

    Hopefully this will be used as a for the "bootcamps" just reporting to the ships and a reminder for all that laziness shoutd NOT be tolerated.

    I think this will be a lesson for much more than just bootcamps. I can pretty much guarantee that every CO out there is looking at their own commands and programs to ensure this doesn't happen on their ship. I would bet you see more training in the active Navy today, at least for awhile until complacency sets in again.
    The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

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    Just one more thought which I just remembered. When I got to the Harry S Truman in 1998, the ship was still in the yards and we had a fire onboard her. It was started by someone smoking in a space, which was just painted.

    People do sneek a smoke in places they know they shouldn't and butts can get diplaced by ventilation. On the Truman, yes there were fumes etc which were probably flammable enough for a heat source to ignite the fumes. What we don't have here is if the HAZMAT in the space was absoluetly sealed and that there was no possibility of fumes escaping. Sure you can extinguish a cigarette in a pool of gasoline, but if that heat source ignites the fumes, you can get a fire. On a ship, there are many places in which fumes can get trapped and you can get an ignitable fuel mix if there are exposed fumes and a fuel source to start the fire. It doesn't take too long for a small fire to turn into a large fire, especially when HAZMAT is available.
    The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by DocVBFDE14 View Post
    Yes, as usual another self appointed expert. I am sure you were the first one that the US Navy contacted for your immense wealth of knowledge.

    I am sure that because you know the conditions of that space, what was going on in that space, what equipment was in that space, and all the other factors that you can sit in Georgia and make the claims you are making.

    You contradict yourself, as I pointed out. You keep claiming it is IMPOSSIBLE, but go on and say that if conditions were right it is possible. Pick a side.

    If you are so sure of EVERY factor that will prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the Navy is conducting a cover-up of some fault with a warship that could in the future cost sailors their lives, then stand up in front of the press and Congress and make your case. If you are unwilling to do that, STFU. Notice- I was not on the investigating board. I have made NO claims that they were right or wrong. Notice I've SHUT UP about their findings.

    And please, don't give me the USS Iowa crap. I am well aware of what was going on with that. I am well aware that the situation between that investigation and this one are vastly different. The Navy was fighting to keep the Iowa and her sisters in service and had very lax training at the time on the ships operations (being that any sailor who had manned them was well over at least 40 years old and retired).

    I am sure you are willing to stand up and confront this vast cover-up. Aren't you?
    Yes I am willing to stand-up. I have written letters to my U.S. Congressman and Both U.S Senators. I have sent letters to the Admirals office in command to the U.S Pacific Fleet. Thanks for asking.

    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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    Well good luck. I eagerly await your presentation of your proof that:
    • The investigation was prejudiced
    • The conditions in the space at the time made ignition completely 100% impossible.
    • That innocent men were punished.

    And I most eagerly await your determination of what actually caused this.

    Good luck. I am sure that in the absence of the indisputable proof above, that most likely your letter will be filed where it belongs.
    Co 11
    Virginia Beach FD

    Amateurs practice until they get it right; professionals practice until they cannot get it wrong. Which one are you?

    'The fire went out and nobody got hurt' is a poor excuse for a fireground critique.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rfdmn09 View Post
    Now that I have read the report. I do stand corrected that some of the appropriate personnel were held accountable. I hope that the CO, XO, Cheng, DCA, the many chief's and PO's were held accountable for their misactions. It shows what laziness does to a person. As prevously mentioned by someone, housekeeping does wonders.
    And I can respect that. As I said, I will not dime out this ship. This is due to my first hand knowledge of what conditions were like on that ship. There were problems on that ship in several area's. Do I know where or when they started? No. However, the Commanding Officer at the time is the one with the hot potato.

    Quote Originally Posted by rfdmn09 View Post
    I DO NOT support the idea that an improperly discarded cigarette started the fire. I don't think a cigarette placed in the ventilation was blown into the room where it ignited rags, papers, or whatever. What did start the fire??? We will never know.
    I have absolutely no problem with this either. You have a belief and opinion. However you are not stating it as FACT without any proof. Again, as an Active Duty E6 and one who conducted repairs on board that ship while she was a tended unit, I will offer NO opinion on the Boards findings.

    Quote Originally Posted by rfdmn09 View Post
    Hopefully this will be used as a for the "bootcamps" just reporting to the ships and a reminder for all that laziness shoutd NOT be tolerated.
    Unfortunately it isn't the "boot camps" that are the problem. This problem stems from far above even the CO's of the ships. The ships are being asked to maintain an underway schedule of a 400+ ship Navy. The Navy currently has less than 300, somewhere in the ballpark of 277 right now.

    The outside inspections, Maintenance availability both Depot and Intermediate are being asked to patch work them together to keep them underway, and the increasing lack of funds for Damage Control equipment, DC training and qualified HazMat keepers in Supply will continue to haunt the Navy.

    To place this in perspective, we just recently completed the Scott SCBA PosiCheck function tests on one aircraft carrier that is tended by us. Of 420+ SCBA's, 191 failed the inspection. Almost half.
    Co 11
    Virginia Beach FD

    Amateurs practice until they get it right; professionals practice until they cannot get it wrong. Which one are you?

    'The fire went out and nobody got hurt' is a poor excuse for a fireground critique.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jccrabby3084 View Post
    I'm not an investigator, but I have seen a cigarette start a fire which lead to a room and contents. I have seen hot embers start fires.
    Just like a structure fire where it is started with a kid playing with matches, who admits to it, other causes are ruled out first. You don't see all the reasons for the fire not to be accidental, but doesn't mean they are not investigated. When making the report an investigator may say that other sources of ignition were ruled out and then supply their conclusions as to the cause. They don't typically go into scientific detail on a report as to why something was ruled out. We don't know what was observed before the fire, or if there were other causes ruled out first.
    All fire investigations must be conducted using the scientific method as stated in NFPA 921. Failure to use the Scientific Method invalidates your report and conclusions in every state and federal court in the country. For an investigator to reach a conclusion as to the origin and cause of a fire. The investigator must eliminate all other possible cause of the fire. You must be able to identify the first fuel ignited and how it came together with a creditable ignition source resulting in the fire. If you can't do that then your official cause to the fire must be undetermined.

    This is the case with this fire. The ignition source is unknown because the cigarette theory the Navy uses is not scientifically possible. The first fuel ignited was not the oil because the smoke in the early stages of the fire was reported to be white for 30 minutes or more. Science shows that the oil produces black smoke when it burns. This eliminates the oil as the first fuel ignited as claimed in the Navy report. Science clearly shows that the conclusion the Navy came to as to the Origin and Cause of this fire was wrong.

    We can debate contributing causes as to the spread of the fire once it did start. Poor training, Poor housekeeping, the list can go on and on. We can debate about what information we don’t have…interviews etc. In the end we are back to this statement in the final report.
    The cause of the fire was a discarded cigarette in a ventilation duct.
    The cigarette blew through the ventilation duct and into the room where the compressor oil was being stored.
    The cigarette ignited the oil resulting in a fire that caused 70 million dollars in damage.
    Science proves that this theory is wrong.

    This is the information included in my letters. They may decided to take no action. The may decide to take a second look at their data. I don't know.
    I do know that our discussions about the issue has become divisive. That’s too bad it was not my intentions.
    Last edited by cubbie; 10-25-2008 at 12:15 AM.

    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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