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  1. #1
    JawOLife
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Red face Just read this, and bare with me

    It has been an experience of mine to roll across a situation that after the fact was found to be not necessarily strange, but yet spooky. This has to do with the many electrical accessories found in vehicles, and yet immediatly thinking that it is harmless, it could actually be your path to death. Pay attention. One morning we were called out to an MVA on a rural road just on the outside edge of our area. We arrived on scene, and initially figured we were going to be extricating judging by the path the vehicle took. (Off the road, down a cliff, which came to about 80ft down and 150ft out from where we staged-midslope) I went down to do my walk around and found the vehicle on its roof, with no pt. inside. Immediatly advised and began a search for the pt in the shrubs, weeds, trees ect. -Nothing found. So anyway, while the police & medics were doing a house to house search for this person, we were to wait for the wrecker, standby till he was loaded and gone and away we'd be. Granted- we had initially had two handlines out - an 1 1/2 and a line ran down for a propack. NOW - the wrecker shows up, eventually hooks on with about 80ft of cable from a closer part of the road, pulls the vehicle approx 2ft - and all of a sudden - suprise we have a nice fire. Now what I neglected to say earlier was we had found that the vehicle had been sitting there for quite some time. The night before it had rained till about 3am -well the vehicle had standing water on its fuel cell, while everything else was pretty much dry, and everything on the vehicle was cold - nothing was hot, nor even warm and it was about 7:30 am. We get the fire knocked down, we give him the go ahead to continue pulling, and suprise - we have another nice fire - we get that one knocked down and went through the procedure one more time after that. Initially the fire started at the REAR of the vehicle which was upside down, and slightly tilted in that direction. In all three restarts, the fire started there and did not reach the dash or engine comp. at any time. Later that day, myself and another from the dept. went over to where the vehicle was taken to take a good look at it. The rear of the vehicle was crushed in from the end-over he did on the way down,and while looking at the trunk, we could just barely see inside of the trunk space. What we found was a speaker box that all the kids like to have in there cars. It was slightly damaged from the impacts, yet not burned from the fire. After digging a little, we followed the wiring from the box through the bottom of the rear seats, along the edge of the right rear pass. doors under the carpeting, continuing under that carpet towards the front of the vehicle to under the front pass. seats were he had an amplifier mounted and then up and into the middle of the dash when his CD player was. All of the wiring was found bare between the front seats and the rear seats. But this particular pair that ran to the box in the trunk looked different in color, as well as its odor. Now I dont know much about sterio equip., but I do know that the amp draws power from the battery (which was NOT disconnected because of access)but after that does the power continue into the speaker box, or does it end at the amp? My only conclusion to this scenario is that there was an obveous fuel leak near that box, there was live wiring ran to it somehow, and when the vehicle shifted when it was being moved, one of the wires was grounded to something inside to create an arch or spark, and the rest is self explained. I guess my main question is how is this crap wired, and had anyone happened to have come across anything even remotly close to this? I Have come across some hairy situations with electrical in vehicles but we have enough to contend with as it is the way these newer vehicles are being manufactured, I guess I had never even thought that something as simple and as harmless (or that is what I thought)as sterio accessories in the rear of the vehicle could be such a threat.- there - I'm done. Oh, yeah, they found the kid seven miles away in the next town walking on the sidewalk.


  2. #2
    ALSfirefighter
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    JawOlife,

    These type of systems are very common in my area. Many times what we find, and I'm not sure if it was in your scenario is that the amp is connected to a totally separate and individual car battery. Mainly we find them just sitting in the trunk, or being that it is popular here, they find another area to mount the other battery so it looks nice for the car/stereo compitions they have. I thank you for sharing your info, good think you had the lines pulled. Sometimes that gets overlooked. Without being able to cut the battery connections your hands were tied even if you found the extra battery. If you eventually find anything additional could you please let us know.

    Tom

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