Why register? ...To Enhance Your Experience
+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 5 of 5
  1. #1
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Upstate New York
    Posts
    77

    Angry Hazards of the Season

    Speaking of the hazards of the season, in addition to the combustible decorations, overloaded electrical circuits, frayed wires, undersized extension chords, and the higher use of candles, the cold weather (in the northern hemisphere, at least) with the increased use of space heaters and fireplaces, the safe use of these appliances should be emphasized.

    We lost a 16 unit apartment yesterday. Fortunately, no one was injured, but a lot of people's holidats were ruined. Although the investigation has not been completed, all indications are that it started in the combustible cavity behind a fireplace. Other contibuting factors may have been the lack of draft stops in the attic. Smoke detectors appeat to have been functional, but because the fire started in the chimney chase, smoke never reached the detectors until the roof fell in. Again, fortunately, good neighbors started knocking on doors and phoning other residents on discovery of the fire.
    An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of suppression! Sometimes even more!


  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Lancaster New York (just east of Buffalo)
    Posts
    5

    Exclamation Fireplace & Chimney Fires

    I can understand the importance now of having a chimney , checked and cleaned. Last March we had an alarm come in during the early AM. The call went out as a working house fire. When I ran out of the house to my truck to respond, you could smell the smoke in the air. Not living that far from the fire scene, this wasn't anything unusal. I made it to the hall, and ran through the parking lot,dodging the falling ashes from what was supposedly a "typical" house fire. Once on the road, we heard the police call to re-check the address,the Lieutenant at the call told her,"Oh don't worry, they'll see it". Once we turned down the road, it was nothing but a glow. I've never seen a house so involved! Needless to say, it was a total loss before we were even on the road.

    My message here really is, this could have been avoided by a simple annual check of the fireplace & chimney. This house was an older log home,that went from beautiful to ashes because the owner never had it checked. The fire started in the wall just behind the fireplace, and the clean-out was sealed shut. Had he done an annual check of the chimney, and fireplace he would have known of the problems he could have with all that smoldering ash trapped in his wall.

    If you know of anyone with a fireplace, make sure that they are aware how crucial this really is. I'm sure there are alot of us that would never want to go through what this poor fellow has because of a truly inexpensive once a year check.
    Sept. 11,2001 shall forever be a day which darkened the horizon, and burdened the hearts of many. But the lives that were lost, shall live forever, and shall never be forgotten. "Stay Low, and Be Well" for you are in our hearts forever Brothers.

  3. #3
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    28

    Default

    Just a few more thoughts on chimneys and fireplaces:

    Back in the mid-80's, one part-time job I held was working for a guy on my shift as a chimney cleaner. I learned alot that came in handy on a few chimney and wood stove fires!

    Anyway, some other things to consider is what type of chimney/fireplace do you have? Such as masonary or pre-fab. What a nightmare pre-fabs are and can be. Too many horror stories to relay here.

    I always recommend to people who have pre-fabs to use the fireplace as an ornamental device verses a heating device. I know the pipes are rated and sometimes have 3 layers but - metal expands and contracts with heating and cooling. Needless to say, wear and tear can come into play. Build small fires in these not big ones.

    The other big issue is what type of wood a person burns in their fireplace/wood stove. Make sure to suggest seasoned wood and stop burning the daily newspaper! For people who use their wood stove, I would sometimes recommend have it cleaned twice a year.

    The other factor with wood stoves, and potential build-up in the flue, is how hot you burn the stove. If you burn it too cool, you will have a lot more build up a lot quicker.

    Let's keep this forum going! Some great stuff from what appears to be some very caring people!

    Best Regards,

    Bill Delaney
    Montgomery County (MD)

  4. #4
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Upstate New York
    Posts
    77

    Default

    Thanks for the info, Bill. I dare say that most of the fireplaces and chimneys installed here in Phoenix are the zero-clearance type with pre-fab chimneys. They, of course, don't come with instructions and people try to use them like the brick and tile fireplaces they grew up with.

    Keep the posts coming. Lots of experience out there. Lets hear from everyone with a fire prevention issue or question. You can always start a new thread for a different topic.

    Regards,
    Dwight
    An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of suppression! Sometimes even more!

  5. #5
    MembersZone Subscriber Capt217's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    53

    Default

    I think there are 3 families in Coos Bay, Oregon that would tell any body that having your flue installed properly, maintained, and checked atleast yearly can save lives or can kill if not done.

    At our department we have a program where we loan out chimney brushes at no cost. It has reduced our calls to flue/chimney fires immensly.
    Captain Tom Kichenmaster
    Philomath Fire & Rescue
    Philomath, OR.

    *****************************
    Every day brings us new and exciting challenges. It is up to us to either embrace them or let them destroy us.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts