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Spontaneous Combustion and Charcoal


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6 replies to this topic

#1 OFFLINE   Medic5274

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 03:02 PM

The Dobbs Ferry Fire Department recently responded to an early morning fire in a single family residence. The fire originated in several plastic garbage pails outside the structure up against the house. The fire transmitted up the outside of the structure under the eaves and into the attic. The homeowners, who were asleep were unaware of the fire until they were awakened by the smoke detectors inside the house. The house suffered considerable damage in the attic and roof areas.

The C&O team made a determination the fire was the result of sponaneous combustion associated with wet charcoal. The homeowner reported several days earlier he accidently got water on a bag of charcoal. Thinking the charcoal was no good he disposed of it into a plastic pail with a lid. This was done two days before the fire.

I have had experience with spontaneous combustion fires associated with thinners,lacquers and linseed oil soaked rags disposed of into sealed containers. I have never seen or heard of this condition with charcoal. The C&O team reported it has to do with the compressed state of the charcoal and the chemical reactions that occur when the charcoal gets wet and begins to heat up.

Has anyone had a similiar expericence with charcoal? This was a new one for me and my department.

#2 OFFLINE   x129K

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 03:03 PM

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CITY Dispatchers Save Seconds.....Seconds Save Lives!

#3 OFFLINE   ny10570

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 06:58 PM

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#4 ONLINE   Bnechis

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 07:59 PM

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#5 OFFLINE   sjc317

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Posted 11 July 2011 - 08:29 PM

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#6 OFFLINE   x129K

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 06:36 AM

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CITY Dispatchers Save Seconds.....Seconds Save Lives!

#7 OFFLINE   kinkchaser

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 07:05 AM

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