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 Post subject: Electrical Fire - Driffield - Yorkshire, England
PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 11:44 am 
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One of my colleagues in England sent me this video. The fire was in an underground linkbox. The location was Driffield in Yorkshire, England.

[media=youtube]30XSCI5LCRo[/media]

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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 7:46 am 
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Nice video Jim. I was waiting for the big explosion that would represent the main tank rupture, but that didn't happen. Interesting that the arcing seems to diminish or stop when they start spraying water. I would have requested a special fog nozzle (intermittent spray) and ground the nozzle so as to not become part of the short circuit. That "ol tyme" building construction did not ignite readily and it seems the damage was limited to within the vault, 8' separation as is typical in America would not be enough for a wood framed building.


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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 8:17 am 
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Gary B wrote:
Nice video Jim. I was waiting for the big explosion that would represent the main tank rupture, but that didn't happen. Interesting that the arcing seems to diminish or stop when they start spraying water. I would have requested a special fog nozzle (intermittent spray) and ground the nozzle so as to not become part of the short circuit. That "ol tyme" building construction did not ignite readily and it seems the damage was limited to within the vault, 8' separation as is typical in America would not be enough for a wood framed building.

Gary, I was waiting for the same thing, the big "Hollywood" finale. The water hose with an electrical fire is always in interesting combination. We'll assume someone de-energized this but I'm not really sure.

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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 8:54 am 
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Jim Phillips (brainfiller) wrote:
Gary, I was waiting for the same thing, the big "Hollywood" finale. The water hose with an electrical fire is always in interesting combination. We'll assume someone de-energized this but I'm not really sure.

I've heard of insulators being cleaned by a power washer on ENERGIZED high voltage lines by using a special nozzle that interrupted the stream and grounding the nozzle (rumor was it took a brave volunteer the first time). It is possible the fire departments have such nozzles, as that could be a common hazard on burning buildings with energized conductors, though it did look like a continuous stream.

Another thought is the flame might have been providing the conductor path (ionized gas is a good conductor, don't build campfires under low power lines). As soon as it flame was cooled that might have removed the short circuit. That is a bit of a stretch.


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PostPosted: Mon May 27, 2013 3:43 pm 
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Jim Phillips (brainfiller) wrote:
Gary, I was waiting for the same thing, the big "Hollywood" finale. The water hose with an electrical fire is always in interesting combination. We'll assume someone de-energized this but I'm not really sure.



Well they certainly didn't spend much time checking for power isolation or earthing the hose or anything, and I notice the traffic lights didn't go out until well after they got there (could've been on a separate circuit of course). Couldn't see any other lighting on, mind you couldn't see it when the arcing was happening either.


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PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 10:00 am 
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Great video. Do you know if anyone was injured? Let's hope not.


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PostPosted: Tue May 28, 2013 1:35 pm 
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CHorvath wrote:
Great video. Do you know if anyone was injured? Let's hope not.

Here is a news report from their local paper. It doesn't sound like anyone was hurt. There are conflicting stories about whether it was a gas leak or an electrical problem. Looks like the biggest casualty was an ATM machine :eek:

[url='http://www.yorkpress.co.uk/news/10429147.Cashpoint_melts_after_pavement_blaze_in_Driffield/'][Yorkshire News Link][/url]

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PostPosted: Wed May 29, 2013 7:24 am 
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Interesting finger pointing. Gas Co. vs. Electric Co. Please let us know if the actual root cause is ever revealed.


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