NEWSHEET 19

Vehicle Fires

A recent study of vehicle fires has been carried out on behalf of the Fire Protection Research Foundation. This highlighted that a fire protection system could have prevented the loss of the vehicle and human lives.

Five examples of vehicle fires are provided below.

VEHICLE FIRE 1

Incident Description:   DOMESTIC VEHICLE FIRE AT PETROL RE-FUELING STATION
As the driver removed the pump ready to re-fuel his car, he felt a shock. A spark ignited nearby fuel vapours which spread to his vehicle. Ignition rapidly followed. Whilst the driver and passengers escaped without harm, both the vehicle and part of the petrol station were destroyed by flames.

Vehicle Type: S.U.V. (Sport Utility Vehicle - 4x4 etc)
Ignition Circumstances:  The vehicle engine was not running and no other vehicle was involved
Ignition Heat Source:   Static electricity generated between the driver and the fuel pump.

VEHICLE FIRE 2

Incident Description: DOMESTIC VEHICLE BEING DRIVEN
The owner of the vehicle smelt smoke and then noticed flaming items/debris coming from under the dash board. Just above his legs and feet. He rapidly drove the vehicle to the side of the road and ultimately to a parking lot.

Vehicle Type:   S.U.V. (Sport Utility Vehicle - 4x4 etc)
Ignition Circumstances:   Ignition occurred whilst the vehicle was being driven, but without any direct contribution from external sources or collision with another vehicle
Ignition Heat Source:   A short circuit or arcing from an exposed electrical conductor that had been unknowingly damaged during the installation of a radio/CD player.
Items that burned: Insulation behind the dashboard

VEHICLE FIRE 3

Incident Description:   OPERATIONAL TOUR BUS
A tour bus carrying 47 passengers was being driven when a fire occurred.

Vehicle Type:   P.S.V. (Public Services Vehicle - Bus/Coach)
Ignition Circumstances:   A fire started whilst the vehicle was in operation. The driver was braking at the time to slow the vehicle speed.
Ignition Heat Source:   The rear brake began "dragging" causing a large amount of friction, heat and rapidly progressed to a fire

VEHICLE FIRE 4

Incident Description:   CAR RENTAL VEHICLE
A Truck ran into the rear of the rented vehicle causing it to become enveloped in flames so intense that the driver could not get close enough to attempt to open passenger rear doors.

Vehicle Type:   A rented limousine with a cars base structure.
Ignition Circumstances:   The ignition occurred post accident
Ignition Heat Source:   Believed to be sparks from physical contact between metal components during the road accident.
Items that Burned:   The fuel tank (located behind the rear axle) was "punctured" during impact allowing petrol to spread in many areas. The fire eventually spread to the interior of the vehicle causing loss of life.

VEHICLE FIRE 5

Incident Description:   SALVAGE COMPANY VEHICLE SALE
The vehicle had no prior collision damage history identified.  When title to the vehicle was claimed by the salvage Company, they unsuccessfully attempted to start it. Identifying a battery problem, they jump started the vehicle -with the mechanic then leaving it a few minutes to allow the engine to warm up. 10 minutes after starting the vehicle, another employee noticed smoke coming from it and alerted the mechanic who called for the fire service.

Vehicle Type:   S.U.V. (Sport Utility Vehicle - 4x4 etc)
Ignition Circumstances:   The vehicle had never apparently been involved in any previous accident and was left with the engine simply idling after a "jump start".
Ignition Heat Source:   Unknown engine source - possibly a spark or overheat.
Items that Burned:   It was suspected that a fuel line leak of petrol had started the fire - due to some mechanical malfunction or other unintentional cause.

SOURCE OF INFORMATION - "Fire Safety of the traveling Public and Fire fighter for Today and Tomorrows vehicle fleet" (for the Fire Protection Research Foundation - April 2007)

Featured

Digital (LHS) & Analogue Linear Sensing

The means to locally monitor for temperature changes (rise or fall) at "point of risk" and at ANY /ALL locations along an installed length of temperature sensitive cable - regardless of environmental conditions.

Fibre Optic Linear Temperature Sensing

Line detection of temperature change and rate of rise along multi -kms lengths of small diameter fibre optic cable. It provides high performance near real time temperature Sensing and Alarm functionality with standard communication interfaces.

Proline 'Nero' Water & Moisture Detection

Rapid detection of the smallest of leaks within Industrial, Commercial Environments by a recoverable cable. Designed to provide 24 hours/day x 7 days/week continuous monitoring of areas where even the smallest of leaks can prove disastrous. Essential where undetected leakages can cause serious damage to today’s complex electrical, communications and computer networks.

About

PROLINE PROTECTION SYSTEMS

A U.K. registered Company with hands-on product development, global market & application experience dating from the 1970's.

Proline equipment conforms to all NFPA 72 and EN54 standards requirements for linear detection.

Pneumatic, Digital, Analogue, Fibre Optics, Measuring Point System, Aspirating Systems...regardless of your linear detection requirement PROLINE will be happy to assist you.