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Man sets fire to carpet with 40,000 volt static charge that built up in his clothes

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  • #16
    No correction neeed, he's NUTS. Why would you purposely try to burn yourself up? Maybe you should go on the Dr. Phil show!

    Comment


    • #17
      Static electricity and fuel fires are gas stations?

      Though ya sure untill last fall at the Chevron station, caught on video, girl puts nozzle in and then get back in to chat wit her girlfriends, gets out to shut it off, blam fire, three girls running from burning car, pump begins to burn, we arrive knock down the fire but watch in wonderment the flame coming out of the gas fill spout to the car!

      How do I know? I was on the nozzle and then saw the video tape!

      Carpet fire, multile starts...hummm .. seem improbable!

      Stay Safe and Keep Low, we all come home, jack.
      Godspeed-Stay Safe.jack

      25 Year Career Union Firefighter
      Local 1696
      ME115 - IACOJ

      Comment


      • #18
        I've known about people smoking, talking on the phone, and leaving the engine running while fueling, but sitting in the car while fueling then getting out can cause a fire? I've never heard of that. I've done it when it's freezing outside and didn't want to stand in the cold. Well now I now and I'm going to have to suffer standing in the cold, jumping up and down
        I have not smoked(ever), left the engine running, or made calls while fueling up

        IF this guy had 40,000 volts charged in his clothing, would he not feel the heat?
        An education is only wasted when the taught individual chooses not to recognize the value of the lesson.

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        • #19
          One to avoid

          Originally posted by pfd4life
          True, what I was geting at is that I have used my cell phone, radio and pager while fueling up my car, or one of our department vehicles and have yet to cause a fire, I've even held it near the fuel opening and nozzle and have not had a single thing happen. They are not a good source of ignition, now getting in and out of your car, that's been proven several times over. But your also not really getting static electricity out of an electrical device, it's more of an arc between components.

          I hope all of your fellow workers read this and take the appropriate steps when around you---LARGE ONES IN THE OPPOSITE DIRECTION.

          I thought the Ragheads were the only ones stupid enough to have suicide bombers.

          Comment


          • #20
            Originally posted by JorieH
            I've known about people smoking, talking on the phone, and leaving the engine running while fueling, but sitting in the car while fueling then getting out can cause a fire? I've never heard of that. I've done it when it's freezing outside and didn't want to stand in the cold. Well now I now and I'm going to have to suffer standing in the cold, jumping up and down
            I have not smoked(ever), left the engine running, or made calls while fueling up

            IF this guy had 40,000 volts charged in his clothing, would he not feel the heat?
            Nope no heat. The heat is only created by current which is the movement of electrons from an area of high concentration to an area of lower concentration. Static electricity is just that. Static, Not moving, therefore no heat. The heat is generated only when there is a path for the electrons to flow.
            Ok, quick science review folks. Current is the product of the voltage divided by the resistance or
            I (current)= V(volts)/R(resistance). Understanding that the resistance encountered in a normal static electric charge is in the hundreds of mega ohms. (million ohms) I=40,000volts / 5Mohms which equals 8 milliamps. Not enough amperage to cause heat that you can feel and maybe enough to cause you heart problems if said current was passed through the heart. (don't panic static charges dont go through you, it is just on your skin) hence all you usually feel it on your skin.
            I thought my first post of the ad with the 500,000 volt van de graf generator would have ended this notion. I am not any good at posting pics but I know most adults have seen these things. They are the metal balls that you put your hands on and your hair raises and all that cool stuff. It produces little lightning bolts that jump from the machine to your hand as you get near the machine. This is perfectly harmless at 500000 volts. Why would anyone think that 40,000 volts would be harmful? Its not the voltage but the current that causes the fires. The current in these static discharges is to miniscule to generate heat to cause ignition of clothing or carpeting. Now Gas vapors are a completely different situation. It takes next to nothing to ignite fuel vapors which is precisely the danger in these fuel pump accidents. Getting in and out of your vehicle causes friction and causes a buildup of a static charge. This potential is constantly looking to go to a more neutral state. As you get out of your car wearing rubber or leather soles (insulation from ground) and you grab hold of the nozzel that has insulating rubber on it and pull it out of the tank. At this point some electrons have started to travel from you to the car, but when the nozzle clears the car the flow stops and the voltage hunts for the next path of least resistance. It can find that through the vapors. Then you get a quick discharge of electricity through the vapors in the form of a spark and boom ignition.
            Now the setup for this has to be perfect. It is extremely difficult to reproduce even in a lab but it can and does happen. Cellphones and radios give off electromagnetic pulses as it were that can cause the buildup of electrons on a person. And now you can get the cycle all over again. It takes very precise circumstances to make this happen which is why you probably couldn't reproduce it. But it doesn't make the danger any less real.
            The safest way to pump gas is to shut off the car/truck completely. Remove even the key. Pump the gas and remain outside the vehicle at all times. If you can't stay out of the car, then make sure that you ground yourself at all times. Remove the nozzle with one hand and place the other hand on the car. This keeps you grounded and reduces the chance for a spark. Put the cell phone down and the radio as well. (unless you are sure that they are intrinically safe)
            Be smart, stay safe, and don't get burned.
            Ps this is a non issue for the most part with diesels. The fuel vaprs from diesel have nowhere near as low of a flash point as Gasoline.
            To those whom much has been given, much shall be required.
            Chickens don't really exist....they are actually eggs with legs!

            Comment


            • #21
              Originally posted by chrnea
              Nope no heat. The heat is only created by current which is the movement of electrons from an area of high concentration to an area of lower concentration. Static electricity is just that. Static, Not moving, therefore no heat. The heat is generated only when there is a path for the electrons to flow.
              Ok, quick science review folks. Current is the product of the voltage divided by the resistance or
              I (current)= V(volts)/R(resistance). Understanding that the resistance encountered in a normal static electric charge is in the hundreds of mega ohms. (million ohms) I=40,000volts / 5Mohms which equals 8 milliamps. Not enough amperage to cause heat that you can feel and maybe enough to cause you heart problems if said current was passed through the heart. (don't panic static charges dont go through you, it is just on your skin) hence all you usually feel it on your skin.
              I thought my first post of the ad with the 500,000 volt van de graf generator would have ended this notion. I am not any good at posting pics but I know most adults have seen these things. They are the metal balls that you put your hands on and your hair raises and all that cool stuff. It produces little lightning bolts that jump from the machine to your hand as you get near the machine. This is perfectly harmless at 500000 volts. Why would anyone think that 40,000 volts would be harmful? Its not the voltage but the current that causes the fires. The current in these static discharges is to miniscule to generate heat to cause ignition of clothing or carpeting. Now Gas vapors are a completely different situation. It takes next to nothing to ignite fuel vapors which is precisely the danger in these fuel pump accidents. Getting in and out of your vehicle causes friction and causes a buildup of a static charge. This potential is constantly looking to go to a more neutral state. As you get out of your car wearing rubber or leather soles (insulation from ground) and you grab hold of the nozzel that has insulating rubber on it and pull it out of the tank. At this point some electrons have started to travel from you to the car, but when the nozzle clears the car the flow stops and the voltage hunts for the next path of least resistance. It can find that through the vapors. Then you get a quick discharge of electricity through the vapors in the form of a spark and boom ignition.
              Now the setup for this has to be perfect. It is extremely difficult to reproduce even in a lab but it can and does happen. Cellphones and radios give off electromagnetic pulses as it were that can cause the buildup of electrons on a person. And now you can get the cycle all over again. It takes very precise circumstances to make this happen which is why you probably couldn't reproduce it. But it doesn't make the danger any less real.
              The safest way to pump gas is to shut off the car/truck completely. Remove even the key. Pump the gas and remain outside the vehicle at all times. If you can't stay out of the car, then make sure that you ground yourself at all times. Remove the nozzle with one hand and place the other hand on the car. This keeps you grounded and reduces the chance for a spark. Put the cell phone down and the radio as well. (unless you are sure that they are intrinically safe)
              Be smart, stay safe, and don't get burned.
              Ps this is a non issue for the most part with diesels. The fuel vaprs from diesel have nowhere near as low of a flash point as Gasoline.
              You have to differentiate between temperature and quantity of heat. These discharges have more than adequate temperature to ignite vapors present within the substance's flammable limits. It does not have a sufficient quantity of heat energy to cause solid objects to pyrolosize and ignite.
              PROUD, HONORED AND HUMBLED RECIPIENT OF THE PURPLE HYDRANT AWARD - 10/2007.

              Comment


              • #22
                The whole deal with the gas pump is you dont discharge static electricity you might buildup sitting in your car . You can sit in your car if its cold out while your filling up but when you get out of the vehicle have both feet placed on the ground and touch the vehicle to discharge you electric charge away fromt he fuel vapors.

                I've watched about 5 videos on idiots going inside theyre car then coming out and touching the gas handle and whooosh omg my cars on fire.
                " We are not extraordinary people , we are people caught in extraordinary situations. " Chapter 1 IFSTA Manual

                Comment


                • #23
                  What happened to all of you who were going to check this out? Were you able to verify the fact that the Chief had no idea what he was talking about?
                  PROUD, HONORED AND HUMBLED RECIPIENT OF THE PURPLE HYDRANT AWARD - 10/2007.

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Originally posted by KemalT View Post



                    Power-dressing man leaves trail of destruction

                    Fri Sep 16,10:30 AM ET

                    SYDNEY (Reuters) - An Australian man built up a 40,000-volt charge of static electricity in his clothes as he walked, leaving a trail of scorched carpet and molten plastic and forcing firefighters to evacuate a building.

                    Frank Clewer, who was wearing a woolen shirt and a synthetic nylon jacket, was oblivious to the growing electrical current that was building up as his clothes rubbed together.

                    When he walked into a building in the country town of Warrnambool in the southern state of Victoria Thursday, the electrical charge ignited the carpet.

                    "It sounded almost like a firecracker," Clewer told Australian radio Friday.

                    "Within about five minutes, the carpet started to erupt."

                    Employees, unsure of the cause of the mysterious burning smell, telephoned firefighters who evacuated the building.

                    "There were several scorch marks in the carpet, and we could hear a cracking noise -- a bit like a whip -- both inside and outside the building," said fire official Henry Barton.

                    Firefighters cut electricity to the building thinking the burns might have been caused by a power surge.

                    Clewer, who after leaving the building discovered he had scorched a piece of plastic on the floor of his car, returned to seek help from the firefighters.

                    "We tested his clothes with a static electricity field meter and measured a current of 40,000 volts, which is one step shy of spontaneous combustion, where his clothes would have self-ignited," Barton said.



                    Firefighters took possession of Clewer's jacket and stored it in the courtyard of the fire station, where it continued to give off a strong electrical current.
                    Very Sad to hear this.

                    Comment

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