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by Charles C. Roberts, Jr. Ph.D., P.E. Reprinted from "Claims Magazine"


Fires started by furnaces have been a major factor in losses associated with residential and commercial property. The beginning of the heating season usually brings a rash of fire losses as marginal equipment that survived the previous season fails, causing a fire.  During the heating season[,] as cold spells occur, marginal equipment is often over stressed, resulting in a fire.  After a thorough burn pattern analysis is performed on the building and a preliminary assessment indicates a furnace related fire, a closer look at the furnace installation may be fruitful.  The following is a listing of some typical fire causation modes associated with furnace (and boiler) fire losses that may be helpful in a causation analysis:

Combustible Material near the Furnace

Some furnace rooms act as a depository for the cardboard boxes, garbage and other combustible materials.  Placing these items close to a furnace can cause a fire as a result of heat transfer from the furnace or flame follout from the draft diverter.  Check for the remains of unusual combustible material near the furnace.  Inquire as to what was in the furnace room at the time of the fire.



From Out of the Abyss...

This week’s article from the past is titled Incendiary Fires Can Be Spotted and was written by Benjamin Horton, CPCU, who was President of the National Adjuster Traing School in Louisville, Kentucky..  It is taken from the Decembe 1968 Vol. XVI No.5 issue.

Incendiary Fires Can Be Spotted 

In the new issue of NFPA Journal®, President Jim Shannon said the Association will focus on the leading causes of home fires, including cooking. "We also need to continue to push hard for home fire sprinklers. That's still a large priority for NFPA, and we plan to work very aggressively in 2014 on our residential sprinkler initiative," he said.



What is Ethics?  There are many famous people throughout history who have commented on this topic.

~~“The most important persuasion tool you have in your entire arsenal is integrity.”  ~Zig Ziglar

 ~~“Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.”  ~Aristotle

 ~~“Education without values, as useful as it is, seems rather to make man a more clever devil.”  ~C.S. Lewis  

FREMONT INSURANCE COMPANY, Plaintiff-Appellant/Cross-Appellee, and STEVE FOLEY and DIANE FOLEY, d/b/a RAINBOW CREEK FARMS, Appellants/Cross-Appellees, v. GRO-GREEN FARMS, INC., Defendant-Appellee/Cross-Appellant. No. 324075. Court of Appeals of Michigan. March 17, 2016

Before: K. F. KELLY, P.J., and FORT HOOD and BORRELLO, JJ.


Plaintiffs appeal as of right from orders of the trial court granting defendant's motion for summary disposition and motion in limine. On appeal, plaintiffs argue that the trial court erred in granting defendant's summary disposition on plaintiffs' tort claims on the basis of the economic loss doctrine, erred in granting defendant's motion for summary disposition on the basis that plaintiffs failed to provide defendant with reasonable notice pursuant to MCL 440.2607(3)(a), and erred in granting defendant's motion in limine and prohibiting evidence relating to "clinkers." Defendant cross appeals as of right, asserting alternative grounds for affirmance of its motion for summary disposition and motion in limine, and disputing the trial court's denial of its motion to amend its witness list. We affirm in part, reverse in part, and remand for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.

 You can access the full article in the members only section

Submitted by Larry Luckham San Rafael Fire Department

One evening around 6:15 PM a few months ago I received a page to a reported structure fire at an address I knew to be a hotel.  I responded and arrived several minutes after the first-in engine company had reported on scene.  Enroute I understood from radio traffic that the fire was extinguished by the building sprinkler system, and a second crew was securing the sprinkler system to shut off the water.

As I entered the building I was directed by a firefighter to the second floor elevator lobby where a crew was busy with dewatering. The Captain showed me where the fire had started, which was in a trash container closet just off the elevator lobby. The closet itself was bare except for two 40 gallon plastic trash cans with black plastic liners. There was no sign that there had been any fire at all. The white enamel walls were clean, without even smoke deposits.

HR 549: National Bombing Prevention Act of 2009

Introduced by Representative Peter T. King

January 15, 2009

The following is from the Library of Congress - Thomas

National Bombing Prevention Act of 2009 - Amends the Homeland Security Act of 2002 to direct the Secretary of Homeland Security to establish an Office for Bombing Prevention within the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) Protective Security Coordination Division of the Office of Infrastructure Protection. Assigns the Office primary responsibility for enhancing the ability and coordinating the efforts of the nation to deter, detect, prevent, protect against, and respond to terrorist explosive attacks in the United States.

Directs the Secretary to partner with other federal, state, local, and tribal agencies, nonprofit organizations, universities, and the private sector to: (1) develop a pilot program that includes a domestic breeding program for explosives detection canines; (2) increase the number of capability assessments of explosives detection canine units; (3) continue development of a scientifically-based training curriculum to enhance consensus-based national training and certification standards to provide for the effective use of explosives detection canines; and (4) continue engagement in explosives detection canine research and development activities through partnerships with the Science and Technology Directorate and the Technical Support Working Group.

Directs the Secretary to develop and periodically update a national strategy to prevent and prepare for terrorist explosive attacks in the United States.

Directs the Secretary, acting through the Under Secretary for Science and Technology, to: (1) ensure coordination and information sharing regarding nonmilitary research, development, testing, and evaluation activities relating to the detection and prevention of, protection against, and response to terrorist attacks in the United States using explosives or improvised explosive devices and the development of tools and technologies necessary to neutralize and disable explosive devices; (2) coordinate with relevant federal department heads to ensure that military policies, procedures, activities, tools, and technologies to prevent and respond to terrorist attacks are adapted to nonmilitary uses; (3) establish a technology transfer program to facilitate the identification, modification, and commercialization of technology and equipment for use by agencies, emergency response providers, and the private sector against such attacks; and (4) establish a working group to advise and assist in the identification of military technologies developed by the Department of Defense (DOD) or the private sector to protect against and respond to explosive attacks.

Amends the Implementing Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission Act of 2007 to direct the Comptroller General to utilize explosives detection canine teams of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and other DHS agencies to strengthen security and capacity.

Directs the Secretary to submit a report to specified congressional committees on the administration of canine procurement activities by DHS to deter, prevent, detect, and protect against terrorist explosive attacks in the United States that includes consideration of the feasibility of reducing the price paid for the procurement of untrained canines."




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