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Andrew T. Tinsley, MS, EI, CFEI
Eastern Kentucky University, USA
Michael Whaley, Criminal Investigator Tennessee Department of Agriculture, USA
David J. Icove, Ph.D., PE, CFEI University of Tennessee - Knoxville, USA

ABSTRACT

The investigation of hay fires has long been a challenge for the fire service.  Fires of this type are notoriously difficult to extinguish and usually require allowing the fire to run out of fuel (or the use of heavy equipment and large volumes of water).  Inherently, this creates a “black hole” for fire investigators as they are often left with little more than witness statements to base their conclusions on.  As a result, many hay fires are attributed to spontaneous combustion for lack of a better explanation.  One of the traditional indicators of spontaneous combustion that fire investigators have relied upon in the past is the formation and/or presence of hay clinkers.  Several reliable sources indicate the formation of hay clinkers is an event which is mutually exclusive to spontaneous combustion.  After a string of suspicious cases in which hay clinkers were discovered, the Tennessee Department of Agriculture’s Criminal Investigation Division conducted a series of field tests.  The results of these field tests indicate that hay clinker production is possible with an external ignition source and should not be utilized as an indicator of fire cause.

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Description

This recall involves Homelite 12 amp electric blower vacuums with model numbers UT42120, UT42120A and UT42121. Model numbers are located on a label on the left side of the red motor housing. The blower vacuums are red and black. “Homelite BlowerVac 2 Speed Powerful 220 MPH” is printed on the side of the motor housing and on the black plastic blower tube.

See full details at CPSC

Description

This recall involves Expert Gardener 12 amp electric blower vacuums with model numbers 20254EG, 20254EGA, 20254EGB, 20254EGBC, 20254EGC and 21254EG. Model numbers are located on a label on the left side of the motor housing. The blower vacuums are green and black. “Expert Gardener” and “Blower Vac 2 Speed Quiet 150 MPH Powerful 220 MPH” are printed on the side of the green motor housing and on the black plastic blower tube.

See full details at CPSC

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.

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UNDER ADVISEMENT RULING

The Court has had under advisement Plaintiff Barbara A. Sloan’s (“Sloan”) Rule 60 Motion.  Having read and considered the briefing and having heard oral argument, the Court issues the following ruling.

Ruling Document 

Description

This recall involves four types of DD branded single-wick candles: Mason jars in 5- and 12- ounce sizes, decorative jars in 10- and 20-ounce sizes, 13-ounce coffee tins and 13-ounce jars with a holiday theme. The candles were sold in a variety of fragrances and colors.

The 5-ounce Mason jars are 2.25 inches wide by 3.75 inches high. The 12-ounce Mason jars are 3 inches wide by 5 inches high. The jars have gray metal lids. The DD logo and the word Handcrafted are in raised letters on the front of the jars. The candle fragrance and size are printed on a hang tang attached to the mouth of the jars.

The 10-ounce decorative jars are 4 inches wide by 3 inches high. The 20-ounce decorative jars are 5 inches wide by 4 inches high and hold a candle. The jars have gray metal lids with the DD logo in raised letters on the top. The candle fragrance and size are printed on a rectangular label on the front of the jar.

The 13-ounce coffee tins are 3.5 inches wide by 4 inches high and have a silver metal lid. The candle size and fragrance are printed on a label that wraps around the outside of the tin.

The 13-ounce holiday candle jars are 3.75 inches wide by 4 inches high and have silver metal lids with the DD logo in raised letters on the top.  The DD logo inside a floral wreath, the fragrance and size are printed directly onto the front of the jar in silver.

See the full details at CPSC

Trivia

Trivia Questions of the Month

The trivia questions are not only fun but informative.  Who doesn't like learning something new, right?

Trivia question for August

The first propulsion means for fire pumps, whether they were hand or steamed powered, consisted of human beings pulling the pump.  Fire crews from the early 1900s were carried around by people, the apparatus had little room for personnel, they moved slowly and when they arrived at the scene, the firefighters were often too tired to do anything.  Luckily, in most cases, the fires died out before they even arrived, so there was little left for them to do.

Towards mid-1800s, and the age of steam, the introduction of the paid firefighters made room for horses to be largely put to use and pull the fire pumps.  This improved the response time of the fire brigades, but still didn't solve the firefighter transport issue.  People literally ran to the fires and, despite the fact that the pump was already there; they had some resting to do before getting to it.  The introduction of running boards and back steps, tail boards, later solved this problem as well.

The continuing development in fire-fighting technologies and equipment made life a lot harder for the horses.  The increase in weight of the fire engine slowly turned the horses as ineffective as the people were before them.  Often, after half a mile or so, the travel speed would decrease dramatically.  This called for a new means of propelling the engines.

Enter the self-propelled fire equipment.  The first self-propelled, steam powered fire engine in the US came to be in 1841 and it was built in New York.  Strangely enough, it didn't catch on.  Firefighters considered such a propulsion solution dangerous and unreliable.  It took decades before the steam powered fire engines really caught on.

However, the reign of the steam didn't last long.  Despite the fact that steam powered fire engines were still in use, here and there, up until the 1920’s, motorized fire trucks became more and more common by the early 1900’s.  Horse-drawn or steam powered engines started being turned into motorized fire engines.  By 1913, Ahrens-Fox Manufacturing Company from Cincinnati was the leading company when it came to the conversion.  From 1911, Mack Trucks began producing fire trucks, slowly becoming the most famous manufacturer in this field.

Many take the motorized fire equipment we use today for granted.  Yes it is big and shiny and very impressive, BUT, when was the first motorized fire engine used and where was it used?  What was the first fire department in California to become motorized?

I could ask that you trust to memory, but I know many will go to their computer for help. Good luck.

Click on any link below to find the trivia question and answer for that month.

 

 

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Location

1279 North White Avenue 
Pomona, California 91768 
Phone:  (909) 865-5004
Fax (909) 865-5024 
8:00 am - 5:00 pm 
Monday - Friday

 

 

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