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Old 28 December 2007, 22:38   #31
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I would say a fire extinguisher is essential - realistically fire is the only reason you are going to completely abandon your rib. Capsize, catastrophic hull failure or collision might also end up with you in the water but presumably you would aim to stay with the striken vessel to aid being rescued. As others have said the type of fire you are likely to get on a rib (fuel or electrical) is not really suited to buckets of water.
What's wrong with using water on an electrical fire? We aren't talking 240v mains - it's only 12v!!!
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Old 29 December 2007, 06:15   #32
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What's wrong with using water on an electrical fire? We aren't talking 240v mains - it's only 12v!!!
You'd be surprised how much of a jolt it feels like when you've got an electrolyte like salt water across +ve and -ve and your body in the circuit.
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Old 29 December 2007, 06:29   #33
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What's wrong with using water on an electrical fire? We aren't talking 240v mains - it's only 12v!!!
Firstly whilst the supply voltage is 12V the voltages inside your equipment can be much higher. Even if you think that is unlikely - then ignorging the electrocution risk for a moment - salt water is likely to short out equipment (as well as causing damage to equipment that might be salvagable). Putting salt water on live electrical equipment has the potential to cause a fire rather than extinguish it!

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Yes - pretty much the same as a chip pan.

Either that or the burning fuel will simply float on the water.
Nos - you are probably right - there are a number of effects which make chip pan fires particularly dramatic (i) all the oil is hot (so superheating the water into steam) (ii) it is usually deep but contained (which stops it spreading about as you described) (iii) they are normally indoors and thus the effects are particularly contained/alarming.

A petrol fire on a boat is presumably either a leak in the tank/pipework or at the engine. If the former adding water is likely to spread the fuel and therefore the problem.

But the initial effect of putting water on a petrol fire is an increase in the amount of flames. If you also spread the surface area of the fuel - that is going to be twice as bad.
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Old 29 December 2007, 08:18   #34
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Nos - you are probably right - there are a number of effects which make chip pan fires particularly dramatic (i) all the oil is hot (so superheating the water into steam) (ii) it is usually deep but contained (which stops it spreading about as you described) (iii) they are normally indoors and thus the effects are particularly contained/alarming.

A petrol fire on a boat is presumably either a leak in the tank/pipework or at the engine. If the former adding water is likely to spread the fuel and therefore the problem.

But the initial effect of putting water on a petrol fire is an increase in the amount of flames. If you also spread the surface area of the fuel - that is going to be twice as bad.

I agree. What I should have said is that at best you might put it out-but what's more likely to happen is that you make no difference apart from delaying yourself using a more effective method of fighting it,and you could make it far worse.



I've been toying with the idea of bolting a cheap CO2 extinguisher to my outboard cowl so if it goes up under there I can just hit the button fill the cowl with non-combustible gas. It would give me a far better chance of going home without calling the lifeboat if I had an engine fire-after all, the last thing you should do is take the cowl off to fight a fire!
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Old 29 December 2007, 08:43   #35
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I've been toying with the idea of bolting a cheap CO2 extinguisher to my outboard cowl so if it goes up under there I can just hit the button fill the cowl with non-combustible gas. It would give me a far better chance of going home without calling the lifeboat if I had an engine fire-after all, the last thing you should do is take the cowl off to fight a fire!
This is similar to the advice about fighting an engine fire on a car, which is to just crack open the bonnet a couple of inches max (i.e. not open the hood up) and inject the extinguisher through the crack and fully empty it.

Mind you, the dry powder normally used makes a hell of a mess - CO2,as you say, would be the neater choice!
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Old 29 December 2007, 09:09   #36
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Where's Jono when you need him?
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Old 29 December 2007, 12:08   #37
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Firstly whilst the supply voltage is 12V the voltages inside your equipment can be much higher. Even if you think that is unlikely - then ignorging the electrocution risk for a moment - salt water is likely to short out equipment (as well as causing damage to equipment that might be salvagable). Putting salt water on live electrical equipment has the potential to cause a fire rather than extinguish it!
Obviously salt water won't do your electrics any good - but neither does a fire. The problem with using CO2 to put out electrical fires is that the burning insulation often reignites as soon as the gas disperses.

If I had a fire in my console above the fuel tank I don't think I would worry too much about the damage salt water would cause.............

Bring back Halon!!!
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Old 30 December 2007, 03:04   #38
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Not really a bit of safety kit but a fuel cut off valve, where you can get to it
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Old 30 December 2007, 05:29   #39
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Not really a bit of safety kit but a fuel cut off valve, where you can get to it
I suspect pablo is using portable fuel cans only (i.e. no fixed fuel tank) so could just disconnect the fuel line at the tank end - or do you think a cut off valve is still important in such a small set up?
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Old 30 December 2007, 05:35   #40
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I suspect pablo is using portable fuel cans only (i.e. no fixed fuel tank) so could just disconnect the fuel line at the tank end - or do you think a cut off valve is still important in such a small set up?
Sorry I was being general, that would do the job to
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