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Old 08 January 2009, 09:16   #31
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Originally Posted by spartacus View Post
A petrol or engine fire would be as problematic on land as it is on water - without the security of being able to retreat from the fire.
No (a) as you say you can walk away on land; (b) you can get round all sides of the engine to fight it easily; (c) fire brigade response time on land will normally be less than the RNLI's; (d) fire service much more experienced at putting out fires than the RNLI, and with much wider range of kit.
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Old 08 January 2009, 11:26   #32
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Originally Posted by Nos4r2 View Post
So, he's putting the point he's spraying the extinguisher in at the highest point where it'll be hardest to reach the fire and any burning fuel under his cowl could well be running out into the boat..
...and this assumes that your PT relays haven't melted themselves to a random collection of strips of metal in a plastic puddle, or if like most manual tilt engines the air intake is the same hole you need to put your fingers in to lift it! Does he happen to have an asbestos glove to hand?!

I do wonder if a remote release CO2 could be used, permanently plumbed in, bottle strapped to the transom? You'd need a biggish or high pressure cyl - most of the volume of the cowl will need expelled & replaced with the CO2 for it to work......


As for the bucket of water, the big issue I could see there is the burning fuel getting washed overboard (or worse still, back into the boat) & causing more problems than the relatively compact fire in the engine....
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Old 08 January 2009, 11:49   #33
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Question how susceptible are dry powder co2 driven extinguishers to powder compaction/dampness on boats ?
Very.

Ideally, you take the thing and smack it on a block of wood a few times once a month to keep the powder loose (smaller ones, you can feel the powder sloshing back and forth when you shake it. Don't know about larger ones.)

jky
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Old 08 January 2009, 11:59   #34
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Originally Posted by Bigmuz7 View Post
I dont see why throwing water at it would be so bad
Depends on the cause of the fire, and what's actually burning (which would be difficult to determine at the time, I'd think.)

If the fire is due to, say, an electrical problem igniting non-petroleum combustible material, water *may* get the burning material below ignition temperature, in which case you're golden (assuming you isolate the ignition source from the initial problem.)

But, if the burning material is gas or oil, throwing water on it causes it to splash wherever the force of the water takes it, and it usually keeps burning. Effect is something like a napalm air strike. The degree of effect, of course, depends on how much petroleum stuff is around, but in general, it's not a good idea, especially on a RIB.

Also, to get access to the base of the fire to throw water on it, you'd need to remove the cowling (assuming outboard), which will fuel the fire with oxygen (not a good thing.)

My $.02;

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Old 08 January 2009, 13:48   #35
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Originally Posted by Polwart View Post
No (a) as you say you can walk away on land; (b) you can get round all sides of the engine to fight it easily; (c) fire brigade response time on land will normally be less than the RNLI's; (d) fire service much more experienced at putting out fires than the RNLI, and with much wider range of kit.
The RNLI is for saving lives at sea, not putting out fires.
If we have a fire on an Atlantic the important thing is to leave the engine running and disconnect the fuel supply if you can and fire the CO2 extinguisher into the running engine until it dies.

The only time I've been on a RIB on fire was with a RYA instructor in Poole, the outboard flashed back through the carbs with flames licking out the hood, funniest thing I've seen two lads cupping water up and splashing it. Credit to em it went out.
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Old 08 January 2009, 14:05   #36
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Well I think these fires are a little more common than people think (not trying to scare monger ) I certainly know of two people its happened to. I've looked out an extinguisher similar to the one I carry in my truck, which I will be fitting before I start my season this year Question is .. which is the best kind then, fellas ? CO2 or powder .. I have access to any type as I use a company called Asco to supply/check all my workshop and office ones
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Old 08 January 2009, 16:13   #37
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Originally Posted by jyasaki View Post
Very.

Ideally, you take the thing and smack it on a block of wood a few times once a month to keep the powder loose (smaller ones, you can feel the powder sloshing back and forth when you shake it. Don't know about larger ones.)

jky
I do that once a month with all the small extinquisher on my boats and with the large ones on the passenger boat I do the same and roll them around on the deck for a bit. Seems to work ok.
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Old 08 January 2009, 17:45   #38
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The RNLI is for saving lives at sea, not putting out fires.
I wasn't disputing that - hence why I would rather have a fire in my engine when its on the trailer or jetty where the fire service can put it out than at sea. An earlier post had suggested that there was no real difference.
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Old 08 January 2009, 18:09   #39
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i heard the rnli have not been allowed to fight fires for a number of years,the only reason crews go on fire fighting courses are part of the health and safety for the offshore boats, i think most people would have a problem with trying to squirt an extiguisher into the air intake of an outboard hood as most have a foam backing or they are baffled , though you might prise out a rubber grommet and try squirting it into that ,though as some one said previously a coat soaked in water wrapped around may be as good ,and dont forget if you have had an engine fire and its out and you need help dont set it off again when letting off flares , regards mart
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Old 08 January 2009, 18:14   #40
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Originally Posted by jyasaki View Post

But, if the burning material is gas or oil, throwing water on it causes it to splash wherever the force of the water takes it, and it usually keeps burning. Effect is something like a napalm air strike. The degree of effect, of course, depends on how much petroleum stuff is around, but in general, it's not a good idea, especially on a RIB.

Also, to get access to the base of the fire to throw water on it, you'd need to remove the cowling (assuming outboard), which will fuel the fire with oxygen (not a good thing.)

My $.02;

jky

Well plain water worked well enough on a car and a motorbike - the motorbike was dripping burning fuel on the road - 2 x 2L water bottles were all that was needed.

I agree that you really need to remove the cowl which is not a good idea but that is the same for most types of extinguishers.

Providing the fuel supply has been shut off there isn't that much to burn anyway - just some wiring and the cowl itself although a 2 stroke oil resevoir could cause a problem.
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