"Fire in the Hole" - Safety Tip

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Splinter

New User
Dolan Brown
Today I was at my son's shop. He was going to use his cutting torch to cut some rusty bolts off a piece of equipment I am reworking for garden rows. Before we got started cutting we had to get some hand tools off his workbench. Note: He doesn't keep a neat workbench. There were loose bolts/screws, pasteboard boxes, etc., etc. all over the bench. Just before he started cutting we kept smelling some plastic burning. We looked aross the road to see if the neighbors were burning some yard trash but they were not. My son turned around and looked back in the shop and there was a fire on the workbench blazing about 1 foot high. We ran back in the shop and he grabbed the fire extenguisher and put the fire out. Burned up a canvas tool bag and a few other small items but no major damage. I am thankful we didn't go out of the shop and close the door or it would have been a major fire before we knew it.

A battery similar to one of these was at the base of the fire http://battstore.stores.yahoo.net/evlanbat6vol.html .

We had bumped something metal on the workbench and it fell across the wire contacts on the battey and that is what caused the fire. :kamahlitu

Lessons learned here...keep a cleaner workbench and keep a plastic cover over at least one of the battery contacts. :BangHead::BangHead:
 

Trent Mason

New User
Trent Mason
Dolan,

I'm really glad no one was hurt and there wasn't any major damage. You all are lucky you caught that before it got out of hand. I could definitely see that happening to me though. That is just one of those obscure things that are easy to forget. Thanks for sharing your story. :icon_thum

Trent
 

Gofor

Mark
Corporate Member
Good tip. Never considered a lantern battery had enough juice to start a fire. Makes sense tho. Glad it wasn't worse.

Go
 

Rob

New User
Rob
I always try to keep my welding bench clean. I had an accident in Charlotte, 1 car garage, welding bench near the door. Smoke started filling my welding helmet, lifted up my helmet and there was a rag about 2' from me burning. It had just started, so I tossed it out in the drive, can't burn concrete right? Went back to welding. After a minute or so, I heard BANG, whooosh. Scared the bejeebus out of me. Jumped straight up in the air. My air hose was outside, rag had landed on that, burned through the hose.
 

skeeter

New User
Charles
Glad you caught the fire before anything more serious happened. Everyone should have a fire extinguisher handy. Never know when it will come in good.
 

TracyP

Administrator , Forum Moderator
Tracy
Man I am glad that you caught it before it got out of hand. It could have really been bad.
 

ScottM

Scott
Staff member
Corporate Member
Dolan, glad there was no serious damage or injuries. Thanks for the safety tip.
 

Charles Lent

Charley
Corporate Member
I had a similar fire about 15 years ago. It was caused by steel wool hitting the terminals of a 9 volt battery and it lit some shavings that was everywhere on the bench. Be VERY CAREFUL of where you put your steel wool. It becomes a flash bulb when electricity runs through it. I too was fortunate and managed to put out the fire before any serious damage occurred.

Charley
 

BobcatBob

New User
Bob
I guess the bottom line is never to leave batteries sitting out in the open with their contacts exposed. This should include those rechargable batteries we all use in our cordless tools. It's probably a good idea to unplug the battery charger when it is not being used so nothing can fall into it and catch fire. One small fire is still one too many! :no:

Bob
 
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