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Sherlock Ohms

Did a Forklift Fire Burn Down the Store?

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Beth Stackpole
User Rank
Blogger
Top-notch detective work
Beth Stackpole   11/2/2011 9:23:05 AM
What a relief for the store owner that they were able to settle the claim. Just goes to show what a sound engineering background can help uncover.

jljarvis
User Rank
Gold
Re: Top-notch detective work
jljarvis   11/3/2011 3:11:24 PM
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Question is, did the insurance company go after the repair shop whose

work violated the manufacturer's instructions, and ultimately caused the fire?

 



Rob Spiegel
User Rank
Blogger
Re: Top-notch detective work
Rob Spiegel   12/30/2011 2:32:19 PM
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Good point, Jljavris. I would think the repair that was done that violated the manufacturer's instructions would face legitimate liability issues.

BobGroh
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Forklift fire
BobGroh   11/4/2011 9:15:30 PM
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I am always surprised and amazed at how much energy you can get out of today's batteries and not just the bigger one's like the forklift had but, for example, even that lowly little 9V battery that we use in our smoke alarms and transistor radios.

Several years ago, I was evaluating a new device in an industrial environment. To test the device, I had a shop made electronic test device which used a simple little alkaline 9V battery (size 522) for power.  Because I didn't want to have to terminate my testing if the battery in the test device ran low, I carried along a spare battery. I just stuck the replacement spare battery in my pocket and carried on with my testing.

The morning wore on and I was busy taking data. My hand brushed the coveralls where the pocket was and, to my surprise, it felt warm.  In fact, it felt darn right warm!  I reached in my pocket and yanked out the spare battery ... and burned my fingers!  I threw the battery down on the grating and wondered what the heck had caused that! 

Looking at the terminals on the battery, I noticed two discolored spots on the the brass.  I also emptied out my pocket and found a 'warm' quarter.  Ah, ha, said I to myself - the quarter must have worked it's way across the battery terminals, causing a short which caused internal heating of the battery.  I gingerly picked up the now somewhat cool battery, placed the quarter across the terminals and the battery very rapidly started to heat up again.

Lesson learned: even small batteries have the potential to heat up considerably when abused.  I never carried a spare battery in a pocket with anything else metallic in it and I always, when disposing of ANY battery, wrap it in tape so the chances of it shorting to something else are pretty much non-existant.

William K.
User Rank
Platinum
Did the forklift start the fire
William K.   11/2/2011 7:47:55 PM
The amount of power that a vehicle battery can deliver for a short period of time is quite remarkable. Even the small 7amp-hour batteries can deliver a hundred amps for as much as 30 seconds. The larger starting-duty batteries can deliver over a thousand amps for a while. 

Because of this ability to deliver so much current it is mandatory that proper precautions be taken to avoid short circuits of the battery wiring. If the installer of the battery cable had done the job correctly, or even if they had added an extra layer of protection, the disaster would have been avoided.

This provides all of us with a reminder about safety requirements in battery wiring designs. 

oldtimer8080
User Rank
Gold
Secure Start/Start Stick facts
oldtimer8080   11/3/2011 5:33:40 PM
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At Bolder Technologies, we built auxilary/emergency starter power cells.

Our SecureStart could power my XJ12 starter ( ~400A ) for 10-12 seconds.

Your regular 27F sized vehicle battery has much more power available and can deliver it all in the space of a few minutes..

The new generation of hybrid and EVs have a new set of rules when it comes to vehicle accidents.

Every EV/Hybrid should have a full current master switch to kill the battery pack voltages.

The BRS should be as visible as they are in computer rooms. The life you save may be your own,,,

 

 

 

 

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