10/27/10 52 W - + 5 - 6 Buzz, Buzz, Swoosh, Applause

Here's your pre-Friday video find. Citizens enjoy the show in Cincinnati, in this transformer fire footage found by Dave Statter. There's something particularly mesmerizing about a crackling transformer. Maybe it's the sheer lethality of the electricity on display. Water is gingerly (dangerously?) applied, and the crowd applauds...

Based on Statter reader comments, this footage appears to depict entirely unsafe operations. Does that make this a close call video? Or of similar instruction value?

Furthermore, my casual irreverence is perhaps inappropriate to the gravity of what’s depicted. What say you? If this post (or even just the emded) disappears, it’ll be because it failed the post-posting smell test.
Legeros - 10/28/10 - 07:59

Well, one thing’s for sure… the videographer is VERY proud of his “old crib.” Yet, the power pole was saved from certain destruction!! ...oh, did the videographer forget to mention where he used to live? All aside, it’s an interesting video. It would have been a perfect “close call” example to see the firefighter get knocked on his a$$ when three phase hit the nozzle!
A.C. Rich - 10/28/10 - 16:24

What would be a more proper way to handle this situation? Even though I am relatively new to firefighting, I know that water is no good for a Charlie fire.
Rookie - 10/28/10 - 19:33

I know enough about electricity to know that it will LIGHT YOUR A$$ UP IF YOU AREN’T CAREFUL WITH IT!! This is what I’d do if it was my gig.

1. “Dispatch, put a rush on the power company”;
2. Get the onlookers BACK, BACK, BACK, even if it means one of them missing a fourth shot of “the old crib”;
3. Check exposures; if needed, use a broken stream to wet them down (I realize it isn’t an optimum way to protect them but it’s better than nothing), and on this job it appears they’re all brick.
4. Stop walking underneath the damn power lines;
5. Test an A-B-C extinguisher on it with short bursts, might reach just enough to knock it down if you have an exposure issue.
6. Wait.
7. Don’t use corny lines like “always somethin’ poppin’ up here”, just because the transformer is poppin’...
Silver - 10/28/10 - 20:29

Why do anything to it at all? You can tell at the 5:00 mark the circuit breaker finally trips, resets, trips and resets again, and finally trips for the last time requiring a manual reset to gain function which is how a thermal snap action circuit breaker operates. Rookie, you should leave the thing alone, keep bystanders away, and protect exposures if needed and can be done safely. Let the power company handle it.
RescueRanger - 10/28/10 - 22:22

Exactly! Like I said, I know jack$hit about it besides it WILL KILL YOU!! That’s all you really need to know Rook’...
Silver - 10/28/10 - 23:07

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