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Old 09-19-2012, 03:41 PM   #21
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Donít take this post the wrong way but I have no intention of fighting a fire. I have one extinguisher and that one came with the RV. I test my smoke detector and carbon monoxide detector regularly so I count on them to wake me from a deep sleep. If the detector goes off in the middle of the night then Iím headed outside, not for an extinguisher.

I personally think the odds of escaping a fire in a plywood and Styrofoam trailer are excellent. If I didnít, I wouldnít own a trailer. The smoke detector in my fifth wheel is so sensitive that slightest amount of smoke will set it off. How many times have you read a post asking if the new furnace could be setting off the smoke detector? Try cooking a pizza in your oven without having the smoke detector going off.

Iíve been camping almost all of my life in Pop-ups, tents, and now fifth wheels, and Iíve yet to see a camper catch fire in a campground. Yes, I know it can happen and if it should happen to me, the wife and I are headed out the emergency window or door. As a matter of fact, if my trailer catches fire, I want the damage to be severe enough that the insurance company totals it so I can buy a new one. I would never trust a trailer that caught fire once and then was repaired, Iíd have to sell it.

While there is a lot of great information available on the various RV Forums on the Internet, they all really smack of doom and gloom. This thread fits that category.

After reading some of the posts in this thread it obvious that some would benefit from taking a cooking class on how to use grills and deep fryers, not fighting fires.

Oakman - you certainly bring a new view to this topic. I have always enjoyed reading your various posts here and will continue to do so, but I have to disagree with some of your comments here:

!) I own a 2012 Silverback FW just as you do and my smoke detectors have never gone off from using any heat producing device in it. I have faith in them working when they should, but like anything electrical or mechanical, they do not always work when they should. To me FE's are insurance when and if the SD's do not work.

2) Even if my SD's do work, there are a lot of flammable items/materials in an RV that can caught fire thus preventing us from getting past them on the way out. Another reason for having a FE available.

3) I think it is simply human nature to want to put out a fire with a FE if it is at all possible - I don't think many of us would simply walk away from our burning RV without making any effort to at least try to put the fire out. And if we can't put the fire out, we can simply collect the insurance money and buy another one.

4) I also hope that if there is a fire in another RV that perhaps I could be of some small assistance in perhaps helping the occupants escape and/or preventing the fire from spreading with my FE.
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Old 09-19-2012, 04:10 PM   #22
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As a former volunteer fireman, from a family of firemen; graduate of the Bucks County Fire School at 17 and Air Force Safety Officer from 1986 - 1989 and Chief of Wing Safety 1994-1999 running away from the sirens is not something I do well.

IMO, getting out should be everyone's first priority and having an available working fire extinguisher to knock down any flames in your way is helpful. Your kids or guests in the bunk house area should also know how to evacuate in an emergency and also have a working flashlight in addition to a working FE to help them do so.

Trying to figure out how to unlock an RV's door in the middle of the night while on your hands and knees choking up a storm from smoke and fumes is not something to "wing" in an emergency.
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Old 09-20-2012, 08:43 AM   #23
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Oakman,how many times have you and your wife practiced getting out & down that B/R window,12 foot off the ground? For that matter how many any kind of RV owners have tryed to EXIT thru that escape window?? I have seen the physical shape of some people,they are NOT going to go out & down that window! Youroo!!
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Old 09-20-2012, 09:25 AM   #24
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Oakman,how many times have you and your wife practiced getting out & down that B/R window,12 foot off the ground? For that matter how many any kind of RV owners have tryed to EXIT thru that escape window?? I have seen the physical shape of some people,they are NOT going to go out & down that window! Youroo!!
How many people have practiced waking up from a deep sleep to find and use their fire extinguisher?

Iíve never actually practiced going out the window but I have gone through the procedure to open the window and remove the screen in both the bedroom and the living room. I also think a lot about how we will get out. BTW, my bedroom window isnít 12 feet from the ground. Iíll be going out the bottom of the window, not the top.

I count on the smoke detector to wake me in plenty of time to get out of the trailer. I test it regularly and put a fresh battery in every spring.

I just donít like all the doom and gloom in so many posts on the various RV forums such as, if your tires are made in china they are gonna blow out, if you donít have a surge protector your electronics are gonna get toasted, if you donít have more than one extinguisher your gonna die in a fire, if you exceed the payload of your truck your gonna have an accident, etc. Sorry, I just donít buy into all of this. My opinion of course.
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Old 09-20-2012, 09:32 AM   #25
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...I just donít like all the doom and gloom in so many posts on the various RV forums such as, if your tires are made in china they are gonna blow out, if you donít have a surge protector your electronics are gonna get toasted, if you donít have more than one extinguisher your gonna die in a fire, if you exceed the payload of your truck your gonna have an accident, etc. Sorry, I just donít buy into all of this. My opinion of course.
Extremely well said Oakman, I agree 100%. Tire Police, Wt Police, Electronic Police and now Fire Extinguisher Police.
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Old 09-20-2012, 09:56 AM   #26
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Well, I have been accused before of being "Doctor Doom," but I have always felt that "Forewarned is Forearmed."

KNOWING the limits and anticipating "worst case" and deciding ahead of time on a course of action; then practicing those actions repeatedly to make sure it will work and be like second nature is a hazard of my former profession.

Pilots practice engine failures at the "critical control speed" not because they EVER expect to burp an engine at that speed. Let me assure you that we don't! But we DO practice and plan for that event.

I have flown the aircraft several thousand pounds over it's maximum takeoff weight (in one case 10s of thousands of pounds during Desert Storm) in support of the San Francisco earthquake and landed on a partially submerged runway there. Had we burped an engine AT ALL we most likely would not have survived the experience. Having shut down MANY engines in flight, several during take off (bird strike mostly), I knew that it was possible and "hoped" it would not happen THAT DAY.

IMO, just because you CAN; does not mean that you should.
The odds will one day catch up to you.

When the kids were smaller, we annually practiced the 3 AM "smoke alarm test." Wanted to make sure they did all the right things. (like checking the door knob before they opened the bedroom door and fast crawled to their exit door). Stopped doing it annually when they could do it perfectly and just did random tests till they moved out and started their own homes.

I happened to ask my 8 year old grandson when we were out in Seattle visiting, what he would do if he heard the smoke detector and he recited the actions perfectly. Here they are "fossil hunting".
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Old 09-20-2012, 11:33 AM   #27
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Well my take on it is based on a joke during our PDI with the dealer. He pointed out the fire extinguisher and said, "Here's your fire extinguisher right by the door. In case of a fire grab it and RUN. Then you'll have two for the next camper!". I kinda think that way as well. Just so I can get everyone out, I don't care what happens to the camper, it can be replaced. With that in mind I make sure and keep fresh batteries in the smoke and carbon monoxide detector and test both each trip.
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Old 09-20-2012, 11:42 AM   #28
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Tom,

Too funny and probably true...


P.S. On a side note regarding house fires. I know someone whose entire house burned down at night while she was sleeping... barely escaped. The fire started in the attic via an electrical connection and raced within minutes from one end of the house to the other. Fire dept said this is common.

As a precaution, a case can be made for also putting a couple of smoke detectors in the attic for additional warning.
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Old 09-20-2012, 12:05 PM   #29
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Tom,

Too funny and probably true...


P.S. On a side note regarding house fires. I know someone whose entire house burned down at night while she was sleeping... barely escaped. The fire started in the attic via an electrical connection and raced within minutes from one end of the house to the other. Fire dept said this is common.

As a precaution, a case can be made for also putting a couple of smoke detectors in the attic for additional warning.
Our home has a monitored Fire/Burglar system and there are 4 "rate of rise" detectors in the attic; powered/monitored smoke detector in each bedroom and in the hall; and a powered/monitored smoke and CO detector in the basement.

FYI - Smoke detectors in the attic are unreliable due to dust and bugs; they false alarm often and are not recommended. RoR detectors are what the professionals use. My brother manages an ADI distributorship for the alarm industry and designed my system.
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Old 09-20-2012, 04:57 PM   #30
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Fire prevention in the fire service always teaches to get out and stay out of any burning structure. As a past fire instructor I can tell you most people don't know how to use a fire extinguster that includes firefighters. I have the extinguster which came with the RV and I got a 5 lb multi propose extinguster in an outside compartment. if you are needing more than that or a 10 lb extinguster then the fire is too large and dangerous to be trying to fight.
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Old 09-20-2012, 05:43 PM   #31
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if you are needing more than that or a 10 lb extinguster then the fire is too large and dangerous to be trying to fight.
Like a gunfight, the first rule is "bring a gun."
The second rule is bring ENOUGH gun.

Thinking you got a chance to save someone or put out a small fire and running out of agent short of your goal, has got to stink. I would rather leave half the agent in the bottle as a gift for the guy recharging my fire extinguisher; than shoot my last burst and have the fire relight.

just sayin...
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Old 09-20-2012, 05:56 PM   #32
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Well my take on it is based on a joke during our PDI with the dealer. He pointed out the fire extinguisher and said, "Here's your fire extinguisher right by the door. In case of a fire grab it and RUN. Then you'll have two for the next camper!". I kinda think that way as well. Just so I can get everyone out, I don't care what happens to the camper, it can be replaced. With that in mind I make sure and keep fresh batteries in the smoke and carbon monoxide detector and test both each trip.
With some of these discussions about FE being just extra weight to haul around and how worthless some of us think they are, why don't we just take all FE's off airplanes, trains, boats, trucks and take them out of buildings, stadiums, hospitals, hangars, marinas etc.?

Makes me sort of regretting starting this thread.
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Old 09-20-2012, 07:22 PM   #33
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Makes me sort of regretting starting this thread.
I think it was appropriate and timely.
Thank you

Like any piece of equipment on the camper (fire extinguisher or hot water heater), knowing how to use it and its limitations may make a "vacation ending" problem, an exciting campfire story.
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Old 09-21-2012, 09:12 PM   #34
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I have a 5 lb in the truck and I replace the one provided with the TT with a 2.5 lb and add a second 2.5 lb in the bedroom.

As far as smoke detectors I prefer photo-electric detectors. I am NICET IV certified fire alarm technician and work on commercial fire alarms so I get to play when them allot. Unfortunately most RVs come with one Ionization detector which are probably chosen because they are cheaper. Ion detectors are designed to detect particles of combustion from a slow/smoldering type fire that doesn't produce much smoke (if any) and are slower to react to a faster flaming/smoky type fire. That's why they false alarm frequently when cooking. Photo-Electric detectors are usually a little more expensive and harder to find but will detect visible smoke from a fast flaming type fire. Given the materials in houses and RVs, I prefer using photo-electric detectors. I have always replaced the factory one and added another in the bedroom before we even go out on our first trip. Only time they go off is if we are cooking something and it gets a little too smoky inside.
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Old 09-21-2012, 10:08 PM   #35
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Never liked the "Police" label and would really hate to see "Anti-" labels for those with opposite viewpoints as well. On any given forum I have visited there’s usually a range of viewpoints. I'm OK with someone not being in agreement. Right, wrong or in differ we are entitle to our viewpoint. With that said, when reading feedback I try to take away what I can use and discard the rest.
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Old 10-20-2012, 10:26 AM   #36
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Just added 2 more 2.5 lb ABC extinguishers to our 5er. One on the driver side of the bed and one on the passenger side of the bed by the door/steps. I just hope we never have to use them on our camper.
That makes 3 in the camper, one inside the tailgate on the truck and one inside the cab of the truck.
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Old 10-20-2012, 10:57 AM   #37
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Just added 2 more 2.5 lb ABC extinguishers to our 5er. One on the driver side of the bed and one on the passenger side of the bed by the door/steps. I just hope we never have to use them on our camper.
That makes 3 in the camper, one inside the tailgate on the truck and one inside the cab of the truck.
Ditto Neil. I hope ours is wasted poundage forever as well.
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Old 10-21-2012, 08:04 PM   #38
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Moved the 2.5# unit that came with the TT to adjacent to the stove area. Installed a new 10# ABC by the door, where the factory 2.5# had been (less than $70 at Home Depot). I also carry a 10# ABC in tow vehicle.
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