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Old 02-23-2014, 01:42 AM   #21
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At Shilshole in Seattle, there are fire hose connections at the head of each pair of docks (there is one access ramp for a pair of docks)-with outlets on the dock. A pumper truck can connect directly to these and to nearby hydrants to get high pressure water on the docks quickly. There is a fireboat downtown (probably 20-30 minutes away) and one on Lake Union that would have to get through the locks to get to Shilshole, probably and hour away.
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Old 02-23-2014, 06:44 AM   #22
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One more time for anyone who has never fought a boat fire....FOAM!!!!

All the water in the world and dry chemical extinguishers used from the dock don't do a thing...except the water will eventually sink the hull in place after the fiberglass burns to the waterline...

OK maybe with water fog applicators in great hands or some kind of deluge system...but in my experience in dozens of boat/marina fires...it take experienced firefighters and the right equipment....

Plain water is useful to keep the fire from spreading if the water can be directed at the other boats while the primary fire is extinguished and burning fuel hasn't made its way to out of the burning hull yet.
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Old 02-23-2014, 07:56 AM   #23
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One more time for anyone who has never fought a boat fire....FOAM!!!!
Only if the fire is fuel in the bilge and nothing else is burning yet ... which is a condition that will last only a minute or two then the battle is all but lost.

High pressure fog will work if there is someone on board who can apply it but by the time that person is suited up the battle is lost. That is why almost all new large yachts have a fog system installed, it give the crew time to call a mayday and bail out if it doesn't suppress the initial fire.

Deluge the good boats and limit the destruction appears to me to be the best if not only alternative. Fiberglass boats don't respond to fire fighting efforts very well.
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Old 02-23-2014, 08:21 AM   #24
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Seems like all too often the resin catches and the flame front goes someplace you can't hit/cool with water...but foam blocks off the draft and eventually the foam reaches the actual flame front and extinguishes it.....that's not actual fire science...just my experience with it...

Not always that simple...the last fire I was on was a 17 foot CC that was filled with foam, gunnel to gunnel and had 2 reflashes before I got sent off on another call.

Haven't been around actual fog application since Officer Candidate School....just saw them break the applicators out for at sea drills since then.
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Old 02-23-2014, 11:45 AM   #25
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Water, used correctly, has many uses and only sinks the boat that is too far along when started. Either water gets the first boat early or it's primary use becomes limiting the number of boats impacted. It can create a barrier much like is done fighting fires on land. Then it can also allow other boats to be moved away. Many marinas with a lot of houseboats have fireboats on site. Houseboats, especially older ones, tend to be involved in a lot of fires. With the fireboats docked at the marinas there they have been able to limit the damage significantly. Without it would go down a dock and get many boats if not all. Now in the same circumstances the damage is usually limited to no more than three boats and often only one boat has any serious damage and the two beside it just have smoke damage. Sometimes even the primary boat damage is quite limited.
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Old 02-23-2014, 12:05 PM   #26
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The owners of our slip here in Seattle was one of the residence of Shelter Bay. They live just across from the marina and saw the fire coming closer to their boat. He was one of the people to get in a dinghy and save a few boats while they could. His was a 48ft Navigator that burned and then sank. This is a painful story.
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Old 02-23-2014, 12:14 PM   #27
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Water, used correctly, (in my experience it rarely has been) has many uses and only sinks the boat that is too far along (not always) when started. Either water gets the first boat early (usually not a glass boat once the resin has really started to cook and that's usually long before trained/equipped guys show up) or it's primary use becomes limiting the number of boats impacted. True if enough hose teams are available) It can create a barrier much like is done fighting fires on land. Then it can also allow other boats to be moved away. Many marinas with a lot of houseboats have fireboats on site. Houseboats, especially older ones, tend to be involved in a lot of fires. With the fireboats docked at the marinas there they have been able to limit the damage significantly. Without it would go down a dock and get many boats if not all. Now in the same circumstances the damage is usually limited to no more than three boats and often only one boat has any serious damage and the two beside it just have smoke damage. Sometimes even the primary boat damage is quite limited.
In general...marina fires usually have more than just a couple boats involved (at least the dozens of marina fires I have witnessed and the ones I usually read about)...because of the response time....the proximity of boats to one another, the marina layout and availability of water and then the first guys usually don't have or deploy foam fast enough.
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