While looking for new YouTube vids, I stumbled upon the episode of Arthur where the school burns down, and that made me think of the fire at MHS in my junior year (which thankfully wasn’t nearly as bad). That in turn made me think of this question that happened to be on the old forum before the switcover, so I thought I’d reask the question: have you ever been through a building fire? For more on the fire at MHS, click here.
I couldn’t really give a definitive answer… I’ve been through a possible fire, in my junior high school years ago in 7th grade. One of the workers left something on top of a heater, and it produced a HELL of a lot of smoke. The smoke entered the gym through the HVAC system, and triggered the smokes. The firefighters came in wearing their equipment and suits, and we got to wait outside for 2 hours while they investigated the cause. All while listening to blaring AS’s and Federal 450Es.
My senior year of high school the drama room cought fire. While I wasn’t in a part of the building directly effected by the smoke or fire, I sure saw all the commotion of teachers waving the FD in, and saw the smoke bellowing out of the drama room. It happened durring the changing from 1st to second periods. We waited in 32 degree temps which is very cold for NC for about an hour and 1/2 before the ROTC sergent came over and barked at us to “remain where we were we’ll be outside for a while” . 1/2 hour later the assisant princpal let us go in to the gym to keep warm sense the gym was not effected. 10 mnutes later we were dismissed for the day (it was on a Friday) the following Monday when we returned to school, the drama room was boarded off and the whole back wing of the school reaked of smoke (most of my classes were in that wing).
My MS had a small fire in the boys room on the first floor when I was in 6th grade. They pulled the fire alarm and we evacuated. I didn’t see any smoke, but they made an announcement about it when we returned 20 minutes later.
When I was 4, my mom, sister(who was 1 at the time) and I were at a Walmart when the MTs went off. When we got out into the parking lot smoke was pouring out of the garden shop. Apparently there was some dumb kid playing with matches who started the fire.
The other incident was either last year or sophomore year when one of the kitchenettes in my HS caught on fire and we had to evacuate for about 1/2 hour.
IDK if anyone can verify this, but w/ my incident the smoke smell didn’t smell like “smoke”, per se. It’s hard to describe what it smelled like, but the best way I can describe it is that it smelled like something on fire, rather than something smoking, keeping in mind it was a clothes dryer fire.
It was just a generic pull station that the Cinar/Cookie Jar Entertainment animators made up. It just said “PULL” on it, no “FIRE ALARM” lettering! THAT is somewhat unrealistic. Virtually all pull stations I see have “FIRE” or “FIRE ALARM” on them as well. I wonder if they had a Simplex 2001 panel or some other later Simplex panel at the Lakewood Elementary School or Mighty Mountain Elementary school? Because the Davis K-8 school, which has a Simplex 2001 panel (replacing a Simplex 4246 or 4208 panel, I don’t know what the old one was), had the fire alarms sounding in 20bpm March Time. It was a lot like the alarms at Lakewood Elementary, except the signals were Simplex 4051 horns on 4050-80 light plates. I doubt the horns at those schools on “Arthur” had any visual signals.
I remember back in June 2004, Brockton High School had a fire when I was there. It was during the fifth and final period of the day, my biology class (we had a substitute teacher that day). But then one of the counselors came and told me that someone reported that they could smell smoke, and they knew there was a Simplex 4040 horn right outside the classroom, and since they knew they were ear-splitting loud they took me out in advance since there was a chance the building was on fire. Then I was out near the school pond looking at some geese all flocking around nearby, when the alarms went off and they evacuated all three buildings (the fire was occuring in the main building). I remember one building (I think it was the Field House) evacuated the students to the football field, since we had around 2000 students at the time. Then the fire department came, and they found out that there was a fire in one of the boys’ restrooms. We were outside for practically 20 minutes! Then they put out the fire, silenced the alarms, got rid of excess smoke/damage, etc. and let us back inside. I remember one of my friends and I discussed it was a little similar to the Arthur episode “April 9th!”
Then the next day, I left school early because I had a doctors’ appointment. On the way back from the appointment we passed by the high school around 3 PM just as a couple of fire trucks were entering the school parking lot. I didn’t think about it much at first.
But the day after that, the principal came on that morning during the morning announcements and she announced in a rather serious tone (usually she’s pretty cheerful) that the previous day, there was another fire after school (which explained the fire trucks I saw when we passed by the school that afternoon!) and this time it was in a classroom, and they indicated that both fires were set deliberately by an arsonist. The newspapers even did a report about this, and I remember it commenting that the principal was too angry and upset to comment on the situation (I don’t blame her). The rest of that day, practically half the school population was nervous, because we thought the arsonist would strike again. Luckily, we did not have any other fires that day, and the alarms did not go off, etc. I remember commenting angrily that whoever started the fires was doing something really stupid and dangerous.
Shortly after that, reward posters popped up all around campus saying that a reward was offered for the capture of the arsonist, and at one point a detective from the fire department came to ask some of the staff questions and investigate. I hope they caught the arsonist and expelled him or her!
Speaking of punishment for something like that, in that “April 9th” cartoon, Mr. Haney says that normally Binky would be suspended for pulling a false fire alarm. I thought normally you would be EXPELLED for doing so!
The minimum penalty at MHS was a 5 day OSS (out of school suspension). A referal was also sent to the superintendent and you’d get a hearing. In the hearing they’d determine whether or not you could return.
Just to note, it was actually 30 BPM march time (1 sec on/off), Slow March Time is 20 BPM (1.5 sec on/off). Odd that the bell rang too (not to mention stopping after the cut-in for the ep title), but that’s TV, and as we all know, since when has TV been correct when it comes to fire alarms…
Ah. I DO know the Simplex 2001 system at the Davis K-8 was definitely Slow March Time, and not 30BPM. All Simplex panels made after the 2001 have Slow March Time capabilties too, I think. I just know the 4002, 4005, 4010 and most likely the big addressable ones like the 4100U have it.
I know another realistic fire alarm representation on TV was on "As Told By Ginger," the Lucky Junior High School had AC electromechanical horns in 30bpm March Time (in the episode "Cry Wolf" during a fire drill). But the Shore Shack on "Rocket Power" (also made by Klasky-Csupo, the same animation studio that produced "As Told By Ginger") had a mix of a continuous bell and a 90bpm March Time horn, with lots of flashing red lights. But then again, as I have said, "As Told By Ginger" was a more realistic cartoon than Klasky-Csupo's other shows, which often tend to have a bit of cartooniness/weirdness to them (especially "Rugrats" and "Rocket Power") And the "My Life as a Teenage Robot" episode when Jenny accidentally sets the school on fire, the fire alarm was yet again a bell, but at least they made it a bit right: the school bell sounded like a 6-inch bell, while the fire alarm sounded like a 10-inch bell.
Not really. the closest I ever got was last year in my foods class when a girl in another group set the bacon she was cooking (in a pot, btw. Idiot…) on fire and almost set the cabinets above her on fire. Next period everyone else in the school was asking me what was burning.
Im not sure of this counts, since i was in a portable at the time, but one of the science rooms caught fire when they plugged the glue gun in (stupid cheap ones). at the time fo the alarm i was doing a presentation, and i was right under the MT on continuous. it blasted for a bit, and my teacher was like “who screamed?” and then the MT went back on, and we evacuated. we were outside for about 20 min, then they try to reset the system but they didn’t reset the pull, so it went off again.
It was 12:15 AM and suddenly (play Ben’s MT4-115 Horn clip) the MTs and MIZs came to life. I was in bed, then I heard the MIZ in my apartment. As I rolled out of bed, I could see the strobe’s flash from under my bedroom door. So I grabbed my scanner, which was already on. The FD was being dispatched, and police officers were already arriving. During one officer’s transmission, I could hear the Farr-Larm 3300 (a Wheelock 31T-115 on a light, 1:M1-24 has/had one and has a vid on YT, Here) going, so I knew the sprinklers had gone off. So I grab a robe and a pair of slip-on shoes and then feel my apartment door, and noticing that it wasn’t hot, carefully opened it. I looked into the hall to find smoke POURING out of our trash room and people crouched low, coughing. I could also smell the acrid smell of burning plastics and the like. (Believe me, that smell is one that’s VERY hard to forget!) So I go out through the front entrance to our parking lot. Now I can see the 3300’s light flashing and the 31T buzzing away. The fire department got to the dumpster through the door that the trash company uses to access them, and the caretaker has a riding mower/snowblower that is also stored in there. They used their hoses on it to quell any remaining fire (the sprinklers took care of most). We weren’t able to go back in until 1:45 AM!
I made a vid about the fire that describes more Here
#2 It was April 2005. Up in apartment 210, the lady had a new cheap-ass fryer from Shopko that overheated and caused a grease fire. She rushed out to get the staff that take care of her, and that caused one of the SLK-24Fs to trigger, activating the system. I was at my PC playing GTA Vice City when the Wheelocks came to life. So I grabbed my scanner and went outside. The FD arrived and used their fans to positive-pressure ventilate the building.
yeah, I don’t even know where that Wheelock horn/light thing is. probably in a box in the basement somewhere.
I’ve had a few cooking fires. Of course, not ones that happened at convenient hours, always after midnight. one was years ago, I hadn’t lived here too long, and built-up grease under the stove burners caught fire. when I came downstairs, fire was coming up from all four burners, and the pan was on fire.
to this day, there is still fire extinguisher powder in the clock window of my stove.
Another one was when I came home and ironically had just placed a phone call to the police about a suspicious driver. I sat down, after putting some water on the stove for some soup, and diverted my attention away for a few seconds. looked up, thick white smoke was pouring out of the kitchen, and at the same time, my system was tripped. called the central station to cancel the dispatch, as I’m putting the fire out with a fire extinguisher. I told them I had the fire “under control” and they were a bit concerned. but, nothing came of it. turns out, I had the wrong burner on, and there was an Ademco 747 security system siren near the stove that caught fire. ironically. a home burglary/fire sounder caught fire and there was nothing left. the plastic went up into the air with the smoke, and formed cobweb-like formations all over the walls, ceilings and windows.
And the last was a month or so ago, put some water on the stove for some tea, and had a very strange hot flash where all my skin turned red and was burning, like a bad sunburn all at once. I have sensitive skin and am a bit touchy with scented products. I had to take a cold shower, it was a bit of an emergency. got out ten minutes later, forgot about the teapot. there was no real fire, the pot had boiled empty and the plastic handle melted down onto the burner and made a few flames. disabled the smoke zone before the first detector was triggered just seconds later. although, a battery-powered ionization smoke sitting on a TV cabinet near the dining room table sounded, and it was nowhere near the ceilling. it’s amazing how just a little bit of plastic can (1) make enough smoke to fill two floors of a house, and (2) create an unpleasant, acrid stench for a week.
Just two or three weeks ago, the weekend just before Thanksgiving, in York Haven, PA, four houses were totally gutted and destroyed by a late-night fire. Thirteen people were left without a place to live. I showed up about 45 minutes into the fire, and there was really nothing left. the fire just jumped from one house to the next like a stick of matches laid next to each other. The streets were lined with fire apparatus for miles. a four-alarm fire, I believe, and some 30-40 fire engines were there. it burned from about midnight to well into the morning. I have a picture on my phone of the aftermath the evening after the fire: a flattened span of black rubble and sheet metal, with one or two spots still smoldering.