Yep...Don't Solder too close to the wall...

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wjcandee

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The other day, Terry advised a DIY-er as follows:

"Since you are not a plumber, do not solder anything close to that wall. Use a compression fitting."

I was thinking of that advice while watching this gigantic fire across the river in Edgewater last night, apparently (but not certainly) started by some alleged plumbers working in a first-floor unit:

fire.jpg

article-edgwater-18-0121.jpg



Took down the whole fully-occupied 400+ unit complex. A good argument for requiring sprinklers in non-"fireproof" multifamily residential construction...

And for not soldering too close to the wall...

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/nat...gewater-n-apartment-complex-article-1.2087477
 
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Terry

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"Authorities are looking into reports that plumbers were working close to where the fire broke out, in a wall of an apartment on the first floor at the south side of the complex, Edgewater Police Chief William Skidmore told The Record."

Yeah, it can happen. Thankfully my fires have been very small. Things I've been able to put out without any real damage. I carry a spray bottle with me anytime I'm soldering. And if I need to, I will cut out or tear out whatever catches on fire. And I have gloves on to make that easier.
Oh yeah, and insurance. Quite a bit. It wouldn't have covered that building though.

That must have been some experience watching it burn.
 

hj

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If plumbers have been working in a building within two days of a fire, they are automatically blamed for it. In one case here, the plumbers worked on some piping in the morning and left. The other trades were working in the same building all day long. One hour after everyone left, it was a blazing inferno, and they said it was because of the plumbers.
 

Terry

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wjcandee

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That must have been some experience watching it burn.

Crazy.

Five alarms and it just kept getting bigger. They had fireboats in the Hudson spraying it and yet it took 15 hours to bring under control.

What blows me away is that the frame construction went up like that despite the building being sprinklered. Media reported today that the sprinklers were working. The owners said that the purpose of the sprinklers was to allow occupants to evacuate safely, not to extinguish the fire.

Uh-huh.

Apparently, the fire spread rapidly through "hard-to-access areas" of the building, which I guess were unsprinklered. Don't know what "hard to access" means.

new-folder-smold118-jpg.jpg


The so-called "fireproof" construction of my high-rise building usually confines a fire to one or two apartments, unless the walls have been compromised or the people in the fire apartment leave the door open. As most residential high-rises in NY choose "fireproof" over sprinklered construction, almost all residential high-rise fires here don't get out of control. When that baseball player's small plane hit the building next door to me a few years ago, I was amazed that the resulting fire did very little damage outside of the apartment that was directly hit.

And "fireproof" construction means that the walls are thick enough that I can't hear my neighbors. Guess I will stay here awhile...

PS The Governor said today that it was definitively an accidental fire that was started while "workers" were using a blowtorch to effectuate a plumbing repair. When the alarms went off, building workers believed that little fire would be extinguished quickly, telling folks to go get a slice of pizza and it would be all over before they got back.

PPS Terry was posting above while I was writing this. Sorry if I repeated some of what he posted. Terry did pick up a little nugget that I missed: the workers called a supervisor before calling 911. Oy.
 
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hj

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quote; The owners said that the purpose of the sprinklers was to allow occupants to evacuate safely, not to extinguish the fire.

That is what our fire marshal said when I asked why we had to connect the fire system after the house shut off valve, and would turn off the system if the occupants turned the water off when they were gone. He said, "if the water is off then there is no one in the house, so we don't care if it burns down."
 
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