Hmmmm? Fires onboard eh? Well other than Knottygirlz tyring to burn down our boat I've had some experience. Two stints in Marine Emergency
Duties training, simulators, lifesaving, survival etc. and a stint in the Ontario
Fire College in Gravenhurst I'm pretty much up to date with the training side of it. Besides I come from a family
of volunteer firefighters.
The first fire I had to fight onboard a ship was in a garbage pile on the deck
of the Griffon in 1979 (not very glamorous). Spontaneous combustion had lit up a pile of garbage bags that we stacked under one of the open deck
companionways. Didn't really amount to much, some charred paint
and a big mess to clean up but it changed the way we handled garbage from then on. Blamed it on the galley rats tossin' their bacon grease soaked rags in the garbage. What a freakin' mess to clean up though.
Second fire was on a yacht that was tied up along side us in Midland ON. A galley fire again. Mostly just smoke damage.
Third was a fire in the engine
room aboard the Samuel Risley back around 88 or 89. A fuel
line had split and shot across the E/R to the exhaust
manifold of the engine
beside it causing a nasty fire. We were breaking ice and escorting a freighter into Thunder Bay at the time. The old captain
didn't want the captain
of the freighter to know we were in trouble and ordered us all back inside, I was Logistics Officer and in charge of First Aid team and refused to send them back into a smoke filled ship. He flipped out and we had words. He was wrong and he knew it. The Chief Engineer
and engineering officer on watch had the fire out before the fire crews could get into the E/R.
We fought a fire onboard a lake freighter in Sarnia, ON back in the early 80's but I can't remember the name of the ship. No one went onboard due to the heat and flames and we used our hand hoses from the upper decks to try to help the shore side firefighters. We got so close with the Griffon that her aluminum
superstructure started to buckle in some places. I was a galley rat back then and didn't do much firefighting just keeping the fella's in dry gloves and hot coffee.
We used to train with the water
bombers in Thunder Bay and that was cool. The Risley was fitted with fire monitors to fight fires at the grain elevators. They were impressive pumps fitted directly to the shafts.
Of all the emergency
training I've taken I think the damage control course was the worst. Imagine being sealed in a large tank with ice cold water
rushing in up to your neck through a split pipe that you had to mend in total darkness. Yup that was fun! NOT!