Fires Destroy 5 RVs, Pickup &Fatality

Whether camping or just relaxing in your recreational vehicle, fire safety is essential.

Firefighters extinguish pockets of fire that engulfed a motorhome. (Courtesy: Cape Coral Fire Department)

Firefighters extinguish pockets of fire that engulfed a motorhome. (Courtesy: Cape Coral Fire Department)

It is critical that every member of your party know what to do in a fire or other emergency. If you are one of the millions of RV enthusiasts who love to take to the road and explore the country, ensure your family’s safety while travelling in your RV.

Recent media reports detail seven separate fires involving recreational vehicles.

California: Unattended Cooking Fire Destroys RV & Pickup

Santacruzsentinel.com reports that a cooking fire in an RV destroyed the RV and a Chevy pickup.

A man was cooking in the RV but was outside the vehicle when the fire started said Zayante Fire Chief John Stipes. The man tried to extinguish it and was burned on his hand, firefighters said. He was not transported to a hospital.

The fire spread to the Chevy and briefly threatened trees and a home about 10 feet from the RV.

Firefighters doused the blaze in about 20 minutes.

Pennsylvania: Extension Cord Overload Causes Camper Fire

fire_safetyLancasteronline.com reports that a pop-up camper was destroyed after an electrical malfunction sparked a blaze near Christiana.

A couple was living in the camper temporarily while their home was under construction nearby, according to Paul Reimold, Christiana fire chief. A heater had been in use inside the camper. An extension cord running from the camper to a nearby home was completely burned. The chief estimated damage at $5,000 to $6,000.

Florida: Candle Causes Motorhome Fire

WINK-TV reports that an unattended fragrance candle caused a fire that destroyed an RV.

When Cape Coral firefighters responded the RV was completely engulfed in flames. Smoke was visible across the city. An open field and a street separated the RV from other homes. Firefighters acted quickly to prevent the fire from spreading across the field.

An investigation revealed that the owner of the home had just returned from a trip to Busch Gardens and were using a fragrance candle to freshen the air inside the motorhome.

At some point, the candle sparked a fire in the center of the RV which then spread quickly.

The RV, valued at 35,000, was a total loss. There were no injuries.

North Carolina: Electric Space Heater Causes Motorhome Fire Fatality

Blueridgenow.com reports that an electric space heater is the likely cause of a recreation vehicle fire that took the life of the person inside.

Henderson County Assistant Fire Marshal Joe Swain said investigators could not determine the precise cause of the fire because of the amount of damage done to the RV.

A woman who was living in the RV “did use a space heater because the furnace in the motorhome was not working,” Swain said. “We are assuming it could have been that, but I could not pinpoint what it is.”

The body was burned too far beyond recognition to make positive I.D. The body was transported to the medical examiner’s office to make a positive identification.

Because of its construction, the RV burned quickly. The motorhome being so small and made out of fiberglass and foam materials with thin paneling, when the fire department got there, it was fully involved. The walls were pretty much down on the floor by the time they arrived.

Mississippi: Propane Sparks RV Explosion

A build-up of propane inside a motorhome sparked an explosion at the Mississippi State Fairgrounds. (Courtesy: WLOX-TV)

A build-up of propane inside a motorhome sparked an explosion at the Mississippi State Fairgrounds. (Courtesy: WLOX-TV)

WLOX-TV reports that a build-up of propane inside an RV sparked an explosion at the Mississippi State Fairgrounds.

Witnesses reported smelling propane just before the explosion. The Jackson fire department responded to the scene.

No one was inside the RV at the time, but two dogs were rescued. The canines were not injured. A number of witnesses helped extinguished the flames before firefighters arrived.

The State Fair Commission says the Louisiana couple that owned the RV were in Jackson to watch their daughter compete in a barrel racing competition.

This is the first known explosion at the state fairgrounds during an event.

Conclusion

According to the US Fire Administration, 42 home candle fires are reported every day – over 15,250 annually. More than half of all candle fires start when something that could burn, such as furniture, mattresses or bedding, curtains, or decorations is too close to the candle.

Nationally, there have been an average of 3,100 RV fires each year since 2000. These fires caused seven deaths, 62 injuries, and approximately $41 million in damages in each of those years, according to Cape Fire.

Worth Pondering…

Remember, safety is no accident.

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