This is AMAZING!!! Man sets carpet on fire with clothes....

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by BigOrange90Jimmy, Sep 16, 2005.

  1. BigOrange90Jimmy

    BigOrange90Jimmy 1/2 ton status Premium Member

    May 24, 2002
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    Wilmington, NC
    Here's the link...

    "Power-dressing Aussie leaves trail of destruction
    Fri Sep 16, 2005 8:37 AM BST9
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    SYDNEY (Reuters) - An Australian man built up a 40,000-volt charge of static electricity in his clothes as he walked, leaving a trail of scorched carpet and molten plastic and forcing firefighters to evacuate a building.

    Frank Clewer, who was wearing a woollen shirt and a synthetic nylon jacket, was oblivious to the growing electrical current that was building up as his clothes rubbed together.

    When he walked into a building in the country town of Warrnambool in the southern state of Victoria on Thursday, the electrical charge ignited the carpet.

    "It sounded almost like a firecracker", Clewer told Australian radio on Friday.

    "Within about five minutes, the carpet started to erupt."

    Employees, unsure of the cause of the mysterious burning smell, telephoned firefighters who evacuated the building.

    "There were several scorch marks in the carpet, and we could hear a cracking noise -- a bit like a whip -- both inside and outside the building", said fire official Henry Barton.

    Firefighters cut electricity to the building thinking the burns might have been caused by a power surge.

    Clewer, who after leaving the building discovered he had scorched a piece of plastic on the floor of his car, returned to seek help from the firefighters.

    "We tested his clothes with a static electricity field metre and measured a current of 40,000 volts, which is one step shy of spontaneous combustion, where his clothes would have self-ignited," Barton said.

    "I've been firefighting for over 35 years and I've never come across anything like this," he said.

    Firefighters took possession of Clewer's jacket and stored it in the courtyard of the fire station, where it continued to give off a strong electrical current.

    David Gosden, a senior lecturer in electrical engineering at Sydney University, told Reuters that for a static electricity charge to ignite a carpet, conditions had to be perfect.

    "Static electricity is a similar mechanism to lightning, where you have clouds rubbing together and then a spark generated by very dry air above them," said Gosden.
  2. big94gmc

    big94gmc 1/2 ton status

    Sep 1, 2004
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    No VA.
    I want pics....
  3. Desert Rat

    Desert Rat Fetch the comfy chair

    Oct 19, 2002
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    Tri-Valley, NorCal
    I smell lawsuit..........
  4. dremu

    dremu Officious Thread Derailer Premium Member GMOTM Winner

    Feb 27, 2000
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    East of San Francisco
    get it ... law SUIT? SUIT


    -- A
  5. newyorkin

    newyorkin 1 ton status Premium Member

    May 8, 2001
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    Los Estados Unitos
    I don't know if the comments are entirely accurate.

    I don't think I've ever heard of anything "giving off" current. Current is drawn, it doesn't just emit.
    The human body builds up charges to 20kilovolts regularly in non-humid weather riding in a car.

    What's really bizarre is that the voltage wasn't discharged immediately. Typically, static elictricity is discharged constantly, and a charge can be completely nuetralized in 1/2000th of a second. For it to have been handled and still be charged is extremely odd...

    Usually, body voltage can't even be measured without specialty equipment, either, because it discharges so rapidly.

    Well anyway, I'm barely an electronics hobbyist, so I don't entirely know what I'm talking about. This just sounds like yeah, very amazing, but I have a feeling there's extra data being left out or there's some fabricated drama sprinkled on top...

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