Has anyone had a fire caused by cell phones? Like people on the phone while pumping gas. I heard that it can start fires. But have'nt heard any dept around here responding to one. So I was wondering if any of you guys/girls responded to a call for that.
I've never heard of it happening. Considering how much trouble I had in my earlier days getting cars to run when the mixture wasn't exactly right, what are the odds of a bit of fuel vapour mixing to exactly the right ratio in open air?
Am I saying it could never happen? No way. Could it happen? Possibly. Likelihood of it happening - rare to almost infinitesimal?
I used to work for a major oil company (as in 5th largest in the world). There was ONE case that the American Petroleum Institute knew of where a fire wasmstarted at a gas station by a cell phone. It involved an old-style phone with a large external-type battery (think like a Motorola HT) where the phone was dropped, the battery popped off and there was an arc between the battery terminals and the phone.
Other than that, really no risk, even though the oil companies have all put up "no talking at the pump" warnings as a CYA.
The cellphone is not the critical factor in starting a fire or causing an ignition spark during fueling operations. Though the cell phone may have caused human distraction, but the source of ignition was static electricity build-up from getting in and out of a parked car when it was very cold outside. The victims clothes is also a factor as some clothes have greater static capabilites. Starting to refuel a vehicle with the gas pump handle "locked on" and then the person gets back into the car to stay warm. Upon returning to the hose and filling operation, any built-up static electricity can cause a spark in the area of the gasoline vapors, all of which have a flashpoint of minus 45F and flashfire ensues. The other critical human factor was the victim, by removing the hose while the handle is still locked ON. Thinking that they need to remove the fuel source to reduce an explosion. Hence now the victim is holding a flamethrower!