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We don't need no water...
  #1  
Old 07-15-2019, 10:55 AM
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Default We don't need no water...

AKA "The Store! The Store! The Store is on fire!"

(Not sure whether this belongs in SC or GWC, since it's a little of both; I throw myself upon the mercy of the mods)

The land the Store was built on was undeveloped prairie about a decade ago, but most of this region is a subtropical rainforest, and there are lots of old-growth evergreens in the vicinity. As such, in keeping with the local look, our parking lot has several planters in between the rows of parking spaces, with young trees growing in them. These planters are filled in with bark chips and the like.

Guess what happens at least once a week every single summer, when it's hot and dry out?

Some idiot flicks their cigarette into the bark chips and they catch fire, because it's been 2 million years since our ancestors learned how fire works and some of us still haven't gotten the memo.

Fortunately, we've never had a major fire in the planters, but we've gotten some pretty serious smoldering and smoking going on before a customer has mentioned it to us so we can go pour water on it. It hasn't been as bad this year since this summer has been bizarrely wet and humid, but it's still happening.

Which brings us to last night. As is typical on summer evenings, we're getting a huge rush in the 8 PM hour because people have been out enjoying the sun all day and now that the sun is going down they're running their errands. And since the person/s who write the schedule continue to refuse to believe us when we say these rushes happen, myself and both of the other floor clerks are in checkstands trying to get the lines down.

And it's then that the phone at my checkstand starts ringing. I pick it up and it's the customer service clerk calling to tell me that a customer has just reported another fire in the planters.

To which I got to say one of the most pleasing things I've ever said on the job; "Well, we're all checking right now, so I guess we're gonna let it burn."

In all seriousness, I knew it wasn't going to be a major conflagration, and there was a cashier on break who'd be coming back in a minute to let me out, so I knew I'd be able to deal with it then. However, it just so happened that the graveyard shift assistant manager walked through the door.

He walks up to me and says "When (checker) gets back, open up a new line."

I get to respond with another of the most pleasing things I've ever said on the job; "Well, when (checker) gets back, I need to deal with the parking lot fire."

Last edited by Smapti; 07-15-2019 at 10:57 AM.

  #2  
Old 07-15-2019, 12:32 PM
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I had to put out an applebees once. I was in the Wendys drive thew across the street and saw the smoke start a wisp and start to really go. But they had beds and it could of gotten out of hand. So pre net phone days I could not google and call so I went over and in the "to go" door it was next to. The just looked at me cross eyed and then noted the now large amt of smoke....panic started to set, calling FD...I'm like listen, give me the pitcher of water and ice tea there. boosh. Told them to overhaul it by turning over the mulch and hit it with couple more pitchers of water.
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Old 07-16-2019, 12:00 AM
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Had a couple of mulch fires at the wholesale club back in the day, from the same kind of thing-- smokers ignoring the ashtrays/cigarette disposal columns and just chucking it aside. One time I was able to put it out by filling a cup from the soda fountain and dousing it out and then stamping it out.

The other time, though, the mulch smoldered and the smoke actually seeped under the store's foundation, so we had smoke in the building without knowing the source. We had to evacuate the building until the situation was understood/resolved.
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Old 07-16-2019, 12:12 AM
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Fires at work seem to be the theme this week, so, with that I present

CARBECUE

Yes, I took it's picture because it just spontaneously started smoldering again, about 2 hours after the local FD had put it out.

We stuffed a running garden hose down the hold for 15 minutes, that did the trick.
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Old 07-16-2019, 07:13 AM
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Yipe... Goes to show just how long residual heat can remain after a car fire!
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Old 07-16-2019, 09:06 PM
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I had a coworker start a fire by flicking her cigarette into the mulch on her way to her car. I noticed it while I was going to make a left turn but didn't feel the need to really turn around and see what happened.

Then there was another time we had a car in our parking lot on fire. Not set on fire a customer's car was on fire. The manager went out with a fire extinguisher and the customers were all like WTF??, well all except the owner of the car he knew. Thinking about it now, it's possible that is was just smoking because I really don't remember anything big happening from it.
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Old 07-17-2019, 04:09 AM
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That used to happen all the time at my job. Every so often, some idiot would by smoking in the garage in their way into the building and toss their lit cigarette off the catwalk and into the tan bark. That is if it didn't blow back onto the catwalk and land on someone on a lower level. The company would occasionally send out a nastygram about it, and threaten to move the smoking areas somewhere a lot less convenient or ban it on the property altogether, but in the end they wouldn't do anything.

A few years ago, they enclosed the catwalks, and removed the tan bark and paved over where it was, so I guess they eventually did do something. Took them long enough though.
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Old 07-17-2019, 11:38 AM
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I've thought for many years there should be a mandatory improvement to all the surveillance cameras out there...


A hotspot detector like the Sidewinder missiles with a long range sprinkler head slaved to it...



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Old 07-17-2019, 07:11 PM
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I love the way you think
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  #10  
Old 07-17-2019, 07:15 PM
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Quote:
Quoth Argabarga View Post
Fires at work seem to be the theme this week, so, with that I present

CARBECUE

Yes, I took it's picture because it just spontaneously started smoldering again, about 2 hours after the local FD had put it out.

We stuffed a running garden hose down the hold for 15 minutes, that did the trick.
Navy firefighting calls that setting a re-flash watch.
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I can get behind 2 elements of ‘gun control’:

Windage and Elevation.
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