Flashlight retrofit program stems potential of explosions

Issue 7 and Volume 138.

Flashlight retrofit program stems potential of explosions DEPARTMENTS Dispatches Following last December’s incident of a flashlight exploding in the pocket of a firefighter’s turnout coat, Princeton Tectonics is retrofitting all its Survivor and Job Light flashlights to eliminate the potential of a recurrence. According to a Pinellas Park, FL, Fire Department official, whose department experienced the incident, the probable cause of the explosion was static electricity igniting built-up hydrogen gases in the tightly sealed light. All batteries leak hydrogen gas, the official explained, and this was the first problem that the department had in the 12 months that they had been using these flashlights. A local vendor had donated about 70 of these flashlights to the department. A Princeton Tectonics engineer confirmed the cause of the explosion, noting that the source of static electricity was the rubberized turnout coat. Princeton Tectonics ran tests on the flashlights and conferred with other…

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