Sunday, July 1, 2007

A fiery time - or a tricky way to get warm in winter

What a crazy winter it's been. Today was like spring and just to see what was going on Dougal and I drove up to the Snow Farm to check out the cross country skiing. Weell.... it was better last Thurs. when I at least skied on fluffy snow in parts! Today it was water, still we enjoyed the outing and I had a fulfilling photo shoot for 20 mins. or so [the shot you see here - looking across the Cardrona Valley].

The real adventure of the day was however back here in town early evening when my camper truck caught fire. I'd just dropped Dougal off at a meeting and was on a brief foray to pick up some projection gear, and there was this smell of burning! At an intersection close to the entry into town I decided it was a good idea to head for the fire station. I duly arrived and found the truck was locked in 4wd, however there was enough grit on the road to turn to a halt OK. There was a small amount of alarming smoke coming out of the front of the bonnet so gingerly I lifted the hood [mindful of what an in-rush of air can do], and lo there was a merry little blaze by the front headlight. I dropped the lid and rushed to get my extinguisher out of the back kitchen area. I fumbled with the first release strap hoping like crazy it'd be simple. It was, then back by the lid I wondered how to pull the next trigger release and that went well too, so I lifted the lid and tried my best aim at the base of the flames, which to my relief promptly went out. Like a surviving Jessie James I waited an indeterminate moment for the victim to twitch with my finger ready, but nothing stirred!

The order in which you do things is I find critical in some situations, and maybe I should have yelled for help as I pondered ringing 111, or disconnecting the batteries. I opted for the former. The service was amazing - the woman took scant details, I hung up and next minute the siren went. I had to block my ears. It was so funny as the few people about were oblivious to the event. The first car to arrive had Wanaka's first female fire fighter, and it kinda threw her and her male mates that the fire was right outside the station door!

Soon many male heads and hands were under the bonnet finding the burnt wires and disconnecting the batteries. At this point all thought I was from out-of-town then the Police arrived and to my relief it was my old neighbour Sean. We tided up, I gathered my valuables and he whisked me off in the squad car just narrowly beating the press [I wondered what his hurry was!]. Next I was back at the meeting where folk were almost disbelieving of my story.

I was told once by a fire fighter that most folk who carry extinguishers use them on someone else's car, but not me. It was a good investment, but for a replacement I think I'll buy a larger one!
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Blogger Shirley Goodwin said...

Hoo! A lucky escape there, Donald!

Was much damage caused to the truck?

July 4, 2007 at 1:04 PM  

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