Thread: travel irons
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Old November 1st, 2009, 02:50 PM
sptrout sptrout is offline
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Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Spring, TX
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First let me say that I am in 100% agreement that anything that is, or can be considered, a fire hazard should not find its way into a cruise ship cabin including irons. However; with all due respect to blueliner & Ron, there is no evidence that I can find that irons are a major, or even a minor cause of house fires. The best scource for that statement can be found at:

This link will take you to a web page at the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Download and read the report written by Marty Ahrens that is titled "Home Structure Fires." The main paper is 79 pages long and provides an excellent report on the causes and results of home fires. According to this report (and many other places that I found), the major causes of house fires are:

1. Cooking equipment (38% of fires/15% of deaths)
2. Heating Equipment (19%/24%)
3. Electrical Distribution & Lighting Equipment (6%/11%) See below
4. Intentional (5%/11%)
5. Candles (4%/6%) (How many times have you seen people ask about bringing candles onboard?)
6. Smoking Materials (4%/24%)
7. Playing with heat source (2%/5%)

If you read on, you will find that the description of what "Electrical Distribution & Lighting Equipment" means:

a. Fixed wiring; transformers or associated over current or disconnect equipment;
b. meters or meter boxes;
c. power switch gear or over current protection devices;
d. switched, receptacles or outlets;
e. cords and plugs, and;
f. lighting equipment.

Nowhere in this paper (or any of the many, many other places that I searched) are irons even mentioned. Oddly, curling irons are mentioned some places as a fire hazard (which I believe as many times as my wife has burned herself with one).

Other web pages of interest:

Obviously none of the above references are directly related to cruise ship fires. However, I believe that they do prove the point that irons are not that much of a fire danger as compared to other possible sources. As noted by blueliner and Ron the most recent example of a major fire on a ship was caused by someone smoking.

My earlier comment about electrical system loading is true, and may be the real concern of the fire potential on a ship in regards to irons. Heavy loading of an electrical system will cause fires as written in the referenced report(s).

Again, I do not advocate bringing irons onboard, or smoking, or candles, or anything that has a potential for starting fires. The only thing I bring onboard is a nightlight, which I am positive will not overload the electrical system, cause any heat issues, and helps prevent me from falling overboard .
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