Last December, Dixon Auto Transport driver Mike Wehling was traveling on a rural Texas road when he noticed the flames and smoke in his passenger side mirror. His passenger side drive tire was on fire. He pulled off to the shoulder, grabbed his new Cold Fire Tactical extinguisher, and ran around to the side of the truck. By this point, the tire had exploded and flames were shooting six to seven feet in the air. Mike could see the steel brake drums glowing cherry red in the overwhelming heat. He deployed the extinguisher, and, in a matter of seconds, the fire was extinguished. When the smoke cleared, he could see the heat had melted the aluminum wheels.
Fire losses are among the most devastating losses motor carriers suffer, yet they have always plagued the transportation industry. Between the equipment and the cargo, the damages may easily range from $200,000 to over $500,000. Even the best maintenance may not be enough to prevent a fire, as the causes vary widely, such as a defective wheel bearing, worn out wiring insulation, or simply an under-inflated tire. However the fire starts, it is nearly impossible to extinguish due to the quantity of combustible materials surrounding the fire and the intense heat the fire emits that makes those same materials reignite after the initial flames are put out.
Reignition is one of the most common reasons that turns what may have been a manageable loss into an expensive conflagration. Most dry chemical fire extinguishers put out fires by driving away the oxygen to smother the flames, but they do not address the retained heat in the object that was burning. However, new available fire safety products, such as Cold Fire Tactical, will not only put out the flames but will also super cool the heat source and surrounding areas, thus preventing the heat from reigniting the fire. With the right product, some fire stories like this one end in success instead of disaster, as Dixon Auto Transport discovered. Dixon had just outfitted its entire fleet with Cold Fire Tactical extinguishers the month before.
A few weeks after the fire, in a phone conversation with Thom Payson, the president of Cold Fire Tactical, Mike explained that he was a volunteer firefighter in his South Georgia hometown and shared his experience with Cold Fire Tactical. As a trained firefighter, Mike said he knew there was no way a regular dry chemical extinguisher could have even touched that fire, let alone put it out.
Bill Fralic Insurance Services and Cold Fire Tactical congratulate Mike Wehling for his level-headed response and decisive actions that turned a catastrophe into a spectacular success story.