HEY ITS A WARM, WINDY DAY.... LET'S GO PLAY WITH MATCHES!

  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Mar 07, 2009 1:32 PM GMT
    My first clue was pulling onto 159th from Central toward my office about 5:30 p.m. from the gym. I saw 3 police cars coming from the north.
    "There must have been some wreck, I thought"

    After working until about 7:15 I traveled the 1.2 miles north on 159th to my house. I saw this weird foam along the road. "What the hell is going on here", I wondered.

    When I got home I got phone messages from family, neighbors and my assistant.

    Apparently some kids (or sick adults) decided to play with matches in the large pasture across 159th from my neighborhood. It was 80 degrees yesterday... and windy The whole place caught fire and burned. Hay bales (no houses fortunately), the horses weren't out I'm told, but it got within about 200 feet of my house. The whole place is black back there.

    What the hell were they thinking??
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    Mar 07, 2009 1:42 PM GMT
    I loved to play with fire when I was kid. icon_confused.gif
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    Mar 07, 2009 1:51 PM GMT
    Sedative saidI love to play with fire. icon_confused.gif




    icon_twisted.gificon_twisted.gificon_twisted.gif

    ask that chatroom. LOL
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    Mar 07, 2009 3:59 PM GMT
    The eastern half of North Dakota is so totally flat it makes Kansas look like the Alps. Think Bonneville Salt Flats with corn fields. And along the rural 2-lane roads there are always large, deep ditches on both sides, gullies really, to channel away the rain run-off from the flat farm fields.

    By law the farmers must keep those ditches clear of overgrowth, that might impede the water flow and cause flooding. Plus prairie deer will go down there to feed, hidden from the view of passing motorists if the underbrush isn't removed, and being startled by the vehicle noise, will suddenly leap out onto the road with disastrous results. In the winter, BTW, snowmobilers will go "ditch running" down there alongside the roads, which I've often done myself.

    So the permitted solution is to burn-off the ditch growth, especially in the Fall. One day I was driving along at the 65-mph speed limit when I saw a wall of grey smoke ahead of me. A ditch fire had gotten out of control in high winds, and had spread to a nearby stand of trees & brush.

    I penetrated the smoke wall and immediately experienced zero visibility. I couldn't even see the road surface, much less past my car's hood. The smoke entered the car, choking me as I coughed uncontrollably (and imparting a smell in the upholstery I never totally lost).

    I realized the great danger I was in: keep driving and drift off the road and crash into a dtich, or have a head-on collision with an oncoming vehicle. Stop, and be rear-ended from behind. My palms were sweaty on the steering wheel.

    I slowed down to about 25 mph, favoring the right shoulder where I could hear my tires on the rougher surface, easing back and forth from the shoulder to the road, to keep me from crossing the road's center dividing line, or plunging into the ditch. Still totally blind, I drove for about 1/4 mile, until the smoke got thinner and I could finally see the road surface.

    As soon as I cleared the smoke wall I got on my cell phone and dialed 911 to report the problem. The dispatcher said they were sending fire trucks, and police to barricade the road. Apparently the situation had just developed moments before I arrived.

    I later learned there were several accidents after me, but I never learned if the farmer who started the fire was held liable. As I said, it was legal to use clearing fires, but I understood you weren't supposed to let them get out of control, and so should avoid periods of high winds, common on the Upper Great Plains.
  • CAtoFL

    Posts: 834

    Mar 07, 2009 4:24 PM GMT
    I'm happy to report that the arsonist who set fires here in southern California has just been convicted of five counts of MURDER for the five lost firefighters who died while fighting the monstrosity the arsonist had set.

    People can be idiots. At least this idiot will suffer consequences. He might even face the death penalty.
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    Mar 07, 2009 8:20 PM GMT
    A case of arson in the Redwood City area (San Francisco peninsula) involved setting large, new houses on fire - burning them to the ground - one after another. For a long time the arsonists were not caught, until one day they threw a video tape out along a freeway. The video tape showed them burning the houses and laughing with each other. One kid on the tape kept calling the other kid "Omar". Someone found the tape, took it to the police. The police looked through all the local high schools, and found the culprits. There were not that many kids with the name Omar. The arsonists were severely punished. Had it not been for their littering (throwing the tape out along the freeway) they might not have been caught.
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    Mar 07, 2009 8:25 PM GMT
    Parable said
    Sedative saidI love to play with fire. icon_confused.gif




    icon_twisted.gificon_twisted.gificon_twisted.gif

    ask that chatroom. LOL


    Whut?! *hides flamethrower*
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    Mar 07, 2009 8:33 PM GMT
    If the Kansas legislature has its way, the the sale to or possession of a "cigarette lighter" by kids under 18 will be illegal. course, noone thinks of matches, apparently. This is what is wrong with this country. We ask to legislate like parents instead of fixing something inherently wrong with mindsets through education.