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  #1  
Old 12 November 2013, 09:57 PM
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Flame Child burned after gasoline poured on slide ignites

A two-year-old girl has been severely burned in suburban Atlanta in a freak accident after gasoline poured on an outdoor slide to make it slicker ignited from static electricity.

http://news.yahoo.com/georgia-child-...223331018.html
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  #2  
Old 12 November 2013, 11:01 PM
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Investigators do not know which of the two siblings poured the gasoline
A 2-year-old and a 4-year-old had access to gasoline?! I don't know if that's worse than the stupid-adult-pouring-it scenario I was picturing.
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Old 12 November 2013, 11:48 PM
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See, to me a "freak accident" is something so unlikely to happen that it was nearly impossible to predict. There is nothing freakish about gasoline fumes igniting, it is more the expected outcome.

It doesn't sound so much accidental as negligent, either.
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  #4  
Old 13 November 2013, 12:14 AM
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Well, it was an accident by the children involved, who almost certainly had no idea what gasoline fumes do. It was negligent by the parent(s) or caregivers who were supposed to be caring for them.
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  #5  
Old 13 November 2013, 01:41 AM
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Originally Posted by erwins View Post
Well, it was an accident by the children involved, who almost certainly had no idea what gasoline fumes do. It was negligent by the parent(s) or caregivers who were supposed to be caring for them.
I'm trying to figure out how a four year old child would know that gasoline would make the slide slippery. I suppose maybe they watched someone pour water on a slide and figured any liquid would do?
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  #6  
Old 13 November 2013, 03:10 AM
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That's what I'm thinking.
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  #7  
Old 13 November 2013, 03:11 PM
Dr. Dave Dr. Dave is offline
 
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I know this is totally missing the point, but would gasoline really make a slide slicker? I would think no more than water, and possibly less than water as the film of gasoline would evaporate quickly, and gasoline has less surface tension anyway. Now motor oil, while much messier, would do the trick.

(Yes, a 4 year old would have no idea about any of that, just responding to "how would they know?" If they "knew" they'd be wrong, I think.)
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Old 13 November 2013, 03:21 PM
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I don't even think water would make a slide slicker unless it was cold and the water iced over.
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  #9  
Old 13 November 2013, 03:23 PM
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When I was a kid we used to get a sheet of wax paper and sit on it while we slid.

Nick

ETA: this was back in the metal slide days. I'm not sure how well this would work on plastic.
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  #10  
Old 13 November 2013, 03:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Dave View Post
I know this is totally missing the point, but would gasoline really make a slide slicker? I would think no more than water, and possibly less than water as the film of gasoline would evaporate quickly, and gasoline has less surface tension anyway. Now motor oil, while much messier, would do the trick.

(Yes, a 4 year old would have no idea about any of that, just responding to "how would they know?" If they "knew" they'd be wrong, I think.)
I have never even heard of putting water on a slide to make it slicker. I wonder if they have even really determined that is why the gasoline was on the child and the slide, or if it was just a guess. The articles i have seen do not say that the girls said so.

As for using gasoline, there is a gradation from very simple hydrocarbons like methane which are hard to even keep liquid at standard pressure and temperature, through auto gas (mostly 6-10 carbon chains) which are generally liquid but very aromatic, diesel (which has longer chains yet) and motor oil (still longer chains). The slipperiness goes up and the aromaticity goes down as the chains get longer. Diesel fuel is even often referred to as 'diesel oil' because it is more slippery and less aromatic (evaporable) than octane. The girls may have seen daddy using diesel to make things slippery.

Here is another article, longer and with more details, but still not really resolving whether the girls really used gasoline to make the slide slipperier or how they would conceive of doing so.

http://www.ajc.com/news/news/toddler...ignites/nbptK/
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  #11  
Old 13 November 2013, 03:31 PM
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According to the AJC article Mack posted, "another child" poured the gasoline. So we don't know the age of the child, and it appears it was not the victim or her sister.
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  #12  
Old 13 November 2013, 03:39 PM
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Thy could have experienced a water slide Or a slip-and-slide and gotten the idea from that.
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  #13  
Old 13 November 2013, 03:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Dave View Post
According to the AJC article Mack posted, "another child" poured the gasoline. So we don't know the age of the child, and it appears it was not the victim or her sister.
I just missed that. I hope there will be more articles on how this happened.
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  #14  
Old 13 November 2013, 03:53 PM
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There is a playground with a splash fountain near where I used to live. Water was collected in buckets and poured down the slides all the time. The kids had lots of fun with this and seemed to think it made the slides more slippery.

BTW there were metal slides as well at plastic at that park. Metal slides do not create static the way plastic ones do and are safer for kids with cochlear implants.
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  #15  
Old 13 November 2013, 04:42 PM
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Back in the days of huge (and I mean huge)* metal slides we used to throw sand on them when they were sticky. It worked rather well.

One at my first grade school was, I think about a twenty foot climb to the top. It finally got removed about 15 years ago.
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  #16  
Old 13 November 2013, 04:53 PM
Nick Theodorakis Nick Theodorakis is offline
 
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There was an enormous slide in the playground I used to go to where I was living until about 3rd grade. Some years later, as an adult, when I saw that slide again I was disappointed that it seems to have shrunk in the meantime.

Nick
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Old 13 November 2013, 05:05 PM
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I had thought that would be the case when I returned to that play ground as an adult. I was wrong. I took my kids there when they were little, and the slide was, indeed to the best of my estimate, about 20 feet up the ladder. I was amazed that it stayed there for that many years. I didn't let my kids get on it as they were only about 5, 4, and 1 respectively at that time.
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  #18  
Old 13 November 2013, 05:08 PM
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Like this one.
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  #19  
Old 13 November 2013, 05:22 PM
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Being up that high was at least half the fun
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  #20  
Old 13 November 2013, 05:25 PM
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Yup. I saw the aftermath when a kid fell of the top of one in elementary school, though, and it was rather nasty. It didn't stop me from using the slide, though.

ETA: I don't think the ones on the playgrounds I used were quite that high. High enough to do some damage if you fell, though.
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