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Never make a fire indoors except in a fireplace or suitable stove

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  • Never make a fire indoors except in a fireplace or suitable stove



    Aahh, fire...

    Since the dawn of mankind, man has been fascinated with fire.

    We've all also been taught not to touch a fire, because touching a fire burns you.

    But, can a fire burn you without being touched? Yes. That's a lesson I learned during a studio shoot of one of our fire scenes in EENDAG.

    The room we shot in was huge, about 100 square metres I'd say.

    The reason we had to shoot indoors is because we had to recreate a ferocious wildfire, consuming the African veld, and it has to be at night. The scenes shot here would then be combined with scenes shot outside at night during a real fire, and some composited scenes.

    So anyway, we brought in lots of grass and clumps of grass, and recreated quite a stretch of beautiful grassy savanna.

    Then of course we set it all alight so that we can shoot many different scenes and shots of the fight of man against wildfire. And what a battle it was! You should really watch it in EENDAG. Simply beautiful!

    But anyway, getting to the life lesson: A fire is a treacherous thing. Obviously the flames and smoke you can see, you will avoid because you know touching flames hurt and inhaling smoke suffocates.

    But, there is something else you can't see, and that was not that obvious.

    Now, people have been making fires indoors for centuries. But what should be noted is that these are made in fireplaces and stoves, which have pipes and chimneys above them.

    These pipes and chimneys let most all the heat escape.

    But what happens if you don't have a chimney, and it's not above the fire specifically?

    Well then what happens is what happened to poor us. We had two doors open on either side of our huge studio, but no overhead ways for the heat to escape.

    So while we were still shooting, suddenly this heatwave hit us from above. It did not come gradually and became hotter. It just hit without warning and was stinging so bad with a non-survivable heat.

    Fortunately since we had big doors open on the sides we could simply run out, and since pre-arranged running hoses were standing by outside for safety, we could immediately spray a gush of water onto our burning inferno which effectively killed all flames within about ten seconds.

    What had happened? Well I imagine the heat from the fire accumulated against the ceiling and kept accumulating while at the same time the fire itself was creating some kind of convection stream of air. All air above the fire went upwards to the ceiling until it all came down again to be recirculated. When it came down it immediately started cooking us alive.

    And when it came down, it also brought down the smoke, which had been gathering against the ceiling leaving us mostly unaffected, with it, robbing us of the right to breathe.

    Also, dry grass specifically make an insanely hot heat.

    The lesson is, have overhead ventilation holes whenever you make a fire indoors, or you will still keep going on with what you're doing thinking everything is peachy, until suddenly a wall of extreme heat will fall on you without warning.

    Well, after this little incident we brought in more grass to rebuild and keep going, but scaled the set way down so the part on fire is much smaller, and we got the footage still needed.

    The scenes came out great on film. Absolutely spectacular. Be on the lookout for EENDAG, to be released in the near future when it's done and ready for your enjoyment.
    - See more at: Never make a fire indoors except in a fireplace or suitable stove
    http://www.mooiflieks.com
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