Last Friday (20th December) after work I walked by a beauty parlor that had an extension cord plugged into an outlet near the front door powering a nail dryer on the other end of the room snaking UNDER a piece of rug used as a floor mat.
Here's the potential scenario:
Rub rub, scrape scrape. Bring in any left-over road salt, dirt and moisture and add to the abrasive and corrosive morass on that carpet.
Rub some more.
Eventually the rubber insulation gets eaten away. The bare wires touch each other. A short circuit happens and there is a spark (of course the fuse has probably been replaced by a slug). The rug on top catches fire and spreads to the rug on the bottom.
It's a turn-of-the century building (a little architectural treasure in my opinion)in New York's Financial District which is a densley populated area. But it's got wooden floors (and wood in the walls) and the upper floors have been sealed for decades, so it's not in the best of shape.
The building catches on fire and it spreads to the next 100-year old half-abandoned tinderbox which also catches on fire (it houses a pizzeria and an Indian restaurant with gas-fired ovens on the ground floor) and then the NEXT one undergoing restoration(flammable chemicals like paint inside).
Pretty soon the whole block is in flames!!!
All because of a stupid little wire running underneath a rug.
This hasn't happened (yet). But it could, so you get the picture.
Please PLEASE do not run your electrical cords underneath a carpet!
Do not splice damaged extension cords or cordsets together and do not overload your sockets!!
This was all stuff we were warned about in THIRD GRADE science class. Go figure...
On the positive side it was a 3-pin air-conditioner extension cord (SPT-3/14AWG).
Sven "(We could not determine the cause of the fire. The building was not wired for electricity)"
[This message has been edited by SvenNYC (edited 12-23-2002).]