As far as restoration goes, many folks have no idea exactly what heat and smoke (not to mention water from us hose jockeys) can do to a building.
The auto insurance industry has almost gotten to the point of "totalling" a car if there's any sort of fire in it due to the circuit boards and other electronic devices being damaged beyond repair from smoke and carbon residue. Wonder if they'll get to that point with houses sooner or later?
[This message has been edited by DougW (edited 06-18-2006).]
Wow yet again! Amazing how though when you look at those pictures, how the heat smoke and flames never did penetrate the wall, or it does not look like it did with the relatively undamaged Romex entering the panel, yet the panel is completely incinerated ( looks like it got warm enough to trip all the breakers in the panel too!!.. Also in the second picture it looks like the steel studs are soot free yet heat and flames made it past the plastic box and into the ceiling cavity...
I was immeadiatly impressed with the condition of the romex outside the panel vs the interior of the panel. Seems like the panel box did a good job of preventing spread of fire into the cavity above it. Yet I don't see any extra layers of sheetrock, like I have to put when installing a panel into a fire rated wall. It looks to me like the panel itself provided good protection against fire spread. Makes one wonder about all the extra precautions work required when installing a panel into a fire wall, per various building codes. I wonder what the picture would look like if there was wood studs instead of metal ones. That might also have made the difference in containing the spread.
The panel cover was on at the time of the fire. All of the individual breakers in the panel tripped, but the main outside did not. The panel was still energized from the night of the fire, back in March.