Cell phones and gas, here is a new one... I now believe...

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by jjmitchell60, Jun 25, 2012.

  1. All have seen the warning as to using a cell phone around gasoline and many like myself say BS! Well I am a believer now but not just gasoline, diesel fuel as well!!!!! A friend of mine came into a country store near my farm, he has several farmas in the area as well, and he had the skin peeling off his face plus no eyebrows or hair of anykind on his face and the front of his head. I ask him what in the world happened to him. Here is his tale and he is the kind that if he said the sky was falling believe it, he is to be believed because he will not lie at all to no one.

    He said he was bush hogging all day the other day in the 95+ degree heat. Now he has a nice size NH 4x4 tractor with a 15' bat wing mower. Said it was around 10PM when he came in and went to diesel up the tractor so as to go back at it the next day at dawn. He pulled up to the pump at his barn, put the nozzle in the tank, started fueling up with diesel, and his cell phone in his shirt pocket rang. He said he pulled it out of his pocket and it rang just as he went to anwser it. After that all he rememebrs is a huge flash, a burning on his face, him falling back to the ground, and then getting up off the ground. His cell phone was 30 feet behind him, the tractor was blackened around the fuel tank area, and his face hurt like he!!. He shut the pump down, crawled up into his tractor, looked in the mirror, and said he saw no hair on his face, his face was as red as it could be with flesh hanging off under his eyes on his cheek. He went next door to his brother's house who rushed him to the ER. He has 2nd and light 3rd degree burns to his face and light 2nd degree burns to the hand that had held his cell phone. The cell phone is TOAST! Seems the fumes from fueling up combined with the heat off the tank (the tractor was very hot being he had a full day in of bushogging) and they said at the ER that most lilely the heat from the motor heated up the fuel tank thus causing the fumes to be more volitile! Now if you have used diesel lately, it is so weak you have to dang near use a propane tourch to set it on fire but it sure did explode in my friends face.

    SO I am now a believer as to gas but also as to diesel fuel and no cell phone while filling up with EITHER!
  2. bobski

    bobski Former Guest

    Jan 16, 2005
    va., conn., & mo.
    i dont buy it.
    i think the phone was just a coincidence to other factors.
    we always grounded jets when we refueled them.
    do you ground your tractor? i know a lot of truckers do.
    odds are it was static electricity.
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2012

  3. dad2thebone

    dad2thebone New Member

    Jul 10, 2011
    I've used my cell while putting both gas and diesel in annd never had a problem. Hmm either im lucky or.......
  4. carver

    carver Moderator Supporting Member

    Last edited: Jun 25, 2012
  5. bobski

    bobski Former Guest

    Jan 16, 2005
    va., conn., & mo.
    but it is true...people that use cell phones do get brain damage.:D
  6. Wags

    Wags New Member

    Oct 10, 2010
    I call BS.

    Diesel, needing very high tempratures to ignite, wouldn't go off with a supposed spark from a cell phone (local FD uses a road flare to ignite when training).
  7. 68c15

    68c15 Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 22, 2011
    I read the story differently. the tank was empty and very warm. he started to refuel so the fuel entering displaced hot fumes. his phone being placed in communicate mode created a spark. I can see it happening.

    something to remember is that a device which transmits radio waves is actually sending electricity into the air.
  8. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

    Jan 11, 2010
    and from me

    i think its a combo with a phone as a enabler , the mythbusters tests where busted BY UCLA who put the phone in a plad shirt and had vibrate as well as ring enabled , the highly charged phone when a call came in added a spike to the static created by the vibrations and they where able to get sparks off it

    any time you get a static spark thats ignition for vapour ..

    while the phone itself wont spark

    when grabbed or moved it CAN discharge as any charged plastic item can , its just physic's paper can spark wood too , ( the coatings on wood are what holds the charge ;) )

    plastic hold charges well until the release and they do that well too

    some capacitors for micro electronics are just plastics ..

    it is possible , get a ugg boot and put your ipod in and slide it up and down then go to a earthed item and almost touch the earthed item with the ipod , you'll get a spark , but you risk frying your ipod ...

    if a ipod can do it why not a phone?

    its the conditions around the devise that create the situation , not just the devise ..

    i get zapped off my rifle when wearing the wrong gear and walking through wheat stubble

    i'll walk around wheat now if i got rubber soles on

    first thing you touch after crossing i always get zapped , fence tree etc hate it :D
    Last edited: Jun 25, 2012
  9. howlnmad

    howlnmad Well-Known Member Supporting Member

    Nov 26, 2008
    Harriman, Tn
    I'll go along with the static charge theory but not the actual use of the phone causing it. The hot fuel return from the engine and a low tank level will give plenty of fumes.
  10. bobski

    bobski Former Guest

    Jan 16, 2005
    va., conn., & mo.
    its not like a welding arch is going on inside a phone. what we talking...a little current?
    i can see it now, cell phones being so powerful sparks shoot out the body as they are being used.
  11. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

    Jan 11, 2010
    hey bobski , walk on carpet in socks then touch the metal window or stove

    that little spark can be 800 degree's , NO BS

    how much to ignite fuel vapour ? 400 ?
  12. Country101

    Country101 Well-Known Member

    Feb 28, 2004
    NW AR
    I will tell you that the fuel being hot makes ahuge differance in ignition. We trained on putting out diesel fires at the fire station. To get the fire started in a shallow pan initially a lighter was used and it took a good while for it to catch and it didnt spread just real fast. After we had put it out several times and the temp of the remaining diesel had risen, it took very little to get the whole pan engulfed and raging. And I have driven enough tractors to know that that fuel tanks takes quite a bit of heat from the engine, so the fuel is plenty warm to make it easy to start.

    That said, I believe it to be more static than the phone. The phone was just incidental.
  13. carver

    carver Moderator Supporting Member

    Jack, can you post a link to the UCLA test? I can't find it.
  14. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

    Jan 11, 2010
    i'll see if i can dig it up ..
  15. cpttango30

    cpttango30 Guest

    This is a myth with new cell phones.

    Maybe with older flip type phones that used to have metal contacts. No phone made today has that anymore. Even more so with modern smart phones.
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