Case Study: August 2008, Farrer Road Consumer Unit Fire

The Singapore Civil Defence Force conducted a recent case study that detailed the events of a major electrical fire at the home of four residents. Each case of electrical fire is taken very seriously, and is analyzed to determine what electrical faults were at play, and what homeowners can do to be safer with their electrical appliances.

This is one of many case studies done on electrical fires that occurred in Singapore in 2008. According to the SCDF, these cases are accidental and yet very dangerous due to the nature of the unsuspecting homeowner. Read on to find out more about this case, and what you can do to prevent electrical faults from occurring in your home.

Case Study Details

Four family members were asleep in their bedrooms at home. At 4 in the morning, they woke up due to a popping sound. The smell of burning filled the air, and they all ran out to see a huge fire on their porch. The fire quickly spread to the roof, and the family evacuated as fast as possible. The fire destroyed nearly every part of the home, including the bedrooms and the car and motorcycle outside next to the porch.

This is a severe case of an electrical fire. It was determined to be an electrical fire due to the fact that there was a consumer unit plugged into the porch, was was the source of origin for the burning. The unchecked consumer unit produced a fire that could not be put out with water, and nearly destroyed the entirety of this family’s home.

What Was the Cause of the Electrical Fault?

The cause of the electrical fault was, in this case, easily determined to be the consumer unit plugged into the porch. This electrical appliance is something that requires a large amount of energy, pulling huge electrical currents from the outlet. If the outlet cannot handle this kind of electrical output, it may overheat or overcharge. This is what causes the appliances to burn, which, subsequently, is what started the fire.

The fact that the fire destroyed even the automobiles speaks to the power and danger that electrical faults pose. When using extra appliances, take extra caution to turn them completely off and unplug them from the outlet before the unit causes a devastating fire.

Why Do These Faults Occur?

Most often, electrical faults occur because homeowners do not realize that appliances still use power when turned off. In this case, the consumer unit wasn’t turned off, but since it wasn’t actively being used or checked, it started to demand too much electrical energy.

Large power units and electronics can be very hard on a home’s electricity circuits, causing an easy overload. There is a chance that the consumer unit would have overloaded in any situation, but in the case of the Farrer Road electrical fire, the fact that the unit went unchecked is what caused the devastation.

Adding extra circuit boards and units to the already-existing electrical component of a home, such as in the case of using a consumer unit, is very risky and is often a cause for concern. Be sure to consult with an electrician before attempting to install any kind of extra electrical board in your home.

Safety Tips for Preventing These Kinds of Faults

Electrical fires and these kinds of faults can be easily avoided if you are aware of the dangers of using electrical appliances. Make sure you never use something that looks faulty. Cracked cords, frayed wires, and loosened outlets are three sure fire signs that something is wrong.

And when it comes to using extra power sources, like a consumer unit or power strip, make sure that it will not overload your circuits. If you are using appliances that demand a lot more use of electricity, you run the risk of electrical fire. This is especially so with faulty circuit breakers that do not trip in the event of an overloaded circuit.

Although circuit breaker trips causepower failure Singapore, which are extremely frustrating, they actually are an effective tool in the prevention of electrical overloading. In 2008, a family of four fell victim to an accidental electrical fire because they were using extra sources of electrical power. Make sure to ask a professional before running any kind of risk with electricity.