Bang! Pop! Crackle crackle sizzle! Bang! Crackle crackle crackle!
Those were the sounds that hit my ears this morning shortly after 5:30am. Power went off at the same time.
Fahim had already gotten out of bed to get ready for the day, so he went to check on what was causing the noise. Because I was worried, and it sounded electrical (there had been a downed power line across the road not that long ago with some of the same sizzling noises), I followed him.
And I saw an orange flickering glow outside our upstairs seating area windows.
It turned out that our electricity meter box was on fire. Part of it, the wooden and glass enclosure to protect it from the elements, was on the ground in flames. The rest was on flames will still attached to our house. That, I don’t have pictures of. Sorry, but no, not going there. Not in those tight quarters. 🙂
Thankfully, our house is a brick/concrete construction, so not much there to catch fire. Except for the wood furniture on the patio, which could light the wood window frames, which could light the curtains, which could lead to indoor furniture…
But none of that happened. Thankfully. 🙂
A policeman saw the fire (we have quite a few in the area – government ministers and such live here) and came over, banging on the gate until Fahim answered it, to make sure we knew about the fire and that everything was okay. There was nothing we could do to put out the fire on the wall – we had baking soda, but not enough to take care of it. And, honestly, the fire was in an area where we weren’t in much danger and it would go out soon enough.
Fahim called the electricity board. They came over a while later and took a look at things. “The meter box is on fire!” Um, yeah, that’s what Fahim said on the phone. 🙂 They had to get replacement parts from inventory, which wasn’t open until 9am or so, so nothing could be done until then. So they left.
Then they came back, spare parts in hand. And replaced the meter box outside. BUT the insulation on the electric wire leading to the fuse box inside the house at the back was badly melted and had to be replaced. Conversation went back and forth with discussions regarding us having to replace the entire wire, which we’d have to hire someone else to do, but we ended up with a much quicker and easier solution – they installed another fuse box that controlled the entire house. The other three fuse boxes were wired to the new master. And the master fuse box was wired, with new wire, to the electricity meter box.
We still have to patch up the holes in the wall and replace the eavestroughing that got melted by the fire and such, but we’re back in operation. 🙂
But still, this leaves a few questions, like why did this happen? Want to take bets on the two lightning strikes that hit our house in the last year? (Goodbye, 2 routers, a fridge, a notebook, an LCD display, a phone cord, and various other things…) Or the monkeys or palm civets that use it like a highway? Or just bad luck?
5 thoughts on “Bang! Pop!! Crackle!!! Fire!!!!”
Probably the monkeys. We had a raccoon and a squirrel short out transformers outside our house. One was during my daughter’s sleepover. The bang and fireball were quite the source of entertainment for the girls. They were horrified, however, by the smoking squirrel in the ditch.
Yikes!!! Waking up to flames. Better than coffee, eh? 😉
Monkey & lightning…. exciting house you got there!
Glad it was fixed fairly quick.
Sandra, yeah, the monkeys are definitely suspect. But I think the lightning strikes help – they may have melted the insulation between the wires, leading to a short.
Smoking squirrel… Yowsa! O_O
Honestly, I prefer uneventful, and I even get that most of the time, thankfully. But every now and then…
Ouch! If the wiring in Srilanka is anything like India, it could well be a self-combusting meter box! Glad to hear that no damage was done and you now have a new fuse box.