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Volume 27, Issue 3

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Recovering a Boiler or Hot Water Heater After a Natural Disaster

Written by  John Hoh November 17, 2007

When planning for natural disaster recovery, carefully take into consideration one of the most widespread and often overlooked potential dangers facing emergency personnel: boilers and water heaters.Fact is, this equipment is found in homes, schools, factories, restaurants, churches, hospitals - just about every building in the civilized world. When damaged or left unattended, boilers and water heaters represent a serious threat to both life and property. The more emergency personnel know about what to look for and what to do, the more this very real threat can be minimized.Boilers can produce steam or hot water, while water heaters produce only hot water. If superheated water under pressure is suddenly released to the atmosphere, it will instantly convert to steam with an expansion rate of approximately 1600 times its original volume. This means the slightest bit of water when turned into steam can have phenomenal power.Take, for example, a hot water

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