16 December 2018


A backdraft can occur when a compartment fire has little or no ventilation, leading to slowing of gas-phase combustion (due to the lack of oxygen); however, the combustible fuel gases (unburnt fuel vapor and gas-phase combustion intermediates such as hydrocarbons and carbon monoxide) and smoke (primarily particulate matter) remain at a temperature hotter than the auto-ignition temperature of the fuel mixture. If oxygen is then re-introduced to the compartment, e.g. by opening a door or window to a closed room, combustion will restart, often rapidly, as the gases are heated by the combustion and expand rapidly because of the rapidly increasing temperature. 
Nobody was killed during this incident.


  1. I was a firefighter during my time in the Air Force from 1995-1999. In addition to the better known backdraft (there was a Ron Howard-directed film called Backdraft in 1991 starring Kurt Russell), we were also warned about the dangers of a BLEVE- Boiling Liquid Expanding Vapor Explosion. Between backdrafts, BLEVEs, building collapse, aircraft munitions, and high temperatures, there was a lot of emphasis on things that could kill or injure us.

    If I'm not mistaken, this film clip (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UM0jtD_OWLU) is from the same video we were shown when training at Goodfellow Air Force Base.

  2. one of numerous links about the fire in the video:

    https://ny.eater.com/2018/12/13/18139185/new-york-style-eats-sidetracks-zen-yai-fire-sunnyside-queens-nyc 12 People Injured and 3 Restaurants ‘Destroyed’ in Queens Fire - Flames began early Thursday morning inside the New York Style Eats diner, reports say



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