A fire which has damaged an army barracks was started by two officers duelling with flares to settle a disagreement.
It’s reported that the two officers took to kayaks in an outdoor swimming pool and fired flare guns at each other. It happened after the pair had attended a dinner to mark the end of training.
But it seems one of their aims was off and a flare was shot through an upper window of the seven-storey building. The unintended consequences are that they managed to set fire to the building which has been badly damaged.
Ten fire engines were called to attend the blaze but came into trouble after discovering the sprinkler systems were not working after a Legionnaires scare.
Firefighters had to instead use water from the swimming pool to help put out the blaze.
The Royal Military Police is investigating the incident at Allenby Barracks in Bovington.
An old tradition with a modern twist, this shows that no matter what training you have, playing with fire can always be dangerous.
When you’re not using equipment for its intended use, then you run the risks of accidents happening. Although it has caused extensive damage, there are thankfully no reports of injuries.
This is why advice is to always avoid using any dangerous equipment when you have been drinking. For example, you shouldn’t cook after a night of drinking, and should instead order a takeaway instead.
It’s because we don’t always make the best decisions when we’re intoxicated. But it does also mean that we’re not always able to react appropriately when things do go wrong.
Not only that, but it’s why we teach our children not to play with dangerous items, such as matches and candles.
No matter how inquisitive they are, or how good their intentions were, the unintended consequences can have huge ramifications.
However, another lesson to learn from this is to ensure all fire safety equipment is suitable for use. Regular inspection and annual servicing, where appropriate, are vital for discovering any issues before they are needed. Just like an inspection will have alerted them to the potential for Legionella’s disease.
Although we all hope to never need to use safety equipment, you need to have it working just in case. So if you ever become aware of an issue with your fire safety equipment, then it needs rectifying immediately.
It should never be put off because of costs or bad timing. The cost of not doing what is needed could be a lot higher.