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Fire Friend Or Foe Essay

Where would mankind be without fire? Would we have survived without the warmth of flames? Without fire, would all humans be huddled around the Equator like a Championship Belt?

Besides warming us, sanitizing our food and medical gear, and moving us from place to place, fire is a friend to the environment too. But during the long, summer months of the fire season, wildfire seems like anything but a friend to man, animal, or land. I wrote about the first notable fire of the season in Idaho two months ago.

The lightening caused Tepee Springs Fire began on the morning of August 12, 2015. By the end of August this forest fire had blown up to 80,000 acres, caused the evacuation of ranches and small communities in its path and closed roads and campgrounds. Surging on ferocious winds, the fire grew by 30,000 acres in just one day, forcing firefighters to back down and closing the Salmon River to all fishing and rafting. The fire jumped the Salmon, a premier white-water rafting destination, stopping 109 rafters in their wakes and forcing them to wait for evacuation because the river and the roads out of the area were too dangerous for travel.

I recently drove along the Salmon River to the end of Forest Road 1614. Over two months after the initial spark, the roadblocks are gone and fishing has resumed. The still-burning fire is contained south of the river and continues to smog the air near and far, contributing to some pretty spectacular sunsets.

Looking up at the wall of the canyon, even the rocks are scorched.

Wait, rocks don’t burn . . . but the moss that grows on them burns.

A ferry was originally placed in this location to accommodate mining travel between the boom towns of Florence and Warren, Idaho. In the 1930s the CCC constructed the Manning Crevice bridge at this location. As reported by Don McRitchie,

The span of the bridge is 240 ft. and it is 327 feet long between anchorages. It is supported by eight 1 1/2 in. diameter cables, and has a capacity of 16 tons. The wood guard rails act as stiffening trusses.

All I can say is that driving across this bridge was scarier than negotiating a boulder field solo with tired legs. Imagine negotiating this with massive fire fighting equipment and firefighters—with flames licking at your gas tank!

Photo by Don Jaques, US Forest Service InciWeb

In places where the fire burned the hottest, the land looks anemic. Heat has stripped it of its glorious color.

Even so, the land is resilient and designed to heal itself, as evidenced by the shoots of green popping up beside the road.

Nature’s graphic design

Part of the cycle of forest life, fire opens the undergrowth to precious, life-giving sunlight to spark new life. Normally the Burgdorf Road, snaking up the mountain, would be lost for the trees.

Mother Nature, the supreme artist.

Fire is erratic. It burns fiercely hot in some areas and leaves other little patches untouched. Peeking through scorched trees, we see unscathed forest, complete with fall colors of the larch trees.

And in 20 years, new growth will be as tall as I am, I may well be ash, and a new crop of animals will hunt for seeds on the forest floor.

It is very hard to remember that despite the momentary devastation and discomfort fire brings, it is a natural element in the cycle of life. We and our drying climate have just provided it with an over-abundant amount of fuel.

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8. Fire: Friend and Foe
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Fire: Friend and Foe


Online Home Work Submission Responses

Objectives

  • To enable the students to know about fire.
  • To enable the students to know the causes of fire
  • To impart the students practical knowledge of putting off Fire.
  • To enrich the vocabulary of the students. 
  • To enable the students to make sentences of their own.

New Words

Key Points

  • Three things are needed to make fire: fuel, oxygen and heat. 
  • Fire  is the result of a chemical reaction. 
  • The most common fuels are wood, coal, cooking gas and petrol.
  • The particular temperature at which the fuel begins to burn is called the ”flash point” 
  • Fire is a good servant but a very cruel master 
  • We use fire to cook food, keep ourselves warm, produce electricity,etc.  
  • Uncontrolled fire burns homes and forests, and also kills people.      
  • We can put out the fire in three ways.
  • If we take the fuel away, no burning can take place. 
  • The second way of putting out a fire is to stop the supply of oxygen. 
  • The third way is to remove the heat or bring down the temperature.
  • Water spray cannot put out the oil fire.
  • Water should not be used to fight electric fire, but it may cause electric shock.
  • Firemen are highly trained persons.
  •  Fire is still worshipped in many parts of the world.

Video


Summary

Fire is the result of a chemical reaction. When oxygen in the air combines with carbon and hydrogen, the reaction takes place. Three things are needed to make fire: fuel, oxygen and heat. The most common fuels are wood, coal, cooking gas and petrol. The particular temperature at which the fuel begins to burn is called the “flash point” or kindling temperature of the fuel. Fire is a good servant but a very cruel master. It is useful as long as it is under control. We use some form of fire to cook food, to warm our homes and to produce electricity. But uncontrolled fire burns homes and forests, and also kills people.

We can put out the fire in three ways. Firstly by taking the fuel away, secondly by stopping the supply of oxygen and thirdly by removing the heat or bringing down the temperature.

Water spray cannot put out the oil fire. In fact it can prove dangerous. Water can carry burning oil with it and thus spread fire. Likewise water should not be used to fight electric fire, because it may cause electric shock.

Today there are firefighting squads in every town. Firemen are highly trained persons. The discovery of fire led to a settled life. Fire is still worshipped in many parts of the world.

Presentation


Short Questions

Q1. What are some common uses of fire?
Ans: The common uses of fire are to cook food, warm our homes in winter. Besides, many industrial processes make use of fire for various types of activities in production of goods and services. In thermal plants fire from coal is used to generate electricity.

Q2. What are the three things required to make fire?
Ans: The three things required to make fire are fuel, oxygen and heat.

Q3. What is called the ‘flashpoint’ of the fuel?
Ans: The particular temperature at which a fuel begins to burn is called the flash point or ‘kindling temperature’ of the fuel.

Q4. What is a fire brigade?
Ans: Band of firefighting workers with special equipment is  known as fire brigade.

Answers of the Textbook Questions

Q1. Mark the correct answer in each of the following.

     i.  Early man was frightened of 
                  a. lightning and volcanoes.
                  b. the damage caused by them.
                  c. fire.      
     
      ii.         a. Fire is energy.
                  b. Fire is heat and light.
                  c. Fire is the result of a chemical reaction.

Answer:   i.  Early man was frightened of -(c) fire.
                  ii.  Fire is the result of a chemical reaction.

Q2. From the boxes given below choose the one with correct order of the following sentences.

      a. That is fire.
      b. A chemical reaction take place.
      c. Energy in the form of heat and light is released.
      d. Oxygen combines with carbon and hydrogen.
       
           (i) (ii) (iii) (iv)        (ii) (iii) (i) (iv)         (iv) (iii) (ii) (i)         (iv) (ii) (iii) (i)

Answer: The correct order is : (iv) (ii) (iii) (i)
  1. Oxygen combines with carbon and hydrogen.
  2. A chemical reaction take place.
  3. Energy in the form of heat and light is released.
  4. That is fire.

Answer the following Questions.

Q1. What do you understand by the 'flash point' of a fuel? 
Ans: Every fuel like paper, coal or wood begins to burn only at a particular temperature. This temperature is provided generally with a lighted match. This temperature is called the flash point of kindling temperature of the fuel. 

Q2.  i. What are some common uses of fire?
        ii. In what sense is it a 'bad master"?
Ans: i. The common uses of fire are to cook food in the kitchen, warm our homes in winter. Beside many industrial process make use of fire for various type of activities in production of goods and services. In thermal plants fire from coal is used to generate electricity.
    ii. If fire gets out of control, it can be dangerous. It burns homes, shops and vast areas of forests. It also kills and injures hundreds of people every year.
Extended learning support link from the internet:

Answers of the Textbook Questions

Working with the Text 

Q3. Match the items in Column A with those in Column B:
                             
                              A                                                     B
                       a.  fuel                                      lighted matchstick
                       b.  oxygen                               air
                       c.  heat                                    coal
                                                                        burning coal 
                                                                        wood 
                                                                        smouldering paper
                                                                        cooking gas

Answer:                 A                                                   B
                  a.   fuel        - coal, wood, cooking gas
                  b.   oxygen - air
              c.  heat   -  lighted match stick, burning coal, smouldering paper

Q4. What are the three main ways in which a fire can be controlled or put out? 
Ans: The three main ways in which a fire can be controlled or put out are :
i. By Preventing oxygen from reaching it. No supply of oxygen means no fire. This can be done by throwing a damp blanket or spraying foam of dry carbon dioxide.
ii. By Removing the inflammable material near the fire like Gas, Oil, wood, Plastic etc.
iii. By lowering the temperature below Flash Point of the burning material, using water etc.

Q5. Match the items in Box A with those in box B.
                                       A
              i.  To burn paper or a piece of wood
             ii.  Small fire can be put out
            iii.  When water is spread on fire.
            iv.  A carbon dioxide extinguisher is the best thing
             v.  Space left between buildings.
                                       B
         i. it absorb the heat from the burning material and lowers the temperature
           ii. reduces the risk of fire.
          iii. with a damp blanket.
          iv. we heat it before it catches fire.
           v. to put out an electrical fire.
Answer:
   i. To burn paper or a piece of wood - we heat it before it catches fire.
  ii. Small fire can be put out - with a damp blanket.
 iii. When water is spread on fire - it absorb the heat from the burning material and lowers the temperature.
 iv. A carbon dioxide extinguisher is the best thing - to put out an electrical fire.
  v. Space left between buildings - reduces the risk of fire.

Q6. Why does a burning candle go out when you blow on it?
Ans: When we blow on burning candle, we remove the hot air around the flame. Thus, we bring down its temperature below the flash point. Then the candle goes out.

Q7. Spraying water is not a good way of putting out an oil fire or an electrical fire? Why not?
Ans: Oil fire cannot be put out by spraying water on it. The reason is that the oil floats to the top of water and continues to burn. Secondly, it can flow quickly carrying the burning oil. Thus the fire spreads. Water should not be used on electrical fire. Water is a good conductor of electricity. So the person spraying water can get electric shock and be killed.

Q8. What are some of the things you should do to prevent a fire at home and in the school?
Ans: Keep the gas cylinder at a safe distance. Check the tube from time to time. The foul smell of the leaking gas should be tackled at the earliest.
i. The school and office buildings often catch fire because of electric short circuit. So we should avoid overload and replace old wires. The electric fuses and MCBs should also be checked from time to time.
ii. We must not keep inflammable or combustible things like kerosene and petrol in our homes.
iii. Fire extinguishers be installed in high-rise buildings.

Working with Language

1. Read the following sentences. 
     To burn paper or a piece of wood, we heat it before it catches fire. We generally do it with alighted match. Every fuel has a particular temperature at which it burns
         The verbs in italics are in the simple present tense. when we use it, we are not thinking only about the present . We use it to say that something happens all the time or repeatedly, or that something in true is general.
       Find ten examples of verbs in the simple present tense in the text 'Fire: Friend and Foe' and write them down here. Do not include any passive verbs. 
____      ____       _____      ____
Answer: Students do themselves.

Q2. Fill in the blanks in the sentences below with words in the box. you may use a word more than once. 
                                       carbon, cause, fire, smother
  i. Gandhiji's life was devoted to the ______ of justice and fair play.
 ii. Have you insured your house against ______?
iii. Diamond is nothing but ______ in its pure from.
iv. If you put to much coal on the fire at once you will ______ it.
v.  Smoking is said to be the main ______ of heart disease.
vi. When asked by an ambitious writer whether he should put some ______ into his stories, Somerset Maugham murmured, "No, the other way round".
vii. She is a ______ copy of her mother.
viii. It is often difficult to ______ a yawn when you listen to as long speech on the value of time.
Answer:
  i. Gandhiji's life was devoted to the cause of justice and fair play.
 ii. Have you insured your house against fire?
iii. Diamond is nothing but carbon in its pure from.
iv. If you put to much coal on the fire at once you will smother it.
v.  Smoking is said to be the main cause of heart disease.
vi. When asked by an ambitious writer whether he should put some fire into his stories, Somerset Maugham murmured, "No, the other way round".
vii. She is a carbon copy of her mother.
viii. It is often difficult to smother a yawn when you listen to as long speech on the value of time.

Q3. One words is italicised in each sentence. Find its opposite in the box and fill in the blanks.
                            spending, shut, destroy, subtract, increase
    i.  You were required to keep all the doors open, not ______.
   ii.  Pupil : What mark did I get in yesterday's Maths test?
      Teacher : You got what you get when you add five and five and _____ ten from        the total.
   iii.  Run four Kilometers a day to preserve your health. Run a lot to ______ it.
  iv.  If a doctor advises a lean and lanky patient to reduce his weight further, be sure he is doing it to ______ his income.
   v. The world is too much with us; late and soon, Getting and ______ we lay waste our powers.                                 --Wordsworth
Answer: 
   i. You were required to keep all the doors open, not shut.
  ii. Pupil : What mark did I get in yesterday's Maths test?
    Teacher : You got what you get when you add five and five and subtract ten from the total.
 iii. Run four Kilometres a day to preserve your health Run a lot to destroy it.
 iv. If a doctor advises a lean and lanky patient to reduce his weight further, be sure he is doing it to increase his income.
 v. The world is too much with us; late and soon. Getting and spending we lay
waste our powers.                                  --Wordsworth

Q4. Use the words given in the box to fill in the blanks in the sentences below. 
                                           across, along, past, through
   a. The cat chased the mouse ______ the lawn.
  b. We were not allowed to cross the frontier. So we drove _____ it as far we could an came back happy.
   c. The horse went ____ the winning post and had to be stopped with difficulty.
   d. It is not difficult to see ______ your plan. Any one can see your motive.
   e. Go ______ the yellow line, then turn left. You will reach the post office in five minutes.
Answer:
    a. The cat chased the mouse across the lawn.
   b. We were not allowed to cross the frontier. So we drove along it as far we could an came back happy.
    c. The horse went past the winning post and had to be stopped with difficulty.
    d. It is not difficult to see through your plan. Any one can see your motive.
    e. Go along the yellow line, then turn left. You will reach the post office in five minutes.

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