A close shave

If you thought women’s emancipation was a child of the 60’s think again. Here is one determined lady fire fighter prepared to step into the breach – more 1950’s judging from her attire. I don’t ever recall seeing my other half gardening in a tailored white blouse and slacks and the idea of her tackling a blazing lawn mower would stretch belief. Even so the photo is illuminating.

Now for one thing the lady is wielding a Co2 fire extinguisher – identifiable by the black discharge horn -which is the right choice for petrol fires at least at the time this picture was taken. CO2 is still effective today but is better used in a more enclosed space than the great outdoors where wind can disperse the gas. In fact the Extinguisher appears to be having little effect on the fire.

An AFFF foam fire extinguisher would be my choice of weapon next time my lawn mower self combusts.

How the fire started in the first place is not clear from the picture. Did dad push it so fast the wheels ignited? Did she drop a ciggy in the petrol tank? A lightning strike? Sabotage by an envious neighbour perhaps. Alas we can only speculate and you are welcome to do so, but the chances of the petrol tank exploding in the poor woman’s face seem real to me and it looks suspiciously like her wellies are on fire.