Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 12-02-2006, 06:10 PM   #1
2 Rivet Member
mtjim's Avatar
1973 25' Tradewind
New Bloomfield , Missouri
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 43
We Lost our Airstream so be Careful with yours

Lost our 1979 Airstream this past Thursday to a fire at 4:30 pm. It was parked next to our house and Fire Chief said it must have been an electical short. It was plugged up to the house electricity. Hate to even think what might have happened if the fire had started in the middle of the night. We are really fortunate and blessed that it occurred when it did.

We just had returned from a 1200 mile trip to SW Kansas on Nov18 where we stayed in the Meade Lake State Park for three nights. Sure did have a good time and are heart broken that our "retreat on Wheels" is gone.

Passerbys saw the blaze and knocked on our house door so we caught the fire early and called 911. The interior is ruined by smoke and fire but the fire never broke through any of the vents or Air conditioner. The trailer was closed up tight and the lack of air actually prevented the fire from becoming totally out of control. We used a fire extinguisher to knock down the blaze before the Fire Truck arrived. Also hooked to it and towed it away from the house before the Fire Truck arrived.

I know one thing for sure now. I will never keep my next trailer plugged in all the time when I'm not using it.

Yep - we are going to get another trailer and it will be an Airstream.

mtjim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2006, 06:17 PM   #2
moosetags's Avatar

2015 25' FB Flying Cloud
2012 23' FB Flying Cloud
2005 25' Safari
Santa Rosa Beach , Florida
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,429
Images: 5
We are really sorry to hear of your Airstream loss. We are also glad that no one was hurt. Airstreams can be replaced, people can't. Glad to hear that you will continue Airstreaming.

SuEllyn & Brian McCabe
WBCCI #3628 -- AIR #14872 -- TAC #FL-7
2015 FC 25' FB (Lucy) with HAHA
2018 Silverado 2500 (Lillian)
moosetags is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2006, 06:18 PM   #3
Rivet Master
Fyrzowt's Avatar
Currently Looking...
West of Fort Worth , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,698
Images: 8
I'm sorry for the loss of your A/S, this is just a bummer! You were thinking more calmly than most to have the presence of mind to get it away from your house. Great job! All too often we see people just freeze and take no action under these stressful circumstances. I applaud you.
Good luck in your search for a new trailer, I sorry you have to go thru this.
Fyrzowt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2006, 06:18 PM   #4
2 Rivet Member
SilverSurfer's Avatar
1971 31' Sovereign
SANTA BARBARA , California
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 65
Images: 7
WOW, I am sorry to hear about your trailer! Your advice is well taken, I too have left mine for days on end plugged in and always worried in the back of my mind that it could catch on fire. I am glad to hear that your home was ok, so scary!
SilverSurfer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2006, 06:30 PM   #5
4 Rivet Member
Roscinante's Avatar
2006 19' Safari
Suisun City , California
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 291
Images: 7
Thanks for the Tip

Really sorry about your loss. I know how excited we were when we first parked our AS in the driveway, hooked up the electric power cord and began showing the neighbors our new toy. I appreciate your willingness to get a painful lesson learned out to all us in the Forum.

May the new year bring you nothing but good stuff and a "replacement" AS!

Bless you and your family - glad all were safe!


Jerry and Avis
2006 Safari Bambi 19'
2005 Toyota Tacoma PU

"Mi Casa Es Su Casa!"
WBCCI #6716
AIR #17388
Roscinante is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2006, 07:37 PM   #6
Rivet Master
Astrodokk's Avatar
1992 30' Airstream 30
Santa Rosa , Northern California wine country
Join Date: May 2003
Posts: 618
Images: 4
Will they be able to trace the origin of the fire or short? If they can and it's a manufacturimng defect, it may be possible to have it replaced??? Time to call CSI!
1992 Airstream 300LE, rear queen, Banks Power!
Astrodokk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2006, 11:01 PM   #7
Rivet Master
Babeebloos's Avatar
1963 19' Globetrotter
Laguna Beach , California
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 766
Images: 24
Would it help if the outlet had one of those safety thingy's like in bathrooms???
Officer says ..."Step AWAY from the toaster Ma'am"
Babeebloos is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2006, 11:15 PM   #8
Rivet Master
Fyrzowt's Avatar
Currently Looking...
West of Fort Worth , Texas
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,698
Images: 8
Originally Posted by Babeebloos
Would it help if the outlet had one of those safety thingy's like in bathrooms???
You're probably talking about a GFCI. Without knowing where the fire started, there is no telling. From the original post, my impression is that the "Chief" was guessing at the cause or wasn't too sure. That happens, we can't always pin down the exact cause. One of my job duties is fire investigation, and I can tell you that a lot of fires get blamed on electrical causes, which in fact have some other cause. On the other hand, it could be electrical in nature - what are the potential heat sources in the trailer? Electrical on, propane off I assume? No recent use of stains, etc which may have ignited such as in rags? You have to look at the total picture, define the area of origin, and look at the potential heat sources in that area.
OK, enough Fire investigation 101.

Many times the insurance company will send their own fire investigator. If they do, I'd be interested in his/her findings.
Fyrzowt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-02-2006, 11:47 PM   #9
Rivet Master
FreshAir's Avatar

1966 24' Tradewind
Placerville , California
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 3,327
Images: 2

How heartbreaking of a loss. However, the next Airstream for you will be even better. You know that. I wouldn't be afraid to keep the next one plugged in because of this traggedy. I am sure an investigation will show what extra pre-cautions will need to be in the future. I maybe would not park next to the house if possible.
Neil and Lynn Holman
FreshAir #12407

Kirk Creek, Big Sur, Ca. coast.

1966 Trade Wind

1971 Buick Centurion convertible
455 cid

1969 Oldsmobile Ninety Eight
455 cid
FreshAir is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2006, 06:12 AM   #10
Always Airstreaming!
rickandsandi's Avatar
2005 22' Safari
1960 24' Tradewind
Anytown , Connecticut
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 3,115
Send a message via AIM to rickandsandi
Dear MTJIM- What a terrible loss. Becuase of your quick thinking and staying calm you probably saved your house. Timing is everything and if there is any positive behind such an event, the losses could have been worse and no one was hurt! I would definatly try to find the exact source of the fire. I am sure it is not because your were plugged into shore power as the root cause for the fire. This horrible event most likely could have occured while at a campground at 1:30 AM if that were the root cause! When you are camping you most often are plugged into shorepower! We have our AS plugged in all summer long, charging batteries, running ref. etc. We go out with it almost every weekend, so we want to be ever-ready. Many folks up here in New England leave theirs plugged in to run electric heaters. I do hope you are able to find the cause for peace of mind if nothing else. Look forward to see your AS!
J. Rick Cipot
Sandi Gould
NEU New England Unit
Airstream Life Magazine
Proud Member of WBCCI
WBCCI #3411
AIR #17099
2009 Silverado 2500HD
2004 22' Safari
1960 24' Tradewind
rickandsandi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2006, 07:01 AM   #11
Retired Moderator
john hd's Avatar
1992 29' Excella
madison , Wisconsin
Join Date: Aug 2002
Posts: 4,644
Images: 40

sorry to hear of your loss.

this brings up another issue i learned from a long time airstreamer. don't pad lock your trailer hitch when towing.

if the trailer is on fire and you need to uncouple it to save your tow vehicle you won't be fumbling for the keys or trying to remember the combination!

take it for what it is worth!

you call them ferrets, i call them weasels.
john hd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2006, 07:08 AM   #12
Rivet Master
Chaplain Kent's Avatar
1994 30' Excella
Currently Looking...
Milwaukee , Wisconsin
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 1,935
I can only imagine what a horrible sight that must have been for you to look out and see your trailer on fire. I feel for you and wish you the best in your search for a new Airstream.
Chaplain Kent
2015 Coachman Freedom Express 19RBS, Chummy IV- Ford Excursion- 7.3 Turbo-diesel
Chaplain Kent is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2006, 07:16 AM   #13
Rivet Master
ZoominC6's Avatar
2004 30' Classic Slideout
Colleyville , Texas
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 1,527
Condolences on your loss. We're happy to hear you're well along with your home. Now you can look forward to the purchase of a new baby. We have ours plugged in and backed up to the garage in preparation for a trip tomorrow for mods and upgrades at our favorite Airstream shop Texas. I think I'll unplug as a safety precaution as the batteries are fully charged and theres no need to leave it plugged in. Anything freaky can happen, I suppose, no matter what the age of the Airstream. Try to have fun with the selection of your replacement Airstream. Thanks for sharing this difficult story with us all and here's hoping that you have better luck with your new Airstream. Happy Trails
In dog years, I'm dead!
ZoominC6 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-03-2006, 07:19 AM   #14
Rivet Master
RoadKingMoe's Avatar
2001 34' Limited
The State of , Ohio
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 1,605
Images: 23
I'm very sorry for your loss. Yes, you were blessed it wasn't at night, but you were doubly blessed it wasn't when you were aboard, asleep. From what I've read, RV and boat electrical fires are usually from the battery-powered system.

Our Airstream has been plugged in 24x7 for the 4+ years we've owned it (3-stage charger/converter now) and it certainly will be if we full-time in it. If you can't trust it to do that, I don't think I'd sleep very well in it.

RoadKingMoe is offline   Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Cost to restore a gutted Airstream Draco General Interior Topics 28 02-18-2013 11:17 PM
future airstream motorhome betteleal Airstream Motorhome Forums 11 02-12-2005 01:39 PM
airstream repair halloey General Interior Topics 3 07-27-2002 06:48 PM
Airstream Related List Servers Andy R Link Archive 0 02-22-2002 02:05 PM - Airstream Link Library Andy R Link Archive 0 02-22-2002 01:31 PM

Featured Campgrounds

Reviews provided by


This website is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Airstream, Inc. or any of its affiliates. Airstream is a registered trademark of Airstream Inc. All rights reserved. Airstream trademark used under license to Social Knowledge LLC.

Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:49 AM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.