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General Chat Thread, Fancy a ciggy? in General; Hello all, first off. Long time no see! Was just chatting to my manager, whose father is a aircon/climate control ...
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    Fancy a ciggy?

    Hello all, first off. Long time no see!

    Was just chatting to my manager, whose father is a aircon/climate control specialist.

    He was on site doing some work at "BDO Stoy Hayward" what he tells me is a massive financial corp.

    So the IT Director is sitting there at a terminal in their server room. so stressed because of the financial problems at the moment(all that data passing in and out) he lights up a ciggy at his desk!

    As the smoke rises, and breaks the laser beams on the ceiling (what is designed to detect smoke) the alarms go off, he rush's to shut down all the servers.

    The isolation doors on the room close, and the fire prevention systems start pumping oxygen depleting gas into the room (no oxygen, no fire) to late for the bloke to get out in time!

    By this time, my manager’s dad had run down. Trying to save the blokes life. He tries to open the isolation door, because the room has pressurized, he couldn’t get it open! So his had to smash the door to pull the bloke out (by now he had stopped breathing)

    The ambulance come, and saved his life, but obviously his job was not saved!

    The servers had gone down for 27 mins! As you all know, a server going down for a min during a reboot is bad enough, let alone 27 mins!


    Only thing I could say to my manager was. “Is this place umbrella corporation”

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    Marci's Avatar
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    Had it happen to me a long time ago at a former employer... filters in the server-room aircon hadn't been cleaned regularly enough. Condensation built up on underside of floor tiles and dripped onto sensors. The system operated an "any 2 out of 6 sensors triggered = release gas" and whilst I was in there it tripped. Came round with a massive headache about 3 hours later on the floor in the carpark... plexiglass on door panels etc, windows barred internally, so unbreakable / no way in or out - they had to remove the doors to get me out.

    Not fun. Had I been older and wiser I'd have sought serious compensation of some form... however I was only 18 at the time. I got an apology and a bonus in with my wages (£300) n' that was the end of the issue... I left the company soon after.

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    Michael's Avatar
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    That's one hell of a story! I hope the IT director is recovering well.

    I'm all for fire prevention/detection systems, but surely where people are working such systems are incredibly dangerous because of pumping the gas into a small area?

    Maybe if the servers were permanently isolated (and physically secure) and administrators remotely controlled servers would this be safe. If I have understood correctly?

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    Hightower's Avatar
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    Do people not think - Are servers more important than a human life?

    They should be made to fit a big red button next to the door in case someone is trapped in. Push it, door opens, they get out, door closes, oxygen still gets sucked out but a mere 10 seconds later.

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    Friez's Avatar
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    Officially by the textbook we are to turn off all machines in the local area (all ~150). In reality: We get out, and we get out fast.

    Survival is far more important than any amount of PC equipment.

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    really umbrella corp stuff though isn't it? hehe

    this company is MASSIVE, its got a 90 inch(yeh. it is that big. not a typo) plasma screen on the wall displaying server stats, its got wireless monitors in all the lifts, displaying financial infomation. and a it director who likes smoking in the server room! he he

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    Bloody hell!

    I dont understand why he turned the servers off though? as there obviously wasnt an actual fire? surely just getting out would be more important

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    i beleve the fire prevention system is tied into the power grid(my managers father had to restore power after saving the bloke)

    so fire alarm goes. servers go to UPS power, and after that. i don't know... maybe their not set to auto shutdown or somthing?

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    He's a very stupid man. I think this would have been a case of a darwin award really, if he hadn't survived.

    I thought all fire suppression systems like that now had to have big 'disable' buttons in the rooms, just in case someone is locked in?

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    Geoff's Avatar
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    The fire prevention systems you are mentioning use halon 1301 gas. They were the standard install for fire prevention in data centres in the 90's. So it's likely you'll still run into them for the foreseeable future. In theory, there should be breathing apparatus in the data centre, so in the event of a halon dump you wont suffocate.

    New installations are recommended to use CO2 dumps instead. Halon is banned for enviromental reasons (it depletes Ozone).

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    torledo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    The fire prevention systems you are mentioning use halon 1301 gas. They were the standard install for fire prevention in data centres in the 90's. So it's likely you'll still run into them for the foreseeable future. In theory, there should be breathing apparatus in the data centre, so in the event of a halon dump you wont suffocate.

    New installations are recommended to use CO2 dumps instead. Halon is banned for enviromental reasons (it depletes Ozone).
    We had a halon installation at my last place of work.... Our offices were located seperately so whenever we'd go to do maintenance for any length of time we'd switch the system to off. Occasionally we'd risk it and go on without switching it off if it was a quick in and out job, remember being told something about having 20 seconds max to get out of the room if the system was activated.......or was that hold our breath for 20 seconds and get out should the siren go off.....i can never remember.

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    What on earth is an IT director doing in the server room in the first place!? Surely they should be stuck in an office completely satellite to the "front line"

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    What about one of these new fangled USB enabled ciggies? https://e-cig.com/shopping/shopexd.asp?id=251&bc=no Smoke free, so you can kill yourself without affecting the fire suppression system or your colleagues lungs.

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    afaik, Your supposed to have enough oxygen masks for the number of people in the room. Oh, and a hold off switch too.

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    Little-Miss's Avatar
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    I find the whole thing frightening! Only thought stuff like that existed in films....never been anywhere where a server room was bigger then a cupboard! lol

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