On 8/10/1978, three teenage girls died after their 1973 Ford Pinto was rammed from behind by a van and burst into flames on an Indiana highway. The fatal crash was one of a series of Pinto accidents that caused a national scandal. In June 1978 Ford voluntarily recalled all 1.9 million 1971-1976 Pintos and 1975-1976 Mercury Bobcats (which had the same fuel-tank design).
On 8/10/1887 three Saint Louis, Missouri firefighters died “while fighting a fire in the Bishop and Spears Peanut Warehouse at 510-512 North Second Street, a collapse occurred taking the lives of three firefighters.”
On 8/10/1930 a Manhattan, New York (FDNY) firefighter “of Ladder 3 was working on top of a thirty-five-foot ladder on the Third Avenue “EL” for a rubbish fire on the tracks (at Cooper Square & St. Marks Place, Manhattan). He was about ten feet above the tracks when a train that ignored a firefighter waving a red lantern to stop, hit the ladder. The train sideswiped the ladder, throwing him to the ground, killing him instantly.”
On 8/10/1937 a New Haven, Connecticut firefighter “died after suffering the effects of smoke inhalation.”
On 8/10/2020 one person died and three others were critically injured after several houses exploded in Baltimore on Monday morning, officials say. The explosion happened in the area of the 6500 block of Reisterstown Road. Firefighters rescued three critically injured patients. The Special Rescue Operations Team searched for more victims. A second alarm was called. This explosion happened on the 4th anniversary of the Flower Branch Apartments explosion that left seven people dead, including two children.
On 8/10/2016 an explosion at the Flower Branch Apartments in Silver Spring, Maryland killed seven including two young children. “In a report released in June, investigators from the National Transportation Safety Board explained how they concluded in April that faulty Washington Gas equipment probably caused the tragedy. The gas company, which participated in the probe, has disputed the finding, which is based on extensive interviews, examinations of the blast site, and experiments that tested how gas equipment might fail. The day after the explosion, which injured more than 30 people and displaced more than 100, investigators for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives examined the smoking remains of the crumbled brick buildings. Their findings were turned over to the NTSB, which probes significant pipeline accidents as well as transportation-related disasters. Investigators zeroed in on a room in the building’s basement. Its ceiling appeared to have heaved upward, and the concrete floor above had flipped over onto itself as if shoved from below. Walls and doors on higher floors had blown outward as the blast wave passed. That basement room, investigators concluded, was where the blast originated. It housed a bank of Washington Gas meters. And it is where the gas smell was coming from in the moments before the blast. Only two weeks earlier, a resident had called 911 about a similar odor, the report said. Several firefighters responded. But their gas detector showed nothing, even when they pried the locked basement door open enough to insert it, the firefighters told the NTSB. They left without calling the gas company. If the explosion came from the basement room, investigators said, there could have been various potential causes. Gasoline-powered maintenance equipment was stored there. And there was the possibility of something criminal — a clandestine drug lab or arson. But ATF investigators soon ruled out these scenarios. The room had been frequented by apartment maintenance workers; they reasoned a drug lab would have been noticed. A half-full gasoline container was found after the explosion, but its cap remained in place. And a security guard for the complex had armed the basement’s alarm at about 9:00 p.m. that evening. “Had somebody entered the meter room before the explosion, the alarm would have sounded and recorded the violation,” ATF investigators said in their report. Investigators concluded that escaped natural gas had built up in the room and somehow ignited. That theory meant the potential culprits were the gas meters and related equipment that lined one wall, the piping that led to those meters, and a gas-powered water heater that also occupied the room. The explosion had destroyed it all. ATF investigators found a disconnected threaded fitting that appeared undamaged. Had the explosion torn the fitting apart, investigators theorized, the threads would have been stripped or deformed. The fitting was meant to connect a vent pipe to regulators, which reduces the pressure of gas coming into a building. If a regulator leaks or fails, the vent pipe is supposed to carry gas safely outdoors, where it can dissipate. ATF investigators surmised that the fitting had been disconnected before the blast. That meant a failed regulator could have allowed gas to accumulate inside the basement. Still, ATF investigators classified the explosion’s cause as undetermined and left the further investigation to the NTSB. The “probable cause” of the explosion, investigators concluded, “was the failure of an indoor mercury service regulator with an unconnected vent line that allowed natural gas into the meter room where it accumulated and ignited from an unknown ignition source.”
On 8/10/1955 a gas explosion and fire killed twenty-two and injured at least eighteen in a row of buildings on the Andover (Ohio) village square. The Gateway Restaurant was at the center of the disaster in the resort area of Pymatuning Lake. The restaurant and a dairy store were in a 2-story wood frame building that disintegrated. “No one was certain what caused the explosion. Firefighters, however, speculated that accumulated gas was set off either by a bolt of lightning or a spark from electrical equipment in the basement, flooded by the heavy rains.”
On 8/10/1924 a fire at the Old Hickory Powder Plant in Jacksonville, Tennessee destroyed 45,000,000 pounds of explosives and 50 buildings.
On 8/10/1908 in York, Pennsylvania a roller mill boiler explosion killed eight and several others were injured. “The head of the boiler, about four feet square, was hurled nearly a block.”
On 8/10/1895 twenty-two buildings were destroyed by fire in Lockport, Illinois.
On 8/10/1886 in Hardin, Texas the Hardin County Courthouse, a wood-frame structure, was destroyed by fire.
On 8/10/1993 a collision of three ships in Tampa Bay, Florida results in a spill of 336,000 gallons of fuel oil; around 6:00 a.m. two fuel barges heading into Tampa Bay and one phosphate freighter heading out collided.