Author Archives: Bob Mayer
Propane doesn’t smell. It’s odorless in its natural state. But if there is a leak, you smell a nasty odor.
Ever wonder why?
It would have been fortuitous if this had been done as more and more buildings began to use propane and gas for heating. But no one thought of doing it until they realized they had to.
Lessons learned that save lives later, often come at high cost.
On March 18, 1937, a gas leak was sparked, causing an explosion that killed approximately 293 students and teachers at the New London School in New London, Texas. It is still the deadliest school disaster in U.S. History.
The six cascade events leading up to seventh, and final:
1. School board overrode the architect’s plan for heating the school.
2. The school was built on a slope with a lot of dead space underneath.
3. School officials canceled the natural gas contract to save $300 a month and tapped directly into an oilfield residue line.
4. The gas company knew the line was tapped into, but ignored it.
5. The line connection to the residue line was faulty.
6. Students had been complaining for days of headaches and burning eyes, but the warning signs were ignored.
7. A teacher turned on an electric sander = Explosion
For more on this, read the short New London Schoolhouse Explosion: Lack of Focus
Quote: “I am not prepared to be a Czar. I never wanted to become one. I know nothing of the business of ruling.” Nicholas II, last Czar of Russia.
We still feel the effects of this catastrophe a century later. Few events have changed the course of modern history more than the Russian Revolution and the man most responsible for it was Nicholas II, the last Czar.
Nicholas II became Czar of Russia in 1896. He led his country into 2 disastrous wars, both of which were lost. He also presided at a time of great social unrest as the traditional serf system was breaking down during the technological revolution. He eventually abdicated in the face of unrelenting pressure, throwing Russia into an intense civil war between the Whites and the Reds, which led to his execution (along with that of his family) and the rise of the communist Soviet Union.
19 May 1868: Nicholas II is born
20 Oct 1894: Alexander III dies and Nicholas II becomes Ruler
14 November 1894: Nicholas II marries Alexandra
14 May 1896: Nicholas II is crowned Czar of Russia; over 1,000 die in a stampede at the celebration festival for the people; that evening Nicholas attends the French ambassador’s gala
8 February 1904: The Russo-Japanese war begins with a sneak attack by the Japanese on the Russian Fleet at Port Arthur
15 October 1904: The Russian Baltic Fleet begins a journey halfway around the world to reinforce the remains of their Far East fleet
27-28 May 1905: The Russian fleet is defeated at the Battle of Tsushima
9 January 1905: Bloody Sunday starts the Russian Revolution
27 June 1905: The Potemkin mutiny
5 September 1905: Treaty of Portsmouth ends the Russo-Japanese War; Russia lost the war
17 October 1905: The October Manifesto promises civil liberties and a parliament
15 July 1914: World War I begins
5 September 1915: Nicholas II assumes command of the Russian Army
17 December 1916: Rasputin is murdered
23-27 February 1917: The February Revolution begins
15 March 1917: Czar Nicholas II abdicates
17 July 1918: Nicholas II and his family are executed
For more read the short Anatomy of Catastrophe. The Last Czar: Leadership Failure.
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Nothing but good times ahead.
Unlike the Czar.