Here’s another story for all the naysayers, doomsdayers, end-of-worlders and Armageddon-ites when it comes to hydrogen. There was a big rig truck in Texas carrying compressed hydrogen gas that caught fire and partly burned.
I say partly because the video shows the back end of the truck burned but not the middle or front. The supposed cause of the fire had to do with the rear brakes overheating and catching the back end of the hydrogen tanks on fire.
The big rig truck driver tried to put out the fire himself with a fire extinguisher as he called 911. The firefighters and Praxair officials were on the scene quickly to put out the fire. Notice that there was a fire only at the rear of the truck. No one was hurt or injured. There was no explosion.
In August 2010 I had talked about a small explosion and fire at a hydrogen fueling station. One person was injured (he was close to the explosion) and no one was killed. Once again the fire was quickly contained.
Hydrogen haters typically point to these incidents and say basically the sky is falling, where in reality the history of gasoline and other fuel fires and explosions have been much worse in comparison. Yes, hydrogen needs to be handled with care. No, it’s not the end of the world.