Where there’s smoke

08.15.2011 Where there's smoke

The teachers came back to the building today. I spent my day running from room to room and connecting classroom networks and various computer-related devices.

The teachers are dears and always want to know what they can do to help. It’s usually easier for me to just plow through the task. (If the cords are untangled, it’s easy!) However, if someone is insistent (like they crawl under the desk and ask me which power cord to plug in), I let them.

Several of the rooms have rather complex set-ups… Computers, projector, document cameras, VCRs, speakers, a printer, and more all connect together. In one, the teacher was one of those that crawled under the table and plugged things in for me.

She plugged in the first cord. A few seconds later, I hear a loud sound. It was like something had fallen off my cart and snapped, but we checked the cart and found nothing amiss.

She plugged in another cord. Nothing happened.

Then she plugged in another.

Pop! We both jumped a bit!

We looked around to find the source of the sound. At first, it seemed like nothing.

I smelled something burning though. Then I looked down and noticed the smoke rolling out of the switch!

I quickly disconnected it and pulled it off the table. Then I looked at the power bricks that had been plugged in so far. One was 15 watts (for the switch). The other was 18 watts (for the speakers). Apparently we had reversed the cords and plugged the one for the speakers into the switch.

Oops. One switch… extra crispy.

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