Countryman & McDaniel -  The Logistics - Customs Broker Attorneys

"Overlooking Runway 25 - Right, at Los Angeles International Airport"  


"Meals: Ready To Explode"

A Whole New Slant On The Military "Hot Meal"

The U.S. Navy

Fighting Barbecue Flames At Guam

March 18 2001

Countryman & McDaniel

 The Air & Ocean Logistics- Customs Broker Attorneys

"Overlooking Runway 25 - Right, at Los Angeles International Airport"


We Think You Will Only See Most These Pictures Here !!

U.S. Navy Photos From Our Eye Witness Source

That Yummy Magnesium-Iron Alloy

The 2001 Countryman & McDaniel

Cargo Nightmare 4th Place Co-Prize Winner

Details Below

Page #1 The History

Page #2 The Explosion

Index To Our General Services

Contact Countryman & McDaniel

Legal Services of The Firm

Our Staff Attorneys & Law Firm Profile

The Cargo Law Network - Correspondent Lawyers In The U.S. & Most Major Trading Nations

Library & Search Engine of The Cargo Letter

Search Engine For This Internet Portal - Find Everything You Need

Transport Reference Desk - Virtual Transport Library

24 Hour Int'l Vessel Casualties & Pirates Database

The Photo Gallery of Cargo Loss - Photos & Lessons Learned

Transport Law Navigator - all air, ocean, motor & customs laws

Library & Search Engine of The Cargo Letter

Mega Portal of Trade & Transport References And Services

General Reference Desk - virtual public library

Terms & Conditions Required For Use of This Web Site

TRANS CAMS © - over 380 Transport Cams, 40 Satellites, Streaming Video, Transport Sounds, Short Wave Radio & Air Traffic Control! CLICK HERE

Search Our Portal To Int'l Trade & Transport Site Features,

Use The Search Engine Here:

   Search The Cargo Law Site or The Entire World Wide Web        powered by FreeFind

  Site Search Web Search

Other Great Disasters of our Time

"Ship-To-Shore-Onto Ship" - Nov. 2007

"Scheldt Snafu!" - M/V Grande Nigeria - Feb. 2006 because Ship Happens©

"A Day At The Beach" - M/V APL Panama - Jan. 2006

"Curse of The Pequot" - M/V Maersk Holyhead - Jan. 2006

"NO Rails" - destruction of New Orleans - Dec. 2005

"Backhaul !" - for July 2005

"The Boeing Tri-Motor" - for April 2005

"Catch of The Day" - for March 2005

"One Brick Short of A Runway" - for Jan. 2005

M/T Vicuna Explodes - for Jan. 2005

"Unstacked" - overboard & Dr. Beach - Nov. 2004

"Super Loss" - March 2004

"Sea (to) Land Express" - May 2004

"Super Loss" - March 2004

"Rocknes Monster" - Feb. 2004

"Stepping In It" - Dec. 2003

"Angel Fire" - Nov. 2003

"Pelican's Peril" - collision on River Scheldt - Aug. 2003

"Broken Spirit" - M/V Tasman Spirit - Aug. 2003

"Denise & Polargo" - a love story - July 2003

"Columbia River Round Up" - June 2003

"T-Boned" - historic collision at sea - May 2003

"Ramp-Age" - Feb. 2003

"Piñata" - breaking the box - Jan. 2003

"Halifax Hash"--M/V Maersk Carolina - Jan. 2003

"Thar She Blows!" - M/V Hanjin Pennsylvania - Nov. 2002

"T-E-U Bar-Be-Cue" - aftermath of the Pennsylvania

"Container Pool" - a mystery - May 2002

"Strangers On My Flight" -- by Frank Sinatra - don't blame us - we only report this stuff!

"Dropping In On The Trucker" - it happened again - April 2002

"UNDER Achiever" - tell your friends ! - March 2002

"White Planes Can't Jump" - trouble at Kuala Lumpur - dramatic!

"Coaster Gets Coasted" - M/V Behrmann! Nov. 2001

"Pier Review"- roll to the hole - Disaster at L.A. - Exclusive Photos! Sept. 2001

 Tell It To The U.S. Marines! - A Symbol of Our Day of Infamy - Sept. 11

Heavy Metal - lifting the un-liftable object - Disaster at Monrovia July 2001

Rail Mate -- an Egyptian rail loss - Tragedy At Ain Sokhna July 2001

Meals: Ready To Explode - Navy container barbecue at Guam! June 2001

America West Kisses Concrete M/V Ville De Orion - stack shift at LAX

U.S. Navy EP- 3 -- China Hostage Situation - Spring 2001

Attack On USS Cole (DDG-67) - - Dramatic Photos!

M/V OOCL America - Feb. 2000

M/V APL China - world's greatest container disaster - Nov. 1998

M/V New Carissa - the ship that would not die - 1999

M/V Tampa Maersk "on a dock diet"

Hanjin's Bad Stab - Under The Dock At Pusan, Korea - Exclusive Photo!

The Cargo Letter Photo Gallery of Transport Loss

........"Meals, Ready To Explode"........

A Whole New Slant On The Military "Hot Meal"

The U.S. Navy

Fighting Barbecue Flames At Guam

18 March 2001

Page #1 The History

Page #2 The Explosion

A Tribute to The Humble MRE

Follow Our Story Below To A Rather Remarkable Event

MRE -- "Meal, Ready To Eat" 1970

Following about 150 years of lesser field culinary practices -- the U. S. Army "Field Ration C" was announced in 1939. It was subjected to stern field trials, from which emerged a range of criticisms such as : "the cans were too large & bulky; the meat lacked variety, was too rich, & contained too many beans"

Yet, there was agreement that the new "C Ration" was nutritionally adequate and was "one of the best field rations . . . ever issued to the Army." This was centainly a great adavance from previous times -- including such practices as sending seeds to some U.S. Cavalry units on the 1850's New Mexico frontier for growing their own food!

The "C Ration" continued to be be issued through all of America's military campaigns from 1940 (along with other special rations - see below) -- through the Korean War -- until the dawn of the Viet Nam experience in the 1960's

This "C Ration" had been a product from the laboratory of U.S. military culuinary sceince -- but overcome by technology in the passage of time.

By the early 1960's criticisms had begun to be received from troopers in Viet Nam -- there was a generation of American service personnel who followed "The Grateful Dead", & who simply demanded a better ration. The U.S. Army Quartermater Corps went to work -- with help from American backpackers.

Our History of The Army Ration

The History of U.S. Army Field Rations - an increddible story

U.S. Army Field "Rations - Type C" In Scale

Military Rations - Design & Development

Heater Meals Home Page

The Future of Military Field Meals - moving America forward

NOTE: Our favorite 1970's "C Ration"-- "Meal, Ready To Eat" (MRE) goodie was that "Fruit Cake" type thing (per label) -- you couldn't eat it -- but the little brown can was a perfect traiing device -- it saw distinguished service as a practice "hand grenade" -- like that little can in the picture above. On the other hand, "Pound Cake" was a treat.

But then, there was the most infamous of all U.S. Army "C Rats" -- the one -- the only -- "Ham & Lima Beans." There is no single military meal ever served which met with such hatred. It is perhaps because of this one meal that the MRE of the 1970's was known as "MRE: 'Meals Rejected by Ethiopians.' [Note: Not a cutural reference -- they were having a famine there at the time.]

Frankly when we were in the field & hungry -- our MREs were pretty good stuff. I liked the spaghetti. McD


Enter The MRE 1980

A "Wonderful" Box of Goodies

Including a Main Course, Fruit, Desert, Cigarettes, Toilet Paper & Condiments

The Modern MRE

The 1960's & 1970's Brought Culinary Breakthrough -- The "Meal; Ready to Eat"

The 1980's Brought Culinary Breakthrough -- The "Meal; Ready To Heat"

Flameless Ration Heaters (FRH) Fueled By A Magnesium-Iron Alloy

200 Years of American Military Culinary Science

Would Now Come Down To One Epic Struggle:

That Yummy Magnesium-Iron Alloy -- Vs. -- The Ocean

This Stoic Shipping Carton (above) Is The Central Character in Our Story -- On March 18 2001

Did You Note That Warning About "Water Activated?"


 From U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters, 15 May 2001:

"Situation: Flameless Ration Heaters (FRH) stowed onboard several Military Sealift Command (MSC) vessels have been identified as the source of elevated hydrogen gas (H2) concentrations in containers and cargo hold spaces. In most instances H2 gas elevations are barely detectable but in isolated cases the levels inside closed containers have entered the explosive range. One such container recently broke into flames on the pier after being opened and prepared for unloading."


This Is Intermodal Reefer Container # SCZU 866966 9

Upon Vessel Discharge At The U.S. Navy Supply Depot -- Guam

18 March 2001

Our Stoic Shipping Carton From The Previous Picture Is Laden Within This Stow

 From U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters, 15 May 2001:

"Background: Subject units are water activated devices for warming military Meals, Ready-to Eat (MRE). FRHs contain magnesium-iron alloy (Mg-Fe) and other powdered ingredients in flat High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) pouch. The exothermic chemical reaction which warms the meals, produces hydrogen gas as a by-product. The addition of water is ordinarily required to cause the reaction to proceed. However, atmospheric moisture may be capable of penetrating the HDPE, causing a low grade reaction and the evolution of H2 gas. The production of a flammable atmosphere is very slow but H2 concentrations may occur inside containers and in upper reaches of holds where pockets of gas may be held."

"FRH units are usually packed together with the MREs, inside the individual menu bags. On one ship, all FRHs were removed from the MREs and stowed in refrigerated containers on the open deck. While this method of stowage removed the H2 gas generating problem from the holds, it concentrated the production of gas within the on-deck containers and resulted in concentration levels in the flammable range. MSC and the U.S. Army are investigating impermeable foil over-wrapping methods and the use of non-hydrogen generating heaters but these solutions will not be fully implemented in the immediate future."

The Load & Stowe Looked Good -- But What About That "Ocean Thing?"

It Had Already Made A Visit To Intermodal Reefer Container # SCZU 866966 9


 From U.S. Coast Guard Headquarters, 15 May 2001:

"Recommendation: Ports loading or receiving shipments of MREs and FRHs should consider requiring the monitoring of containers and holds in which FRH are stowed prior to movement of the containers or any activities which could introduce an ignition source. COTPs should advise ship operators that have FRHs aboard their vessels of this potential condition and, recommend the operators have procedures and equipment necessary to monitor the temperature and atmospheric contents of containers holding FRHs. For additional information on FRHs is the Coast Guard Liaison to MSC -- CDR Paul Gugg at (202) 685-5726.-- mailto: Operational insights may also be obtained from MSO Guam which has been involved in the discovery & abatement of this problem on preposition vessels staged in its AOR."


>>> For What Happens Next <<<

Please Go To>> PAGE 2

Flameless Ration Heaters Gone Mad - BOOM!!

Intermodal Ocean Container # SCZU 866966 9 -- At Risk

In The Words Of New Orleans Chef Emeril

"Let's Kik It up A Notch" >>>>

Page #2 The Explosion




NOTE: The Cargo Letter wants you to know that by keeping the identity of our contributors 100% confidential, you are able to view our continuing series of "Cargo Disasters." Our friends send us materials which benefit the industry. The materials are provided to our news publication with complete and enforceable confidentiality for the sender. In turn, we provide these materials to you.

The Manifest

| Cargo law Main Page | The Freight Detective | Law Navigator | Claims Calculator |

| The Freight Detective General Investigations | The Freight Detective Transport Investigations |

| The Logistics Chain | Photo Gallery of Cargo Loss | Our Staff |

| Trans-Cams | Forwarder/Broker Industry Chat & Issue Discussion Board |

| Library & Search Engine of The Cargo Letter | Bookstore |


 Back To Main Page


The Law Offices of Countryman & McDaniel

Eleventh Floor LAX Airport Center

5933 West Century Boulevard

Los Angeles, California, 90045

(310) 342-6500 Voice

(310) 342-6505 Fax


to The Law Offices of Countryman & McDaniel


to The Cargo Letter