July 27th, 2007

Fluffy Vulcan

Effect of massive conflagration on shipping lane

A long time ago, I read a short story about a forest fire. Some animals took refuge in a pond, and as the fire caught the mast surrounding the water, the resulting heat was sufficient to heat the pond waters to boiling killing all wildlife.

Well... I'm in the middle of a Batman fanfiction in which a firebug is able to ignite 30 warehouses (15 on each side of a shipping lane, perhaps 200 yards wide--at least that's what Google tells me it should be). I'm guessing that the buildings would probably occupy about a quarter of a mile on each side of the shipping lane. 

I've tried googling 'forest fire boil pond', but I can't think of what else to google. Basically, I have a transient who was sleeping on the loading dock and woke up to see everything around him in flames. If he, in a panic, jumps into the water, assuming he can swim, will he be safe--or will he be boiling more than his shoes?
Kettle Sigil Discordia

Guns, guns, guns.

I've not searched for this because I'm in a situation where I don't really know enough to start my search.

I'm after a type of gun. I want it to be an automatic weapon that's good enough to be used as a sniper rifle ( at short range, about two/three stories up directly across the street from the target) by someone who is a very good shot. I'd really like it to be a gun that's identifiable to those under fire by the sound it makes and common enough that it wouldn't have to be the shooters own weapon, he can leave it at the scene. I also want the shooter to be using a bullet that will pass through without doing vast amounts of damage. I.E. a headshot will leave the head intact, a bodyshot won't make massive holes in the torso.

I'm clueless about weapons. Can anyone help me out?

***Edit** It would be enough just to know from the sound it's a rifle of some sort not a handgun. Can anyone tell me the difference in sound?

**Edit2** And I've worked around the damage, it can do lots of damage I have a way out. And I'd quite like to use the words "High velocity Spatter" too.