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Fire Hangar Aircraft Explosion





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Fire Detection and Protection for Military Airbases and Airports


     Airports and airbase flight operations represent one of the highest industrial fire risk hazards.   Aircraft, the flight line, and aircraft servicing facilities contain numerous fire accelerants.  These accelerants include: aviation gasoline (AVGAS), jet fuels and military jet fuels, engine oils, oxygen systems, and hydraulic fluids.  Due to the potential for mass casualties, airport / airbase emergency response teams must be able to respond immediately.  Airport / airbase firefighters must be trained and proficient with using firefighting foams, dry chemical, and clean agents to extinguish burning aviation fuel.

     Spark and fire detection is an important aspect of  fire protection for airport / airbase operations.  For example, aircraft hangars require protection and monitoring against leaking fuel.  Optical flame detectors have been used for many years in aircraft hangars to protect valuable aircraft from fire. Optical flame detectors can spot sparks and fuel and gas fires at long distances with the highest immunity to false alarms.  

     Gas leak detection is an essential part of fire protection for airports / airbases.  Ground flight support operations involve the use of many hazardous and highly combustible substances.  Flight support facilities such as aircraft hangars, aviation component warehouses, and fuel storage areas require constant gas monitoring.  In addition to gas leak detection systems, these areas should implement a two-tier fire security system that includes flame detectors.  Those airports / airbase activities that involve the distribution of chemicals require gas monitoring at storage areas, loading  docks, pumping stations, and fuel / chemical transport vehicles. 

     Electrical fires are another potential fire hazard that airports and military airbases must address. Electrical current flows produce heat as a byproduct of that flow. The greater the current flow, the greater the amount of heat created.  Should this heat become too great, protective coatings on wiring and other electrical devices can melt, causing electrical shorting.  Electrical shorting can lead to metals melting, liquids vaporizing, and flammable substances igniting.  An important factor in preventing electrical fires is to keep the area around electrical work or electrical equipment clean, uncluttered, and free of all unnecessary flammable substances.  Power cords, wires, and lines should be free of kinks and bends.  Wires and cords should be protected so they are not walked upon or run over by support equipment (trucks, forklifts, carts, etc.)   

     Responding to aircraft fires is a core function of Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF).  Airports with commercial airline service are required by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to meet 14 Code of Federal Regulations Part 139 certification.  FAA certification standards require annual recurrent training, design standards for training facilities, and equipment requirements.  ARFF standards require an adequate water supply and delivery systems, emergency planning, and criteria for minimum response times. 

     The most hazardous location on an airport is an active runway.  Responding fire fighting and emergency units must be aware of a runway's status be alert regarding aircraft movements and approaching / launching aircraft.  Responding units must be certain that no potential collision hazards exist before entering the runway safety area.  Active taxiways are the second most hazardous location on an airport.  Responding emergency crews must exercise extraordinary caution when approaching or crossing an aircraft taxiway.  Airport ramp and apron areas represent yet another hazardous zone for emergency response teams.  Great caution should be exercised to avoid moving aircraft whether taxiing or being towed by service vehicles.  

     Modern aircraft contain a variety of materials and fluids that become hazardous when damaged or burned.  Some aircraft composite materials emit toxic fumes when heated or burned.  Other materials emit toxic particulates and micro fibers when damaged.  Another area of concern is with the cargo being held within an aircraft.  The cargo may contain extremely hazardous materials and components.  For all these reasons, fire is clearly not the only hazard to deal with during an aircraft incident.  Toxic fumes and particulates are an equally dangerous safety threat.  Emergency response crews must exercise caution to avoid inhalation or ingestion of any fumes, vapors, or particles associated with an aircraft fire or accident.  The proper use of aviation firefighting protective equipment is essential.   

   

Protecting Airports and Airbases from the Destructive Forces of Nature

     The National Aerospace Organization is hosting a symposium and exposition on November 15th, 2012 to address new technologies and innovations for effectively detecting and mitigating fire damage at airports and military airbases.  At this event, other destructive natural forces such as  hurricanes, flooding, snow and ice, earthquakes, and lightning will be addressed.  Exciting presentations will be provided to explain and demonstrate the most effective technologies and equipment for protecting airport runways, flight lines, taxiways, aircraft hangars, terminals and support facilities.  

 

Go to Event Page for more Information

 

Protecting Military Airbases
and
Commercial Airports
Against the Forces of Nature

Exposition and New Technology Presentations


November 15, 2012
Hilton Oceanfront Hotel (Cocoa Beach, Florida)
________

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National Aerospace Conference Exposition





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Protecting Airports Airbases from Nature Storms Snow Fire Earthquakes

   

  

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