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Old 02-08-2012, 19:41   #61
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Re: Diesel Engine Fires

I will stick with CO2, it's in the engine room (a contained space) I have both CO2 and dry powder ext, thru out the boat all up to date and weight. Been good enough for years and I can't see any good reason to change! do you guys?? just asking
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Old 23-02-2013, 20:44   #62
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Re: diesel engine fires

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Originally Posted by gjordan View Post
Sometimes the loss of a boat from fire is because an owner is to cheap to put the last little bit of equipment in. The large motor yacht that I mentioned in a previous post is a good example. The manual pull (discharge) probably would have saved a million dollar yacht. I worked on a 100 ton motor yacht that had a big lever just outside the engine room door. Pulling that lever was designed to cut the power to the exhaust vents, drop large metal plates to block air in the vents, close all 4 fuel valves and let go 2 huge CO2 bottles. The trouble was that the system was disconnected . We spent $125,000 on a refit one summer but the fire system didnt get fixed. I like the idea of CO2 or Halon or any other system, but I think they all need an external discharge method that can be pulled at the first sign of fire. My 2 cents worth.____Grant.
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Old 23-02-2013, 22:05   #63
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Re: Diesel Engine Fires

Glad I found this Thread as I am in the process of an ER upgrade on Stargazer, which includes the fire suppression system.

Can anyone identify the manufacturer of this tank… as it has been painted over?
It is a low profile tank mounted directly above the Main Engine,
8” diameter by 5” high
The Gauge reads full and tank weighs 18 lbs.
No ideas what is in it…? Guessing Halon, but would like to know before deciding on service.

What I don’t like is that it is automatic only….
I prefer the option of manual deployment so looking at other space efficient options and would appreciate suggestions.

The Cubic Volume of my ER is approx. 25m3… Thanks for any advice.
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Old 23-02-2013, 22:28   #64
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Re: Diesel Engine Fires

It looks like a Fireteks tank by Krunal Engineering or a Dascem and could be either Halon or CO2--I have seen both. The Gilana has an almost identical system, but curiously the text lists it as a CO2, while the jpg lists it as a Halon:

http://www.gilana.org/sy_for_sale/halon.jpg

my best guess though is it is a Halon filled tank.
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Old 23-02-2013, 23:53   #65
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Re: Diesel Engine Fires

I have used halon all I can say is it is AMAZING!
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Old 06-07-2014, 21:18   #66
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Re: Diesel Engine Fires

My engine room fire was on a quad screw crewboat in the Gulf. We had lost the fuel pump on #2 engine and had run a jumper fuel line from #4 over to it so we could keep operating offshore (yeah, I know, dumb idea....)

The jumper developed a leak right at the #2 engine turbo and was spraying fuel everywhere, but as long as we where hooked up the fuel spray was being sucked into the turbo - and no problem.

Eventually a deck hand spotted the problem and reported it to the other Captain. He pulled all the engines back to idle and went to the engineroom to check it out. Once the engines were pulled back, the diesel fuel spray hit the hot turbo instead of being sucked into it, and the whole think ignited into a gaint ball of fire.

I was off watch and asleep (I was the 2nd Captain) and heard all the commotion and got up. I entered the engineroom - which was now abandoned and on fire - in just my underwear. I grabbed the 15-lb CO2 fire extinguisher that had just been serviced by a USCG approved vendor to attack the fire, but the extinguisher was EMPTY.

I couldn't get past the fire to reach the shut-offs at the back of the engineroom, and the ones on the bridge never worked (remember this was an oil field crewboat in the Gulf in the early 90's!)

Smoke was now down to waist height, so I left and organized a fire party. I had 1 guy go on deck to open the emergency escape hatch to vent out the smoke and to bring down the deck washdown hose, and had the second guy go and get the two 20-lb Purple K extinguishers from passenger compartment.

I finally put on some clothing and re-entered the engineroom just as the escape hatch was opened. All the smoke exited so I could now fully see and breath. I found another CO2 extinguisher and knocked the fire down with it, but it kept re-igniting - so I started using the wash down hose. That cooled the turbo enough and extinguished the burning overhead material so that diesel fuel didn't immediately re-ignite. I was able to get past the fire area and shut down the 2 engines involved in the fire, which stopped fuel from being sprayed everywhere.

Eventually the wash down hose and the CO2 extinguisher fully extinguished the remaining burning diesel fuel. I never did use the PK dry chems.

As with any fire on a boat, eventually you need to use water, so make sure you have a wash down hose or a bucket for that purpose.

And many thanks to my Fire fighting instructors at Texas A&M for giving me the hands-on training to be able to deal with this type of a fire!
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Old 06-07-2014, 23:12   #67
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Re: Diesel Engine Fires

The cause of most fires on boats has been traced to be insurance.
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Old 07-07-2014, 20:58   #68
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Re: Diesel Engine Fires

On a more serious note.

Astrid pasted a link to my web page and the folder was called "for sale" no, she is not for sale, no ways! its just that changing the folder on the web page is a PITA.

Most Halon BCF Trichlodiflouromethane extinguishers are not being refilled because of EPA or equivalent regulations. The replacement halide gasses are very good, but very expensive.

Personally if I had a fire, and the Halon system extinguished it, I would apologize deeply to the ozone, but be thankful it saved my boat. If you have a Halon system, keep it even though it might fail an inspection, or class survey. Put in whatever your insurance or flag state requires, but keep the Halon.

In the navy we had a FSS running halon in the helicopter fuel (Kerosene) treatment plant, where high pressures of filtration increased risk. I was present at a demonstration of the system and it is impressive, we were actually IN the fire for a few seconds (with BA sets and suits) the fire was snuffed out instantly.

There is a catch though. IF the engine room ventilation is good, and is not shut down, the fire can re-ignite very easily if the triangle has not been broken, HEAT-FUEL-O2. So the Halon removes O2, the fire dies, the fans bring in more O2, the heat and fuel are still there, the chance of a re-ignite is 99%.

Its good, but its not enough. You have to have external fuel shutoffs, and or ventilation shutters. A fusible link fire shutter is an inexpensive item.

Fire is my biggest fear on board. Storms, Pirates, Reefs, BAH! FIRE is what scares me, it can kill you in your sleep while quietly smouldering away without flames.

just saying...
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Old 08-07-2014, 13:41   #69
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Re: diesel engine fires

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What's really stupid is some one(s) went through all the time and expense to invent a product that works really well for its designated purpose and then it gets banded because it might get into the atmosphere. My Halon unit is 20 YO.

So, which would be worse, a little Halon, or lots of toxic smoke from a huge fire that could have been stopped?

I see this crap happening all the time. Good working products disappear off the shelves in the name of environment or health. So why don't they just ban cars completely? No! They just have to nit pick us a tiny little bit at a time until we're helpless. What about airplanes? They are worse then cars as far as PPM per person. But yet they just keep building them.
From what I've seen going on in the pass 60 years, I could write a book.........

3 products that have disappeared in the last couple of years is Rolaids, Robitussin cough drops, Excedrin & others I can't think of for now. All these, and more, I have used for YEARS w/o ill affect and now they are gone over night w/o warning. It seems they want one to rely on a Doctor to get anything that works. The rest are just placebo's.
Rant over, for now!

I think the main drawback was the manufacture of Halon, which released CFCs to the air,

But hey you rant is impressive, bring back asbestos, DDT, cigarettes, lead, mercury , etc
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Old 08-07-2014, 16:27   #70
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Re: diesel engine fires

Quote:
Originally Posted by delmarrey View Post
So, which would be worse, a little Halon, or lots of toxic smoke from a huge fire that could have been stopped?


3 products that have disappeared in the last couple of years is Rolaids, Robitussin cough drops, Excedrin & others I can't think of for now.
While it might personally be bad (inconvenient) for you in the short term to have your boat burn, release of Halon is much worse for the planet as a whole in the long term.

There isn't even any dissension on this one - all political parties, manufacturers, hippies, everyone from every stripe agreed this stuff was bad and the science behind it was incontrovertible. It was nothing like the debate around banning TBT, for instance.

It is not illegal for you to keep your halon system, or to use it, or to refill it. It is illegal to manufacture any more halon, so once the world supply is gone then you will need to change to a different suppressant.

There are legal and currently manufactured halotron substitutes that work very well.

Maybe it is just a regional thing, but excedrin, robitussin and rolaids are readily available everywhere we have been. We haven't been in the US Pacific Northwest in many years, but they are in every drug grocery store on the US East Coast and Midwest states we visit.

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