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Thread: I know that this has been asked ...... Combi Foams

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    Default I know that this has been asked ...... Combi Foams

    I know there they have been threads regarding combination A/B foams but looking for some fresh insight.

    My VFD will be getting a new engine in a few months with a foam proportioning system, and the Chief wants to start using foam on most fires - structure, auto, trash and fast moving brush fires.

    We do cover a 11-mile stretch of a busy interstate so there is a strong potential for a tanker accident with significant Class B spill. Other than that though, there are no occupancies that pose a major Class B fire hazard beyond a 5-10 gallon spill and fire at the fuel pumps, MVC or in a garage.

    Right now we are discussing the use of a combo foam v. simply a class A foam in the single tank.

    Three questions ....

    In your experience and opinion, is there a complying reason to use a Combination A/B foam?

    If yes, does anyone have experience with Fireade 2000 good, bad or indifferent?

    Does anyone have any good bad or indifferent experiences with any other Combination foams?
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    I would ask this question first. How many gpms of foam do you want to flow on a class B incident? Answer that and I will give you my opinion.
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    If your concern is for a large class B tanker incident , then an engine cannot carry enough foam concentrate to be of any use other than a small spot fire.

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    Quote Originally Posted by islandfire03 View Post
    If your concern is for a large class B tanker incident , then an engine cannot carry enough foam concentrate to be of any use other than a small spot fire.
    Agree, and that is why we are leaning towards straight Class A foam, but considering combi foams.

    Our truck will have a 20 gallon foam tank, so if we flowing 300gpm that would be 9 gpm @ 3% for hydrocarbons. The thought process for the combi foam would be it would give us the ability to rapidly foam smaller Class B incidents or rapidly deploy foam capable handlines for a short time in a selected area to effect rescues when dealing with a tanker incident, not necessarily to extinguish the fire. We have access to a foam pumper about 20 miles away plus an ARFF vehicle from a nearby USAF base for suppression operations.

    The basic question that we have is that capability worth the significant cost of combi foam v. class A foam, especially given that Class A foam can be used to knock down flammable liquid fires (w/o vapor suppression).

    And if it is, what combi foams have departments found successful.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    I would ask this question first. How many gpms of foam do you want to flow on a class B incident? Answer that and I will give you my opinion.
    As I stated in my post to Island, we are looking at flowing 2 1 3/4" handlines at 150gpm, which would be 9 gpm for hydrocarbons and 18gpm for poloar solvents.

    And the thinking is we would likely only flow them in passenger rescue situations or small Class B incidents. The truck would not be used foe long-term suppression operations.

    Again, the biggest factor for us is the cost of the combi foam v. Class A foam considering the very limited number of Class B incidents we run on.
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    Im a firm believer in using class A in the engines foam tank/proportioner - and using an old fashion inductor straight out of the buckets for arfff -
    ?

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    Quote Originally Posted by slackjawedyokel View Post
    Im a firm believer in using class A in the engines foam tank/proportioner - and using an old fashion inductor straight out of the buckets for arfff -
    And that very well may be what we end up doing as we likely will use Class A foam in the engines foam tank, but we are exploring to option of using a combi foam, depending on effectiveness, and more importantly, cost.
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    Quote Originally Posted by slackjawedyokel View Post
    Im a firm believer in using class A in the engines foam tank/proportioner - and using an old fashion inductor straight out of the buckets for arfff -
    This...
    We are in the process of getting rid of the class B, and filling both tanks with A. If we need B we already have eductors in the compartments.
    IAFF

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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    As I stated in my post to Island, we are looking at flowing 2 1 3/4" handlines at 150gpm, which would be 9 gpm for hydrocarbons and 18gpm for poloar solvents.

    And the thinking is we would likely only flow them in passenger rescue situations or small Class B incidents. The truck would not be used foe long-term suppression operations.

    Again, the biggest factor for us is the cost of the combi foam v. Class A foam considering the very limited number of Class B incidents we run on.
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    We have combo foam in our 30 gallon tank on our main engine and 20 gallons of class B foam with an eductor on our second out engine.

    Frankly, for us using class A foam would be cheaper for us to have in the onboard tank because I can't recall a time where we have flowed class B foam other thn in a drill.
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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    We have combo foam in our 30 gallon tank on our main engine and 20 gallons of class B foam with an eductor on our second out engine.

    Frankly, for us using class A foam would be cheaper for us to have in the onboard tank because I can't recall a time where we have flowed class B foam other thn in a drill.
    And that is what we are thinking as the combo foams run close to $95/5 gallons v. much, much less for Class A, but I wanted to get some input from other posters.

    We are required by our rating to carry at least 15 gallons of Class B on each engine, as well as carry at least one educator so even if we go with Class A foam in the foam we will still have Class B capability for smaller Class B incidents. Each arriving engine will also carry 15 gallons of Class B foam as well.
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    We go to more fires that require Class B than Class A. Lots of fires at well sites. Sometimes storage tanks. Sometimes high pressure separators or gun barrel separators. Sometimes everything on site is on fire. For safety, we do not stay on scene longer than five minutes if there is still active fire, and we leave if significant progress is not made in two minutes. Generally on something like a 210 tank battery, if we have a good Class B foam, we can get it out within 45 seconds. Some of the other stuff that's more multi-purposed, it has taken us easily double that to do the same thing. Not that it doesn't work, but it just doesn't seem to work as good as the more specific foam, and it costs more than just straight Class A, so it is expensive to use on a Class A fire.

    Our latest engine we built has an eductor we built and a tank for each Class A and Class B. We use a needle valve to change between the two.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    We have combo foam in our 30 gallon tank on our main engine and 20 gallons of class B foam with an eductor on our second out engine.

    Frankly, for us using class A foam would be cheaper for us to have in the onboard tank because I can't recall a time where we have flowed class B foam other thn in a drill.
    What combo foam do you use? Any opinion about it?
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    On our first out engine, we have a 30 gallon on board FoamPro system. We use FireAde 2000 in it. It seems to work pretty well for us, but it is expensive. I have used it on class A fires with success, never flowed on a Class B fire with the FireAide 2000.

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    Quote Originally Posted by asner85 View Post
    On our first out engine, we have a 30 gallon on board FoamPro system. We use FireAde 2000 in it. It seems to work pretty well for us, but it is expensive. I have used it on class A fires with success, never flowed on a Class B fire with the FireAide 2000.
    Have you used any straight Class A foams?

    If yes, does FireAde work any better? Is it worth the extra cost on Class A fires?
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    What combo foam do you use? Any opinion about it?
    I believe it is FireAde2000. It seems to work just fine for the class A incidents we have used it at.
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