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Thread: F500 or Class B

  1. #1
    Fire827
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post F500 or Class B

    I have been seeing a lot of this F500 foam around one dept. said they gave away all their Class B 3%AFFF and are using F500 on all types of Class B fires. They have not had an opportunity to use this as of yet. When I enquired the Chief said, “I hope it will work”. My question is to the departments using this foam how does it work? Are you using more product or about the same. Is it putting the fires out? Is it worth $100 per pail? Any input would be great.
    Fire827

    [This message has been edited by Fire827 (edited 06-08-2001).]


  2. #2
    sconfire
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Thumbs up

    F-500 is a good product. While we do not use it as of yet, we have tested it. I call personnaly say that it is GREAT!

    However it does not replace foam. It does not form a layer on top to suppress vapors because it is a micell encapsulator. It bonds with hydrocarbons and encapsulates it. EXAMPLE: You could not use it for sub-surface injection.

    Here is a report that I completed on field testing that was done with this product.

    SCENARIO #1
    Fuel Neutralization Demo: 1 gallon of gasoline was put into a 4'X4' metal pan. 16 ounces of F-500 was added followed by approximately 10 gallons of water. The gasoline and F-500 looked clear, however when the water was added the product turned milky white with a small amount of foam. This foam is not to be confused with a foam blanket. This is only a by-product of the agitation of the water being applied with the fog nozzle. A propane torch was lit and placed within a 1/2" of the surface with no ignition. The torch was moved to all points of the pan with no ignition. It was apparent that the LEL of the gasoline was dropped below the point of ignition by the introduction of F-500 and water.

    SCENARIO #2
    Burning Tires Demo: 25 tires where placed into a pile 6' high and 6' wide. Ignition was aided with 1/2 gallon of gasoline/diesel mixture. The tires where allowed to burn for 5 minutes before the demonstration began.
    (All temp reading were administered with a hand held Laser Thermometer)

    A temperature reading of 1600 degrees (maximum reading) @ 10 feet after 5 minute burn time was recorded. A mixture of F-500 and tank water was administered for 4 seconds through 200' of 1 3/4"preconnect hose @ 100gpm from the nozzle. Full extinguishment was accomplished at the end of 4 second period during which the temperature dropped to 98 degrees @ 10 feet.

    Within 20 seconds after extinguishment, the tires were slightly warm to the touch with no smoke or steam being admitted. Let it be noted that the tires stayed in their original position with no overhaul attempted.

    NOTE: when the F-500/water mixture was applied the black smoke immediately turned white decreasing the toxicity level in the smoke.

    SCENARIO #3
    Burning Pallets Demo: 30 pallets here placed into a pile 8' high and 6' wide. Ignition was aided with 1/2 gallon of gasoline/diesel mixture. The pallets where allowed to burn for 15 minutes before the demonstration began. This was due to damp wood.(All temp reading were administered with a hand held Laser Thermometer)

    A temperature reading of 1600 degrees (maximum reading) @ 10 feet after 15 minute burn time was recorded. A mixture of F-500 and tank water was administered for 4 seconds through 200' of 1 3/4"preconnect hose @ 100gpm from the nozzle. Full extinguishment was accomplished at the end of the 4 second period during which the temperature dropped to 100 degrees @ 10 feet.
    Within 20 seconds after extinguishment, the pallets were slightly warm to the touch with no smoke or steam being admitted. Let it be noted that the pallets stayed in their original position with no overhaul attempted.

    NOTE: when the F-500/water mixture was applied the black smoke immediately turned white decreasing the toxicity level in the smoke.

    SCENARIO #4
    Vehicle Fire: A 1986 Ford Crown Victoria was ignited with the aid of a 1/2 gallon of gasoline/diesel mixture. The vehicle was allowed to burn for 5 minutes before the demonstration began. This was done so that the maximum combustion of material could occur.(All temp reading were administered with a hand held Laser Thermometer)

    A temperature reading of 1600 degrees (maximum reading) @ 10 feet after 5 minute burn time was recorded. A mixture of F-500 and tank water was administered for 4 seconds through 200' of 1 3/4"preconnect hose @ 100gpm from the nozzle. Full extinguishment was accomplished at the end of the 4 second period during which the temperature dropped to 100 degrees @ 10 feet.
    A temperature reading of 480 degrees was read at surface level on the trunk lid and dropped to 84 degrees within a 2 second application of the F-500/water mixture.
    Within 20 seconds after extinguishment, the car interior was warm to the touch with little to no smoke or steam being admitted.

    NOTE: when the F-500/water mixture was applied the black smoke immediately turned white decreasing the toxicity level in the smoke and greatly improving visibility.

    It should also be noted that a structure fire scenario can be conducted and was HIGHLY recommended by Mr.Ausborn. We did not have one readily available.

    Basic Product Information: HCT F-500 is listed in Section 18 of the NFPA as a "wetting agent" that can be used at 1%, 3%, and 6% concentrates for both Class A and B fires. It is also listed with Underwriters Laboratories as compliant with the applicable requirements for the Standard for Foam Equipment and Liquid Concentrates. HCT, Inc. is also ISO 9001 compliant.

    APPLICATIONS
    Class A:

    Wood
    Paper
    Cotton
    Hay/Straw/Grain
    Coal
    Coconut
    Fiberglass
    Rubber Tires

    Class B:

    Polar Solvents
    Isopropyl Alcohol
    Methanol
    Methyl Ethyl Ketone
    Methyl Tertiary Butyl
    Ether (MTBE)

    Non-Polar Solvents
    Gasoline
    Diesel
    Jet A
    JP4/JP5/JP8
    Crude Oils

    USES for F-500:
    F-500 is excellent for use in hand-held 2.5 gallon pressurized water extinguishers.

    F-500 is excellent for use in Highway fuel spills, Refinery, chemical and industrial spills as well as Neutralization of fuel in storm drains. When applied, F-500 chemically encapsulates the hydrocarbon fuel and renders flammable liquid nonflammable. the major point of this is during cleanup and disposal the fuel remains neutralized and nonflammable

    F-500 is excellent in the use of Vapor Reduction. (see SCENARIO #1)

    F-500 is excellent for fuel fires and can be used aggressively without the fear of breaking the "protective blanket" exposing vapor. It safely neutralizes the vapor without flashback.

    F-500 is excellent in the use of cleaning fuel soaked bunker gear. It can be sprayed directly on or placed into a Washer/Extractor with the gear. This product is environmentally safe, nontoxic, noncorrosive and 100% biodegradable.

    F-500 is safe to use through Foam Equipment, however it can be added directly to tank water with 100% miscibility.

    It is not advisable to mix F-500 and AFFF products

    Here is the website for the product: http://www.hct-world.com/

    If you would like to see the report so it can be printed, go to this address http://thencfd.homestead.com/firenews.html

    I would be happy to talk to you more about this. Just email me at sconfire@home.com

    Hope this helps!

    ------------------
    Captain Grant Mishoe
    North Charleston Fire Department
    North Charleston, SC


    [This message has been edited by sconfire (edited 06-09-2001).]

  3. #3
    C. Pete Rickard
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Angry

    Hold The phone!

    Question? Is any of this new snake oil stuff U.L. Listed as a Class B foam which pass's the requirements of U.L. 162 Class B foam testing?

    You need to ask this question!

    Where in all of your training have you every been told to use a wetting agent or an emulsifier on a Class B fire?

    Or better yet on a flammable liquid fire with a depth greater than 1"?

    Question: If one of your fire fighters get's hurt or even dies; Can you defend your actions of using a non-listed foam on a Class B fire? Ever hear of an expert witness?

    Smoking Guns! That is why the U.L. 162 test is there; For Your Protection!

    I love all of these tests that are conducted and submitted as proof. Lets get to the meat of it and test it to the U.L. Standard! If not why?


    [This message has been edited by C. Pete Rickard (edited 06-10-2001).]

  4. #4
    sconfire
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Talking

    Pete,
    Page 9 of F500's training manual states that it complies with the UL162 "Applicable Requirements for Foam Equipment and Liquid Concentrates", as well as NFPA18 "Standard for Wetting Agents"

    All of the technical stuff can be viewed on their website at: http://www.hct-world.com/images/f500sog4.pdf

    You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view.

    I have seen F500 used in ARFF with the vehicle being a USAF P23. They extinquished a pit (about the size of 2 average size swimming pools) of diesel fuel that was fully involved in less than 10 seconds.

    I saw another test that used MANPOWER instead of the trucks. Same size pit and they were crawling through it. Nothing re-ignited.

    You can order a video from them to see all of this stuff being tested. I hope this helps answer your question.

    I can give you some contacts with the company if you like.




    ------------------
    Captain Grant Mishoe
    North Charleston Fire Department
    North Charleston, SC

  5. #5
    KEA
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Well, hear it goes!

    //when the F-500/water mixture was applied the black smoke immediately turned white decreasing the toxicity level in the smoke.//

    How did you measure the toxicity of the smoke? Where did the toxic elements go to?

    What were the LEL readings before and after?

    "Page 9 of F500's training manual states that it complies with the UL162 "Applicable Requirements for Foam Equipment and Liquid Concentrates","

    To my knowledge UL does not list this as a class B foam. Just because some manual states something does not mean that UL has given them their stamp of approval.

    From what I read on the web-site this product use to be called Fuel Busters of which I personally witnessed in use on tire fires in California during testing of which we were a part of.

    Fact: 13 1/2 pales of product later, 4000 gallons of water and the 1500 tires were still burning.

    Plain water tests at a higher application rate proved to offer better suppression on 1500 burning tires.

    We have completly suppressed over 150 tires with plain water in 60 seconds. 110 tires with plain water in 20 seconds.

    Gasoline fires have been put out with plain water numerous times during training in the AF to include one ocasion at the Jackson Fire Training Academy.

    This product would not pass the MIL spec testing at the USAF testing center at Tyndall AFB so the military wont touch it.

    I do not sell any foam or emulsifiers! My opinions are based soley on my first hand experience with the product. To date, I have not been convinced.

    If your willing to bet your life on it go for it, but I'm not willing to at this time.


  6. #6
    S. Cook
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    As yet I haven't seen this, but Kirk makes a good point, "complies with UL" and "UL listed" are 2 completely different animals.

  7. #7
    Fire Eater 07
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    I have seen a demonstration of it and it worked awesome...although the price it brought with it was not justified,(according to our genius council members!)
    stay safe brothers

    ------------------
    Engine / Squad Co.# 7

  8. #8
    C. Pete Rickard
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Hold the phone! Product litterature and UL listings is two different things. I will research this later today and post my findings.

    In the mean time you guys can check these out:

    UL Directory of Fire Protection Equipment 2000. Gives all of the listings and what equipment it is listed with. Purchase direct fromn UL for around $19.00.

    Or try the web site for UL. www.ul.com and reseach the following. "Foam Liquid Concentrates (GFGV)", "Wetting Agents (GOHR), Hazard Control Technologies, Inc EX4697 and Pyrocool Technologies, Inc. EX4501 to see what is listed.

    The UL web site is not user friendly (they want you to buy the book for obvious reasons) so it may take awhile to get through it.

    Remember the whole drift of this conversation is Class B deep seated fires over 1" in depth. Big stuff! like tanker trucks, tanks, burning fuel in sewers, etc.

    Skin fuel fires on the road, tire fires, stacks of wood, etc. are not being considered here.

    You should also consider Vapor Suppression of chemicals with a high VP. I'm sure we can get into a conversation on this later.

    cprhose@aol.com

  9. #9
    sconfire
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    >KEA wrote: How did you measure the toxicity of the smoke? Where did the toxic elements go to? What were the LEL readings before and after?

    I couldnt measure the toxicity of the smoke. I didnt have LEL readings before or after the fire. When dealing with petroleum based fires (i.e. fuels and rubber) when the black smoke goes away, the level of toxicity is greatly reduced. The level of toxicity is greater when it is black because of the smoke is heavily laden with unburned or partially burned material. Same principal is in effect when you fight a house fire and you see the black smoke turn white.
    Now I am not saying that the toxicity goes completely away... I just said it is greatly reduced. I DO NOT have cold hard LEL readings for this, only my experience of observation while in service of the fire department.

    >To my knowledge UL does not list this as a class B foam.

    That is because it is not a foam, rather a wetting agent

    >Just because some manual states something does not mean that UL has given them their stamp of approval.

    F-500 is new and there is no real classification for it. "Wetting agent", it seems, appears to be the closest thing. The technical jargon will be coming soon. I am attempting to get the UL information as well.

    >From what I read on the web-site this product use to be called Fuel Busters of which I personally witnessed in use on tire fires in California during testing of which we were a part of.

    Fuel Busters is the original product. Since then there has been legal litigation over this matter. You may read the entire situation of the litigation on there website. This explains the entire scenario in some detail as to what is going on.
    F-500 is NOT Fuel Busters. It has been reformulated and has been chemically re-engineered. I am not an expert on this... as I said I have only my observational powers and experience to know that this product does what it says it does.

    >Fact: 13 1/2 pales of product later, 4000 gallons of water and the 1500 tires were still burning.

    On the video that HCT provides it shows a very large pile of tires burning. With one 1.75 handline it completly puts the fire out within a minute and a few seconds. Everyone will have to view it themselves or watch video of it before they can make judgements on the product.

    >Plain water tests at a higher application rate proved to offer better suppression on 1500 burning tires.

    With the exception of some chemical compunds, anything will go out if you put enough water on it.

    >We have completly suppressed over 150 tires with plain water in 60 seconds. 110 tires with plain water in 20 seconds.

    Do you have any video of this. I would like to review your techniques for this. I have never, ever seen that many tires go out that quick. I may be doing something wrong. I would like to correct my mistake, if indeed I am making one.

    >Gasoline fires have been put out with plain water numerous times during training in the AF to include one ocasion at the Jackson Fire Training Academy.

    As I said anything will go out if you put enough water on it. One of the goals with the fire service is to put the fire out with less damage to the structure or the spread of the product with large amounts of water. (i.e Hazardous Material run-off)

    >This product would not pass the MIL spec testing at the USAF testing center at Tyndall AFB so the military wont touch it.

    There are numerous Air Force Bases and Marine Corps Air Stations that use this product.

    >I do not sell any foam or emulsifiers! My opinions are based soley on my first hand experience with the product. To date, I have not been convinced.

    Like I said Fuel Busters is NOT F-500. It used to be called Fuel Busters, however it has been restructured and chemically re-engineered. This is all explained at the website.

    >If your willing to bet your life on it go for it, but I'm not willing to at this time.

    I have personnaly used it and I will use it. I think you will as well... if you see what F-500 can do.

    >S.cook wrote. As yet I haven't seen this, but Kirk makes a good point, "complies with UL" and "UL listed" are 2 completely different animals.

    My understanding is the reason why it is listed as "Complies with" is because UL does not have a classification for it. However this is under current review and changes will follow.

    >Hold the phone! Product litterature and UL listings is two different things. I will research this later today and post my findings.

    This is correct. I am anxious to see what you find out.

    >Remember the whole drift of this conversation is Class B deep seated fires over 1" in depth. Big stuff! like tanker trucks, tanks, burning fuel in sewers, etc.
    Skin fuel fires on the road, tire fires, stacks of wood, etc. are not being considered here.

    ORIGINALLY POSTED FROM Fire827** I have been seeing a lot of this F500 foam around one dept. said they gave away all their Class B 3%AFFF and are using F500 on all types of Class B fires. They have not had an opportunity to use this as of yet. When I enquired the Chief said, “I hope it will work”. My question is to the departments using this foam how does it work? Are you using more product or about the same. Is it putting the fires out? Is it worth $100 per pail? Any input would be great.

    I answered with findings that I have personnaly witnessed with the F-500 product.
    The Air Force has tested it with great success. The Marines as well, I do believe the Navy has as well. The video that the company has shows VERY LARGE fuel fires and the speed in which this product works in extinguishment. Since this is a mi-cell encapsulator (encapsulates the hydrocarbon molecule, the thing that is making the vapor) it in essence stops the vapor from RE-IGNITING!! To my knowledge water as well as foam do not do this. Water spreads it around and foam only SUPPRESSES the vapor witha blanket. This blanket is subject to degredation and can and in some cases fail on you at a critical time.
    Anyone see the Hawaii fuel farm fire with the fellows falling into the fire. This was because the hoses broke the foam blanket and the fuel reignited. Since F-500 encapsulates the fuel, the vapor is not a problem, thus re-ignition is not a problem. Now you may have to use a lot of F-500 on a very large fire. However you would do the same with foam or water. Just how much are you willing to spend for the product that you will use? That was another question...

    Wear and tear on your personnel as well as equipoment and the enviroment is the name of the game.

    >You should also consider Vapor Suppression of chemicals with a high VP.

    F-500 can only be used on certain types fires. This holds true with foam and water as well.

    I'm sure we can get into a conversation on >this later.

    I am sure we will. I look forward to discussing this with anyone. I am not trying to be an ***** like some others have been in the past. I am merely trying to pass on information. By no means am I an expert on this matter. I hope that I can learn more from these forum boards. I am not a member of HCT or being paid by them in anyway. I work for a fire department, just like 99% of everyone else talking on these boards. I am a captain, which means I have a crew that I am responsible for, not to mention myself. I want them to go home the next morning with all of their fingers and toes. If no one got hurt then it was a good shift! I can say that with the data and the scenarios that I have seen that F-500 works. It may be a little expensive, but it works.

    I think people said the same thing in the early 1900's when someone decided to put a pump and tank on a vehicle. My gosh, who would have realized that horses would no longer be our main mode of transportation in going to fires.

    I realize that there are universally acdepted ways of suppressing fires, and I am all for that. However when I see a product like F-500 come along, I can say this warrants a look see from anyone in the business of firefighting.

    Just my 2 cents!

    Stay safe,



    ------------------
    Captain Grant Mishoe
    North Charleston Fire Department
    North Charleston, SC

  10. #10
    C. Pete Rickard
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Hold on sconfire, don't get so upset. We are just trying to make a point. You just need to look at the facts.

    Be back later.

  11. #11
    S. Cook
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    Capt. Mishoe,

    To my first reply, you said: "My understanding is the reason why it is listed as "Complies with" is because UL does not have a classification for it. However this is under current review and changes will follow."

    I must ask, and I'm not trying to be argumentative, but if UL does not have a classification for it, how can it then be listed as UL compliant? What UL classification does it comply with?

  12. #12
    sconfire
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    No problem Pete,
    I am not upset. I hate talking on a computer because no one really knows what someones attitude is when they write. I UNDERSTAND YOU FULLY!!! Believe me I was as skeptical as you are now. However we are all of the agreement that this world has a "show me" mentality. We want to see facts! That really sucks when you see a product like Fuel Busters with its poor performance and it gets mixed in with something that might really have some benefits to fire suppression. I do not know all the in and outs of this stuff... I just know what I have seen.

    To answer S. Cook...
    My understanding is that it does to class "B" material what foam does, however it does it in a different manner. Instead of blanketing it, F500 encapsulate the hydrocarbon molecule. However it cannot be used in some instances like a foam because of the encapsulating deal. (i.e. Sub surface injection)They, being UL, are trying to research this product for its benefits. Thus if it stops the fire or suppresses the vapor, like Foam does, however does not do it in the same manner... then I think that is when they say it complies with UL listing. I think that is what is meant by that but I am not sure. I am in the process of getting some information from some people to fuly explain this. If you can bear with me, I will get this as quickly as possible. Once again, I am not angry or ****ed off in anyway. I am just trying to facts, that I know to be true, looked at so this will not be a one sided arguement.

    I am all for a discussion!

    Stay safe!

    ------------------
    Captain Grant Mishoe
    North Charleston Fire Department
    North Charleston, SC

  13. #13
    OFDLUIT33
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Post

    I don't know anything about it being UL listed or not. All I know is a 2 and 1/2 gallon water can with this stuff in it puts a hell of a knock down on a car fire.

    ------------------
    The views here are mine and do not reflect that of my department or any of it's members.

  14. #14
    MembersZone Subscriber AC1503's Avatar
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    Is there any new information on this F-550 stuff.

    Does it really work, or is it snake oil?

  15. #15
    MembersZone Subscriber sconfire's Avatar
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    WOW! This was a discussion from way back! I am still a believer in this product. You may want to go to the HCT website and email or call them. They can probably set up a demo for you and your department. I can preach all day to what I have seen, but until others see it for themselves... some will never be convinced.

    I think you will like what you see.

    Captain Grant Mishoe
    Always remember the CHARLESTON 9

    Captain Grant Mishoe, Curator of History
    North Charleston and American LaFrance Fire Museum
    "You'll never know where you're going until you remember where you came from"
    www.legacyofheroes.org
    www.firehistory.org
    www.sconfire.com

  16. #16
    Member iamfireman's Avatar
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    Ok, here is my 3 cents worth. My depart. was given some by a sales rep. to try out. So we mixed up a batch, just like we were instructed to do by the sales rep., and started a fire in a pan. Using a spray bottle, started to spray the mixture on the fire. THE FIRE GOT BIGGER!!!!!! So we made up a new batch, made it a little stronger, and still the fire wouldn't go out. We took the top off of the bottle and poured the product into the pan full strenght, the fire still did not go out. Needless to say, we haven't bought any!!!


    Just my 3 cents worth!!!!!!

    Rick

  17. #17
    MembersZone Subscriber ullrichk's Avatar
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    We have been carrying 25 gal of F-500 in a foam tank for about a year now. Here are some of my thoughts:

    F-500 seems to make for very quick knockdown on class A fires. Unfortunately I can't say its better than any other wetting agent since we never used any other wetting agent before the foam tank was installed.

    Have you looked at how many gallons of the stuff it would take to neutralize a fuel spill? If your state regs won't allow the encapsulated fuel to be disposed of as anything other than HAZMAT, you will have succeeded in multiplying your problems several fold.

    This stuff is not recognized by ISO as a substitute for the AFFF or other foam you need for each pumper. If this is important to your dept., plan on making room for the AFFF, too (both in the compartment and the budget).
    ullrichk
    a.k.a.
    perfesser

    a ship in a harbor is safe. . . but that's not what ships are for

  18. #18
    MembersZone Subscriber sconfire's Avatar
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    As I stated when this issue came up previously... I can only quote on what I have seen. We did the whole pan thing and we lit up a car and we did a pile of tires. It worked fine for us. I thin you will have to use the stuff yourself to get your own idea about the product. These discussions are so loaded! It is like asking do you prefer leather or tactical tupperware... or how about E-One to Pierce... there will never be a unanimous agreement from everyone.
    Always remember the CHARLESTON 9

    Captain Grant Mishoe, Curator of History
    North Charleston and American LaFrance Fire Museum
    "You'll never know where you're going until you remember where you came from"
    www.legacyofheroes.org
    www.firehistory.org
    www.sconfire.com

  19. #19
    HNFC FF/President mdoddsjffhnfc's Avatar
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    My company has the Class B foam. Since we dont see many fires that we need foam for, the Class B foam is good enough. Plu swe've used it for drills and it works great. So we dont need any other type of foam.
    Firefighter, Volunteering since Oct 2001

    CCFA 05-04, best overall class for 2005
    "GOOD GAME!"

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