1. #1
    FF/EMT

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    Question Petroleum Tank Farm Water Supply

    I am developing a water supply for a large petroleum tank farm in our area. We are a small suburban department with a 1250 gpm pumper and 2000 gpm aerial device. I need to develop the capability to develop an 11,000 gpm supply from hydrant and rural water supply. I have a creek close to the scene, which may give me 1000-2000 gpm if I am lucky. I have a few hydrants in the area, but the creek is seasonal. Does anyone have any suggestions???
    Eric J. Rickenbach
    FF/EMT/Chief Engineer/Instructor
    Sinking Spring, PA

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    My friend, you are going to need alittle more equipment such as pumpers and LDH. Is the water even available from the water sources?

  3. #3
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    BIG PAULIE here are some answers...

    You are going to need a little more equipment such as pumpers and LDH
    The current alarm card brings not only our equipment, but also 4-5 more LDH equipped engines. We have a special tanker alarm for our immediate area also.

    We are currently doing a resource analysis to determine what to figure on total volume that would be available in the forst hour.

    Is the water even available from the water sources?
    There is a municipal water system source available at the tank farm. There is a second municipal water system less than 2 miles away (and not interconnected to the first.) We are working to determine flows, but the one water company doesn't want to allow us to do this or tell us what to expect. (We're working on that problem...)

    The creek is seasonal, but we could reasonably expect to be able to supply at least 1500 gpm year-round. When it is at it's best we could probably double, triple, or even quadruple that, but we have to figure worst case.

    There are several static sources - ponds, large swimming pools, etc. - but they are not quickly renewed so they are more-or-less one shot and done.

    We are potentially looking at tanker relays that could exceed 5 miles in any one direction. Logistical nightmare!!!

    That is why I am looking for input on how others deal with this type of situation. Eric
    Eric J. Rickenbach
    FF/EMT/Chief Engineer/Instructor
    Sinking Spring, PA

  4. #4
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    shammrock54's Avatar
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    A good idea may be two or three large capacity underground water tanks around the perimiter of the farm. as long as you have the pumpers and LDH equipment your current water supply may be enough, but having more water and water that is not a creek of hydrant system that could cause problems in a situation were water is what your gonna need. just a thought, good luck and i hope that place never burns!
    Member IACOJ & IACOJ EMS Bureau
    New England FOOL
    "LEATHER FOREVER"
    As always these are strictly my own opinions and views

  5. #5
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    I would also tap into resources the tank operator has. Do they have a refinery close by? what about commercial fire services? Make them buy you a big *** tanker or a couple. What about a retention pond with a water level guage connected to a pipe from the creek...cheaper than underground storage.

  6. #6
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    Well, if I don't miss my guess through the miracles of Mapquest, this is your tank farm:



    First thought is, this isn't a municipal fire protection problem. Above 3500gpm, ISO rates properties individually and they shouldn't affect the Public Protection Class if I understand correctly.

    So it should be up to the owner to provide adequate water and means to distribute/use it.

    Assuming you want 11,000gpm for 2 hours (and that's a *big* assumption that's all you need) you need 1,320,000 gallons.

    An acre (200' x 200') contains 300,000 gallons for every foot of depth (thus the term acre-foot) so you need over 4 acre-feet just in water.

    But you need more depth than that -- a couple feet extra to make drafting easy is nice. A couple feet extra to allow for a particularly bitter winter producing thick surface ice. Unless you use concrete walls, the sides will slant in some. My guess is you need a 1 acre pond 15' deep or a 2 acre pond 10' to comfortably meet your water supply needs.

    With such a pond, along with really good dry hydrants, 4 3000gpm pumpers and some 6" LDH could meet your needs.

    Then again, I'd assume the purpose to that flow isn't to extinguish, but contain the fire. Much more efficient to have those pumps mounted stationary and pumping an underground grid with monitors/sprinklers in place than waiting for FD to arrive, setup deluge guns, lay hose, set up draft.

    My other guess is you'll be waiting for the fuel to burn out -- in which case you may need a lot more than just a two hour supply of water!

    Matt

  7. #7
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    Originally posted by Dalmatian90
    Well, if I don't miss my guess through the miracles of Mapquest, this is your tank farm:

    Matt
    Matt, the photo is correct but old. There have been additional tanks installed at all 3 tanks farms (there are actually 3 separate, because there are 3 pipelines underground here). There is also a propane tank farm (24 - 66000 gal tanks). Room for a "pond" would be next to impossible due to topography and land features.

    Thanks for the input.... Eric
    Eric J. Rickenbach
    FF/EMT/Chief Engineer/Instructor
    Sinking Spring, PA

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