1. #1
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    Default Shipping Container Live Burn Building design questions

    Hi everyone,

    I'm looking for some information on using steel shipping containers to build a multi-story Live Burn Building, and am looking for answers from those of you that use these. This building will be used as a traditional live burn building for teaching SCBA skills, hoseline stretches and advancing the line, TIC training, tactics, PPV use, RIT, and HiRise firefighting training from a dry standpipe installed in one stair well, etc. We'll only be burning straw and wood pallets, with live burns conducted as per NFPA 1403.

    The main questions I've got are -

    a) Do you line the floor/walls/ceiling of the rooms you are setting fires in your containers with an insulative material to protect the container, or do you just use the bare container?

    b) Approx. how many burns are the containers good for?

    c) When cutting openings for doorways into the container walls, do you leave the bottom 6 inches or so of the wall in place to help maintain structural integrity?, or do you cut the hole flush with the floor to remove the trip hazard?

    d) Do you modify the containers in any way to allow excess firefighting water to escape?

    e) Do you do anything to prevent rust or corrosion in the rooms where you set live fires and the paint gets damaged?

    Any other information that you can pass along would be great, and if you can post any photos that you have, that would be a big help.

    Thanks!
    Last edited by stillPSFB; 01-13-2005 at 11:15 PM.
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    Send fire-ect, or anyother live fire training facility and I am sure they would be able to help you out. Last year we built a live fire facility out of seacans and did not line the walls with anything, works real good but we didnt make a multiple storey facility.

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    Try a search on here. These have been discussed a few times and you may be able to find some of the info.
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    Revenge of the search nazi.

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    Originally posted by PFD109NFD107
    Revenge of the search nazi.
    At least I was pleasant about it!!
    The comments made by me are my opinions only. They DO NOT reflect the opinions of my employer(s). If you have an issue with something I may say, take it up with me, either by posting in the forums, emailing me through my profile, or PMing me through my profile.
    We are all adults so there is no need to act like a child........
    IACOJ

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    Originally posted by firenresq77
    Try a search on here. These have been discussed a few times and you may be able to find some of the info.
    Umm... I'd already done that, and had only found 1 answer to question 'b'(from a slightly different application), and no answers to questions a, c, d, or e.

    So has anyone else got anything useful to add?
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    Look at NFPA 1402, a guide on building burn structures. It can give guidance. The NFPA Tech Committee on Training has discussed, in its meetings, the question of shipping containers. Perhaps you could contact them for guidance. Dave Trebiacci at NFPA is the liaison who can reach the Committee chair.
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    While I've got you here JB, is there any problems with using steel shipping containers for TIC training that you are aware of? I'm just wondering if having the floor, walls and ceiling made of the same material (which is a good heat conductor) makes a TIC show similar readings all over?
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    Originally posted by stillPSFB
    While I've got you here JB, is there any problems with using steel shipping containers for TIC training that you are aware of? I'm just wondering if having the floor, walls and ceiling made of the same material (which is a good heat conductor) makes a TIC show similar readings all over?
    Excellent question. As you know, metal is reflective of infrared energy. As a result, reading images in a metal room can be tough. This in and of itself is OK, though. You might go into environments that have reflective floors and walls. Think of a hospital or other such commercial structure...tile walls, tile floor...reflective environment. Practicing in a difficult environment can help your skills, which is a good thing.

    There are a few things working in your favor, though, so it won't be too bad. First, most of those containers are old and therefore rusted. The rust, and then creasote buildup, reduces the reflectivity. If you spray fire-protective foam on the walls and ceiling (as some places do), this will further reduce the reflectivity.

    While my experience in container burns has been that there is some equalization of wall and ceiling temps, once you get a good fire going, the thermal layers and fire itself make that moot. And, even though you will heat the floor through conduction, it will not be as hot as the upper parts of the wall, so you still get differentiation.

    I hope that helps.
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    Originally posted by firemanjb
    There are a few things working in your favor, though, so it won't be too bad. First, most of those containers are old and therefore rusted. The rust, and then creasote buildup, reduces the reflectivity. If you spray fire-protective foam on the walls and ceiling (as some places do), this will further reduce the reflectivity.
    Will the heavy coats of rust-inhibiting paint help to reduce the reflectivity?

    I hope that helps.
    It certainly does - thanks.
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    Originally posted by stillPSFB

    Will the heavy coats of rust-inhibiting paint help to reduce the reflectivity?


    It certainly does - thanks.
    Gloss paint will be more reflective than flat. A quality, smooth coat will be more reflective as well. Once you get good fires going, it probably won't matter too much as the paint will be creosote covered.
    My comments are sometimes educated, sometimes informed and sometimes just blowing smoke...but they are always mine and mine alone and do not reflect upon anyone else (especially my employer).

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