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Foam Firefighting. Section IV Foam Application and Operations. Objectives. Discuss the principals and considerations for fighting Class A fires. Dispel myths surrounding Class A foam Discuss Class A Foam for structural fire attack. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

Text of Foam Firefighting

  • Foam Firefighting

    Section IV

    Foam Application and Operations

  • ObjectivesDiscuss the principals and considerations for fighting Class A fires.

    Dispel myths surrounding Class A foam

    Discuss Class A Foam for structural fire attack.

    Discuss the effectiveness of Class A foam for exposure protection.

  • Objectives

    Discuss Class A foams benefits during overhaul.

    Define the principals of Class B fire attack.

    Discuss the techniques of Class B foam application.

  • ObjectivesDiscuss considerations for after foam is applied

    Discuss the strategies for exposure protection for Class B fire incidents.

    Discuss water supply considerations.

  • Principals and Considerations for Fighting Class A Fires

    Class A foam is biodegradable when used in small ratios of .01-1.0%.

    Considerations should still be made to keep runoff out of sewers lakes and streams.

    Use proper PPE when handling concentrates.

  • Principals and Considerations for Fighting Class A Fires

    Clean PPE thoroughly if it has been soaked in concentrates.

    Have backup lines in operation when high energy foam systems are in use.

    Foam proportioning ratios can be tailored to suit the job.

  • Class A Foam Common Myth

    Some people have promoted the theory that 200 of a foam solution aspirated to a 10:1 expansion ration actually gives you the fire protection capability of 2,000 gallons of water.


  • Class A Foam Myth DispelledClass A foam only makes water more efficient at soaking into the fuel and absorbing heat.

    Less water is required to extinguish a fire than if plain water is used.

    It does not create more water!!!

  • Class A Foam Common Myth

    Foam lines may be flowed at lower application rates or from smaller hose lines than those of plain water.


  • Class A Foam Myth DispelledThere is no reputable scientific data to prove this point.

    Shorter discharge times results in less water being used.

    It is recommended that foam solution flow rates and hose sizes be the same as the generally accepted flow rates and hose sizes for plain water.

  • Class A Foam and Structural Fire AttackMost effective on interior fire attacks.

    Must be applied directly to the burning material to be most effective.

    Helps maintain visibility due to less steam conversion.

  • Class A Foam and Structural Fire Attack

    When using Class A foam for an interior attack use with either a direct or combination attack.

    Reduces time a fire stream needs to be applied.

  • Class A Foam and Structural Fire Attack

    Fog nozzles should be used on low energy foam lines.

    Fog or smoothbore nozzles may be used with CAFS systems.

  • Class A Foam and Structural Fire Attack

    CAFS fire streams are well suited for exterior fire attacks.

    The extended reach assures that the foam is being delivered deep into the structure.

    The fire can be knocked down quickly from a window or a doorway.

  • Class A Foam and exposure Protection

    Excellent for protecting exposures.

    Insulating properties protect unburned areas.

    Type 2 or Type 3 foam is recommended

  • Class A Foam Overhaul Operations

    Class A foam exhibits some of its greatest benefits during overhaul operations.

    Applied in the same fashion as water with standard nozzles and techniques.

  • Class A Foam Overhaul Operations

    Drastically reduces the amount of water used.Limited runoffLess water damage

  • Class A Foam Overhaul Operations

    Thermal blocking occurs when concealed hot spots contain enough heat to turn small amounts of penetrating water into steam.

  • Class A Foam Overhaul Operations

    The use of foam helps defeat the phenomenon of thermal blocking by enabling more water to penetrate deeper and speed the cooling process.

  • Principals of Class B Fire Attack.Size of the fire

    Type of fuel

    Required application rate

    Amount of foam concentrate needed and available

    Ability to deliver and sustain the required foam rate

  • Size of the Fire

    Almost always involve the entire surface of an exposed fuel.

    May remain that size throughout the duration of the incident.

    Coincidently the size of the fire is fairly constant throughout the incident.

  • Size of the Fire

    Determining the size of the fire in a circular enclosure in square feet.

    Area = 3.14 X Radius

    Determining the size of the fire in a square or rectangular enclosure in square feet.

    Area = Length X Width

  • Size of the Fire

    If the Fire Involves a Spill Area

    Determine the maximum length and width of the spill and multiply by those numbers

  • Type of Fuel


    Polar Solvent

    Toxic or Non Toxic

    Water Reactive

  • Application Rate

    Sq ft (X) 0.1 for Hydrocarbons = Application Rate in GPM

    Sq ft (X) 0.2 for Polar Solvents = Application Rate in GPM

  • Amount of Foam ConcentrateApplication Rate (In GPM)XDischarge time (15 min)XProportioning Rate (.03 or .06)=Concentrate Required

  • Ability to Deliver and Sustain the Required Foam Rate

    Have enough foam on hand

    Have enough water GPM (X) 15 min () Concentrate Required = Water Required

    Have the proper equipment to flow the required application rate.

  • Techniques of Class B Foam Application.

    Air Aspirated Foam

    Non Air Aspirated

  • Air Aspirated FoamAdvantages

    Foam is longer lasting.

    Longer drainage time.

    Highest quality.

  • Air Aspirated FoamDisadvantages

    Short Reach

    Affected by wind conditions

    Nozzles can be bulky and may be single purpose.

  • Non Air Aspirated FoamAdvantages

    Can be applied through any standard fog nozzle.

    Greater reach and penetrating power

    Faster knockdown in lab tests.

  • Non Air Aspirated FoamDisadvantages

    Will not form as thick of a blanket.

    Requires more frequent re-application.

  • Manual Application TechniquesRoll On Method (roll foam onto leading edge of spill or fire and roll foam toward the back).

    Bank Down Method (hit an elevated object above the spill or fire).

    Rain Down Method (foam is sprayed above and is rained down on spill or fire).

  • Exposure Protection

    Not different from structural fire exposure protection.

    Judgmental decision based on the situation.

  • After Foam is AppliedProtect your foam blanket at all costs.

    Insure that no smoking or other sources of ignition around the blanket.

    Insure that blanket is not broken, walked or driven through.

    Insure that your hoses are not part of the spill.

  • Situations to Consider Exposure Protection

    A large fire that cannot be immediately extinguished.

    Employing a nonintervention strategy.

    Extremely sensitive structures. (fuel tanks, etc)

    Structures in the vicinity showing the effects of exposure to the fire.

  • Factors That Determine the Danger of an Exposure

    Amount and intensity of the original fire.

    Proximity of the exposure to the fire.

    Wind and weather conditions.

    Composition of the exterior of the exposure.

  • Water Supply ConsiderationsFoam operations usually require significant amounts of water.

    Have the required water available before beginning foam operations.

    Rule of thumb is 1 gallon per min for every 10 sq ft.

  • Water Supply ConsiderationsQuestions to ask

    What is my water requirements?

    What is my water supply available?

    Does access to the scene inhibit my ability to deliver the required flow?

  • SummaryPrincipals and considerations for fighting Class A and Class B fires vary.

    There are may myths myths surrounding Class A foam

    Class A Foam is an effective tactic for structural fire attack, exposure protection and overhaul.

    Techniques of Class B foam application vary with the prescribed application and take in account many considerations .

  • SummaryWhat are the considerations after Class B foam is applied?

    Exposure protection for Class B fire incidents are integral to an effective incident management strategy.

    Water supply considerations for Class B Foam operations.

  • Questions???

  • AcknowledgementsIFSTA Principals of Foam Firefighting 1st Edition, 1996Dominic Colletti, Class A Foam-Best Practice for Structural Firefighters, 1998Various Web SourcesTask Force Tips Elkhart Brass ManufacturingOperations Chief David A Greene