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Anonymous Poster #1

Firewater Storage Tank

06/02/2017 4:06 AM

We have a facility with one firewater storage tank. We want to carry out a turn around maintenance on this one tank. Does anyone know any NFPA, API or any standard that allows a reduction in the fire protection for a facility while the storage tank is on turn around maintenance provided there is a contingency plan in place? I thought NFPA 25 or NFPA 22 will have something about this but I couldn't find anything to support my claim from the above standards. Thank you very much in advance for your valuable inputs.

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#1

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/02/2017 7:29 AM

I was only on the alarm side of things ,but many of the firewater storage tanks were nothing but giant plastic vessels. ... Filled with water.

As for system maintenance which I did all the time in many municipalities/counties both commercial and residential. ... I would call into the local fire department and use some official lingo to take whatever system out of service for as long as I needed.

Doing so meant a manual call to the fire station if anything happened while out of service.

..Seemed to work great so long as the sky wasn't falling..

Why wouldn't this be permitted? Paper mill far from the FD? Curious.

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#2
In reply to #1

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/02/2017 11:35 AM

JE - Thanks for your valuable input. My situation is such that it is a remote facility - the fire station will depend on this singular fire water supply. The nearest town with fire water supply is about 120 minutes drive away. Yes - the contingency calls for having a 24/7 fire service at the facility during the turn around maintenance of the fire water storage tank. The fire station can provide one 100,000 gallons water truck. The worst risk area in the facility requires 5,000 gpm. Per company standard, firewater is required for a minimum duration of 4 hours. 20 minutes water supply is considered grossly inadequate. I am trying to make the argument that NFPA, API or any other standard allows reduction in full water coverage during the impairment period. I understand NFPA 25, chapter 15 calls for some measures during the impairment period. Unfortunately, I don't believe NFPA 25, chapter 15 addresses my concern adequately. What magic will the fire station perform if there is no water during the unlikely event of a fire during the impairement?

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#3
In reply to #2

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/02/2017 12:03 PM

I'm thinking your insurance company is one you want to ask. Perhaps a plan where you rent a couple of tanker trailers to hold some water from the tank while you do the work would satisfy the indemnity requirements.

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#4
In reply to #3

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/02/2017 12:43 PM

I have to agree, renting tanker trailers with the same capacity as the existing tank would be the safest. just got make sure that the fire department can connect to the outlet.

When I've had to work on fire systems, I've always at least one fire truck standing by on-site, cuts response time by not having to go through dispatch.

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#5
In reply to #4

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/02/2017 1:05 PM

Good point on the "connections".

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#12
In reply to #3

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/03/2017 10:41 PM

Agree 100%.

The insurance company will require that you comply with all applicable codes, and may even limit activities for which they will provide coverage.

From my experience in plants maintenance work can involve hot work flammable/combustible material and reactive materials, or any combination thereof.

Comments regarding compatibility of connections with fire department equipment were also on the money,

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#14
In reply to #12

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/04/2017 1:14 AM

Unfortunately, we can only give 1 GA to a reply. And I already did it. So if you feel the same way, then give BSR"s #3 a GA!

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#11
In reply to #2

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/03/2017 7:18 PM

Uh,,, would you mind checking your numbers on that 100,000 gallon water truck? I work for a volunteer fire dept., and that would be over 800,000 lbs of water, plus the weight of the tanker. You would crash through every bridge and culvert you drive over with that much weight.

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#13
In reply to #11

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/04/2017 1:04 AM

Wait ... where did you come with a 100,000-gallon tank? The OP/AP never stated the volume of the tank. Brave Sir Robbin suggested renting "Tanker Trailer(s)" and I concur. Unless I misread the AP's/OP, I didn't see any volume stated, just an unknown volume size of the tank. 100,000 gallons would still fit easily in 2 or 3- 40-foot semi-tankers.

Makes no sense to "to over Engineer" a simple problem.

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#15
In reply to #13

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/04/2017 1:30 AM

Post #2 did indeed say the fire department could supply one 100,000 gallon tanker.

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#16
In reply to #15

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/04/2017 1:44 AM

That they did in #2, but they ID themselves's as "AP #1". As alway's on CR4, people come here asking questions and not giving all the info. needed to fully understand their question?

Then come back as a legit name?

I still think Brave Sir Robin nailed it on the head

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#17
In reply to #15

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/04/2017 10:12 PM

Is it possible that Post #2 was referring to a 100,000 gallon CAPACITY tanker, to be filled at the site?

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#18
In reply to #17

Re: Firewater storage tank

06/04/2017 11:03 PM

NO!

From Reference.com:

QUICK ANSWER

Small tanker trucks have a maximum capacity of 3,000 gallons, while large tankers have a maximum capacity of 11,600 gallons.

You would need 9 of the large maximum capacity tankers to hold 100,000 gallons of water.

100,000 gallons of water occupies approximately 13,370 cubic feet. I know that tankers aren't cylindrical, but for an approximation, a cylinder 8 feet in diameter would have to be 266 feet long to hold 100,000 gallons of water! If we increase the diameter to 12 feet, it would still have to be 118 feet long!

Moving even an empty 100,000 gallon tank on a road or highway would require all sorts of special permits, a police escort, and most likely a crew to lift all sorts of wires along the way, assuming a route could be found that avoids low overpasses.

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#6

Re: Firewater Storage Tank

06/02/2017 2:05 PM

The facility's fire insurance company will have access to these things. And, joy of joys, the best advice possible is only a phone call away.

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#7

Re: Firewater Storage Tank

06/02/2017 2:56 PM

I would contact the fire department and ask what they need in the way of water supply setup....they may have portable tanks and/or other materials/suggestions that are compatible with your situation and their needs....they may have a standard way of handling these types of situations...You may have to curtail some high risk activities during the maintenance interval....

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#8

Re: Firewater Storage Tank

06/02/2017 4:05 PM

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#9
In reply to #8

Re: Firewater Storage Tank

06/03/2017 12:18 AM

I was watch to see how many posts there would be before someone would bring up the true meaning of "firewater", as opposed to "fire water". You're the one!

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#10
In reply to #9

Re: Firewater Storage Tank

06/03/2017 12:49 AM

And to post as an "AP"? At least Lyn has more balls than that! To Take down a fire suppression system is serious shit, no joking aside

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#19

Re: Firewater Storage Tank

06/05/2017 10:09 AM

The tanks I have built for permanent plant fire protection always have been (2) tanks

on every site. On the other hand I have seen single tank on many installation as well.

I honestly do not know how they use them. I know people who work for fire safety calculate the water requirements and go thorough fire hazard review. I think in this case the people who is going to fight the fire in emergency are the best advisor. During construction phase I have heard some site use temporary pond storage for fire water storage and use the water from it for fire fighting effort.

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#20

Re: Firewater Storage Tank

06/05/2017 1:05 PM

Fire codes will typically specify the system requirements for normal operation. When you go into a maintenance situation that is abnormal, you need to take appropriate steps to ensure safety. At one company, there were restricted activities during fire system maintenance, such as limited welding and grinding. At another, we had to ensure that fire extinguishers were present at specific locations during sprinkler system outages for maintenance. Your local fire marshal will tell you what you have to do to meet regulations and your insurance company will typically accept the fire marshal's direction and advice. I would be very surprised if you were required to maintain an alternate water supply if your fire system storage tank was drained for maintenance, but I would expect that you would have to put a plan in place for safe operation or provide alternate fire protection.

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#21

Re: Firewater Storage Tank

06/07/2017 12:04 PM

If you are in the USA, every step of the way in this project, take along your jurisdiction's fire marshal.

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