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951(23) Improved quidelines for marine portable fire extinguishers
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Improved guidelines for Marine portable fire extinguishers

  dd-mm-yyyy = Entry into force
DocumentA.951(23)05-12-2003
Revokes A.602(15)Expired 04-12-2003

THE ASSEMBLY,

RECALLING Article 15(j) of the Convention on the International Maritime Organization concerning the functions of the Assembly in relation to regulations and guidelines concerning maritime safety,

RECALLING ALSO that, by resolution A.602(15), it adopted the Revised Guidelines for Marine Portable Fire Extinguishers, to supplement the relevant requirements of chapter II-2 of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS), 1974, as amended, as well as chapter V of the Torremolinos International Convention for the Safety of Fishing Vessels, 1977,

RECOGNIZING the need to further improve the said Revised Guidelines following the adoption of amendments to chapter II-2 of the 1974 SOLAS Convention and of the 1993 Torremolinos Protocol to the 1977 Torremolinos Convention referred to above, and in the light of the experience gained from the application of the Revised Guidelines,

HAVING CONSIDERED the recommendation made by the Maritime Safety Committee at its seventy-fifth session,

  1. ADOPTS the Improved Guidelines for Marine Portable Fire Extinguishers, the text of which is set out in the Annex to the present resolution;

  2. RECOMMENDS Governments concerned to apply the annexed Improved Guidelines in conjunction with the appropriate requirements of the international instruments referred to above;

  3. AUTHORIZES the Maritime Safety Committee to keep the Improved Guidelines under review and amend or extend them as necessary;

  4. REVOKES resolution A.602(15).

01 Scope

1 Scope

These Guidelines have been developed to supplement the relevant requirements for marine portable fire extinguishers1 of the International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea 74, as amended, the International Code for Fire Safety Systems (FSS Code) and the 1993 Torremolinos Protocol relating to the Torremolinos International Convention for the Safety of Fishing Vessels, 1977. The Guidelines are offered to Administrations to assist them in determining appropriate design and construction parameters. The status of the Guidelines is advisory. Their content is based on current practices and does not exclude the use of designs and materials other than those indicated below.


1 Wherever in the text of these Guidelines the word .portable extinguisher. appears it should be taken as meaning. marine portable fire extinguisher..

02 Definitions

2 Definitions

2.1 An extinguisher is an appliance containing an extinguishing medium, which can be expelled by the action of internal pressure and be directed into a fire. This pressure may be stored pressure or be obtained by release of gas from a cartridge.

2.2 A portable extinguisher is one, which is designed to be carried and operated by hand, and which in working order has a total weight of not more that 23 kg.

2.3Extinguishing medium is the substance contained in the extinguisher which is discharged to cause extinction of fire.

2.4Charge of an extinguisher is the mass or volume of the extinguishing medium contained in the extinguisher. The quantity of the charge of water or foam extinguishers is normally expressed in volume (litres) and that of other types of extinguishers in mass (kilograms).

03 Classification

3 Classification

3.1 Extinguishers are classified according to the type of extinguishing medium they contain. At present the types of extinguishers and the uses for which they are recommended are as follows:

Extinguishing mediumRecommended for use on fires involving

Water
Water with additives

 

wood, paper, textiles and similar materials

Foam

 

wood, paper, textiles and flammable liquids

Dry powder/dry chemical (standard/classes B, C )

 

flammable liquids, electrical equipment and flammable gases

Dry powder/dry chemical (multiple or general purpose/classes A, B, C)

 

wood, paper, textiles, flammable liquids, electrical equipment and flammable gases

Dry powder/dry chemical (metal)

 

combustible metals

Carbon dioxide

 

flammable liquids and electrical equipment

Wet chemical for class F or K

 

cooking grease, fats or oil fires
Clean agents2
 

3.2 A table is provided in the appendix which describes the general characteristics of each type of extinguisher.


2 Refer to the recommendations by the International Organization for Standardization, in particular Publication ISO 7165:1999, Fire-fighting . Portable fire extinguishers . Performance and construction.

04 Construction

4 Construction

4.1 The construction of an extinguisher should be designed and manufactured for simple and rapid operation, and ease of handling.

4.2 Extinguishers should be manufactured to a recognized national or international standard1, which includes a requirement that the body, and all other parts subject to internal pressure, be tested:

  1. to a pressure of 5.5 MPa or 2.7 times the normal working pressure, whichever is the higher, for extinguishers with a service pressure not exceeding 2.5 MPa; or

  2. in accordance with the recognized standard for extinguishers with a service pressure exceeding 2.5 MPa.

4.3 In the design of components, selection of materials and determination of maximum filling ratios and densities, consideration should be given to the temperature extremes to which extinguishers may be exposed on board ships and operating temperature ranges specified in the recognized standards.

4.4 The materials of construction of exposed parts and adjoining dissimilar metals should be carefully selected to function properly in the marine environment.


1 Refer to the recommendations by the International Organization for Standardization, in particular Publication ISO 7165:1999, Fire-fighting - Portable fire extinguishers - Performance and construction.

05 Fire classifications

5 Fire classifications

5.1 Fire classifications are generally indicated as A, B, C, D and F (or K). There are currently two standards, defining classes of fires according to the nature of the material undergoing combustion, as follows:

International Organization for Standardization (ISO standard 3941)1National Fire Protection Association (NFPA 10)
Class A:

Fires involving solid materials, usually of an organic nature, in which combustion normally takes place with the formation of glowing embers.

 

Class A:Fires in ordinary combustible materials such as wood, cloth, paper, rubber and many plastics.
Class B:

Fires involving liquids or lliquefiable solids

Class B:

Fires in flammable liquids, oils, greases, tars, oil base paints, lacquers and flammable gases.

 

Class C:Fires involving gasesClass C:

Fires, which involve energized electrical equipment where the electrical non-conductivity of the extinguishing medium is of importance. (When electrical equipment is de-energized, extinguishers for class A or B fires may be used safely.)

 

Class D:Fires involving metalsClass D:

Fires in combustible metals such as magnesium, titanium, zirconium, sodium, lithium and potassium.

 

Class F:Fires involving cooking oilsClass F:Fires involving cooking grease, fats and oils.

1 Comite Europeen de Normalisation (CEN standard EN2) closely follows ISO standard 3941

06 Test specifications

6 Test specifications

6.1 Construction, performance and fire-extinguishing test specifications should be to the satisfaction of the Administration, having due regard to an established international standard1.


1 Refer to the recommendations by the International Organization for Standardization, in particular Publication ISO 7165:1999, Fire-fighting - Portable fire extinguishers - Performance and construction.

07 Criteria for assessing compliance with chapter 4 of the FSS Code and regulations V/20 and V/38 of the 1993 Torremolinos Protocol relating to the 1977 Torremolinos Convention

7 Criteria for assessing compliance with chapter 4 of the FSS Code and regulations V/20 and V/38 of the 1993 Torremolinos Protocol relating to the 1977 Torremolinos Convention

7.1 Chapter 4 of the FSS Code requires that extinguishers have a fire-extinguishing capability at least equivalent to that of a 9 L fluid extinguisher having a rating of 2A on class A fire which may be water or foam as required by the Administration. This equivalence may be demonstrated by fire test ratings determined according to an international, national or other recognized standard1.

7.2 The size and type of extinguishers should be dependent upon the potential fire hazards in the protected spaces while avoiding a multiplicity of types. Care should also be taken to ensure that the quantity of extinguishing medium released in small spaces does not endanger personnel.


1 Refer to the recommendations by the International Organization for Standardization, in particular Publication ISO 7165:1999, Fire-fighting - Portable fire extinguishers - Performance and construction.

08 Marking of extinguishers

8 Marking of extinguishers

8.1 Each extinguisher should be clearly marked with the following minimum information:

  1. name of the manufacturer;

  2. types of fire and rating for which the extinguisher is suitable;

  3. type and quantity of extinguishing medium;

  4. approval details;

  5. instructions for use and recharge (it is recommended that operating instructions be given in pictorial form, in addition to explanatory text in language understood by the likely user);

  6. year of manufacture;

  7. temperature range over which the extinguisher will operate satisfactorily; and

  8. test pressure.

09 Periodical inspections and maintenance

9 Periodical inspections and maintenance

9.1 Extinguishers should be subject to periodical inspections in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions and serviced at intervals not exceeding one year.

9.1.1 At least one extinguisher of each type manufactured in the same year and kept on board a ship should be test discharged at five yearly intervals (as part of a fire drill).

9.1.2 All extinguishers together with propellant cartridges should be hydraulically tested in accordance with the recognized standard or the manufacturer's instruction at intervals not exceeding ten years.

9.1.3 Service and inspection should only be undertaken by, or under the supervision of, a person with demonstrable competence, based on the inspection guide in table 9.1.3.

 

9.2 Records of inspections should be maintained. The records should show the date of inspection, the type of maintenance carried out and whether or not a pressure test was performed.

 

9.3 Extinguishers should be provided with a visual indication of discharge.

 

9.4 Instructions for recharging extinguishers should be supplied by the manufacturer and be available for use on board.

 

ANNUAL INSPECTION

Safety clip and indicating devicesCheck to see if the extinguisher may have been operated
Pressure indicating deviceWhere fitted, check to see that the pressure is within limits. Check that dust covers on pressure indicating devices and relief valves are in place
External examinationInspect for corrosion, dents or damage which may affect the safe operation of the extinghuisher
WeightWeigh the extinguisher and check the mass compared to the fully charged extinguisher
Hose and nozzleCheck that hoses and nozzles are clear and undamaged
Operating instructions

Check that they are in place and legible

 

INSPECTION AT RECHARGE

Water and foam chargesRemove the charge to a clean container if to be reused and check if it is still suitable for further use. Check any charge container
Powder chargesExamine the powder for reuse. Ensure that it is free flowing and that there is no evidence of caking lumps or foreign bodies
Gas cartridge

Examine for damage and corrosion

 

INSPECTION AT FIVE AND TEN YEAR INTERVAL

INSPECTION AFTER DISCHARGE TEST

Air passages and operating mechanismProve clear passage by blowing through vent holes and vent devices in the cap. Check hose, nozzle strainer, discharge tube and breather valve, as applicable. Check the operating and discharge control. Clean and lubricate as required
Operating mechanismCheck that the safety pin is removable and that the lever is undamaged
Gas cartridgeExamine for damage and corrosion. Weigh the cartridge to ascertain that it is within prescribed limits
O-rings washers and hose diaphragmsCheck O-rings and replace hose diaphragms if fitted
Water and foam bodiesInspect the interior. Check for corrosion and lining deterioration. Check separate containers for leakage or damage
Powder body

Examine the body and check internally for corrosion and lining deterioration

 

INSPECTION AFTER RECHARGE

Water and foamReplace the charge in accordance with the manufacturers instructions
ReassembleReassemble the extinguisher in accordance with the manufacturers instructions
Maintenance labelFill in entry on maintenance label, including full weight
Mounting of extinguishersCheck the mounting bracket or stand
ReportComplete a report on the state of maintenance of the extinguisher.

Table 9.1.3 - Inspection guide

Appendix Types of extinguishers

 

TYPES OF EXTINGUISHERS

Extinguishing medium used:

Water

Foam

Powder

Carbon dioxide

Clean agents

Water, with possible salts in solution                              

Water solution containing foam generating substances

 

Dry chemical powdersPressurized carbon dioxide               
Expellant charge of the extinguisher (stored pressure or cartridge as indicated)               Carbon dioxide or other pressurized inert gases or compressed air (stored pressure or separate cartridge)  Carbon dioxide or other pressurized inert gases or compressed air (stored pressure or separate cartridge)

Carbon dioxide or other inert gases or dry air (stored pressure or seperate cartridge)

 

  
The discharge of the extinguisher is achieved by: Opening of the valve. Action of pressurized gas (opening of the cartridge)  Opening of the valve. Action of pressurized gas (opening of the cartridge)Opening of the valve. Action of pressurized gas (opening of the cartridge)

Opening of the valve of the container constituting the extinguisher

 

 


 

TYPES OF EXTINGUISHERS

The discharged extinguishing medium consists of:

Water

Foam

Powder

Carbon
dioxide

Clean agents

Water with possible salts in solution                              Foam containing the gas used

Dry chemical powders and carbon dioxide or other gas

 

Carbon dioxide                

The discharged extinguishing medium causes the extinction of the fire by:

Cooling of the burning materials. Water evaporation and consequent  formation of a local atmosphere (water/steam) which isolates the burning products from the surrounding air

Formation of a foam layer which isolates the burning products from the surrounding air and cooling in the case of class A fires

Inhibition of the combustion process by the interrupting the chemical reaction. Some separation of burning materials from the surrounding air

 

Formation of a local inert atmosphere (carbon dioxide) which isolates the burning material from the surrounding air. Smothering and cooling action of carbon dioxide 
The electrical
resistance of
the discharged
extinguishing
medium is:
Very lowVery low  Varied

Very high.
Under intense
heat some
powders may be
electrically
conductive

 

Very high 
Operating
peculiarities
and
limitations:

The jet or spray of the extinguisher should be directed towards the base of the fire

 

Powder mixture subject to windage;  they may therefore have reduced effectiveness in the open or in ventilated spaces

 

Gas subject to windage; they therefore have limited effectiveness in the open or in ventilated spaces 
 The extinction of the fire achieved only when all the  burning surface is covered by foam

 

 

TYPES OF EXTINGUISHERS

 

Water

Foam

Powder

Carbon
dioxide

Clean agents

Disadvantages
and dangers:
Not to be used where there is electrical hazard

Generated powder
mixtures may be
suffocating and can
impair vision. Powder
can damage
electrical contact.

 

Carbon dioxide may be suffocating               
  

 

 

 

Maintenance:

Extinguishers with copper or copper alloy body should not be polished with products of corrosive or abrasive nature which may cause wall thickness reduction. Such extinguishers should be avoided but where used they should preferably be painted externally.

 

Some types of
powder may be
altered by
humidity, therefore,
avoid the refilling
of the extinguisher
in humid locations.
  
The charge can freeze at temperatures of about 0ºC (unless the charge is made non-freezable chemically) The charge can freeze at about 5ºC. The charge can be altered by elevated temperatures (about 4ºC or more). Therefore, the extinguisher should not be installed in positions where it may be exposed to high or low temperatures.
   When a carbon dioxide container is provided, avoid the installation of the extinguisher in excessively warm locations, where the internal pressure of the carbon dioxide in the container might rise to very high values.

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