Innovative fire-fighting technology from Chubb Fire recently came to the rescue of two buses that caught fire in separate incidents that fortunately passed off without injury or unnecessary drama.
The buses, both using a Direct Acting Powder Suppression System from Chubb Fire supplied to - and installed by - Forman Vehicle Systems, were victims of a fuel fire and an electrical fire, both of which were immediately extinguished without risk to the driver or passengers.
The technology deployed is a simple self-activating system that offers the widest versatility to give a proven cost/performance ratio. It does not rely on any complex electronics or any moving parts, but rather employs a flexible detection and delivery system based on patented tubing manufactured from specially processed polymer materials to achieve the desired heat detection and delivery characteristics.
The tubing, which is pressurised, is placed above potential fire hazards (for example within the engine bay) and secured in place with brackets. The system discharges the extinguishant directly from the burst hole in the tube, at the closest point to the fire, to give the fastest extinguishing time and prevent the fire from spreading.
“The technology we have provided does not need any external energy/power supply,” explains Rob Wakes, Mechanical Fire Sales Executive for Chubb Fire. “This makes it cost effective as no electrical installation/ wiring is required, but more importantly perhaps it means that the system is always operative even during energy break down.”
The system was installed by Forman Vehicle Systems, acknowledged experts in fire protection solutions for transport. Managing Director Terry Forman added: “We are delighted in how the technology has worked, particularly in the example of the electrical fire which can be notoriously difficult to extinguish compared to oil-based fuel fires.”
As well as the Chubb Fire technology, Forman Vehicle Systems has also installed a voice-messaging device to alert drivers to a potential fire hazard, and a method of monitoring temperatures within the engine bay. It is currently working with Chubb Fire in developing a sprinkler device for fighting fires on the upper deck of buses – fires that are normally the result of deliberate vandalism and arson rather than a vehicle malfunction.