Wormald’s response to the Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage Protection Operational Policy on Fire Fighting Foams.
Wormald is committed to protecting people, property and the environment in the products that we use in our fire suppression systems. The use of any firefighting foam has negative impacts on the environment if not controlled, and Wormald recognises that the Operational Policy is moving to limit and ultimately remove these impacts over a three (3) year timeframe. This allows all stakeholders involved, the opportunity seek alternate firefighting foams that provide an balance between reducing the environmental impacts, and still having the ability to suppress a fire in the shortest amount of time needed.
Our current firefighting foam concentrate used in the Wormald vehicle foam suppression system is Ansul ICAO B 6% AFFF which is supplied to Wormald by Tyco Fire Protection Products (TFPP). TFPP has advised that their current ICAO B 6% AFFF firefighting foam contains no PFOS, and based on a sampling performed on their product manufactured since 2013, the highest recorded level of PFOA detected, was 0.74 parts per million (ppm).
Based on these results, the existing Ansul ICAO B 6% AFFF falls within the Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage Protection Operational Policy definition of C6 Purity Compliant. For a firefighting foam to qualify as “C6 Purity compliant” under the operational policy, the firefighting foam must not have greater than 50 ppm of total impurities in the concentrate for any compounds where the perfluorinated part of the carbon chain is longer than 6 carbon atoms, and 0.74ppm falls well within this measurement.
Wormald is recommending to all its customer’s that the requirements of the QLD policy should be fully complied with as per clause 6.2.4 “Foams containing short-chain fluorotelomers” for the existing Ansul ICAO B 6% AFFF firefighting foam.
Wormald is currently reviewing alternate firefighting foams (Non-persistent type) to enable customers to migrate to a firefighting foam that falls in line with the outcomes of the Operational Policy that the department is seeking. This will take some time to achieve, but we believe it will be completed well before the three (3) year timeframe set by the department.
IB-14 QUEENSLAND OPERATIONAL POLICY: ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT OF FIREFIGHTING FOAM
This Information Bulletin is to inform the fire protection industry and users of firefighting foams of the release and effects of the Queensland Department of Environment and Heritage Protection (DEHP) Operational Policy: Environmental Management of Firefighting Foam.