Industrial Fire Fighting Equipment: 4 Common Challenges!

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Industrial firefighters must be prepared to respond to fires of flammable liquid and compressed gases, hazardous material releases, rescues and medical emergencies throughout oil, petro-chemical, pipeline and port facilities.

In order to prevent loss of people, facilities, and equipment, these emergency responders must have the proper response equipment and advanced training in tactics to combat many types of incidents.

Industrial firefighting has a number of specific risks associated with it. Due to industrial facilities exposure to large volumes of volatile raw materials, their apparatus are normally designed to flow high volumes of water and foam or other extinguishing agents. Due to the exertion placed on this industrial fire fighting equipment, a unique set of challenges are faced that there is a need to mitigate against. Here are 4 common challenges when managing Industrial Fire Fighting Equipment:

1. Ensuring Equipment Suitability

The members of industrial response teams will be aware of their individual roles and responsibilities and trained in all aspects of response. To complement this preparedness it is essential to ensure that the equipment held is relevant to the product types handled in each facility and that this equipment has the capacity to provide a sufficient response. The difficulty is ensuring that product specifications are readily available to response personnel. Ensuring the correct product is used when in a response scenario.

2. Managing Multiple Sites

Organizations dealing with industrial fires face the difficulty of managing equipment across multiple sites. These organizations need to know equipment supply levels, condition and availability instantly when an incident occurs. The difficulty in tracking this however is that the equipment also needs to be stored in a very specific way to ensure an efficient response. Equipment is stored in a ready to use manner and can be packaged in bags or boxes preloaded on fire trucks.

3. Tracking Repairs

In order for organizations to respond effectively there is a need to have an infrastructure that enables them to track and conduct their own repairs as part of a response. When dealing with large volumes of industrial equipment across a number of locations, companies can find that the process of scheduling repairs and monitoring work can turn into a complex undertaking if they're not prepared.

4. Scheduling Maintenance

Organizations have plans in place to coordinate the response to an incident on site. The plan brings together the various elements of the response and it should be kept up to date and tested on a regular basis. This plan relies on the fact that equipment is satisfactory, has maintenance plans and a recorded history. Many companies have assigned staff who have a sole responsibility of equipment inspection and ensuring equipment is in a constant state of readiness. This is carried out in a labour intensive way by tracking this expensive equipment with an inexpensive spreadsheet or paper based system.

We're always interested in anything that aids responders in improving your capabilities. Being able to easily manage and track your equipment is one of the reasons we created [D4H] Technologies designed especially for response team equipment.

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