Possible fire system solution - Let me know what you think

JB-13

Active Member
Posts
33
Reaction
0
So after all of the fire talks and seeing danzo’s video it got me thinking. ( Short intro: I have no fabricating or safety background and my racing experience goes as far as chasing a TT for the past season.) But I have spent the good majority of my life in construction. My thought is could a fire sprinkler system be set up in a race vehicle similar to those in homes/commercial buildings? The sprinkler heads could be mounted in strategic locations where fires are prone to occur. Obviously they couldn’t cover everything but critical areas in the vehicle. Of most of the stories I’ve heard by the time the driver/co-driver realizes there is a fire it is almost too late. The sprinkler could run off of a separate tank from the manually operated system. Sensors can be installed at the tank for each line where a low voltage wire hooked up to an LED could notify the co driver that a sprinkler in a given area is going off. Too me this idea helps prevent the fire and notifies the passengers long before smoke is coming into their helmets. I pitched this idea this weekend to a friend who works for a fire system contractor, he told me that he could make that system work, the sprinkler heads can vary in temp all the way up too 600 degrees before breaking the filament. What do you think RDC? Has this been attempted? Why wouldn’t it work? Like I said I don’t have much experience, but if this could save lives or peoples hard work and money, then please by all means take my idea and run with it.

(sorry to the mods if i put this in the wrong section, figured it needed more attention)
 

cixelsyd

Well-Known Member
Posts
108
Reaction
0
One thing that could be a problem would be if you couldn't run something other than water through the sprinkler heads.
 

JB-13

Active Member
Posts
33
Reaction
0
My contractor friend told me that they can run more than water, my understanding was that it could be the same fire supression fluid that is currently used under the right amount of pressure. And Im not sure about shock and vibration. Typically the sprinkler fillament is a glass tube with liquid inside that breaks the glass when reaching a certain tempurature. My initial idea was to have a sprinkler head near the transmission which is usually covered by a belly pan or some sort of skid plate.
 

danzar

Well-Known Member
Posts
585
Reaction
37
wouldn't work, good idea though. Sprinkler heads are normally a 1/2" orifice, way too large for a small application, the sprinkler heads will not hold up to the beating they would tale on a race vehicle.
 

NicksTrix

Well-Known Member
Posts
3,122
Reaction
72
as racer56 stated, these have been manditory in nascar the last few years. the auto system discharges in the fuel cell/trunk area only. the bottle sits alongside the manually operated one that is stored behind the drivers seat. the manually operated one handles the cab. they have a single temperature rated head/ nozzle in the truck that activates the system to take care of exstinguishing a fuel fire. it will work even if the driver is knocked out from pounding the wall. it all came about after a number of big fires..
great thinking though, keep it up.
 

ndvalium

Rescue Director
Posts
3,069
Reaction
3,050
as racer56 stated, these have been manditory in nascar the last few years. the auto system discharges in the fuel cell/trunk area only. the bottle sits alongside the manually operated one that is stored behind the drivers seat. the manually operated one handles the cab. they have a single temperature rated head/ nozzle in the truck that activates the system to take care of exstinguishing a fuel fire. it will work even if the driver is knocked out from pounding the wall. it all came about after a number of big fires..
great thinking though, keep it up.

However with these systems and even the current ones being used on off road, we still have the major deliema's of:

1) A open enviorment that allows any kind of agent to disperse rapidly and removes the smother effect, especially if a vehicle is still moving and providing a rapid volume of oxygen to the fire.

2) Dirt, Silk, Vibration, debris and 30 million other things encountered on a race course that will hamper the nozzles and the overall product being used.

It is pretty cool though to see everyone really keeping this in front of their mind and trying to find better answers for this problem. I wish we hadnt lost any race cars and am very happy that everyone has gotten out safely as that is obviously the number one concern in every one of these.

As a little side note, I know everyone is required to have a extinguisher on their race car and while I hate the fact that it is a dinkly 2.5 model that is often the choice, if you do go to use your extinguisher, take a half extra second to give it a couple shakes in every direction before squeezing. I have 120 fire extinguishers that I use for various events and one thing I am finding during annual service of them is the powder is getting very compacted in the ones that are bouncing around the desert routinely. If it gets to compacted, the agent does not discharge properly.


(still looking for someone that can carry a 25 lb foam extinguisher on a test run / race situation around the Vegas desert area so I can see if it keeps it foam qualities - so please PM me if you can help)
 

racer56

Well-Known Member
Posts
2,288
Reaction
479
Has anyone ever tried a fire blanket? The fire blanket would serve two purposes. First it would smother the fire and deprive it of oxygen. Second, it would provide temporary containment of the fire, allowing fire extinguishers to be more effective.
 

JB-13

Active Member
Posts
33
Reaction
0
If a supression system won't work then what about temp sensors. I know we monitor motor/trans temperatures and it is displayed on the dash, why not monitor certain exterior temps as well where fires could occur. If we can't stop the fire, then at best those driving can be given more time to exit and extinguish it.
 

ndvalium

Rescue Director
Posts
3,069
Reaction
3,050
If a supression system won't work then what about temp sensors. I know we monitor motor/trans temperatures and it is displayed on the dash, why not monitor certain exterior temps as well where fires could occur. If we can't stop the fire, then at best those driving can be given more time to exit and extinguish it.

I am sure it would take an engine guy to tell us but a temp sensor may work for transmission area but in the areas of the headers where most of the time ignition occurs in my opinion, could a sensor work properly? A sensor would have to determine a fire temp from a header temp which may actually be hotter than the intial fire right?
 
Top