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Type IIIB liquid storage on racks

Type IIIB liquid storage on racks

(OP)
I'm trying to retrofit an existing fire sprinkler system in a storage warehouse that will be storing mostly motor, transmission and hydraulic oil in 5 gallon plastic containers. The maximum storage height is 16'-6' and the ceiling height is 20'-6". I'm following NFPA 30 for the design criteria and found that Scheme A needs to be used for this type of commodity unless someone thinks otherwise. This Scheme prescribes the location of in rack sprinklers and the required density for ceiling sprinklers. It also states that barriers are needed at different levels. I want to avoid using in rack sprinklers in the retrofit due to the additional cost. Is there a section on any of the NFPA 13, NFPA 30 or other that states the limits on when you must use in rack sprinklers and when they are not needed? The only one I found is that when using ESFR sprinklers heads and a building height of less than 45 ft, in rack sprinklers are not required. I don't think the existing piping and water available can support the large volumes of water required by the ESFR sprinklers. Any suggestions will be appreciated.

RE: Type IIIB liquid storage on racks

NFPA 30 is what you need to follow, and in-racks sprinklers are required to control the fire. Think about it you have a plastic container with a combustible liquid in it, if a fire starts the container will fail early in the fire and rain down burning liquid spreading the fire. The in-racks are your only hope in controlling the fire. Sometimes you can not store what you want unless you have an adequate water supply. Perhaps they can store on the floor and not in the racks, that maybe an alternative worth investigating.


Also check FM 7-29 IGNITABLE LIQUID STORAGE IN PORTABLE CONTAINERS, I believe FM will also require the in-racks.

RE: Type IIIB liquid storage on racks

In-rack sprinklers may not be required if solid pallets are not used. I your case, I would look for that exception and determine if you meet the criteria for storage height, quantity within a fire area, fire rating of storage area aisle spacing and other conditions..

RE: Type IIIB liquid storage on racks

Between NFPA 30 and FMLPDS 7-29, K 14 ESFR is your only option, and all of your commodities must be cartoned. You need to ask if these commodities will be hand-picked from the racks because if so, in-rack sprinklers with horizontal barriers is the prescribed protection. The commodity is high hazard and the protection schemes are intended to control the fire before the plastic bottle is breached. Your only other option is AFFF, but even, a reduction in the discharge density can only be approved based on the listing of the foam.

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