SAFETY CIRCULAR 16/2017
File: D03803 | NOVEMBER 2016
SAFE HANDLING OF FIREFIGHTING FOAM CONCENTRATES
The Class A, Class B, High Expansion Foam and Training Foam concentrates used by DFES can cause serious eye damage and skin irritation on contact. Correct PPC must be worn whenever handling foam concentrates.
Recent station visits undertaken as part of the Legacy Foam Management Strategy have identified varying levels of understanding of the safe handling procedures for the firefighting foam concentrates used by DFES and where to obtain Safety Data Sheets (SDS) for these products.
DFES currently use four foam concentrates:
- CLASS A Foam – PHOS-CHEK WD881
- CLASS B Foam – SABO Hydrex AR 3×6 FFFP
- High Expansion – JET X 2 3/4%
- Training Foam – Fomtec Trainer E-Lite
The Class A, Class B, High Expansion and Training Foam concentrates used by DFES are irritating to skin and have the potential to cause serious damage if they enter the eye. The Safety Data Sheets for all three foam concentrates detail similar safe handling and first aid measures:
- use in well ventilated areas;
- wear tight sealing safety goggles, protective gloves and protective clothing;
- do not eat, drink or smoke when using this product.
First Aid Measures
- Eye contact – rinse thoroughly with plenty of water for at least 15 minutes lifting upper and lower eyelids. Seek medical attention.
- Skin contact – remove contaminated clothing and wash skin thoroughly with soap and water. Seek medical attention if skin irritation develops or persists. Wash affected clothing before re-use.
- Swallowed – rinse mouth with water. Do NOT induce vomiting. Seek medical attention.
- Inhalation – remove to fresh air. If breathing is difficult administer oxygen. Get medical attention immediately if symptoms occur.
The SDS for each of these foam concentrates can be accessed from Doctrine Resources > Station/Brigade/Group/Unit > Safety Data Sheets, or via the links below:
Personnel are also reminded of the requirements for B Class foam usage and storage detailed in SOP 3.17.3 – Use of B Class Foam.
Information on the ongoing Legacy Foam Strategy (AFFF) is available on the DFES Portal.
DEPUTY COMMISSIONER CAPABILITY
Full links for volunteers and extranet users: