Improvement of preventive fire safety at a tank farm

Tank farms are used for the storage of extremely flammable and explosive substances; Consequently, preventive fire safety is of major significance. When rehabilitation of such a tank farm is planned, contractors often advocate in depth – and thus expensive – measures. A fire-protection answer developed by TÜV SÜD demonstrates that an equivalent level of security can be reached with a much more cost-effective resolution. A central position in damage limitation is performed by early fireplace detection using thermographic cameras.
Numerous tank farms throughout Germany retailer petrol, diesel, kerosene or liquefied petroleum fuel (LPG). In contact with air, these extremely flammable substances can kind explosive mixtures. Given this, tank farms require special measures in the area of preventive hearth protection. If rehabilitation of fire-protection systems turns into essential at an older tank farm, far-reaching measures ought to be taken, not only by the use of precaution but additionally to exclude possible legal responsibility risks. And but not each measure that’s technologically feasible is also essential in case of a rehabilitation, as could be seen from the example of a tank farm in Bavaria, Germany.
The tank farm is located at a basin of a river port in Bavaria. The part of the tank farm in want of rehabilitation covers 24 tanks with a storage volume of between 600 and a pair of,000 cubic metres. The tank farm is used for intermediate storage of highly flammable fluids with flame factors of < 21 degrees Celsius, as outlined in the German hazardous substances laws. In hearth inspections and on-site inspections after incidents, the inspectors had recognized major non-conformities in the fire-extinguishing system. To exchange the outdated and non-conforming system, an engineering firm submitted an intensive listing of measures. These measures fully satisfied all regulatory requirements but represented a very cost-intensive answer, requiring a full rehabilitation using traditional extinguishing techniques. For the tank-farm operating company, the prices of implementing these measures would have added up to 1.7 million euros.
In hearth protection, the problem lies in connecting well-founded technological data and legal know-how. In apply this means harmonising reasonable engineering providers and legal applications to obtain a cohesive, economically feasible and easily applied fire-protection idea.
Alternative solution developed by TÜV SÜD
At the working company’s request, TÜV SÜD’s third-party consultants validated the person measures and the cost-effectiveness of the rehabilitation plan submitted by the engineering agency. Owing to the big number of deficiencies recognized in the tank farm, the experts first ready a listing of priorities with the measures necessary to fulfil the safety requirements and obtain the protection objectives. They arrived on the conclusion that not all of the proposed measures actually wanted to be applied. Starting from this discovering, they then drew up an alternative fire-protection concept that may in the end reduce the projected costs by one third.
TÜV SÜD’s rehabilitation plan included the fire-protection infrastructure already in place on the tank farm, corresponding to a non-automatic foam extinguishing system with a complete foaming-agent provide of 10,500 litres distributed across two tanks, two submerged pumps within the port basin with a pump capacity of 180 m3 per hour to ensure water provide for fire fighting and sprinkling the shells and the roofs of the tanks, manual triggering of the shut-off valves and a transformer station powered by the regional energy provider. The feed-in of emergency energy was effected by the native professional fire department.
The engineering agency, in contrast, had planned to replace the entire fire-extinguishing system. They needed to install three cellular extinguishing-agent distribution systems in container kind for distant controlled sprinkling and foaming of the tanks. This answer would have required the set up of new electrical, operational and management methods as nicely as new pipe routes connecting the extinguishing-agent distribution systems with the fire-fighting systems in the tank fields. The costs for the three extinguishing-agent distribution techniques in container kind alone would have added up to around 1.2 million euros.
Incipient fire fighting state of affairs with intact energy supply and free access to the tank farm.
Implementation of three packages of measures
The alternative rehabilitation idea developed by TÜV SÜD, which additionally met the necessities of the Bavarian Building Code (BayBo [1]), offered for 3 important packages of measures to attain the protection and safety objectives.
First, installation of a totally automated infrared measuring system made by DIAS Infrared to ensure early hearth detection. The system’s seven thermographic cameras are put in on pan-tilt models. They detect changes in temperature on the surfaces of the tanks made of different materials and situated within the space monitored by the cameras, earlier than these modifications in temperature could cause a fire. As the cameras can transfer, the areas to be monitored can be divided into sectors. The cameras then method these sectors cyclically in sequence. To defend the cameras towards external influences, they are housed in ventilated and heated weatherproof enclosures (Fig. 1). Monitoring focuses totally on the protection units of the tanks, pumps and motors and on the filling techniques on the tank-farm premises. The management room at the tank farm and the local professional fire division are notified immediately as soon as the temperature exceeds a certain limit. The measure package also includes remote triggering of the extinguishing-agent supply from the management centre and automation of the safety units.
Incipient fireplace combating state of affairs with power loss the place access to the tank farm is blocked by a cargo train.
In addition, it covers rehabilitation of the sprinkler and foam-extinguisher system. In this context, TÜV SÜD’s solution offered for alternative of the leaking and corroded pipe sections with new pipes and for set up of three fastened foam-extinguishing techniques in the type of foam displays to struggle incipient fires directly. In addition, a mobile foam monitor was planned as a backup.
A third focus area considerations safeguarding the ability provide required for early fire detection and fireplace combating. According to the regional vitality supplier, power outages may have a period of no much less than 30 minutes. Given this, the tank-farm wanted an independent energy supply system that was in a position to ensure power provide for no much less than 2 hours. The specialists relied on battery buffering and a diesel operated emergency energy unit to resolve this drawback.
Fire protection must ensure achievement of the protection objectives
Protection objectives and equivalent safety level reached
The fire-protection answer introduced by TÜV SÜD was agreed with each the tank farm’s working firm, the municipal authority and the professional fireplace division. The three measure packages additionally complied with the required safety objectives and the safety ranges. And ultimately, they proved far more cost-effective than the answer initially proposed. Since rehabilitation of the tank farm, early fire detection along side improved fire-protection infrastructure has become a central part of injury limitation. Since the rehabilitation idea was implemented, the tank-farm’s working firm – working with the professional fire division – has been capable of successfully counteract all attainable eventualities of incipient hearth successfully and at an early stage, even in instances of energy loss or when access to the tank farm is blocked (see Figures 2 and 3).
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Classification underneath the Bavarian Building Code (Bayerische Bauordnung, BayBo)
Tank farms are installations of a particular kind and use (special structures). Their operation entails the dealing with and storing of extremely explosive or flammable substances. Protection measures and safety precautions thus not solely fall throughout the operating company’s accountability but are additionally a matter of public interest. Given this, the BayBO stipulates requirements together with material necessities which, as “General clauses of fire protection”, assist to assist the safety aims outlined in Article 12. However, in pressure gauge แบบ น้ำมัน with article three (1) deviations from the technical building rules are possible if an alternative answer is discovered that is equal in phrases of fulfilling the overall necessities in paragraph 1. In different words, the requirements laid down in the Building Code are deemed complied with if the commonly recognised rules of architecture and technology are fulfilled.

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