A static spark in an enclosed space and a build up of 1/32 of an inch (the thickness of a dime) of volatile dust covering 5% surface area of a room dispersed into the air can cause a dust explosion. A study launched by the Chemical Safety Board found that between 1980 and 2005 there have been at least 281 combustible dust fires and explosions. These incidents have taken 119 lives and injured 718 more. These accidents also have an economic impact. Leading insurance firms estimate the direct costs of an explosion typically run in excess of one million dollars, with many unprotected explosions leveling plants, or even closing businesses.
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The oldest and most prevalent fire extinguishant is water. Taking a page out of Mother Nature's book, humans created a water delivery system that mimics rain, the fire sprinkler. Sprinklers have, throughout the years, proven to be an effective fire suppressant and life safety device. Although, there are situations when the use of water may be hazardous,, damaging, or impractical.
For instance, introducing water into a data center would be damaging to the computer components, whereas, a clean agent system extinguishes a fire without damaging electronic components. In another instance in a manufacturing plant introducing water to a process or existing fire may exacerbate the situation, but a clean agent system would not adversely react with the process or fire, thus saving lives and equipment.
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Traditional detection is not always the best choice. Take for example a room that has a significant amount of airflow or high ceilings. It would take a significant amount of heat or smoke to reach the detectors or require the installation of additional detectors, which is not cost effective. Flagship Fire, Inc. offers an assortment of detection types, ranging from air sampling units to optical smoke and fire sensors.
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