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FM Global

Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets 7-29


September 2004
Page 1 of 106

FLAMMABLE LIQUID STORAGE IN PORTABLE CONTAINERS

Table of Contents
Page

1.0 SCOPE ................................................................................................................................................... 4


1.1 Changes .......................................................................................................................................... 4
2.0 LOSS PREVENTION RECOMMENDATIONS ....................................................................................... 4
2.1 Introduction ...................................................................................................................................... 4
2.1.1 Liquid Evaluation ................................................................................................................... 4
2.1.2 General Issues ...................................................................................................................... 4
2.2 Construction and Location ............................................................................................................... 5
2.3 Ignition Source Control .................................................................................................................. 11
2.4 Occupancy ..................................................................................................................................... 17
2.4.1 Ventilation ............................................................................................................................ 17
2.5 Protection ....................................................................................................................................... 18
2.5.1 General ................................................................................................................................ 18
2.5.2 Metal Containers > 60 gal (230 l) (Including IBCs) ............................................................ 19
2.5.3 Metal Containers > 6.5 gal (25 l) and 60 gal (230 l) ....................................................... 20
2.5.4 Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l) ........................................................................................ 24
2.5.5 Plastic, Composite (Plastic-Metal) or Other Combustible Containers > 6.5 gal (25 l) ....... 27
2.5.6 Plastic, Glass, or Other Combustible/Brittle Containers 6.5 gal (25 l) ............................ 30
2.5.7 Yard Storage Any Container Type .................................................................................. 36
2.6 Human Element ............................................................................................................................. 36
2.6.1 Employee Training and Maintenance .................................................................................. 36
3.0 SUPPORT FOR RECOMMENDATIONS ............................................................................................. 37
3.1 Application of Recommendations .................................................................................................. 37
3.2 Liquid Evaluation ........................................................................................................................... 37
3.2.1 Water Miscible Liquids. ....................................................................................................... 40
3.2.2 Emulsions ............................................................................................................................ 41
3.2.3 Viscous Liquids/Viscous Mixtures ....................................................................................... 41
3.2.4 Liquid with Boiling Point <100F (38C) .............................................................................. 42
3.2.5 Liquids with Specific Gravity > 1 ......................................................................................... 42
3.2.6 Ethylene Glycol ................................................................................................................... 42
3.3 Construction and Location ............................................................................................................. 42
3.4 Ignition Source Control .................................................................................................................. 43
3.5 Ventilation ...................................................................................................................................... 44
3.6 Protection ....................................................................................................................................... 44
3.6.1 General ................................................................................................................................ 44
3.6.2 Metal Containers > 60 gal (230 l) ....................................................................................... 45
3.6.3 Metal Containers > 6.5 gal (25 l) and 60 gal (230 l) ....................................................... 45
3.6.4 Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l) ........................................................................................ 46
3.6.5 Plastic or Composite (Plastic-Metal) Containers > 6.5 gal (25 l) ........................................ 47
3.6.6 Plastic, Glass, or Other Combustible/Brittle Containers 6.5 gal (25 l) ............................ 48
4.0 REFERENCES ..................................................................................................................................... 52
4.1 FM Global ...................................................................................................................................... 52
4.2 NFPA Standards ............................................................................................................................ 53
APPENDIX A GLOSSARY OF TERMS ..................................................................................................... 53
APPENDIX B DOCUMENT REVISION HISTORY ..................................................................................... 56
APPENDIX C NFPA STANDARD .............................................................................................................. 56

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7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 2 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

APPENDIX D JOB AIDS ............................................................................................................................ 56


D.1 Abbreviations Used in Fire Protection Tables ............................................................................... 56
D.2 Fire Protection Illustrations ........................................................................................................... 57
D.2.1 In-Rack Layouts .................................................................................................................. 57
D.2.2 Fire Protection Schemes ..................................................................................................... 93

List of Figures
Fig. 1. Location and construction of flammable liquid storage buildings and cutoff rooms. ......................... 6
Fig. 2a. Space separation for large storage pads hydrocarbon liquids (English units) ........................ 12
Fig. 2b. Space separation for large storage pads hydrocarbon liquids (metric units) .......................... 12
Fig. 2c. Space separation for small storage pads hydrocarbon liquids (English units) ........................ 13
Fig. 2d. Space separation for small storage pads hydrocarbon liquids (metric units) .......................... 13
Fig. 3a. Space separation for large storage pads water miscible liquids (English units) ..................... 14
Fig. 3b. Space separation for large storage pads water miscible liquids (metric units) ....................... 14
Fig. 3c. Space separation for small storage pads water miscible liquids (English units) ..................... 15
Fig. 3d. Space separation for small storage pads water miscible liquids (metric units) ....................... 15
Fig. 4a. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme. ..................................................... 58
Fig. 4b. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme. ..................................................... 59
Fig. 4c. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme. ..................................................... 60
Fig. 4d. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme. ..................................................... 61
Fig. 4e. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme. ..................................................... 62
Fig. 4f. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme. ...................................................... 63
Fig. 5a. Single row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers. ......................................................... 64
Fig. 5b. Double row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers. ........................................................ 65
Fig. 5c. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers. ....................................................... 66
Fig. 5d. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers. ....................................................... 67
Fig. 6a. Single row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers. ......................................................... 68
Fig. 6b. Double row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers. ........................................................ 69
Fig. 7a. Single row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers. ......................................................... 70
Fig. 7b. Double row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers. ........................................................ 71
Fig. 8a. Single row rack sprinkler layout water miscible liquids in small metal containers. .................. 72
Fig. 8b. Double row rack sprinkler layout water miscible liquids in small metal containers. ................ 73
Fig. 8c. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout water miscible liquids in small metal containers. ............... 74
Fig. 8d. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout water miscible liquids in small metal containers. ............... 75
Fig. 9a. Double row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. ............... 76
Fig. 9b. Double row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. ............... 77
Fig. 9c. Double row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. ............... 78
Fig. 9d. Double row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. ............... 79
Fig. 9e. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. .............. 80
Fig. 9f. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. ............... 81
Fig. 9g. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. .............. 82
Fig. 9h. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. .............. 83
Fig. 9i. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. ............... 84
Fig. 9j. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. ............... 85
Fig. 9k. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. .............. 86
Fig. 9l. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme. ................ 87
Fig. 10a. Single Row Rack Storage of Group 4 Water Miscible Liquids. ................................................... 88
Fig. 10b. Double Rack Storage of Group 4 Water Miscible Liquids. .......................................................... 89
Fig. 11a. Single Row Rack Storage of Group 4 Water Miscible Liquids. .................................................... 90
Fig. 11b. Double Row Rack Storage of Group 4 Water Miscible Liquids. .................................................. 91
Fig. 12. Double Row Rack Storage of Group 3 Water Miscible Liquids. ................................................... 92
Fig. 13a. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme A. .................................................... 94
Fig. 13b. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme A. .................................................... 95
Fig. 13c. Double row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme A. ................................................... 96
Fig. 13d. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme A. ................................................... 97
Fig. 14a. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme B. .................................................... 99
Fig. 14b. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme B. .................................................. 100
Fig. 14c. Double row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme B. ................................................. 101

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 3

Fig. 14d. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme B. ................................................. 102
Fig. 15a. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme C. .................................................. 104
Fig. 15b. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme C. .................................................. 105
Fig. 15c. Double row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme C. .................................................. 106

List of Tables
Table 1. Location and Construction of Flammable Liquid Storage Buildings orCutoff Rooms with
Containers Less Than or Equal to 60 gal (230 l) ............................................................................ 6
Table 2. Location and Construction of Flammable Liquid Storage Buildings orCutoff Rooms with
Containers Greater Than 60 gal (230 l) ........................................................................................... 7
Table 3. Drainage and Containment Requirements for Metal Containers ................................................... 10
Table 4. Space Separation Between Fire Rated Exterior Walls and Flammable Liquid Storage Pads ...... 11
Table 5. Equipment Ratings in Flammable Liquid Storage Occupancies ................................................... 16
Table 6. Palletized or Solid Pile Storage of Flammable Liquids in Relieving Style Metal Containers >
60 gal (230 l) .................................................................................................................................. 20
Table 7. Double and Single Row Rack Storage of Flammable Liquids in Metal Containers > 6.5 gal (25 l)
and 60 gal (230 l) With Aisles a Minimum of 8 ft (2.4 m) Wide ................................................ 22
Table 8. Rack Storage of Flammable Liquids in Metal Containers 60 gal (230 l) with a Closed
Head Foam-Water Sprinkler System ............................................................................................. 22
Table 9. Palletized/Solid Pile Storage of Flammable Liquids in Metal Containers > 6.5 gal (25 l)
and 60 gal (230 l) (Apply Table in Accordance with Recommendation 2.5.3.2) ....................... 23
Table 10. Rack Storage of Flammable Liquid in Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l) With Aisles a
Minimum of 8 ft (2.4 m) Wide ..................................................................................................... 25
Table 11. Rack Storage of Liquids With a Closed Cup Flash Point 200F (93C) in Metal Containers
With Aisles a Minimum of 8 ft (2.4 m) Wide (See Note 1) ......................................................... 25
Table 12. Protection for Flammable Liquids in Relieving Style Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l) ............ 26
Table 13. Palletized/Solid Pile Storage of Liquids In Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l) ............................ 27
Table 14. Shelf Storage of Liquids in Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l) .................................................... 27
Table 15. Fire Protection Criteria for Flammable Liquids in Plastic or Glass Containers .......................... 29
Table 16a. Rack Storage of Liquids in Plastic or Glass Containers .......................................................... 32
Table 16b. Rack Storage of Group 1, 2, and 3 Water Miscible Liquids in Plastic or Glass Containers. .. 33
Table 16c. Rack Storage of Group 4 Water Miscible Liquids in Plastic or Glass Containers. (Note 1) .... 34
Table 17. Palletized/Solid Pile Storage of Liquids with Closed Cup Flash Points 200F (93C) and
Group 1-3 Water Miscible Liquids in Plastic Containers ............................................................ 35
Table 18. Flammable Liquid Spill Fire Data ................................................................................................ 39
Table 19. Flammable Liquid Pool Fire Data ............................................................................................... 39
Table 20. Water Miscible Liquid Groupings ................................................................................................. 41
Table 21. Scoping Tests for Flammable Liquids in Small Plastic Containers ............................................. 48
Table 22. Protection Scheme C Ceiling Sprinkler Designs ...................................................................... 103

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7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 4 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

1.0 SCOPE
This data sheet covers the storage of chemically stable flammable liquids stored in portable, non-pressurized
metal, glass, fiberboard, plastic or composite containers of any size.
For the purposes of this standard, the term flammable liquid is used to represent any liquid that has a
measurable fire point.
This data sheet does not apply to:
1. Dispensing of flammable liquids. Use Data Sheet 7-32, Flammable Liquid Operations, to evaluate all
flammable liquid dispensing operations.
2. Flammable solids or unstable liquids.
3. Liquids that have a flash point but no fire point (see Section 3.2).
4. Aerosols. (See Data Sheet 7-31, Storage of Aerosol Products.)
5. Distilled spirits. (See Data Sheet 8-8, Distilled Spirits Storage.)
6. Stationary tanks. (See Data Sheet 7-88, Storage Tanks for Flammable Liquids.)
7. Compressed or Flammable Liquefied Gases. (See Data Sheet 7-50, Compressed Gases in Cylinders;
Data Sheet 7-53, Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG); and Data Sheet 7-55/12-28, Liquefied Petroleum Gas.)

1.1 Changes
September 2004. Metric values in figures for fire protection Scheme A were corrected.

2.0 LOSS PREVENTION RECOMMENDATIONS

2.1 Introduction

2.1.1 Liquid Evaluation


2.1.1.1 Protect all flammable liquids, mixtures, emulsions, or semi-solids (i.e., materials that are spreadable
at room temperature) that have measurable flash points and fire points in accordance with this standard.
Criteria for evaluating some liquids are provided below:
a) Liquids, mixtures or emulsions that do not exhibit a fire point (see Appendix A) can be treated as a
nonflammable liquid.
b) Evaluate and group water miscible flammable liquids in accordance with Section 3.2.1. Treat Group 5
water miscible liquids as nonflammable liquids.
c) Viscous mixtures (see Section 3.2.3 for definition of viscous mixture) of flammable liquids and solids
in metal containers can be protected using the criteria provided in Data Sheet 8-9, Storage of Class 1, 2,
3, 4 and Plastic Commodities, for Class 3 commodities.
d) Viscous mixtures (see Section 3.2.3 for definition of viscous mixture) of flammable liquids and solids
in plastic containers can be protected using the criteria provided in Data Sheet 8-9, Storage of Class 1, 2,
3, 4 and Plastic Commodities, for Group A unexpanded plastics.
e) Emulsions with up to 20% flammable liquid in a water base can be treated as nonflammable liquids.
f) Protect ethylene glycol in 6.5 gal (25 l) or smaller plastic containers using the protection criteria for liquids
with flash points greater than or equal to 200F (93C) in metal containers.
g) Protect materials that are solid at room temperature, 68F (20C), in accordance with other appropri-
ate FM Global standards (e.g., Data Sheet 8-9, Storage of Class 1, 2, 3, 4 and Plastic Commodities).
An evaluation of the proper commodity classification may be necessary.

2.1.2 General Issues


2.1.2.1 Arrange, locate, and protect dispensing operations in accordance with Data Sheet 7-32, Flammable
Liquid Operations. Cutoff rooms or detached buildings with both flammable liquid storage and dispensing
must meet all applicable recommendations in this standard and in Data Sheet 7-32.

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
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2.1.2.2 Flammable liquid storage rooms/buildings should be limited to the storage of flammable liquids. Other
products may be stored in a flammable liquid room or building as long as they do not present a fire hazard
greater than the liquid storage and they do not represent a significant loss exposure if damaged in a fire.
The protection scheme for the entire storage room or building must be designed for the worst case stor-
age. Any level of aerosol product may be stored with flammable liquids in maximum 1 qt (1 l) metal contain-
ers as long as the provided fire protection scheme is fully adequate for both storage types.
2.1.2.3 Partially full containers should be handled and stored like full containers. Empty containers should
be immediately purged and cleaned. Empty containers that are sent away for cleaning should be stored out-
side the facility or in an area suitable for flammable liquid storage (e.g., cutoff room, flammable liquid cabinet).

2.2 Construction and Location


Isolate flammable liquid storage by distance or construction so that they do not expose important buildings
or facilities and in turn are protected from fires originating elsewhere. The extent of isolation depends on
such factors as the size of the container, the container construction type and the physical properties of the
liquid.
Flammable liquid storage creates many different fire scenarios. Active fire protection systems (e.g., auto-
matic sprinklers, special protection systems, etc.) cannot be economically designed to cover every possible
flammable liquid fire scenario. Passive protection schemes (e.g., isolation, construction features, drainage,
etc.) provide the last line of defense against the uncontrolled spread of a flammable liquid fire if the active pro-
tection systems fail to control the fire. Failure to incorporate passive protection schemes into a flammable
liquid storage facility significantly increases the likelihood of an out-of-control flammable liquid fire.
2.2.1 Locate flammable liquid storage and construct flammable liquid cutoff rooms and detached buildings
in accordance with Tables 1 and 2, and Figure 1. The tables and figure only apply to storage occupancies.
Manufacturing occupancies that utilize flammable liquids should be evaluated in accordance with Data Sheet
7-32, Flammable Liquid Operations.
a) Tables 1 and 2, and Figure 1 apply if both the exposing building/room and the exposed building are
adequately sprinklered.
b) If the exposing building is not sprinklered (i.e., low value building, Location 1 only) or if the provided
protection is inadequate, apply spacing and construction recommendations listed in Data Sheet 1-20,
Protection Against Exterior Fire Exposure), using a high hazard occupancy. A minimum space separa-
tion of 50 ft (15.2 m) is always recommended.
Note: A space separation distance less than 50 ft (15.2 m) is acceptable for low value detached buildings
as long as it meets the space separation recommended by Data Sheet 1-20, Protection Against Exterior
Fire Exposure.)
c. FM Approved flammable liquid storage cabinets or storage buildings may be used for storage of flam-
mable liquids. Storage building that meet all of the requirements of an inside cutoff room may be used
inside the facility. Flammable liquid storage cabinets may be used in general purpose warehouses or other
storage areas to store limited quantities of flammable liquids in containers 6.5 gal (25 l).

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Operating Standards Page 6

Fig. 1. Location and construction of flammable liquid storage buildings and cutoff rooms.

Table 1. Location and Construction of Flammable Liquid Storage Buildings or


Cutoff Rooms with Containers Less Than or Equal to 60 gal (230 l)
Liquid Closed Cup Flash Point Construction Type
Container OR Storage Wall or
Container Size Construction Liquid Type Location Location Fire Rating
16 oz (500 ml) Plastic/Glass Group 1-3 Water Miscible Liquids 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 A, B, C NC
1 gal (4 l) Plastic/Glass Group 2-3 Water Miscible Liquids 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 A, B, C NC
6.5 gal (25 l) Metal Any 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 A, B, C NC
Plastic/Glass 200F (93C) AND 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 A, B, C NC
Group 3 Water Miscible Liquids
Plastic/ < 200F (93C) 1 A, B, C NC (see Section 2.2.9)
Nonmetallic OR 2 A NC (see Section 2.2.9)
Untested Liquid Packaging B
Combination C 2 hour (see Section
2.2.9)
3, 4 A 1 hour (see Section
2.2.9)
B 2 hour (see Section
2.2.9)
C

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
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Liquid Closed Cup Flash Point Construction Type


Container OR Storage Wall or
Container Size Construction Liquid Type Location Location Fire Rating
> 6.5 gal (25 l) Metal Any 1 A, B, C NC
and 2 A NC
60 gal (230 l) B
C 1 hour
3, 4 A NC
B 1 hour
C
200F (93C) 5 See Section 2.2.4
Plastic/ < 200F (93C) 1 A, B, C NC (see Section 2.2.9)
Nonmetallic AND 2 A NC (see Section 2.2.9)
Non-Water Miscible B
C 2 hour (see Section
2.2.9)
200F (93C) 1 A, B, C NC
OR 2 A NC
< 200F (93C) B
AND C 2 hour
Water Miscible Liquid
3, 4 A 1 hour
B 2 hour
C
NC = Noncombustible

Table 2. Location and Construction of Flammable Liquid Storage Buildings or


Cutoff Rooms with Containers Greater Than 60 gal (230 l)
Liquid Closed Cup Flash Point Construction Type
Container Container OR Storage Wall or
Size Construction Liquid Type Location Location Fire Rating
> 60 gal Metal Any 1 A, B, C NC
(230 l) 2 A NC
B
C 2 hour
3, 4 A NC
B 2 hour
C
200F (93C) 5 See Section 2.2.4
Plastic/ < 200F (93C) 1 A, B, C NC (see Section 2.2.9)
Nonmetallic AND 2 A NC (see Section 2.2.9)
Not Water Miscible B
C 2 hour (see Section 2.2.9)
200F (93C) 1 A, B, C NC
OR 2 A NC
< 200F (93C) B
AND C 2 hour
Water Miscible Liquid
3, 4 A 1 hour
B 2 hour
C
NC = Noncombustible

2.2.2 Avoid below grade or upper floor storage areas. Ground floor locations are preferred. Upper floors intro-
duce problems of access for fire fighting, floor leakage and transportation of drums through main areas. Base-
ment locations are unacceptable because they are difficult to ventilate, drain or enter during fires. A room
with a recessed floor is not considered a below grade room.

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7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 8 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

2.2.3 Locate interior or exterior cutoff rooms next to loading/shipping docks in warehouses to prevent the
creation of a flammable liquid fire hazard along liquid transportation routes in buildings/warehouses that are
not protected for the hazard. Ideally the cutoff rooms should be provided with their own shipping doors.
Provide space in the cutoff rooms for staging of product before it is placed in storage or while it is waiting
for shipment.
2.2.4 Flammable liquids with flash points above 200F (93C) packaged in metal containers 60 gal (230 l)
may be palletized in general purpose warehouses with a curb surrounding the storage area and no fire rated
partition, if all of the following conditions are met:
a) The sprinkler protection is adequate for the stored liquids as well as the surrounding occupancy. (See
Tables 6 and 9)
b) No high-value occupancies that are susceptible to heat, smoke or water damage are exposed.
c) The curb is designed in accordance with Data Sheet 7-83, Drainage Systems for Flammable Liquids,
[i.e., sized for the largest container plus 2 in. (5.1 cm) of freeboard and a minimum of 4 in. (10.2 cm)
high]. Extend the curb at least 6 ft (1.8 m) beyond the storage footprint.
2.2.5 Construct cutoff room walls liquid-tight so that spilled liquids and vapors will be contained. Also design
walls that are stable when exposed to a flammable liquid fire. Provide at least one outside access way for cut-
off rooms. Protect necessary interior openings with an normally closed automatic closing fire door. The fire
door should be located on the storage side of the wall. (See Section 2.2.9 for liquids with a flash point less
than 200F (93C) that are not water miscible and are stored in plastic containers)
2.2.6 Provide an Approved roof covering that consists of a Class 1 internal fire resistance (see Data Sheet
1-29, Roof Deck Securement and Above-Deck Roofing Components) and an ASTM E108 Class A rated
external fire resistance (see Data Sheet 1-29) for all detached buildings or cutoff rooms. For interior cutoff
rooms that have ceilings below the main buildings roof, provide a ceiling assembly that has the same fire rat-
ing as the interior walls of the cutoff room.
2.2.7 Provide masonry or concrete construction for all 2 hour rated walls. Provide impact protection (e.g.,
26 ga. (0.455 mm) metal facing) for 1 hour fire rated walls constructed of low impact strength materials (e.g.,
gypsum board).
2.2.8 Provide noncombustible wall construction with no openings on the main building/warehouse for 10 ft
(3 m) beyond each side of an exterior cutoff room.
2.2.9 Provide the following construction features for cutoff rooms and detached buildings used to store
non-water miscible liquids with closed cup flash points < 200F (93C) packaged in plastic containers.
a) Provide masonry or concrete construction for 1 and 2 hour fire rated walls.
b) Provide only exterior access to interior or exterior cutoff rooms. There should be no direct openings
in the wall separating the main building from the cutoff room. The use of an enclosed walkway connect-
ing the main building to the cutoff room is permitted if it is designed to prevent the flow of liquid out of
the cutoff room.
c) Protect steel columns located inside detached buildings or cutoff rooms by one of the following methods
or an equivalent:
i) Provide a sidewall sprinkler on the column, at the 13 to 12 elevation arranged to direct the water
discharge into each web of the column. Design the sprinklers to provide 30 gpm/sprinkler (114 l/min/
sprinkler). Include the flow in the over-all sprinkler system design.
ii) Provide a minimum of one hour fireproofing of the column.
2.2.10 Provide drainage and/or containment for cutoff rooms or buildings that store flammable liquids in con-
tainers greater than 6.5 gal (25 l). Design the drainage and/or containment to prevent the escape of burning
liquid and limit the release of any liquid from the room/building. Use Table 3 to determine what drainage-
containment options or alternatives are acceptable for metal containers based on the stored liquids physi-
cal properties, the container size, and the existence of any unfavorable factors such as:
a) High-value exposed areas or equipment where prompt removal of spilled or burning flammable liquids
is needed to minimize damage or production interruption.
b) A high frequency of occurrence due to design or layout where routine spills or fires are inherent hazards.

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 9

c) Liquid damage potential to nearby equipment.


d) Weak fire protection water supplies. Although sprinklers will eventually extinguish fires in high flash
point or water soluble liquids, extinguishment may not be achieved prior to operating sprinklers over a
greater area than that expected if the burning liquids were promptly drained from the area.
e) Where local conditions do not allow construction of adequate containment for the anticipated spill.
In general, liquids with a viscosity greater than 10,000 cp only require containment. Drainage-containment
requirements for container construction types not covered by Table 3 are provided with the protection criteria
for the container-liquid combination. See Data Sheet 7-83, Drainage Systems for Flammable Liquids, for
additional information on drainage system design.

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7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 10 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

Table 3. Drainage and Containment Requirements for Metal Containers


Closed Cup Flash
Point/Liquid Type Container Size Drainage and Containment Options and Alternatives
200F 6.5 gal (25 l) None
(93C) > 6.5 gal (25 l) Provide containment designed in accordance with Data Sheet 7-83. If
unfavorable factors exist, see Data Sheet 7-83; drainage may also be required.
Provide a 30 minute liquid hold-up time and minimum 3 in. (7.6 cm) high curbs.
Water Miscible 6.5 gal (25 l) None
Liquid > 6.5 gal (25 l) and Provide containment designed in accordance with Data Sheet 7-83. If
OR 60 gal (230 l) unfavorable factors exist, see Data Sheet 7-83; drainage may also be required.
Liquids with Provide a 30 minute liquid hold-up time and minimum 3 in. (7.6 cm) high curbs.
a Specific > 60 gal (230 l) Provide emergency floor drainage and containment designed in accordance
Gravity > 1 with Data Sheet 7-83. Arrange the drains to ensure a spill from one container
could not cover more than the sprinkler operating area. Provide a minimum 3
in. (7.6 cm) curb. OR
Provide an Approved closed or open head foam-water sprinkler system (See
Section 2.5.1.6 and Appendix A) and curbing/ramps at all openings designed to
contain the sprinkler water and hose stream discharge for 20 minutes but not
be less than 4 in. (10.2 cm) high. For rooms 1000 ft2 (92.9 m2) design liquid
containment for sprinkler discharge only. If the closed head foam-water
sprinkler system is not pre-primed, increase liquid hold-up time by the time
needed to get foam flow out of the most remote sprinkler. OR
Provide an Approved total flooding special protection system to supplement the
automatic sprinkler protection. The system must be designed to discharge and
extinguish the fire before the operation of sprinklers. Provide curbing/ramps at
all openings designed to contain the sprinkler water and hose stream discharge
for 20 minutes but not be less than 4 in. (10.2 cm) high.
< 200F 6.5 gal (25 l) None
(93C) > 6.5 gal (25 l) and Provide emergency floor drainage and containment designed in accordance
60 gal (230 l) with Data Sheet 7-83. A minimum 3 in. (7.6 cm) curb is acceptable for this
container size range. OR
Provide an Approved closed or open head foam-water sprinkler system (See
Section 2.5.1.6 and Appendix A, Foam-Water Sprinkler Systems). Provide
curbing/ramps at all openings designed to contain the sprinkler water-foam and
hose stream discharge for 20 minutes but not be less than 3 in. (7.6 cm) high.
For rooms 1000 ft2 (92.9 m2) design liquid containment for sprinkler
discharge only. If the closed head foam-water sprinkler system is not pre-
primed, increase liquid hold-up time by the time needed to get foam flow out of
the most remote sprinkler. OR
Provide an Approved total flooding special protection system to supplement the
automatic sprinkler protection. The system must be designed to discharge and
extinguish the fire before the operation of sprinklers. Provide curbing/ramps at
all openings designed to contain the sprinkler water and hose stream discharge
for 20 minutes but not be less than 3 in. (7.6 cm) high.
> 60 gal (230 l) Provide emergency floor drainage and containment designed in accordance
with Data Sheet 7-83. Arrange the drains to ensure a spill from one container
could not cover more than the sprinkler operating area. Provide a minimum 3
in. (7.6 cm) curb. OR
Provide an Approved closed or open head foam-water sprinkler system (See
Section 2.5.1.6 and Appendix A, Foam-Water Sprinkler Systems) and curbing/
ramps at all openings designed to contain the sprinkler water-foam and hose
stream discharge for 30 minutes but not be less than 4 in. (10.2 cm) high. For
rooms 1000 ft2 (92.9 m2) design liquid containment for sprinkler discharge
only. If the closed head foam-water sprinkler system is not pre-primed,
increase liquid hold-up time by the time needed to get foam flow out of the most
remote sprinkler. OR
Provide an Approved total flooding special protection system to supplement the
automatic sprinkler protection. The system must be designed to discharge and
extinguish the fire before the operation of sprinklers. Provide curbing/ramps at
all openings designed to contain the sprinkler water and hose stream discharge
for 30 minutes but not be less than 4 in. (10.2 cm) high.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 11

2.2.11 Arrange drainage systems to extinguish draining liquids and to prevent flammable vapors from backing
up into buildings or rooms that are tied into those systems. One method of accomplishing this is the use
of trapped drains. Provide this arrangement for all buildings/rooms with drains that are tied into a drainage sys-
tem that can handle flammable/combustible liquids regardless of the occupancy in that room/building. Also
design emergency drainage systems to prevent liquid back-up from flood or surface water.
2.2.12 Locate and arrange outdoor storage as follows:
a) Locate outdoor flammable liquid storage that exposes buildings with combustible exterior construc-
tion (e.g., Class 1 or 2 sandwich panels), light noncombustible exterior construction (i.e., non-fire rated or
less than 1 hour fire rating), or fire rated exterior construction with unprotected openings in accordance
with Figures 2 a-d and 3 a-d. The minimum space separation for stored hydrocarbon liquids is 30 ft (9.1 m).
The minimum space separation for stored water miscible liquids is 20 ft (6.1 m).
b) Locate outdoor flammable liquid storage that exposes buildings with minimum 1 hour fire rated exterior
construction in accordance with Table 4.
c) Limit non-relieving style containers greater than 6.5 gal (25 l) in size to one high for storage located
50 ft (15.2 m) or closer to exposed buildings. Limit relieving style containers greater than 6.5 gal (25 l) in
size to 3 high for storage located 50 ft (15.2 m) or closer to exposed buildings. For storage areas greater
than 50 ft (15.2 m) from the main building, limit storage heights to those that maintain pile stability.
d) Limit any one dimension of the storage pad/area to 100 ft (30.5 m).
e) Provide curbing/diking around any exterior flammable liquid storage that is located within 50 ft (15.2 m)
of an important building. Storage pads greater than 50 ft (15.2 m) away from important buildings should
be curbed/diked to control any liquid release. However, as long as the ground is clearly sloped away from
important buildings, utilities, fire protection equipment or other storage pads, dikes are not required for
property protection purposes. Arrange curbed/diked areas to permit emergency drainage of impounded
liquids.
f) Install a fixed automatic water spray system, arranged to protect the exposed building or facility, in
accordance with Section 2.5.1.7 of this standard if the recommended space separation distances cannot
be provided.
g) Outdoor storage that is provided with a noncombustible roof for exposure protection may be consid-
ered a cutoff room or detached building if the storage arrangements and sprinkler designs are in accor-
dance with Section 2.5 and the construction features of the exposed building are in accordance with
Figure 1 and Table 1.
Table 4. Space Separation Between Fire Rated Exterior Walls and Flammable Liquid Storage Pads
Container Container Closed Cup Wall Fire Rating/Roof Maximum Space
Size Type Flash Point/Liquid Type Assembly Classification1 Pad Dimension Separation
6.5 gal Any All 1 hour/Class 1A 100 ft < 30 ft
(25 l) (30.5 m) (9.1 m)
> 6.5 gal Non-Relieving All 1 hour/Class 1A 100 ft 30 ft
(25 l) Style (30.5 m) (9.1 m)
Relieving Style 200F (93C) OR 1 hour/Class 1A 50 ft < 30 ft
Water Miscible (any F.P.) OR (15.2 m) (9.1 m)
Specific Gravity > 1 (any F.P.) OR 2 hour/Class 1A 100 ft < 30 ft
Viscosity > 10,000 cp (any F.P.) (30.5 m) (9.1 m)
< 200F (93C) 1 hour/Class 1A 100 ft 30 ft
(30.5 m) (9.1 m)
2 hour/Class 1A 50 ft < 30 ft
(15.2 m) (9.1 m)
1
Class 1A Roof Assembly Classification = Approved roof covering that consists of a Class 1 internal fire resistance and an ASTM E108
Class A rated external fire resistance (see Data Sheet 1-29, Roof Deck Securement and Above-Deck Roofing Components, for full
description).

2.3 Ignition Source Control


A basic design goal for occupancies that contain flammable and combustible liquids is the elimination and
careful control of all potential ignition sources. Prevention measures should prevent contact of an ignition
source with any flammable vapor-air mixture.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 12 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

280

230
Space Separation (ft)

180

130

80

30
0 2000 4000 6000 8000 10000 12000
Storage Pad Area (ft2)

Fig. 2a. Space separation for large storage pads hydrocarbon liquids (English units)

79

69

59
Space Separation (m)

49

39

29

19

9
0 200 400 600 800 1000
2
Storage Pad Area (m )

Fig. 2b. Space separation for large storage pads hydrocarbon liquids (metric units)

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 13

90

80

70
Space Separation (ft)

60

50

40

30
0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 900 1000
Storage Pad Area (ft2)

Fig. 2c. Space separation for small storage pads hydrocarbon liquids (English units)

34

29
Space Separation (m)

24

19

14

9
0 20 40 60 80 100 120 140 160 180
Storage Pad Area (m2)

Fig. 2d. Space separation for small storage pads hydrocarbon liquids (metric units)

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 14 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

80

70

60
Space Separation (ft)

50

40

30

20
0 2000 4000 6000 8000 10000 12000

Storage Pad Area (ft2)

Fig. 3a. Space separation for large storage pads water miscible liquids (English units)

23

21

19
Space Separation (m)

17

15

13

11

9
0 200 400 600 800 1000
Storage Pad Area (m2)

Fig. 3b. Space separation for large storage pads water miscible liquids (metric units)

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 15

34

32

30
Space Separation (ft)

28

26

24

22

20
0 100 200 300 400 500 600 700 800 900 1000
Storage Pad Area (ft2)

Fig. 3c. Space separation for small storage pads water miscible liquids (English units)

16

15

14
Space Separation (m)

13

12

11

10

9
0 50 100 150 200 250 300 350
Storage Pad Area (m2)

Fig. 3d. Space separation for small storage pads water miscible liquids (metric units)

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 16 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

Table 5. Equipment Ratings in Flammable Liquid Storage Occupancies


Electrical Equipment Rating within
6 ft (1.8 m) of Floor Level Lift Truck Rating Ventilation Rates
US (NEC 500) US (NEC 505) for Handling or per Unit Floor Area
Closed Cup IEC Transporting cfm/ft2
Flash Point Container Size CENELEC Liquids (m3/min/m2)
F.P. 100F Any Class 1 Division 2 Zone 2 Type EE or DY 0.5
(38C) (0.15)
AND
B.P. < 100F
(38C)
100F 6.5 gal (25 l) Ordinary Ordinary Type EE or DY Natural
(38C) > 6.5 gal (25 l) Class 1 Division 2 Zone 2 Type EE or DY 0.25
(0.08)
> 100F Any Ordinary Ordinary Ordinary Natural
(38C)

2.3.1 Use Table 5 to determine areas needing rated electrical equipment. Ordinary electrical equipment is suit-
able for liquids with flash points greater than 100F (38C) if they are not heated above their flash point and
if there is no possibility of lower flash point liquids being introduced later.
2.3.2 Use Table 5 to determine when lift trucks that are Approved for Class 1, Division 2 locations are needed
to handle and/or transport liquid storage. It is acceptable to use electric Type E, gasoline Type GS, diesel
Type DS and LP-gas Type LPS to transport all liquid types outdoors as long as the lift trucks are well main-
tained. Air-powered or manually-operated hoists, hand trucks or other manual equipment are acceptable
and are generally preferred for use with all flammable liquids.
2.3.3 Provide grounding in accordance with Data Sheet 5-8, Static Electricity, Data Sheet 5-10, Protective
Grounding for Electric Power Systems and Equipment, and NFPA 70 National Electrical Code, Articles 250
and 500 for equipment subject to static accumulations, such as racks, ventilating ducts, hoists, etc. Proper
grounding of equipment reduces the potential for buildup of electric charge on separated pieces of equip-
ment due to static accumulations or stray electric currents.
2.3.4 Prohibit smoking or the use of open flames in all rooms, buildings, or outdoor storage areas that are
utilized for the storage of flammable and combustible liquids. Post conspicuous signs to define hazardous
areas and state restrictions for the area.
2.3.5 When heating rooms or buildings containing a flammable liquid storage, use a system that does not intro-
duce an ignition source (e.g., steam, hot water, or hazardous location rated electric heating). Direct natural
gas/fuel oil-fired make-up air heaters are acceptable if the heating unit is located outside the room or build-
ing and there is no air recirculation. Heating equipment temperatures should be below the auto-ignition point
of the liquids present in the room. If liquids with a closed cup flash point < 100F (38C) are present, the
heaters should be at least 5 ft (1.5 m) above the floor level.
2.3.6 Avoid hot work of any kind or use of improperly rated electrical equipment in areas (indoors and out-
doors) storing flammable liquids. Hot work in flammable liquid storage areas provides an ideal ignition source
for a fuel that is available in significant quantities and in a readily ignitable form. Ideally, relocate any hot
work to a nonhazardous location. When relocation is not possible, a documented Hot Work Permit System
is needed. Use a documented permit system to strictly control all hot work operations. The permit is issued
only after a complete review of all proposed work, the hazards in the area, and all precautions needed to pre-
vent a fire or explosion is conducted. Do not issue a permit or allow the work unless all of the needed pre-
cautions are met. Precautions are listed on the FM Global Hot Work Permit itself (also see Data Sheet 10-3,
Hot Work Management). Some of the minimum requirements include:
a) Automatic sprinkler protection must be in service. Provide charged small hose or fire extinguishers
at the work area.
b) Remove flammable and combustible liquid storage from the area. Remove or cover with a fire-
resistive tarpaulin all combustibles within 35 ft (11 m) of the work (see Data Sheet 1-0, Safeguards During
Construction).

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 17

c) Keep mechanical ventilation in the room/building in operation. Use a portable combustible gas analyzer
before and during the work. If any detectable readings are obtained, then work cannot begin or con-
tinue until the source is found and suitably mitigated such that the concentration is maintained below 10%
of the LEL.
d) Provide a continuous fire watch both during and at least 60 minutes after work. Check the area at
least hourly for up to four hours after the end of hot work operations.
e) Avoid the use of non-rated electrical equipment in areas containing flammable liquids. If such equip-
ment must be temporarily introduced, view this as hot work and follow the permit precautions. As with other
hot work, if the precautions cannot be taken, the permit should not be issued and the non-rated electri-
cal equipment should not be used. For situations where the above steps are not applicable or unusual
circumstances are present, consult a specialist in flammable/combustible liquid handling before any hot
work is performed.

2.4 Occupancy

2.4.1 Ventilation
Ventilation systems are designed to confine, dilute and remove the normal amount of flammable vapor
released from leaks of flammable and combustible liquids stored in containers. Adequately designed low level
ventilation will reduce the chances of a flammable vapor-air mixture accumulating in the storage area. An
adequately designed system will provide a sweeping air movement across all floor areas in the storage build-
ing or cutoff room. Designing a ventilation system to remove a large vapor release is outside the scope of
this document.
2.4.1.1 Provide continuous low level mechanical ventilation designed in accordance with Table 5. Mechani-
cal ventilation systems should operate continuously and be monitored so that any loss of ventilation would
be detected promptly. Provide a visual or audible ventilation failure alarm at an occupied location to ensure
prompt detection. Arrange the system as follows:
a) Remove exhaust air through a system of blowers, fans and duct work terminating out of doors away
from air inlets, doorways and other openings.
b) Construct exhaust ducts of noncombustible materials.
c) Provide Class 1 Division 2 rated electrical equipment inside exhaust ducts. Use Table 5 to determine
the needed electrical rating for electrical equipment that is located outside the exhaust ducts but inside
the storage room or building. Electrical equipment that is located outside the exhaust ducts and outside the
storage room or building does not need to be hazardous area rated.
d) Run the ducts as directly as possible to the outdoors with a minimum of bends.
e) Protect long runs of ventilation ducts with the potential for accumulation of combustible deposits in
accordance with Data Sheet 7-78, Industrial Exhaust Systems.
f) Exhaust systems for small rooms may consist of a fan installed at floor level arranged to exhaust out
of doors (i.e., installed in wall).
g) Arrange the ventilation system to take suction within 12 in. (0.3 m) of the floor.
h) Provide an Approved combustible gas detector arranged to stop recirculation and return to full exhaust
when the vapor concentration reaches 25% of its lower explosive limit (LEL) on ventilation systems that
are arranged to recirculate air into the room/building.
2.4.1.2 Provide make-up air inlets in exterior walls. Locate air inlets remote from exhaust outlets so that air
will sweep through the hazardous area. If gas or oil make-up air heaters are provided, they should be indirect-
fired and properly safeguarded. If make-up air is taken from other plant areas, those areas should be free of
flammable or combustible liquids. Install automatic closing fire dampers or doors at make-up air inlet
openings in interior fire walls or partitions. The dampers or doors should have a fire rating equal to that of
the walls.
2.4.1.3 Provide a sufficient number of exhaust ports and make-up air inlets to ensure the full ventilation rate
is available across all floor areas within the storage area. Confirm air movement throughout the area using
smoke pencils or other appropriate devices.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 18 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

2.4.1.4 For unheated liquids with a flash point greater than 100F (38C) or lower flash point liquids in con-
tainers less than 6.5 gal (25 l), provide natural draft ventilation arranged to provide 1 ft2 (0.1 m2) of free inlet
and outlet opening per 500 ft2 (47 m2) of floor area.

2.5 Protection

2.5.1 General
2.5.1.1 Provide automatic sprinkler protection over all areas storing, staging, or used for transporting flam-
mable liquids. Extend the sprinkler protection to the physical limits of the area. The physical limits are defined
by at least one hour rated fire walls and curbs. Sprinkler systems over areas defined by curbs only should
extend over and 20 ft (6 m) beyond the curbed area. Sprinkler systems should be either a standard closed
head or deluge type. Design the sprinkler systems in accordance with the criteria presented in this stan-
dard based on liquid type, container type, storage arrangement, storage height, and building height. Protect
staging areas as storage areas.
2.5.1.2 Provide a deluge system in unheated storage areas. Preaction systems and dry systems are not
acceptable unless the cutoff room or building has a floor area less than or equal to the sprinkler design area.
2.5.1.3 Install sprinkler systems in accordance with the appropriate FM Global installation standard. Specific
installation guidance provided in this standard supersedes the installation standard. Provide an Approved
fire protection equipment.
2.5.1.4 Provide a maximum of 100 ft2 (9 m2) spacing for sprinklers when protecting liquids with a flash point
less than 200F (93C) and a maximum spacing of 130 ft2 (12 m2) when protecting liquids with a flash point
greater than or equal to 200F (93C).
2.5.1.5 Provide the following detector spacing for interior deluge systems:
a) Space pilot heads the same as ceiling sprinklers.
b) Space electric or pneumatic devices under smooth ceilings in accordance with the spacing require-
ments listed in the Approval Guide, a publication of FM Approvals, for the particular model.
2.5.1.6 Design and install open (deluge) or closed-head foam-water sprinkler systems (See Appendix A) in
accordance with the following criteria:
a) Provide a closed- or open-head foam-water sprinkler system when required for a specific storage
arrangement or to limit the exposure created by a flammable liquid fire to surrounding areas when adequate
drainage capacity is not available (see Table 3).
b) Hydraulically design the system in accordance with a specific foam-water protection table in this stan-
dard or to the full water based sprinkler protection criteria for the storage arrangement. In no case, should
the provided discharge density be less than the required Approval density.
c) When a foam-water sprinkler system is required, design the foam concentrate supply as follows:
i) Provide at least a 20 minute supply of foam concentrate for storage of metal containers up to 60 gal
(230 l).
ii) Provide at least a 30 minute supply of foam concentrate for storage of any container greater than
60 gal (230 l) and plastic containers less than 60 gal (230 l) without a known protection scheme.
iii) Base the concentrate supply on the sprinkler system design requirements, hose stream design
requirements and the required concentrate injection percentage.
d) Design containment for foam-water sprinkler protected areas in accordance with Table 3 and Data
Sheet 7-83, Drainage Systems for Flammable Liquids.
e) Use a compatible foam concentrate for the flammable liquid being protected. Utilize Approved foam-
water sprinkler system components (concentrate, proportioning equipment, tanks, control panels, and
sprinklers).
f) Install and maintain the foam-water sprinkler system in accordance with NFPA 16, Deluge Foam-Water
Sprinkler Systems and Foam-Water Spray Systems.

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 19

2.5.1.7 Fixed automatic special protection systems (i.e., total flooding gaseous, dry chemical, water spray)
may be used to protect flammable liquid storage located in low value detached buildings, at facilities that lack
a fire protection water supply, or to provide additional protection for high value occupancies.
Note: These systems are not an alternative to sprinkler protection but they can provide some level of pro-
tection for facilities that lack a water supply or where it is not economical to install sprinklers. They can also
be used to limit the exposure created by inadequate space separation between important buildings or pro-
cesses and flammable/combustible liquid storage. Install these systems in accordance with the following
guidelines:
a) Use Approved systems and equipment that are designed in accordance with the applicable FM Global
data sheet. Installed systems must be maintained and tested in accordance with manufacturers recom-
mendations and guidelines as well as any requirements provided in related FM Global data sheets.
Protection systems that have not been proven via the Approval process for a specific occupancy are not
acceptable. Water mist systems and high expansion foam systems remain unproven for flammable liquid
storage occupancies.
b) Only inert gas based (e.g., CO2, Inergen) gaseous systems should be used to eliminate the corrosion
problems created by the decomposition of other clean agents. (See Data Sheet 4-0, Special Protection
Systems; Data Sheet 4-8N, Halon 1301 Extinguishing Systems (NFPA); and Data Sheet 4-11N, Carbon
Dioxide Extinguishing Systems (NFPA).)
c) Dry chemical systems should not be used in conjunction with water based protection systems unless
they have been tested with a water based fire protection system and were shown to be unaffected by
water discharge. (See Data Sheet 4-0, Special Protection Systems, and Data Sheet 4-10, Dry Chemical
Systems.)
d) When water spray systems are used to provide exposure protection, arrange spray nozzles to ensure
complete coverage of the exposed wall. Windows will need additional nozzles specifically arranged to pro-
tect the opening. Provide an automatic detection system arranged to ensure prompt activation of the
water spray system. Heat detectors may not activate promptly if the exposing fire is not abutting the pro-
tected wall. Optical flame detectors will provide reliable prompt detection of a fire. (See Data Sheet 2-8N,
Installation of Sprinkler Systems (NFPA); Data Sheet 4-0, Special Protection Systems; and Data Sheet
4-1N, Water Spray Fixed Systems (NFPA).)
2.5.1.8 Provide portable extinguishers in areas (interior and exterior) storing flammable and combustible
liquids. Extinguishers should be either carbon dioxide, dry chemical, or AFFF type. Refer to Data Sheet 4-5,
Portable Extinguishers, to determine effective sizes and locations for the extinguishers. Extinguishers should
be Approved. Protect extinguishers located outside against freezing.
2.5.1.9 Small hose (112 in. [38 mm]) stations with combination spray/solid stream nozzles should be pro-
vided in areas storing flammable liquids. The provision of a foam induction nozzle and containers of foam con-
centrate would increase the effectiveness of a hose station. Space hose stations to allow full coverage of
the area or building being protected. Add a water demand of 50 gpm (11 m3/hr) to the sprinkler demand for
a single hose station (100 gpm [23 m3/hr] should be added for more than one hose station).

2.5.2 Metal Containers > 60 gal (230 l) (Including IBCs)


2.5.2.1 Protect palletized or solid pile storage of metallic IBCs (portable tanks) in accordance with Table 6.
Buildings or cutoff areas that are equal to or less than the sprinkler operating area can utilize 165F (74C)
rated sprinklers in the ceiling sprinkler system.
2.5.2.2 Provide a 500 gpm (114 m3/hr) hose stream allowance.
2.5.2.3 Water supplies should meet the total sprinkler and hose stream demand for a duration of at least
one hour.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 20 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

Table 6. Palletized or Solid Pile Storage of Flammable Liquids in


Relieving Style Metal Containers > 60 gal (230 l)
Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Sprinkler Type
Nominal Response/
Maximum Maximum K-factor Nominal
Closed Cup Ceiling Storage Protection gpm/psi0.5 Temperature
Flash Point Height Height Mode (l/min/bar0.5) Rating Density Design Area
Water Miscible 30 ft 2 High Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2
Liquids (9.1 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2)
< 200F (93C) 30 ft 1 High Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2
(9.1 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2)
200F (93C) 30 ft 2 High Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2
5000 ft2
(9.1 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2)
Note: See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.

2.5.3 Metal Containers > 6.5 gal (25 l) and 60 gal (230 l)
2.5.3.1 Protect rack storage of metal containers greater than 6.5 gal (25 l) and less than or equal to 60 gal
(230 l) in accordance with Tables 7 or 8.
Protection in Table 7 may be used for cutoff rooms or warehouses that are designed to ensure the sprinkler
discharge and any flammable liquid spill are confined to the building of fire origin via containment and/or
emergency drainage features.
Protection criteria provided in Table 8 applies to liquids with a closed cup flash point less than 200F (93C)
stored in cutoff rooms or warehouses that are provided with either a specially designed emergency floor
drainage system or an Approved closed- or open-head foam-water sprinkler system (See Section 2.5.1.6
and Appendix A). The emergency floor drainage system must be designed to both limit the spread of burn-
ing liquid and promptly remove burning liquids from the building. Arrange the drainage system to limit the
maximum flammable liquid pool area to the size of the sprinkler operating area. The operating area pro-
vided in the table can be adjusted upward to allow for larger pool areas but may not be reduced to less than
3000 ft2 (279 m2) or increased to more than 5000 ft2 (465 m2). In cutoff rooms or buildings where all of the
ceiling sprinklers are included in the operating area, the drainage system only needs to promptly remove
the burning liquid from the area. Design emergency floor drainage systems in accordance with Data Sheet
7-83, Drainage Systems for Flammable Liquids.
a) Provide 286F (141C) rated ceiling sprinklers. Buildings or cutoff areas that are equal to or less than
the sprinkler operating area can utilize 165F (74C) rated sprinklers in the ceiling sprinkler system.
b) Install in-rack sprinklers in accordance with the figures referenced in the tables. Locate in-rack sprin-
klers that are installed in the longitudinal flue space at the junction of transverse flue spaces. Sprinklers
located behind uprights should be at least 3 in. (75 mm) from the uprights (i.e., if the longitudinal flue space
is 6 in. (15 cm), the in-rack should be centered between the adjacent vertical rack members). Locate face
sprinklers within 18 in. (46 cm) of the rack face. Locate in-rack sprinkler piping behind horizontal rack
members to minimize the potential for damage. Use Approved in-rack sprinklers with water shields.
c) Provide at least an 8 ft (2.4 m) aisle between racks.
2.5.3.2 Protect palletized or solid pile storage of metal containers greater than 6.5 gal (25 l) and less than
or equal to 60 gal (230 l) in accordance with Table 9. Base the maximum storage height for these contain-
ers on the worst case flammable liquid stored in the room or building. Buildings or cutoff areas that are equal
to or less than the sprinkler operating area can utilize 165F (74C) rated sprinklers in the ceiling sprinkler sys-
tem. Apply the following limitations to the protection schemes provided in this table:
a) Limit the storage height of liquids with a boiling point less than 100F (38C) to one container high
on-end.
b) Where a relieving style container is required, provide Approved plastic plugs on the 2 in. (50.8 mm)
and 34 in. (19 mm) openings in the top of the container (see 3.6.3.4).
c) Relieving style containers must be palletized on open deck (i.e., slatted) pallets and stored on-end.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 21

d) Design and install foam-water sprinkler systems in accordance with Section 2.5.1.6 of this standard.
e) Foam-water sprinkler systems must be able to deliver foam discharge out of the most remote 4 oper-
ating sprinklers within 2 minutes of sprinkler operation. Pre-prime (i.e., pre-fill the sprinkler piping with
the correct foam-water mixture) foam-water sprinkler systems that cannot meet the 2 minute deliver time.
2.5.3.3 Provide a 500 gpm (114 m3/hr) hose stream allowance for all cutoff rooms or buildings greater than
2000 ft2 (186 m2). A 250 gpm (57 m3/hr) hose stream allowance is acceptable for cutoff rooms or buildings
less than or equal to 2000 ft2 (186 m2).
2.5.3.4 Water supplies should meet the total sprinkler and hose stream demand for a duration of at least
one hour.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Table 7. Double and Single Row Rack Storage of Flammable Liquids in Metal Containers > 6.5 gal (25 l) and 60 gal (230 l) With Aisles a Minimum of 8 ft (2.4 m) Wide
Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria In-Rack Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Closed
Sprinkler Type Sprinkler Type
7-29

Cup
Page 22

Flash Nominal Response/ Layout Nominal Response/


Point OR Maximum Maximum K-factor Nominal (See K-factor Nominal Design
0.5 0.5
Liquid Ceiling Storage Drum Protection gpm/psi Temperature Design Section gpm/psi Temperature (No. Sprinklers @
0.5 0.5
Type Height Height Orientation Mode (l/min/bar ) Rating Density Area D.2.1) (l/min/bar ) Rating Pressure)
Water 30 ft 25 ft On-End Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2 Figure 4b 5.6 QR/Ordinary 6 @ 15 psig (1.03 barg)
Miscible (9.1 m) (7.6 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2) (81) (one level of in-racks)
Liquids
12 @ 15 psig (1.03 barg)
(more than one level of
in-racks)
On-Side Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2 Figure 4c 5.6 QR/Ordinary 6 @ 15 psig (1.03 barg)
Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2) (81) (one level of in-racks)

0.60 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2 Figure 4d 5.6 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 15 psig (1.03 barg)
(25 mm/min) (465 m2) (81) (more than one level of
in-racks)
< 200F 30 ft 25 ft On-End Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.60 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2 Figure 4b 8.0 QR/Ordinary 18 @ 30 psig (2.1 barg)
(93C) (9.1 m) (7.6 m) Density/Area (115) (25 mm/min) (465 m2) (115) (6 per tier per rack)
0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2 Figure 4a 8.0 QR/Ordinary
(12 mm/min) (465 m2) (115)
On-Side Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2 Figure 4c 8.0 QR/Ordinary 18 @ 20 psig (1.4 barg)
Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2) (115) (6 per tier per rack)
0.60 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2 Figure 4d 8.0 QR/Ordinary
(25 mm/min) (465 m2) (115)
200F 40 ft 36 ft On-End Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2 Figure 4e 5.6 QR/Ordinary 6 @ 15 psig (1.03 barg)
(93C) (12.1 m) (11 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2) (81) (one level of in-racks)
On-Side Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2 Figure 4f 5.6 QR/Ordinary 6 @ 15 psig (1.03 barg)
Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2) (81) (one level of in-racks)
Note: See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Table 8. Rack Storage of Flammable Liquids in Metal Containers 60 gal (230 l) with a Closed Head Foam-Water Sprinkler System (See Section 2.5.1.6 and
Appendix A, Foam-Water Sprinkler Systems) or Drainage Arranged to Limit Liquid Pool Area and Aisles a Minimum of 8 ft (2.4 m) Wide
Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria In-Rack Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Sprinkler Type Sprinkler Type
Closed Protection Nominal Response/ Layout Nominal Response/
Cup Maximum Maximum Mode K-factor Nominal (See K-factor Nominal Design
0.5 0.5
Flash Ceiling Storage Drum gpm/psi Temperature Design Section gpm/psi Temperature (No. Sprinklers @
0.5 0.5
Point Height Height Orientation (l/min/bar ) Rating Density Area D.2.1) (l/min/bar ) Rating Pressure)
< 200F 30 ft 25 ft On-End Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2 Figure 4b 8.0 QR/Ordinary 18 @ 30 psig (2.1 barg)
(93C) (9.1 m) (7.6 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (279 m2) (115) (6 per tier per rack)
Note: See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets
Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Table 9. Palletized/Solid Pile Storage of Flammable Liquids in Metal Containers
> 6.5 gal (25 l) and 60 gal (230 l) (Apply Table in Accordance with Recommendation 2.5.3.2)
Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Sprinkler Type
Nominal Response/
Maximum Pile Relieving K-factor Nominal
Closed Cup Maximum Drum Height Style Drum Protection Protection gpm/psi0.5 Temperature
Flash Point Ceiling Height Orientation (No. Drums) (Yes/No) System Type Mode (l/min/bar0.5) Rating Density Design Area
Any: 30 ft On-End 1 No Water Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2
< 200F (9.1 m) Density/Area (115) (12mm/min) (465 m2)
(93C) Foam-Water Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2
OR Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (279 m2)
200F 2 Yes Water Control- 11.2 SR/High 0.60 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2
(93C) Density/Area (161) (25 mm/min) (465 m2)
OR Foam-Water Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2
Water Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (279 m2)
Miscible
3 Yes Foam-Water Control- 11.2 SR/High 0.45 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2
Density/Area (161) (18 mm/min) (279 m2)
4 Yes Foam-Water Control- 11.2 SR/High 0.60 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2
Density/Area (161) (25 mm/min) (279 m2)
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

On-Side 1 No Water Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2


Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2)
3 No Water Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.60 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2
Density/Area (115) (25 mm/min) (465 m2)
200F 30 ft On-End 6 No Water Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2
(93C) (9.1 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2)
On-Side 12 No Water Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.30 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2
Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2)
Note: See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 23
7-29
7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 24 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

2.5.4 Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l)


2.5.4.1 Protect rack storage in accordance with Tables 10, 11, or 12. Table 12 can only be applied to the
storage of relieving style metal containers (See Appendix A, Relieving Style Container) and flammable liquids
with a boiling point greater than 100F (38C).
2.5.4.2 Protect palletized or solid pile storage in accordance with Tables 12 or 13. Table 12 can only be applied
to the storage of relieving style metal containers (See Appendix A, Relieving style container) and flam-
mable liquids with a boiling point greater than 100F (38C).
2.5.4.3 Protect shelf storage in accordance with Table 14. Shelves should be no more than 2 ft (0.6 m) wide
and should be noncombustible. If two rows of shelves are placed back-to-back, a noncombustible partition
should separate them. Shelves lacking this partition should be treated as a single-row rack.
2.5.4.4 Provide a 500 gpm (114 m3/hr) hose stream allowance for all cutoff rooms or buildings greater than
2000 ft2 (186 m2). A 250 gpm (57 m3/hr) hose stream allowance is acceptable for cutoff rooms or buildings
less than 2000 ft2 (186 m2)
2.5.4.5 Water supplies should meet the total sprinkler and hose stream demand for a duration of at least
one hour.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Table 10. Rack Storage of Flammable Liquid in Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l) With Aisles a Minimum of 8 ft (2.4 m) Wide
Closed Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria In-Rack Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Cup
Flash Sprinkler Type Sprinkler Type In-Rack
Point Nominal Response/ Nominal Response/ Design
OR Maximum Maximum K-factor Nominal Layout K-factor Nominal Pressure
Liquid Ceiling Packaging Storage Protection gpm/psi0.5 Temperature Design (See Section gpm/psi0.5 Temperature (See
Type Height Type Height Mode (l/min/bar0.5) Rating Density Area D.2.1) (l/min/bar0.5) Rating Note 1)
Water 30 ft Uncartoned 25 ft Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.3 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2 Figures 8a, 8.0 QR/Ordinary 15 psig
Miscible (9.1 m) and/or Cartoned (7.5 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (279 m2) 8b, 8c, 8d (115) (1.03 barg)
< 200F 30 ft Uncartoned 25 ft Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.6 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2 Figures 5a, 8.0 QR/Ordinary 30 psig
(93C) (9.1 m) and/or Cartoned (7.5 m) Density/Area (115) (25 mm/min) (465 m2) 5b, 5c, 5d (115) (2.1 barg)
SR/High 0.6 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2 Figures 5a, 8.0 QR/Ordinary 30 psig
(25 mm/min) (279 m2) 5b, 5c, 5d (115) (2.1 barg)
Cartoned Only 25 ft Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.3 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2 Figures 5a, 8.0 QR/Ordinary 30 psig
(7.5 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2) 5b, 5c, 5d (115) (2.1 barg)
SR/High 0.3 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2 Figures 5a, 8.0 QR/Ordinary 30 psig
(12 mm/min) (279 m2) 5b, 5c, 5d (115) (2.1 barg)
20 ft Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 0.6 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2 Figures 6a, 8.0 QR/Ordinary 30 psig
(6.1 m) Density/Area (161) (25 mm/min) (279 m2) 6b (115) (2.1 barg)
15 ft Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 0.6 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2 Figures 7a, 8.0 QR/Ordinary 30 psig
(4.6 m) Density/Area (161) (25 mm/min) (279 m2) 7b (115) (2.1 barg)
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

Notes:
1. Base the in-rack sprinkler water demand on the simultaneous operation of the most hydraulically remote sprinklers as follows:
a) Eight sprinklers where only one level of in-rack sprinklers is installed
b) Twelve sprinklers (six on each two top levels) where two levels of in-rack sprinklers are installed.
c) Eighteen sprinklers (six on top three levels) where more than two levels of in-rack sprinklers are installed.
d) The in-rack end head design pressure is provided in Table 10.
2. See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.

Table 11. Rack Storage of Liquids With a Closed Cup Flash Point 200F (93C) in Metal Containers With Aisles a Minimum of 8 ft (2.4 m) Wide (See Note 1)
Sprinkler Protection Criteria

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Maximum Maximum K 14.0 Suppression Mode Sprinkler Large Drop Sprinkler Protection 165F ELO or LO Standard Spray Sprinkler
Container Packaging Ceiling Storage Protection 165F (74C) Rated (74C) Rated Protection
Size Type Height Height (No. A.S.@Pressure) (No. A.S.@Pressure) (No. A.S.@Pressure)
6.5 gal Uncartoned 30 ft 25 ft Protect using protection criteria for a Class Protect using protection criteria for a Class Protect using protection criteria for a Class
(25 l) and/or (9.1 m) (7.5 m) 3 commodity in Data Sheet 8-9, Storage of 3 commodity in Data Sheet 8-9, Storage of 3 commodity in Data Sheet 8-9, Storage of
Cartoned Class 1, 2, 3, 4 and Plastic Commodities. Class 1, 2, 3, 4 and Plastic Commodities. Class 1, 2, 3, 4 and Plastic Commodities.
40 ft 35 ft Protect using protection criteria for a Class Not Acceptable Protect using protection criteria for a Class
Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers

(12.2 m) (10.7 m) 3 commodity in Data Sheet 8-9, Storage of 3 commodity in Data Sheet 8-9, Storage of
Class 1, 2, 3, 4 and Plastic Commodities. Class 1, 2, 3, 4 and Plastic Commodities.
Notes:
1. The fire protection listed for the liquids covered by this table is equivalent to Class 3 commodity protection criteria. This does not infer that these liquids are Class 3 commodities.
2. See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.
Page 25
7-29
Table 12. Protection for Flammable Liquids in Relieving Style Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l)
Excludes flammable liquids with a Boiling Point < 100F (38C)
Closed Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria In-Rack Sprinkler Protection Criteria
7-29
Page 26

Cup
Flash Sprinkler Type In-Rack Sprinkler Type
Point Nominal Response/ Layout Nominal Response/
OR Minimum Max. Max. K-factor Nominal Design (See K-factor Nominal In-Rack End
0.5
Liquid Storage Aisle Storage Roof Container Packaging Protection gpm/psi0.5 Temperature (No. Heads Section gpm/psi Temperature Head Pressure
0.5
Type Arrangement Width Height Height Size Type Mode (l/min/bar0.5) Rating @ Pressure) D.2.1) (l/min/bar ) Rating (See Note 1)
< 200F Single & 8 ft 25 ft 33 ft 6.5 gal Uncartoned Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 75 psig Figure 8.0 QR/Ordinary 30 psig
(93C) Double Row (2.4 m) (7.5 m) (10 m) (25 l) and/or pendent (202) (12@5.2 barg) 9a (115) (2.1 barg)
and Racks Cartoned or
B.P. > Figure
100F 9b
(38C) Cartoned Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig Figure 8.0 QR/Ordinary 15 psig
OR Only pendent (202) (12@3.5 barg) 9c (115) (1.03 barg)
200F or
(93C) Figure
OR 9d
Water
Miscible 20 ft 30 ft 6.5 gal Cartoned Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 75 psig None None None None
(6 m) (9.1 (25 l) Only pendent (202) (12@5.2 barg)
m)
Multiple Row None 25 ft 33 ft 6.5 gal Uncartoned Supression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 75 psig Figures 8.0 QROrdinary 30 psig
Racks (7.5 m) (10 m) (25 l) and/or pendent (202) (12@5.2 barg) 9e-9f (115) (2.1 barg)
Cartoned or
Figures
9g-9h
Cartoned Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig Figures 8.0 QROrdinary 30 psig
Only pendent (202) (12@3.5 barg) 9i-9j (115) (2.1 barg)
or
Figures
9k-9l
Palletized DNA 12 ft 33 ft 6.5 gal Uncartoned Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 75 psig DNA DNA DNA DNA
(3.7 m) (10 m) (25 l) and/or pendent (202) (12@5.2 barg)
Cartoned
8 ft 33 ft 6.5 gal Cartoned Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig DNA DNA DNA DNA
(2.4 m) (10 m) (25 l) Only pendent (202) (12@3.5 barg)

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Notes:

1. Base the in-rack sprinkler water demand on the simultaneous operation of the most hydraulically remote sprinklers as follows:
a) Eight sprinklers where only one level of in-rack sprinklers is installed.
b) Fourteen sprinklers (seven on each two top levels) where more than one level of in-rack sprinklers are installed.
c) The in-rack end head design pressure is provided in Table 12.
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets
Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 27

Table 13. Palletized/Solid Pile Storage of Liquids In Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l)
Closed Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Cup
Flash Sprinkler Type
Point Nominal Response/
OR Maximum Maximum K-factor Nominal
Liquid Building Packaging Storage Protection gpm/psi0.5 Temperature Design
Type Height Type Height Mode (l/min/bar0.5) Rating Density Area
< 200F 30 ft Cartoned 12 ft Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 0.6 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2
(93C) (9.1 m) Only (3.7 m) Density/Area (161) (25 mm/min) (465 m2)
Uncartoned 8 ft Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 0.6 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2
and/or (2.4 m) Density/Area (161) (25 mm/min) (465 m2)
Cartoned 5 ft Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.3 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2
(1.5 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2)
200F 30 ft Uncartoned 20 ft Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.3 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2
(93C) (9.1 m) and/or (6.1 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (279 m2)
Cartoned 12 ft Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.2 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2
(3.7 m) Density/Area (115) (8 mm/min) (279 m2)
Note: See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.

Table 14. Shelf Storage of Liquids in Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l)
Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Closed Cup Sprinkler Type
Flash Nominal Response/
Point Maximum Maximum K-factor Nominal
OR Ceiling Storage Protection gpm/psi0.5 Temperature Design
Liquid Type Height Height Mode (l/min/bar0.5) Rating Density Area
< 200F 30 ft 7 ft Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.3 gpm/ft2 5000 ft2
(93C) (9.1 m) (2.1 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (465 m2)
SR/High 0.3 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2
(12 mm/min) (279 m2)
200F 30 ft 15 ft Control- 5.6 SR/Ordinary 0.2 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2
(93C) (9.1 m) (4.6 m) Density/Area (81) (8.2 mm/min) (279 m2)
Water 30 ft 15 ft Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.3 gpm/ft2 3000 ft2
Miscible (9.1 m) (4.6 m) Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min) (279 m2)
Note: See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.

2.5.5 Plastic, Composite (Plastic-Metal) or Other Combustible Containers > 6.5 gal (25 l)
Note: Proven protection schemes are not currently available for flammable liquids stored in this type of
container. The recommended protection will not prevent the consumption of all of the liquid stored in the cut-
off room or building, but it may prevent structural failure of the roof and walls by cooling the structures. The
large quantity of liquid in a single container greatly increases the potential for a large spill fire that will acti-
vate all of the sprinklers in the cutoff room or building.
2.5.5.1 Protect storage of non-water miscible liquids with closed cup flash points less than 200F (93C)
as follows:
a) Use Table 15 to determine the allowed storage arrangement, building roof height, storage height,
storage location and sprinkler protection criteria.
b) Provide emergency floor drainage and containment designed to remove the maximum expected sprin-
kler and hose stream discharge. Design these systems in accordance with Data Sheet 7-83, Drainage
Systems for Flammable Liquids.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 28 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

c) If adequate drainage cannot be provided, supplement the recommended sprinkler protection with a
foam-water system (See Section 2.5.1.6 and Appendix A, Foam-water sprinkler systems). Provide
containment designed to provide enough liquid hold up for 1 hour of the expected sprinkler and hose
stream discharge. Design the foam-water sprinkler system in accordance with Table 15. Provide at least
a 30 minute foam duration.
d) Provide a 500 gpm (114 m3/hr) hose stream allowance.
e) Water supplies should meet the total sprinkler and hose stream demand for a duration of at least one
hour.
2.5.5.2 Protect storage of water miscible liquids and liquids with closed cup flash points greater than or equal
to 200F (93C) as follows:
a) Use Table 15 to determine the allowed storage arrangement, building roof height, storage height,
storage location and sprinkler protection criteria.
b) Provide containment designed to provide enough liquid holdup for 1 hour of the expected sprinkler
and hose stream discharge. If adequate containment cannot be provided, install emergency floor drain-
age and containment designed to remove the maximum expected sprinkler and hose stream discharge.
Design these systems in accordance with Data Sheet 7-83, Drainage Systems for Flammable Liquids.
c) If adequate containment alone or drainage-containment cannot be provided, install a foam-water sprin-
kler system. Design the foam-water sprinkler system in accordance with Table 15. Provide at least a 30
minute foam duration. Provide at least 30 minutes containment for expected sprinkler and hose stream
discharge.
d) Provide a 500 gpm (114 m3/hr) hose stream allowance.
e) Water supplies should meet the total sprinkler and hose stream demand for a duration of at least one
hour.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Table 15. Fire Protection Criteria for Flammable Liquids in Plastic or Glass Containers
Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Sprinkler Type Sprinkler Design
Nominal Response/
Max. Max. K-factor Nominal Design Sprinkler
0.5
Liquid FlashContainer Storage Roof Storage Storage Ceiling Sprinkler Protection gpm/psi Temperature
Pressure or Operating
0.5
Type Point Size Arrangement Height Height Location System Type Mode (l/min/bar ) Rating Density Area
Water Any > 6.5 gal Palletized 30 ft 5 ft Inside Cutoff Any Control- 11.2 QR/Ordinary
0.6 gpm/ft2 Entire
Miscible (25 l) Only (9.1 m) (1.5 m) Room, Outside Density/Area (161) (25 mm/min) Room
Liquids Cutoff Room,
or Low Value
Detached
Building
6.5 gal Use Tables 16b, 16c and 17 for Group 1, 2, 3 and 4 water miscible liquids (defined in Section 3.2.1.1). Protect water miscible liquids
(25 l) that are not included in one of the groups using the criteria provided for water miscible liquids in containers > 6.5 gal (25 l) in this table.
Non-Water 200F > 6.5 gal Palletized 30 ft 5 ft Inside Cutoff Any Control- 11.2 QR/Ordinary 0.6 gpm/ft2 Entire
Miscible (93C) (25 l) Only (9.1 m) (1.5 m) Room, Outside Density/Area (161) (25 mm/min) Room
Liquids Cutoff Room,
or Low Value
Detached
Building
6.5 gal Use Tables 16a and 17.
(25 l) If liquid-package combination is not covered by Tables 16a or 17, use criteria for containers > 6.5 gal (25 l) in this table.
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

< 200F > 6.5 gal Palletized 30 ft 5 ft Inside Cutoff Inside Cutoff Room is Not Acceptable; Protection Criteria is Not Available for this Arrangement
(93C) (25 l) Only (9.1 m) (1.5 m) Room
Outside Cutoff Any Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 75 psig Entire
Room Specific (161) (5.2 barg) Room
Application
Deluge Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 50 psig Entire
or Specific (161) (3.5 barg) Room
Foam-Water Application
6.5 gal Palletized 30 ft 5 ft Inside Cutoff Any Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 75 psig Entire
(25 l) Only (9.1 m) (1.5 m) Room Specific (161) (5.2 barg) Room
Application

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Deluge Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 50 psig Entire
or Specific (161) (3.5 barg) Room
Foam-Water Application
Outside Cut- Any Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 50 psig Entire
Off Room or Specific (161) (3.5 barg) Room
Low Value Application
Detached
Building
Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 29
7-29
7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 30 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

2.5.6 Plastic, Glass, or Other Combustible/Brittle Containers 6.5 gal (25 l)


2.5.6.1 Protect storage of non-water miscible liquids with closed cup flash points less than 200F (93C) or
any liquid-packaging combination that does not have specific proven protection criteria as follows:
a) Use Table 15 to determine the allowed storage arrangement, building roof height, storage height,
storage location and sprinkler protection criteria.
b) Provide emergency floor drainage and containment designed to remove the maximum expected sprin-
kler and hose stream discharge. Design these systems in accordance with Data Sheet 7-83, Drainage
Systems for Flammable Liquids.
c) If adequate drainage cannot be provided, supplement the recommended sprinkler protection with a
foam-water system (See Section 2.5.1.6 and Appendix A, Foam-water sprinkler systems). Provide con-
tainment designed to provide enough liquid hold up for 1 hour of the expected sprinkler and hose stream
discharge. Design the foam-water sprinkler system in accordance with Table 15. Provide at least a 30
minute foam duration.
d) Provide a 500 gpm (114 m3/hr) hose stream allowance.
e) Water supplies should meet the total sprinkler and hose stream demand for a duration of at least one
hour.
Note: This protection will not prevent the consumption of all of the liquid stored in the cutoff room or building,
but it may prevent structural failure of the roof and walls by cooling the structures.
2.5.6.2 Protect storage of liquids with closed cup flash points greater than or equal to 200F (93C) as follows:
a) Protect rack storage of liquids with closed cup flash points greater than or equal to 200F (93C) in
plastic or glass containers in accordance with Table 16a.
b) Protect palletized or solid pile storage of liquids with closed cup flash points greater than or equal to
200F (93C) in plastic or glass containers in accordance with Table 17.
c) Protect any combination of liquid and packaging that is not covered here in accordance with
Recommendation 2.5.6.1 above.
d) Provide a 500-gpm (114 m3/hr) hose stream allowance for all cutoff rooms or buildings greater than
2000 ft2 (186 m2). A 250-gpm (57 m3/hr) hose stream allowance is acceptable for cutoff rooms or build-
ings less than 2000 ft2 (186 m2).
e) Water supplies should meet the total sprinkler and hose stream demand for a duration of at least one
hour.
2.5.6.3 Protect storage of Group 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 water miscible liquids as follows:
a) Use Table 16b to determine fire protection criteria for rack storage of the following liquid-container
combinations:
Group 1 water miscible liquids in 16 oz (500 ml) or smaller plastic or glass containers.
Group 2 water miscible liquids in 1 gal (4 l) or smaller plastic or glass containers.
Group 3 water miscible liquids in 6.5 gal (25 l) or smaller plastic or glass containers.
b) Use Table 16c to determine fire protection criteria for rack storage of Group 4 water miscible liquids
in 6.5 gal (25 l) or smaller plastic or glass containers.
c) Use Table 17 to determine fire protection criteria for palletized or solid pile storage of the following liquid-
container combinations:
Group 1 water miscible liquids in 16 oz (500 ml) or smaller plastic or glass containers.
Group 2 water miscible liquids in 16 oz (500 ml) or smaller plastic or glass containers.
Group 3 water miscible liquids in 64 oz (1.9 l) or smaller plastic or glass containers.
Group 4 water miscible liquids in 6.5 gal (25 l) or smaller plastic or glass containers.
d) Protect Group 5 water miscible liquids as nonflammable liquids. Use Data Sheet 8-1 to determine the
appropriate commodity classification.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 31

e) Protect any combination of liquid and packaging that is not covered by Tables 16b, 16c or Table 17
in accordance with recommendation 2.5.6.1 and Table 15.
f) Provide a 500 gpm (114 m3/hr) hose stream allowance for all cutoff rooms or buildings greater than
2000 ft2 (186 m2). A 250 gpm (57 m3/hr) hose stream allowance is acceptable for cutoff rooms or buildings
less than 2000 ft2 (186 m2).
g) Water supplies should meet the total sprinkler and hose stream demand for a duration of at least one
hour.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Table 16a. Rack Storage of Liquids in Plastic or Glass Containers
Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Sprinkler Type
7-29
Page 32

Closed Cup Maximum Nominal Response/


Flash Point Building or Maximum K-factor Nominal
OR Container Ceiling Packaging Storage Minimum Protection gpm/psi0.5 Temperature Fire Protection Scheme
Liquid Type Size Height Type Height Aisle Width Rack Width Mode (l/min/bar0.5 Rating or Sprinkler System Design
< 200F (93C) 2 oz. Unlimited Cartoned Unlimited 4 ft Any Any Any Any Scheme A
(60 ml) (1.2 m)
200F (93C) 6.5 gal Unlimited Cartoned or Unlimited 4 ft Any Any Any Any Scheme A
(25 l) Uncartoned (1.2 m)
450F (232C) 6.5 gal 40 ft Cartoned or 35 ft 4 ft Any Any Any Any Scheme A
(25 l) (12.1 m) Uncartoned (10.7 m) (1.2 m) Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary Scheme B
Density/Area (115)
Cartoned 35 ft 8 ft 9 ft Any Any Any Scheme A
(10.7 m) (2.4 m) (2.7 m) Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary Scheme C
Density/Area (161)
30 ft Cartoned 25 ft 4 ft > 9 ft Any Any Any Scheme A
(9.1 m) (7.6 m) (1.2 m) (2.7 m) Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 75 psig
pendent (202) (12 @ 5.2 barg)
Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary Scheme B
Density/Area (115)
8 ft 9 ft Any Any Any Scheme A
(2.4 m) (2.7 m) Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 75 psig
pendent (202) (12 @ 5.2 barg)
Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary Scheme C
Density/Area (115)
15 ft 4 ft > 9 ft Any Any Any Scheme A
(4.6 m) (1.2 m) (2.7 m) Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig

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pendent (202) (12 @ 3.5 barg)
Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary Scheme B
Density/Area (115)
Uncartoned 25 ft 8 ft 9 ft Any Any Any Scheme A
(7.6 m) (2.4 m) (2.7 m) Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary Scheme C
Density/Area (115)
15 ft 4 ft > 9 ft Any Any Any Scheme A
(4.6 m) (1.2 m) (2.7 m) Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary Scheme B
Density/Area (115)
Note: See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations. See Section D.2.2 for fire protection schemes.
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets
Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Table 16b. Rack Storage of Group 1, 2, and 3 Water Miscible Liquids in Plastic or Glass Containers. (Note 1)
Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria In-Rack Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Water
Miscible Rack Sprinkler Type Sprinkler Type
Group Maximum Type/ Response/ Nominal Response/
(See Building Minimum Maximum Nominal Nominal Fire Protection K-factor0.5 Nominal Discharge
0.5
Section Container Ceiling Packaging Aisle Storage Protection gpm/psi Temperature Scheme or Ceiling gpm/psi Temperature Pressure
3.2.1) Size Height Type Width Height Mode (l/min/bar0.5 Rating Sprinkler Design Layout (l/min/bar0.5) Rating (Note 3)
Group 1 16 oz Unlimited Cartoned Any Unlimited Any Any Any Scheme A (Note 2) Scheme A Scheme A Scheme A Scheme A
(500 ml)
Group 2 1 gal Unlimited Cartoned Any Unlimited Any Any Any Scheme A (Note 2) Scheme A Scheme A Scheme A Scheme A
(4 l)
Group 3 1 gal 30 ft Cartoned DRR/ 25 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 75 psig None NA NA NA
(4 l) (9.1 m) 8 ft (7.6 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 5.2 barg)
(2.4 m) (Note 5, 6)
Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.6 gpm/ft2/2000 ft2 Fig. 12 8.0 QR/Ordinary 30 psig
Density/Area (115) (25 mm/min/186 m2) (115) (2.1 barg)
0.3 gpm/ft2/2000 ft2 Fig. 15a, 8.0 QR/Ordinary 30 psig
(12 mm/min/186 m2) 15b, 15c (115) (2.1 barg)
(Note 4)
6.5 gal Unlimited Cartoned Any Unlimited Any Any Any Scheme A Scheme A Scheme A Scheme A Scheme A
(25 l) or (Note 2)
Uncartoned
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

Notes:
1. See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.
2. See Section D.2.2 for fire protection schemes.
3. Base the in-rack sprinkler water demand on the simultaneous operation of the most hydraulically remote sprinklers as follows:
a) Eight (8) sprinklers where only one level of in-rack sprinklers is installed
b) Fourteen (14) sprinklers (seven on two levels) where more than one level of in-rack sprinklers are installed
c) The in-rack end head design pressure is provided in Table 16b.
4. The referenced figures are part of Fire Protection Scheme C. Only use the figures, do not apply the entire fire protection scheme.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 33
7-29
Table 16c. Rack Storage of Group 4 Water Miscible Liquids in Plastic or Glass Containers. (Note 1)
Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria In-Rack Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Water Sprinkler Type Sprinkler Type
7-29

Miscible
Page 34

Group Maximum Nominal Response/ Nominal Response/


(See Building Rack Type/ Maximum K-factor Nominal Fire Protection K-factor Nominal Discharge
Section Container Ceiling Packaging Minimum Storage gpm/psi 0.5 Temperature Scheme or Ceiling gpm/psi 0.5 Temperature Pressure
3.2.1) Size Height Type Aisle Width Height Protection Mode (l/min/bar0.5) Rating Sprinkler Design Layout (l/min/bar0.5) Rating (Note 3)
Group 4 16 oz 30 ft Cartoned Any 25 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig None N/A N/A N/A
(500 ml) (9.1 m) (7.6 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 3.5 barg)
(Note 4) Control-Specific 11.2 SR/Ordinary 15 @ 50 psig Fig. 11a or 8.0 QR/SR/ 15 psig
Application (161) (15 @ 3.5 barg) 11b (115) Ordinary (1.0 barg)
Control-Density/ 11.2 SR/Ordinary 0.40 gpm/ft2/2000 ft2 Fig. 11a or 8.0 QR/SR/ 30 psig
Area (161) (16 mm/min/186 m2) 11b (115) Ordinary (2.1 barg)
15 ft Control-Specific 11.2 SR/Ordinary 15 @ 50 psig None N/A N/A N/A
(4.6 m) Application (161) (15 @ 3.5 barg)
Control-Density/ 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.3 gpm/ft2/2000 ft2 Fig. 11a or 8.0 QR/SR/ 30 psig
Area (115) (12 mm/min/186 m2) 11b (115) Ordinary (2.1 barg)
1 gal 30 ft Cartoned Any 25 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig None N/A N/A N/A
(4 l) (9.1 m) (7.6 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 3.5 barg)
(Note 5) Control-Specific 11.2 SR/Ordinary 15 @ 50 psig Fig. 11a or 8.0 QR/SR/ 15 psig
Application (161) (15 @ 3.5 barg) 11b (115) Ordinary (1.0 barg)
Control-Density/ 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.3 gpm/ft2/2000 ft2 Fig. 10a or 8.0 QR/SR/ 30 psig
Area (115) (12 mm/min/186 m2) 10b (115) Ordinary (2.1 barg)
15 ft Control-Specific 11.2 SR/Ordinary 15 @ 50 psig None 8.0 N/A N/A
(4.6 m) Application (161) (15 @ 3.5 barg) (115)
Control-Density/ 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.3 gpm/ft2/2000 ft2 Fig. 11a or 8.0 QR/SR/ 30 psig
Area (115) (12 mm/min/186 m2) 11b (115) Ordinary (2.1 barg)
6.5 gal Unlimited Cartoned Any Unlimited Any Any Any Scheme A Scheme A Scheme A Scheme A Scheme A
(25 l) and (Note 2)
Uncartoned

Notes:
1. See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.
2. See Section D.2.2 for fire protection schemes.
3. Base the in-rack sprinkler water demand on the simultaneous operation of the most hydraulically remote sprinklers as follows:
a) Eight (8) sprinklers where only one level of in-rack sprinklers is installed

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


b) Fourteen (14) sprinklers (seven on two levels) where more than one level of in-rack sprinklers are installed
c) The in-rack end head design pressure is provided in Table 16c.
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets
Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 35

Table 17. Palletized/Solid Pile Storage of Liquids with Closed Cup Flash Points 200F (93C) and
Group 1-3 Water Miscible Liquids in Plastic Containers
Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Max Sprinkler Type
Closed Cup Building Nominal Response/ Sprinkler Design
Flash Point or Maximum K-factor Nominal (Density/Area)
OR Container Packaging Ceiling Storage Protection gpm/psi 0.5 Temperature (No. A.S.@
0.5
Liquid Type Size Type Height Height Mode (l/min/bar ) Rating Pressure)
200F 6.5 gal Cartoned 40 ft 15 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 75 psig
(93C) (25 l) (12.1 m) (4.6 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 5.2 barg)
30 ft 15 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig
(9.1 m) (4.6 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 3.5 barg)
Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 25 @ 50 psig
Specific (161) (25 @ 3.5 barg)
Application
5 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig
(1.5 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 3.5 barg)
Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 25 @ 25 psig
Specific (161) (25 @ 1.7 barg)
Application
Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 0.6 gpm/ft2/3000 ft2
Density/Area (161) (24 mm/min/279 m2)
450F 6.5 gal Cartoned 40 ft 15 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 75 psig
(232C) (25 l) or (12.1 m) (4.6 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 5.2 barg)
Uncartoned 30 ft 15 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig
(9.1 m) (4.6 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 3.5 barg)
Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 15 @ 50 psig
Specific (161) (15 @ 3.5 barg)
Application
Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 0.6 gpm/ft2/3000 ft2
Density/Area (161) (24 mm/min/279 m2)
5 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig
(1.5 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 3.5 barg)
Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 15 @ 25 psig
Specific (161) (15 @ 1.7 barg)
Application
Control- 8.0 SR/Ordinary 0.3 gpm/ft2/3000 ft2
Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min/279 m2)
Group 1 or 2 16 oz Cartoned 30 ft 12 ft Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 25 @ 50 psig
Water (500 ml) (9.1 m) (3.7 m) Specific (161) (25 @ 3.4 barg)
Miscible Application
Liquids 8 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig
(See (2.4 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 3.4 barg)
Section 3.2.1)
Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 15 @ 50 psig
Specific (161) (15 @ 3.4 barg)
Application
5 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig
(1.5 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 3.4 barg)
Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 15 @ 50 psig
Specific (161) (15 @ 3.4 barg)
Application
Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 0.6 gpm/ft2 /2000 ft2
Density/Area (161) (24 mm/min/186 m2)
Group 3 64 oz Cartoned 30 ft 20 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig
Water (1.9 l) (9.1 m) (6.1 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 3.5 barg)
Miscible Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 15 @ 50 psig
Liquids Specific (161) (15 @ 3.4 barg)
(See Application
Section 3.2.1)
Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.3 gpm/ft2/2000 ft2
Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min/186 m2)
Group 4 6.5 gal Cartoned 30 ft 20 ft Suppression- 14.0 QR/Ordinary 12 @ 50 psig
Water (25 l) or (9.1 m) (6.1 m) pendent (202) (12 @ 3.5 barg)
Miscible Uncartoned Control- 11.2 SR/Ordinary 15 @ 50 psig
Liquids Specific (161) (15 @ 3.4 barg)
(See Application
Section 3.2.1)
Control- 8.0 SR/High 0.3 gpm/ft2/2000 ft2
Density/Area (115) (12 mm/min/186 m2)
Note: See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.

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7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 36 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

2.5.7 Yard Storage Any Container Type


2.5.7.1 Provide manual protection consisting of yard hydrants within 200 ft (60 m) of all outside flammable
and combustible liquid storage areas. Provide manual foam protection for critical large or high value stor-
age areas containing liquids with flash points below 200F (93C). Manual foam protection can be provided
by a fixed water spray system, fixed monitor nozzles, or mobile monitor and hose nozzles. Design the sys-
tem in accordance with Data Sheet 4-7N, Low Expansion Foam Systems.

2.6 Human Element

2.6.1 Employee Training and Maintenance


Thorough employee training and a basic equipment and building maintenance program are fundamental
components of any flammable liquid storage facility. Both items will contribute to reducing the potential for
a fire as well as reduce the frequency and severity of such occurrences. Proper employee training for spill
response and lift truck operation can ensure that a small event is contained and does not escalate into a
major fire loss.
2.6.1.1 Create a training program for all employees (including lift truck operators, emergency organization
members, and security personnel) who have access to or work in areas containing flammable/combustible
liquid storage. Design the training programs to address the various types of liquids stored and the associ-
ated hazard level present at the facility. The training should include proper container handling, equipment
operation, and emergency procedures. The consequences of failing to follow the procedures should also be
presented. Provide training for all new employees. Refresher programs should also be provided, as needed,
for current employees. The program should at least include:
a) The hazards created by the liquids and their associated containers.
b) Proper liquid handling procedures (i.e., lift truck operations, liquid transport through the facility, etc.).
c) The location, proper type and proper use of fire extinguishers and small hose stations for the hazard
present.
d) Fixed extinguishing systems operation and function.
2.6.1.2 Establish an emergency response plan at locations storing flammable/combustible liquids. Design
the plan to control the extent of damage due to fires by at least ensuring prompt fire department notifica-
tion, and availability of provided fire protection features. The plan should also include spill response proce-
dures aimed at limiting spill size (e.g., prompt removal of breached containers), containing released liquid
(e.g., use of sand bags or other barriers), and elimination of all ignition sources that may be exposed by the
spill, or flammable vapors, until the spill is cleaned up. The actual extent of the emergency response plan,
including spill response procedures, will depend on the hazards present, facility size, availability of emer-
gency response personnel from surrounding communities (e.g., fire department, spill response teams, etc.),
and local, state or federal regulations.
The facilitys emergency organization members and the local fire department should be familiar with the loca-
tion of flammable/combustible liquid storage as well as the emergency response plan. Use emergency
response drills to reinforce the employee training programs (including emergency organization) and assist
the fire department in pre-fire planning.
2.6.1.3 Arrange security rounds to include all areas storing flammable and combustible liquids. Train security
personnel to recognize and provide prompt notification of a leak.
2.6.1.4 Establish excellent housekeeping standards for areas storing flammable and combustible liquids.
Clean up spills promptly. Keep waste materials in Approved oily waste cans. Remove waste daily. Maintain
adequate aisles to permit unobstructed movement of personnel and access for fire fighting. Do not store
other combustibles in the area nor permit any material that might wash into or plug drains. Keep outdoor stor-
age areas clear of grass, weeds and other foreign combustibles.
2.6.1.5 Provide a raw materials inspection program to ensure delivery of expected liquids and prevent the
introduction of incompatible liquids into a storage facility. Accept, ship and use only containers that comply with
U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), United Nations, or equivalent specifications. The vapor space
should be no less than permitted by the specific regulation.

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 37

2.6.1.6 All containers filled with flammable and combustible liquids should be clearly labeled. Inspect drums
for leaks upon receipt, when in use and while stored. Leaking, corroded or damaged drums should be
promptly removed and spillage immediately cleaned up and disposed of in a manner acceptable to the
authority having jurisdiction.
2.6.1.7 Management should strictly control all changes in storage arrangements, locations and types of flam-
mable or combustible liquids. Conduct a full review of all planned changes with qualified loss prevention
consultants as well as other authorities having jurisdiction before the project begins.
2.6.1.8 Establish a complete maintenance program designed to ensure that equipment is operating as it
has been engineered to operate. Refer to Data Sheet 9-0/17-0, Maintenance and Inspection, to evaluate exist-
ing programs or as a guide to develop new programs. Maintenance programs for equipment handling and
areas containing flammable or combustible liquids should include: mechanical and electrical equipment.
Follow preventive maintenance schedules closely to prevent the creation of an ignition source (e.g., equip-
ment breakdown and overheating, improperly sealed hazardous area rated electric equipment).
2.6.1.9 Relocate equipment needing repair or maintenance by use of a cutting torch or other hot work
operation to a nonhazardous location.

3.0 SUPPORT FOR RECOMMENDATIONS

3.1 Application of Recommendations


This standard applies to all storage of flammable liquids. Full scale fire tests have demonstrated that a severe
fire involving flammable liquids generally consumes less than three pallet loads of test commodity. It is
expected that a single inadequately protected pallet load of flammable liquid storage in a warehouse occu-
pancy could result in a fire that overtaxes the available sprinkler protection.

3.2 Liquid Evaluation


The first step in evaluating the storage of flammable liquids is to determine the actual fire hazard presented
by the liquid. Current labeling practices required by transportation code or other codes and liquid classifica-
tion schemes are not a good indication of the fire hazard of a liquid. Even measurable physical properties
of liquids do not always provide enough information to determine the fire hazard created by a stored liquid.
Existing liquid classification schemes are based on the liquids closed cup flash point.
The current liquid classification scheme provided in NFPA 30, Flammable and Combustible Liquids Code
is:
Flammable liquids have closed-cup flash points below 100F (38C) and vapor pressures not exceeding
40 psia (2.76 bar) at 100F (38C) (thus excluding liquefied petroleum gases, liquefied natural gases and
liquefied hydrogen). Flammable liquids are referred to as Class 1 liquids, and are subdivided as follows:
Class IA liquids flash points below 73F (23C) and boiling points below 100F (38C).
Class IB liquids flash points below 73F (23C) and boiling points at or above 100F (38C).
Class IC liquids flash points at or above 73F (23C) and below 100F (38C). Examples are styrene,
methyl isobutyl ketone, isobutyl alcohol and turpentine.
Combustible liquids have closed-cup flash points at or above 100F (38C). They are referred to as either
Class II or Class III liquids and are subdivided as follows:
Class II liquids flash points at or above 100F (38C) and below 140F (60C).
Class IIIA liquids flash points at or above 140F (60C) and below 200F (93C).
Class IIIB liquids flash points at or above 200F (93C).
The current liquid classification scheme followed by the U.S. Transportation Code and U.N. Transportation
Recommendations classify flammable liquids into two basic groups:
Flammable Liquid Flash Point 141F (60.6C)
Combustible Liquid Flash Point > 141F (60.6C) and < 200F (93C)

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 38 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

The liquid classification scheme based on flash point started when liquids were commonly mixed in open
vessels or tanks and a measure of the potential for ignition was needed. The flash point served this purpose
well. It does not provide any measure of the fire hazard created by storing the liquids in various containers
and in various storage arrays. Flash point does provide some measure of how difficult ignition of a liquid
may be.
The fire hazard of a flammable liquid is determined by both inherent physical properties of the liquid and exter-
nal factors such as container construction, container size, storage arrangement and building construction fac-
tors. Two measures of fire severity are heat release rate and flame height. For liquid fires, the heat release
rate is controlled by the surface area of the liquid, the liquids heat of combustion, and the mass loss rate of
the liquid. The flame height is controlled by the fires heat release rate. The heat of combustion and mass
loss rate are physical properties of the liquid. The surface area available to burn is dependent on numer-
ous external factors such as, liquid release method (spray release, liquid stream, catastrophic mass release),
floor surface and pitch (rough surface and/or floor pitch will limit liquid spread), and container construction
(combustible containers will release liquid while most noncombustible containers will retain liquid if properly
protected). Tables 18 and 19 provide calculated heat release rates and flame heights for various liquids in
a fixed pool area and for flowing liquid fires.

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


Table 18. Flammable Liquid Spill Fire Data
Mass Heat
Tank Pipe Pipe Flow Flow Discharge Pool Pool Pool Pool Fire Loss Release Flame Flame
Liquid Volume Diameter Diameter Rate Rate Duration Diameter Diameter Area Area Duration Rate Rate Height Height
Liquid Classification (gal/kg) (in.) (mm) (kg/s) (gpm) (s) (m) (ft) (m2) (ft2) (s) (kg/m2s) (kW) (m) (ft)
Heptane 1B 55/123 0.5 12.7 0.1 2.3 1231 0.93 3 1 7 1232 0.144 4,030 5.6 18
Heptane 1B 56/123 1 25.4 0.4 9.3 307.6 1.88 6 3 30 309.9 0.145 16,583 9.5 31
Heptane 1B 56/123 1 25.4 0.64 14.9 190 2.4 8 5 49 194.4 0.146 27,212 11.5 38
Heptane 1B 57/123 2 50.8 1.6 37.1 76.9 3.8 12 11 122 82.3 0.146 68,219 16.3 53
Heptane 1B 58/123 3 76.2 3.6 83.7 33.3 5.7 19 26 275 41 0.146 153,493 22.1 72
Heptane 1B 110/247 1 25.4 0.4 9.3 615.8 1.88 6 3 30 617 0.144 16,469 9.5 31
Heptane 1B 220/494 1 25.4 0.4 9.3 1229 1.88 6 3 30 1231 0.144 16,469 9.5 31
Decane 2 55/131 1 25.4 0.48 10.4 306.6 2.3 8 4 45 311 0.112 18,939 9.7 32
Dodecane 3A 55/134 1 25.4 0.44 9.4 306.6 2.5 8 5 53 312 0.101 20,030 9.8 32
Ethyl Ether 1A 55/148 1 25.4 0.42 9.4 307.6 1.7 6 2 24 310 0.187 11,333 8.1 27
Acetone 1B 55/123 1 25.4 0.46 10.3 307.6 2.2 7 4 41 314.1 0.141 14,954 8.7 29
IPA 1B 55/123 1 25.4 0.46 10.3 307.6 2.7 9 6 62 317.5 0.108 17,932 9.1 30
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

Table 19. Flammable Liquid Pool Fire Data


Chemical Heat Heat Release
Liquid Pool Pool Pool Area Pool Area Mass Loss Rate of Combustion Rate Flame Height Flame Height
Liquid Classification Diameter (m) Diameter (ft) (m2) (ft2) (kg/m2s) (kJ/g) (kW) (m) (ft)
Heptane 1B 2.4 8 5 49 0.144 41.2 26,839 11.4 38
Decane 2 2.4 8 5 49 0.112 40.7 20,622 10.0 33
Dodecane 3A 2.4 8 5 49 0.101 40.4 18,459 9.5 31
Ethyl Ether 1A 2.4 8 5 49 0.187 26.7 22,587 10.5 34
Acetone 1B 2.4 8 5 49 0.141 27.9 17,797 9.3 31

2004 Factory Mutual Insurance Company. All rights reserved.


IPA 1B 2.4 8 5 49 0.108 29 14,169 8.3 27
Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 39
7-29
7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
Page 40 FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets

The above approach to evaluating liquid fire hazard indicates that hydrocarbon liquids will produce compa-
rable heat release rates regardless of flash point. Since the heat release rate provides a measure of the
fire severity, subdividing hydrocarbon liquids by expected fire severity alone appears meaningless.
Another factor that can be considered is the ability to extinguish a liquid pool fire with ceiling sprinkler dis-
charge alone. Past FM Global Research testing shows ceiling sprinklers were successful in extinguishing pool
fires involving liquids with a closed cup flash point greater than 200F (93C). This result was also sup-
ported in more recent FM Global Research tests on vegetable and motor oils. Using this criteria, hydrocar-
bon liquids could be divided into two groups: liquids that cannot be extinguished with ceiling sprinkler
discharge and liquids that can be extinguished with ceiling sprinkler discharge. The break point would be a
closed cup flash point of 200F (93C). Using this break point also allows consideration of the difficulty to
ignite a high flash point liquid.
The FM Global Research test results on motor oil and vegetable oil provided a break point to use for the evalu-
ation of liquids with a flash point greater than 200F (93C). The required level of fire protection for veg-
etable oils in plastic containers is significantly less than what is required for motor oil in plastic containers.
The closed cup flash point of the tested vegetable oil was 450F (232C). The motor oil tested has a flash point
of 375F (191C). The main difference between the two tested liquids is the amount of energy needed to
ignite the liquids. The higher flash and fire point of the vegetable oil allowed for the use of a reduced protec-
tion scheme (i.e., no barriers and one line of in-racks) because the released oil was more difficult to ignite
and when ignited was very easily cooled and extinguished by sprinkler discharge.
Other material/liquid properties that may impact the fire hazard of a liquid include: water miscibility, liquid mix-
tures and emulsions, liquid viscosity, low boiling point liquids (i.e., boiling point < 100F [38C]) and liquids
that are heavier than water (i.e., specific gravity > 1).

3.2.1 Water Miscible Liquids.


See Appendix A for the definition of water miscible.
Historically, water miscible flammable liquids were thought to require significantly less protection than nor-
mal hydrocarbon liquids due to the fact that they can be diluted with water to a point where they cease to be
flammable. This approach actually allowed certain water-flammable liquid mixtures to be protected like a
solid commodity. Water miscible liquids do generally have lower heat release rates and low flame radiation
(due to limited soot production). Also as the water percentage of the mixture rises, the flash point and fire
point of the mixture increase while the heat of combustion and heat release rate decrease. At some point, the
mixture will cease to have a fire point but may still have a flash point. Mixtures that do not have a fire point
are not flammable. Conversely, if the mixture has a fire point, it will burn and can create a pool fire. Unfor-
tunately, this means products with limited amounts of a water miscible liquid and a fire point have the poten-
tial for creating a pool fire if the liquid release is not controlled during a fire. This could allow fire spread well
beyond the area of fire origin. Mixtures that have fire points must always be considered flammable liquids.
There are only a handful of flammable liquids that meet the definition of water miscible provided in this stan-
dard. The majority of liquids that meet the definition are low molecular weight alcohols and acetone. All of
the liquids listed in Table 20 are water miscible.
Water miscible liquids do mix with water. However, they are also lighter than water so they float on its surface.
The majority of the mixing in a sprinklered pool fire scenario is due to sprinkler discharge impacting the liquid
surface. Full scale tests by FM Global Research have shown that, although mixing does occur, it is a very
slow process and should not be depended on to reduce fire protection needs in a warehouse storage
arrangement.
Some protection criteria required for water miscible liquids as a general group can be reduced due to the
lower heat release rates and lower flame radiation (e.g., location and construction requirements, sprinkler pro-
tection for liquids in metal containers). Some protection criteria can be reduced due to the expected dilu-
tion effect of water (e.g., drainage requirements). In other cases, water miscible liquids need to be broken
down by the specific liquid, liquid concentration, and storage container construction (e.g., sprinkler protec-
tion for liquids in plastic containers). Since plastic or glass containers cannot prevent the release of a water
miscible liquid during a fire, the liquid type and concentration must be considered. All water miscible liquids
do not present the same fire hazard. Acetone creates a more severe fire hazard than isopropyl alcohol (IPA).
Unfortunately, fire testing conducted to date have only looked at alcohols. This base of test data allows the
grouping of all water miscible alcohols by volume percent. One series of small scale testing indicates that

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80% acetone presents a similar fire hazard as 100% IPA. Since different levels of fire protection criteria are
possible for various mixtures of some miscible liquids and water, mixtures with similar fire hazards were
grouped.

Table 20. Water Miscible Liquid Groupings


Volume Percent Range
Methyl Alcohol, Ethyl Alcohol, n-Propyl Alcohol,
Group Isopropyl Alcohol, tert-Butyl Alcohol, Allyl Alcohol Acetone
1 71 100 16 80
2 51 70 DNA
3 31 50 DNA
4 21 30 DNA
5 0 20 0 15

Miscible liquid mixtures in plastic or glass containers 6.5 gal (25 l) that are not included in the groups have
not been evaluated. Use the guidelines in Table 15 to determine acceptable fire protection for these liquids.

3.2.2 Emulsions
There are a number of products that consist of a water base mixed with various percentages of immiscible
flammable liquids and solids. Many of these are emulsions (i.e., the immiscible flammable liquid does not
separate out of the mixture). A common example of this type of product is a water borne paint or coating. Latex
paints generally have little or no flammable liquid content. Some newer paints have various percentages
of flammable liquid in a water base. The flammable liquids can be water miscible or immiscible. Bench scale
testing on a large number of paint products with up to 20% immiscible flammable liquid has shown these
materials to present no measurable fire hazard. Many of these materials cannot be easily tested using stan-
dard flash or fire point test methods. However, efforts to ignite larger quantities of liquid than required by
these tests also failed to produce any sustained combustion.

3.2.3 Viscous Liquids/Viscous Mixtures


Viscosity is measured by many different types of tests. Many of the measurements were developed for a
particular type of liquid at a fixed temperature. It is not possible to convert between most of the viscosity
measurements. One unit of viscosity is a centipoise (cp). One cp is equivalent to 6.72 X 10-4 lb/sec-ft or
0.01 g/cm-sec. The viscosity of several liquids (at 70F [21C]) are as follows: water, 1.0 cp; gasoline, 0.65 cp;
acetone, 0.35 cp; lubricating oil (SAE 10), 60 cp; glycerin, 1000 cp; honey, 10,000 cp; and asphalt, over
100,000 cp. An important benefit of viscous liquids is their reduced flow capacity. Highly viscous liquids will
resist free flow which results in reduced surface area. As discussed earlier, surface area has a direct impact
on liquid fire severity. Unfortunately, the viscosity of many materials decreases with elevated temperatures.
Since current viscosity measurement techniques do not provide viscosities at fire temperatures, a reduction
in fire hazard for viscous homogenous materials cannot be determined.
There are other liquids that consist of a mixture of solids and a flammable liquid. In cases where there is a
high solid content, a reduction in fire hazard is expected. Liquids with a viscosity of 10,000 cp and less than
10% flammable liquid or a viscosity of 100,000 cp and less than 50% flammable liquid can be protected using
reduced protection criteria. Straight interpolation may be used to calculate the maximum solvent content
for mixtures with viscosities between 10,000 cp and 100,000 cp. One example of this type is automobile repair
putty which consists of a viscous base material combined with a small quantity of low-flash-point solvent.
Liquid drainage systems are not needed for any liquid with a viscosity greater than 10,000 cp. Even though
these liquids may experience a reduction in viscosity when exposed to a fire, if the sprinkler protection is
adequate, the liquids should cool quickly on the floor. The reduced flow characteristics of a highly viscous
liquid negates the effectiveness of a drainage system in removing the liquid.

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3.2.4 Liquid with Boiling Point <100F (38C)


No testing has been conducted on these liquids. Their low boiling point results in rapid vaporization when
released. This creates the potential for the formation of an explosive cloud if the liquid is spilled or quick
buildup of pressure in a sealed container exposed to a fire. The impact on the overall fire hazard may be lim-
ited. Quick vaporization produces a high mass loss rate that will quickly reduce pool area. These two fac-
tors may cancel each others impact on the overall heat release rate. The key concern with these liquids is
the prevention of a large liquid release that could result in an explosion or the prevention of container over
pressurization during a fire.

3.2.5 Liquids with Specific Gravity > 1


These liquids can be extinguished by water if the water is given the opportunity to build up over the liquids
surface. Emergency floor drainage is not required for this type of liquid storage as long as adequate con-
tainment can be provided to ensure water build-up over the flammable liquids surface. The overall fire haz-
ard is not expected to be significantly reduced since the liquid fire would not be extinguished until water could
completely cover its surface.

3.2.6 Ethylene Glycol


There is currently no full scale testing available on water miscible liquids with closed cup flash points above
200F (93C). Recent testing by FM Global Research on lower flash point water miscible liquids has shown
that all water miscible liquids do not create the same fire hazard, so fire protection criteria based solely on
the liquids water miscibility is incorrect.
Ethylene glycol in 6.5 gal (25 l) or smaller plastic containers should not be treated like motor or vegetable
oils. There are three reasons for this. First, ethylene glycol has a heat of combustion of 8260 Btu/lb
(19.2/MJ/kg), while ethanol, which has a similar chemical structure, has a heat of combustion of about
12,800 Btu/lb (29.7 MJ/kg). Thus ethylene glycol has a heat of combustion that is about 35% lower than
ethanol. This heat of combustion is about half that of motor and vegetable oils. The severity of a fire in ethylene
glycol is expected to be considerably less severe than was observed in the tests of oils.
Secondly, ethylene glycol is water soluble. Sprinkler discharge will dilute the liquid and extinguish a fire in
it. FM Global Research tests on pan fires of oil using a 50-50 mixture of ethylene glycol and water in the sprin-
kler system showed this mixture will extinguish the oil fire without contributing to the fire.
Lastly, the high flash point of ethylene glycol should make it significantly easier to control an ethylene glycol
fire with sprinklers.

3.3 Construction and Location


The location and construction features provided for flammable liquid storage are dependent on both the
expected fire severity with protection systems in service and the potential for more severe fire scenarios than
designed for. Container size has a significant impact on the potential for a more severe fire scenario. Fire pro-
tection designs for larger containers is based on a flowing liquid release that is ignited immediately. The
amount of the spill is dependent on the container size. The scenario for metal drums assumes a release from
two drums on a single pallet. There is a potential for a larger release or a delayed ignition. Both cases could
result in a larger fire that will challenge the provided protection scheme. At least a cutoff room is needed
to segregate flammable liquid drum storage from other less hazardous occupancies.
Many combustible or brittle containers with low flash point, immiscible flammable liquids cannot be easily
protected with existing sprinkler technology. This type of storage needs to be well cut-off from other occu-
pancies since the confidence level in provided protection is low.
Flammable liquid storage buildings/cutoff rooms must utilize noncombustible construction. The high inten-
sity of a flammable liquid fire could ignite combustible construction even in adequately protected facilities.
Additional protection is needed to ensure the integrity of steel columns located in buildings or cutoff rooms
where a severe fire is expected.
Liquid control is a critical issue in buildings or cutoff rooms storing flammable liquids. Based on the type and
size of container, the level of liquid control can vary. In storage arrays where large spills are possible, strict
liquid control via drainage systems and curbing is needed. Storage arrays of small containers with proven
protection schemes do not require drainage or containment.

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
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Outdoor storage of flammable liquids presents a significant exposure to surrounding buildings, structure,
and utilities. Lack of adequate space separation between the storage area and combustible buildings, non-
combustible buildings, or fire rated construction with unprotected openings will result in fire spread to or into
the exposed building. If the liquid is contained to the storage area by diking or ground slope, the fire can spread
by radiation. The space separation curves provided in this standard are based on preventing the ignition
of exposed wood for at least 15 minutes. The distances provided are based on flame radiation calcula-
tions. To use this methodology, a number of assumptions were needed. The assumptions used are listed
below:
1. The storage pad area defines the pool fire size.
2. The long dimension of the storage pad is no more than three times the length of the short dimension of
the pad. The long dimension creates the exposure.
3. An emissive power of 80 kW/m2 was used for hydrocarbon liquids and 30 kW/m2 was used for water
miscible liquids.
4. A critical heat flux of 10 kW/m2 was used for the exposed wood surface.
5. A nominal wind, in the direction of the exposed building, of 20 mph was used. The calculations addressed
both the flame shortening effect of wind and the flame tilt created by the wind.
The limitations created by this methodology are:
1. The geometry of the storage pad is fixed.
2. The results are conservative due to the chosen critical heat flux, the fixed wind speed, the fixed exposure
width, and the fixed assumed emissive powers.
Exposed buildings with fire rated exterior construction (e.g., 8 in. [200 mm] concrete block provides approxi-
mately a 134 hour fire rating and 12 in. [300 mm] concrete block provides approximately a 3 hour fire rat-
ing) can tolerate an exposing fire as long as fire department response is expected within the fire rating. (See
Data Sheet 1-21, Fire Resistance of Building Assemblies, for additional information on determining the fire
rating of construction.) Some amount of space separation is still needed to allow adequate access to the stor-
age area for manual fire fighting efforts.
Large metal storage containers that are not arranged to relieve excess pressure can BLEVE (Boiling Liquid
Expanding Vapor Explosion). A BLEVE releases a large quantity of energy in the form of a fire ball and a
shock wave. Low storage heights permit better cooling of exposed containers. Containers that are designed
to vent excess pressure present a minimal BLEVE potential.

3.4 Ignition Source Control


Unlike solid materials, liquids with low flash points do not require much energy to ignite since they produce
flammable vapors at ambient temperatures. Preventing the ignition of an accidentally released flammable
liquid prevents a flammable liquid fire. The most common ignition sources in a warehouse are the electri-
cal equipment, the fork lift trucks, the employees, and hot work operations. Liquid storage that can pro-
duce large liquid releases (i.e., containers greater than 6.5 gal [25 l]) or storage of liquids with excess
vaporization rates (i.e., boiling point < 100F [38C]) should have added precautions taken to prevent an igni-
tion of a spill. Since liquid vapors are heavier than air, using hazardous area rated electrical equipment or
not providing electrical equipment within 6 ft (1.8 m) of the floor would provide the needed level of ignition
source control where the flammable vapors will likely be located. Careless operation of fork lift trucks creates
an opportunity for an accidental release of liquid. Use of a properly rated fork lift truck would ensure the
needed level of ignition control is available where the most likely source of flammable vapor generation is
expected.
Control of open ignition sources such as matches, fired heating equipment, and hot work must be strictly
controlled in and around areas storing flammable liquids. Any open flame or spark has ample energy to ignite
flammable vapors released by flammable liquids. Since the vapors are heavier than air, they have the abil-
ity to flow away from the point of release. Hot work or an open flame well away from a liquid spill can ignite
the spill if the vapors flow to the work area.

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7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
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3.5 Ventilation
Ventilation is an active system designed to prevent the buildup of flammable vapors due to small leaks or
spills. These systems must be properly designed and laid out to ensure all floor areas of the warehouse or cut-
off room are covered by the system. In large buildings, a test of the system using a smoke generating device
may be needed to ensure the system layout is adequate.

3.6 Protection
Determining adequate fire protection for the storage of flammable liquids is not a straight forward effort. In gen-
eral, there is a lack of full scale testing to draw conclusions from due to the high cost and potential risk of con-
ducting this type of testing. However, even if the testing is done, the number of variables that could drastically
impact the outcome of a test are too numerous to handle. Potential fire scenarios range from a point igni-
tion of a common combustible material in a flammable liquid storage occupancy to the ignition of the con-
tents of one 350 gal (1.1 m3) IBC that had all its contents released onto the floor before ignition.
For containers greater than 6.5 gal (25 l) in size, the fire scenario used to evaluate protection involves a
breached container that leaks flammable liquid at a fixed rate until empty, with ignition after approximately
10 gal (38 l) had been released. The recommended fire protection may not be adequate for the scenario
involving the complete release of a large container before ignition in warehouses or cutoff rooms that are
larger than the provided sprinkler operating area. Due to the variability of defining fire protection for flammable
liquids, sprinkler protection alone will not ensure adequate protection. Construction features, space separa-
tion, and prevention measures must be included in any flammable liquid warehouse/cutoff room design.

3.6.1 General
Automatic sprinklers are critical for controlling temperatures in a flammable liquid fire. Lack of sprinklers will
result in the loss of buildings used to store these materials. Due to the near immediate growth of a flam-
mable liquid pool fire, the use of dry sprinkler systems is not acceptable. The potential delay time for water
delivery will allow unchecked temperature growth at the ceiling resulting in a large number of sprinklers open-
ing. The very rapid fire growth expected does not allow for a fixed increase (i.e., penalty) in sprinkler oper-
ating area. A preaction system could be used as long as the provided detection system ensures water
delivery to the sprinklers before the sprinklers operate. Deluge systems provide the best level of protection
in unheated facilities. The detector spacing for a deluge system must provide a response to fire that is equiva-
lent to automatic sprinklers on a 100 ft2 (9 m2) spacing.
Special protection systems should be installed with caution in a flammable liquid storage occupancy. All of
these systems have inherent limitations that must be recognized and considered before a system is installed.
The system that presents the least number of limitations is a foam-water sprinkler system. A foam concen-
trate is delivered through sprinkler piping to the fire. Open doors or windows or sprinkler discharge will not
affect the effectiveness of the foam. However, these systems are complicated and require the proper opera-
tion of a number of mechanical and electrical devices. Dry chemical systems can easily extinguish a flam-
mable liquid fire; however, these systems are not tested with sprinklers operating. The water may impact the
effectiveness of dry chemical agents. Since a flammable liquid fire has a very rapid growth rate and these sys-
tems are generally activated by heat detectors, it is reasonable to expect simultaneous operation of the sprin-
kler system and the dry chemical system.
Gaseous extinguishing systems also have some significant limitations. The effectiveness of a gaseous sys-
tem is severely reduced by openings in the protected space. Openings can be compensated for in the sys-
tem design. However, to permit an economical design, windows and doors are generally assumed closed. If
a door or window fails to close, the system will not be effective. Gaseous extinguishing systems are gener-
ally activated by heat detectors and may have built-in discharge delays. Similar to dry chemical systems,
gaseous systems will not likely discharge before the operation of ceiling sprinklers. Finally, many of the new
clean agents designed to replace Halon 1301 produce large quantities of decomposition products that are
highly corrosive. The amount of decomposition is related to the fire size at discharge. If a gaseous extin-
guishing system is needed, only inert gas based systems should be used.
One potential option for increasing the response time of a special protection system is the use of optical
flame detectors. This approach may produce a response time that would allow system discharge before sprin-
kler activation. However, if a protection system requires the use of a discharge delay, the quicker flame detec-
tion will not be a benefit.

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
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3.6.2 Metal Containers > 60 gal (230 l)


Limited testing has been conducted on these containers. DOT-approved containers are required to have
an emergency vent. The fire protection issues associated with these units is expected to be similar to metal
drums except the fire scenario will involve a single large container. A BLEVE is not expected due to the pro-
vision of the emergency vent. However, adequate cooling is still needed to prevent the creation of a violent
jet of burning vapor out of the vent.

3.6.3 Metal Containers > 6.5 gal (25 l) and 60 gal (230 l)

3.6.3.1 Rack and Palletized Tests


Racks with drums on-side to four-tiers high and palletized drums up to three high were tested by
FM Approvals. Drums in the first and second tiers contained gasoline, benzene or water. Drums in higher
tiers were empty or contained water. Various ceiling sprinkler densities were used: 0.22 gpm/ft2 (8.9 mm/min);
0.28 gpm/ft2 (11.4 mm/min); 0.44 gpm/ft2 (17.9 mm/min); and 0.58 gpm/ft2 (23.6 mm/min). In-rack sprin-
klers were not provided. Pressure and temperature sensors were provided on the drums in the bottom two
tiers. If the temperature or pressure exceeded pre-set limits, the test was considered a failure as the drum
would have BLEVEd. (Drums containing flammable liquids were vented to prevent rupture.)
Gasoline was discharged at different rates and at various points within the array to simulate the leaking of
a drum.
When gasoline was discharged onto the floor beneath the array, only the bottom tier was severely exposed;
when the gasoline was discharged within a higher tier, the surrounding drums were severely exposed. Tests
with multi-tier storage showed that this arrangement is difficult and sometimes impossible to protect only
with ceiling sprinklers because the rate of temperature rise of the drums in the bottom tier was three to five
times more than one-high storage. In general, the gasoline and benzene temperatures and pressures rose
much faster than those of water, as would be expected.
These tests revealed that only the 0.58 gpm/ft2 (23.6 mm/min) density prevented excessive drum
temperatures and pressures in multi-tier storage.

3.6.3.2 Heptane/Water Tests


To compare drum behavior when filled with heptane or water, drums were exposed to a ring oil burner. The
heptane-filled drum BLEVEd after 3-4 minutes at 17 psig (1.2 barg). The water-filled drum ruptured after
10 minutes at 40 psig (2.8 barg). It was concluded that the heptane drum failed sooner because the heptane
ignited when the top rim joint started to fail and leak. The heptane fire further weakened the drum, thus accel-
erating its failure. The criteria for failure in a subsequent test series with water-filled drums was set at 15 psig
(1.03 barg).

3.6.3.3 Foam-Water Sprinkler Tests Rack and Palletized Storage


Racks with five-tier-high, on-end storage and two-, three- and four-high palletized storage were used. Drums
were filled with water. Sprinklers were 286F (101C) 12 in. (12.4 mm) orifice rated. The rack was provided
with 160F (71C) 12 in. (12.4 mm) orifice in-rack sprinklers in every tier except the bottom. Ceiling sprin-
kler density for the rack tests was 0.30 gpm/ft2 (12 mm/min), whereas the palletized tests used a 0.60 gpm/ft2
(24 mm/min) density. A flammable liquid fire was simulated by providing a continuous flow of fuel from the
bottom of the top level of storage.
The results showed that in-rack sprinklers adequately protect the drums from over pressurization. One drum
on the bottom unprotected tier reached 16 psig (1.1 barg). This demonstrates that a foam-water sprinkler sys-
tem can control a floor pool fire, but it offers no improvement in protecting multi-tier arrays and, particu-
larly in palletized storage, the pallets may prevent the foam from spreading beneath them.

3.6.3.4 Relieving Style Drums


FM Global approves plastic plugs for relieving style drums. They are listed in the Approval Guide as Fusible
Closures for Steel Drums. These fusible closures are designed to reduce the potential of a violent drum
failure in a fire scenario but do not eliminate that potential. Fusible closures must be used within the defined
limits set by the Approval.

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Fusible closures are approved for use with steel drums that are either a tight head (DOT/UN specifica-
tion IA1) or removable head (DOT/UN specification IA2) design.
They are used on drums in transit or in storage and are not equivalent to the Approved Safety Bungs that
are used for dispensing flammable liquids from drums.
Drums shall not exceed 60 gal (227 l) in size and must have two threaded fittings installed in the top head
of the drum. At least one opening shall be 2 in. (50 mm) in diameter. Thread dimensions shall be in accor-
dance with ISO 228-1:1994 or ANSI/ASME B 1.20.1-1983 (R1992). However, regardless of which thread
standard is used, the threads must also fall within the defined tolerance of the other standard.
Tight head drums (1A1) shall be capable of resisting an internal pressure of 20 psig (1.4 barg) when fully
engulfed in a flammable liquid pool fire (i.e., all cylindrical surfaces exposed to a consistent flame that
extends above the top of the drum) without rupture or leakage of the drum. Ideally only drums with at least
a 1 mm wall/top/bottom thickness should be used as relieving style drums. However, testing has shown
that drums with a wall/top/bottom thickness of 0.8 mm can meet this performance criterion.
Filled drums using these types of closures must only be stored on end (fusible closure up).
Only thin thermoplastic cap seals are permitted over the fusible closure. Metallic cap seals are
unacceptable.
Fusible closures cannot be painted.
Fusible closures should be installed at the time the drum is filled. These types of closures should not be
added by individuals who are not familiar with their installation requirements.

3.6.4 Metal Containers 6.5 gal (25 l)


The metric equivalent of 5 gal is 20 l; however, the standard size container in Europe is 25 l which is 6.6 gal.
Although the testing conducted in the United States used 5 gal containers, the protection criteria will not
be significantly affected by an additional 1.6 gal. For the purposes of this standard, 6.5 gal is a nominal
container size that has a maximum volume of 6.6 gal.

3.6.4.1 Early Testing


One-gallon (3.8 dm3) cans of paint having flash points from 105F (40C) to 170F (77C) were tested in a
1012-ft (3.2 m)-high palletized array in a 15-ft-high (4.5 m) building. Ceiling sprinklers were 12 in. (12.4 mm)
160F (71C) rated on 10 ft x 10 ft (3 m x 3 m) spacing; ceiling density was 0.23 gpm/ft2 (9.4 mm/min).
Six sprinklers operated and controlled the fire, reducing the 1100F (593C) maximum ceiling temperature
to 500F (260C) after ten minutes.

3.6.4.2 Suppression Mode Testing


A series of ten fire tests were conducted by FM Global Research to investigate the use of suppression mode
sprinklers over flammable liquids in up to 5-gal (20 l) relieving style metal containers. Three intermediate
scale tests were done to determine the potential for success in larger arrays, evaluate the differences between
F-Style (i.e., rectangular container with approximately 34 in. [19 mm] opening) and Friction Lid (i.e., paint
can) containers and evaluate different ignition scenarios (point ignition versus pool ignition). The intermediate
scale testing indicated that the pool fire ignition scenario was the worst case. Three full scale rack storage
tests were done using F-Style metal containers and three full scale rack storage tests were done using tight
head 5 gal (20 l) metal containers. The last test was a palletized array of tight head 5 gal (20 l) metal
containers.
The test series demonstrated that suppression mode sprinklers could be used to protect rack and palletized
storage of flammable liquids. However, the result of this protection level did not meet the classical definition
of suppression. In all cases, the provided protection achieved a very high level of control until the spilled
fuel was consumed and manual extinguishment of individual containers that were venting vapor was
accomplished.

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3.6.5 Plastic or Composite (Plastic-Metal) Containers > 6.5 gal (25 l)

3.6.5.1 IBC
A series of scoping and intermediate scale fire tests have been conducted on a wide variety of all plastic
and composite IBCs. The tests looked at the general performance of IBCs when exposed to pool fires and
spill fires with the hope of developing a standard fire test that could be used to evaluate the fire performance
of any IBC. The test results showed significant differences in fire performance of the tested units, and high-
lighted the need for a performance test to determine which units should be used for flammable liquid storage.
Additional research is needed to finalize a test for evaluating the fire performance of IBCs.

3.6.5.2 Plastic Drums


Outdoor fire tests have been conducted by the U. S. Coast Guard comparing plastic and metal drums of flam-
mable liquids. With plastic drums, it was found that BLEVEs are not produced since the plastic acts as an
insulator, preventing heating of the contents and pressurization of the drums. However, the sides soften and
melt, releasing the contents. This could occur before sprinklers would be expected to operate. Also, any sur-
face of the plastic drum not wetted by sprinkler water would be expected to fail. A large flammable liquid
fire would be expected where low flash point (i.e., < 200F [93C]) liquids are stored in plastic drums, regard-
less of sprinkler protection.
There is some judgment involved in evaluating the likelihood of an uncontrolled fire involving high flash point
(i.e., 200F [93C]) liquids in plastic drums. As an example, consider a cutoff room at a paper mill where
lubricating oils are stored in 55-gallon (209 l) plastic drums. If approximately ten drums are stored in this room
one pallet high and the room is protected for its occupancy, it is unlikely that an uncontrollable fire will occur,
and this type of storage arrangement should be considered tolerable.
Environmental and economic considerations have increased the use of plastic drums for handling high flash
point liquids such as lubricating oils. These considerations are substantial and for some circumstances plas-
tic drums may be the best alternative for handling these liquids.
FM Global Research tests have identified hazards associated with flammable and combustible liquids in
small plastic containers. Small plastic containers always failed early in the tests. Fire tests with plastic drums
that contain inert liquids revealed a different failure mode. A fire from a point source ignition developed slowly
and steadily. A Fire Products Collector test resulted in simulated sprinklers operating before the container
failed and released its contents. The inert liquid materials then extinguished the fire. A major difference
between the two tests is the time to container failure: the small containers may fail within 30-45 seconds of
ignition and the drums required minutes before failure. With limited quantities (i.e., maximum of ten drums
in a single fire area) of high flash point liquid storage in plastic drums one drum high, an initial pool fire is not
expected. A slowly developing fire is expected. It is reasonable to expect that sprinkler protection adequate
for the surrounding occupancy will provide adequate protection.

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7-29 Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers
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3.6.6 Plastic, Glass, or Other Combustible/Brittle Containers 6.5 gal (25 l)

3.6.6.1 Scoping Tests

Table 21. Scoping Tests for Flammable Liquids in Small Plastic Containers
Mineral Hair Spray Isopropyl
Test Commodity Paint Thinner Spirits (alcohol) Alcohol Corn Oil
Arrangement 1 Pallet 1x2x1 1x2x1 1x2x1 1x2x1
Stack Height, ft (m) 4 (1.2) 5 (1.5) 5 (1.5) 5 (1.5) 5 (1.5)
Clearance to Sprinklers, ft (m) 26 (7.9) 25 (7.6) 25 (7.6) 25 (7.6) 25 (7.6)
Sprinkler K-factor 5.6 LD 11.2 5.6 5.6 5.6
Sprinkler Temperature Rating, F (C) 280 (138) 160 (71) 280 (138) 280 (138) 280 (138)
Sprinkler Spacing, ft2 (m2) 100 (9.3) 100 (9.3) 100 (9.3) 100 (9.3) 100 (9.3)
Water Pressure, psig (barg) 29 (2) 75 (5.2) 29 (2) 29 (2) 29 (2)
First Sprinkler Operation, min:sec 4:31 1:53 16:26 2:57 After 30:00
Last Sprinkler Operation, min:sec 8:43 3:47 25:18 6:56 After 30:00
Total Number of Sprinklers Operated 42 45 2 41 2
Total Sprinkler Discharge, gpm (l/sec) 1275 (80) 3750 (236) 60 (4) 1240 (78) 60 (4)
Peak Gas Temperature, F (C) 2275 (1246) 1150 (621) 360 (182) 1275 (690) 170 (77)
Peak Steel Temperature, F (C) 1220 (660) 210 (99) 280 (138) 475 (246) 145 (63)
Note: See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.

3.6.6.1.1 Petroleum Liquids


This test was conducted with a pallet load of Class 2 commercial paint thinner (closed-cup flash point -104F
[40C]) in polyethylene 1-gal (3.8 l) containers.
The pallet load consisted of 180 containers packaged in cardboard boxes, three containers to a box. Ninety-
six 12-in. (12.5 m), 286F-(141C) rated sprinklers were installed on a 100 ft2 (9.3 m2) spacing per head.
The ceiling density was 0.30 gpm/ft2 (12 mm/min).
The fire opened 42 sprinklers. The ceiling temperature reached 2275F (1246C) and exceeded 1000F
(538C) for 312 minutes. (See Table 20 for other results.) Even though the containers were plastic, several low-
order ruptures were heard during the test, indicating that the internal pressure had risen before the fire burned
through the plastic. The containers spilled their contents to form a 30-ft (9 m) diameter pool fire. The fire
was not extinguished by sprinklers. It eventually ended when the flammable liquid was consumed. The test
indicates that a larger array would have caused structural building damage.
A second test was conducted with two pallet loads of mineral spirits horizontally separated by 12 in. (305 mm).
Each pallet load consisted of 216 1-gal (3.8 l) containers in 36 cartons. Because of the results with the pre-
vious test, 160F (71C) rated, 0.64-in (16.2-mm) orifice Large Drop sprinklers were provided on 100 ft2
(9.1 m2) per head spacing. Discharge pressure was 75 psig (5.2 barg), which produced 94 gpm (5.9 l/min)
per sprinkler.
Note: This protection is adequate for 10-ft-high (3 m) Level 3 aerosol storage under a 20-ft (6 m) ceiling
and for 5-ft-high (1.5 m) storage under a 30-ft (9.1 m) ceiling.
The fire opened 42 sprinklers within the first three minutes. Eventually 45 sprinklers operated. The number
of sprinklers opening within a short time period overtaxed the water supply, thus causing the discharge pres-
sure to drop to 45 psi (3.1 bar). Again, a large pool fire developed which was intense enough to burn one third
of the paint off both sides of a door located 60 ft (18.3 m) from the array.

3.6.6.1.2 Alcohol Products


Two tests were conducted with alcohol products. The first involved 8-oz (0.24-l) pump-type containers of
hair spray consisting of SD Alcohol 40 (ethyl alcohol), water, ethyl ester of PVM/MA copolymer, isopropyl alco-
hol, aminomethyl propanol and fragrance. The second test used 1-gal (3.8 l) polyethylene containers of
essentially pure isopropyl alcohol. The protection for both tests consisted of 12 in. (12.7 mm) orifice, 280F
(141C) sprinklers on a 100 ft2 (9.1 m2) per head spacing. Discharge density was 0.30 gpm/ft2 (12 mm/min).

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The two pallet loads in the test with the smaller containers consisted of 192 cartons, each containing 12
bottles, for a total of 144 gal (545 l) of product.
Each of the two pallets in the second test contained 216 1-gal (4-l) polyethylene bottles in 36 cartons.
The fire developed slowly in the first test without the development of a large pool fire. By the time the two sprin-
klers operated, the first at 16 minutes 26 seconds and the second at 25 minutes 18 seconds, the pallets
were saturated with released, burning liquid. Consequently, sprinkler discharge did not immediately extin-
guish the fire, but it did control the fire. The near-ceiling gas temperature over ignition reached a maximum
of 360F (182C).
Forty-one sprinklers opened during the second test, but because the water supply was not overtaxed, the
0.30-gpm/ft2 (12 mm/min) density was maintained. Sprinklers did not control the fire. Ceiling air tempera-
ture over ignition reached 1275F (691C) and remained over 1000F (538C) for 1 minute 8 seconds.

3.6.6.1.3 Corn Oil


A test using the same array and protection as the above alcohol test was conducted with corn oil, a Class
IIIB liquid. During the test, oil leaked from the containers but had not ignited when the test was concluded after
30 minutes. The oil ignited when the building was ventilated, whereupon sprinklers opened and controlled
the fire.

3.6.6.2 Full Scale Motor Oil Fire Tests


Three full scale fire tests were run using motor oil in one quart plastic containers in cardboard cartons in
double-row racks. The total rack height was 20 ft (6 m). Protection criteria consisted of barriers and in-rack
sprinklers every 10 ft (3 m) vertically.
The key issue in protection of motor oil is the prevention of an established pool fire at floor level. In the tests,
this goal was achieved. Previous testing, however, has demonstrated that once a pool fire is well estab-
lished, there is no practical level of sprinkler protection that can be expected to achieve control. There is, there-
fore, a very narrow boundary between success and failure as regards protection of motor oils by sprinklers.
The only two choices appear to be very early control (or suppression) and a relatively small fire, or failure
to control and a resulting inferno. For this reason, it is unwise to attempt to extrapolate very far beyond the con-
ditions actually tested.
The tested protection scheme represents a departure from previous approaches in that sprinklers at the ceil-
ing are not considered in the design for most cases. A strong in-rack sprinkler design along with barriers
are being relied upon to control or suppress a fire in its very early stages (well before operation of ceiling sprin-
klers) in order to prevent the establishment of a pool fire.
Three intermediate scale (four stacks) and two full scale fire tests involving palletized storage of cartoned
motor oil in plastic containers have been run by FM Global Research.

3.6.6.3 Full Scale Vegetable Oil Fire Tests


There have been three fire tests of cartoned vegetable oil in plastic bottles in racks protected by suppression
mode sprinklers, and one fire test of uncartoned vegetable oil in plastic bottles in racks protected by sup-
pression mode sprinklers. The first two tests followed the normal suppression mode sprinkler protocol, which
calls for testing the two worst case scenarios. The first is where the main array is located directly below an
suppression mode sprinkler with high clearance between the top of storage and the sprinkler, and the second
where the main array is centered beneath two sprinklers with low clearance. Successful suppression must
occur in both test scenarios in order for suppression mode automatic sprinkler protection to be consid-
ered acceptable.
There have been four full-scale fire tests involving double-row rack storage of vegetable oil in plastic con-
tainers protected by standard ceiling and in-rack sprinklers. The first two tests involved soybean oil in 48-oz
(1.5 l) plastic bottles in cardboard cartons. The remaining two tests involved a corn/canola oil mix in 48-oz
(1.5 l) plastic bottles shrink-wrapped in cardboard trays.
A series of four full-scale tests involving palletized storage of vegetable oil in plastic containers protected
by standard sprinklers was conducted at the FM Global Technology Center.

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Three of the tests involved soybean oil in 48-oz (1.5 1) plastic bottles in cardboard cartons. The fourth test
involved a corn/canola oil mix in 48-oz (1.5 l) plastic bottles shrink-wrapped on cardboard trays.
Previous testing using standard and large-drop sprinklers and the expectation of pile collapse allow the con-
clusion that suppression mode sprinklers can be expected to adequately protect palletized or solid-pile stor-
age of cartoned and uncartoned vegetable oil in buildings to 40 ft (12.1 m).
It cannot be overemphasized that pile collapse is the key to successful protection. This protection guideline
cannot be applied where piles are stabilized by external support, and its application is limited strictly to solid-
piled and palletized storage. It should not be applied to bin-box or shelf storage, or any form of rack stor-
age (including portable racks). While stacks of vegetable oil may be mixed with stacks of other commodities
(i.e., horizontal mixing), storage should not be mixed within stacks (i.e., vertical mixing) as this could have a
significant impact on pile collapse.
There have been two full-scale fire tests by FM Global Research involving double-row rack storage of veg-
etable oil in plastic containers in cardboard cartons mixed with other cartoned commodities protected by stan-
dard ceiling and in-rack sprinklers. The tests involved a mixture that was half soybean oil in 48-oz (1.5 l) plastic
bottles in cardboard cartons mixed with another commodity in a uniform staggered arrangement such that
there was no pallet load of vegetable oil directly above, below or beside another pallet load of vegetable oil.
It cannot be concluded from these tests that some lesser degree of protection than is required for segre-
gated (unmixed) vegetable or motor oil storage is acceptable for vegetable or motor oil stored mixed with other
commodities because the exact configuration of storage at the ignition point (which cannot be controlled
in most cases) will have a major impact on fire development and the resulting required protection.

3.6.6.4 Groups 1 and 2 Water Miscible Liquid Fire Tests


A total of eight (8) full scale fire tests have been completed on alcohol based liquids in plastic bottles. The
majority of the testing has been on 99% isopropyl alcohol (IPA) in 16-oz (500 ml) plastic bottles in cartons. Test
Nos. 2-5 involved rack storage arrangements. They looked at protection criteria recommended in Data
Sheet 7-29, Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers, as well as other in-rack/ceiling arrangements
and suppression mode protection schemes. Test Nos. 6-8 involved palletized storage. The test arrays ranged
from 3 pallets high (12 ft [3.7 m]) to one pallet high (5 ft [1.5 m]). A single rack storage test (Test No. 1)
on a 70% IPA-water mixture in 1 gal (4 l) plastic containers in cartons was also conducted. In addition to the
full scale testing, lab scale testing in the FM Approvals Flammability Apparatus was also done to compare
the fire hazard of several water miscible liquids.

3.6.6.5 Group 3 Water Miscible Liquid Fire Tests


Test No. 1
A fire test was conducted on a 50% isopropyl alcohol/50% water mixture in 1 gal plastic bottles. The bottles
were in cartons and placed on pallets. The product was stored in a double row rack. The total storage height
was approximately 25 ft (7.6 m). The roof height was 30 ft (9.1 m). Protection was provided by K = 14 (201)
suppression mode sprinklers set to provide a 75 psig (5.2 barg) discharge pressure. In addition to the main
array, a target rack filled with product was placed across an 8 ft (2.4 m) aisle. Also a second target consist-
ing of tri-wall cartons on pallets was placed across an 8 ft (2.4 m) aisle from the target array.
The fire developed and formed a pool fire in the aisle between the main array and the product filled target
array. The suppression mode sprinkler discharge pushed the pool fire into the longitudinal flue space of the
target array. The target array ignited in the longitudinal flue and flames reached the ceiling before the sup-
pression mode sprinklers over this rack operated. A total of 6 suppression mode sprinklers operated during this
test. The test was terminated at 15 minutes with only minimal flaming in both the main array and product
filled target array. The tri-wall carton target array was not involved.
This test was considered a success.
Test No. 2
Test No. 2 repeated Test No.1 except the ceiling discharge pressure was lowered to 50 psig (3.5 barg).
The fire developed and formed a pool fire in the aisle between the main array and the product filled target
array. A large quantity of spilling product pushed the pool fire under the product filled target array. The target

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array ignited in the longitudinal flue and flames reached the ceiling before the suppression mode sprinklers
over this rack operated. A total of 11 suppression mode sprinklers operated during this test. The test was ter-
minated at 15 minutes. The fire was not suppressed. However, at the point of test termination, the fire was well
controlled. The tri-wall carton target was not involved.
Test No. 3
This fire test was conducted on a 50% isopropyl alcohol/50% water mixture in 1 gal plastic bottles. The bottles
were in cartons and placed on pallets. The product was stored in a double row rack. The total storage height
was approximately 25 ft (7.6 m). The roof height was 30 ft (9.1 m). Protection was provided by 165F (74C)
rated ELO, K = 11.2 (161) sprinklers arranged to provide a 0.6 gpm/ft2 (25 mm/min) density. In-rack sprin-
klers were installed at the 10 ft (3 m) and 20 ft (6.1 m) levels in the racks longitudinal flue space at each
transverse flue (i.e., approximately a 4 ft (1.2 m) on-line spacing). The in-racks were large orifice, K = 8 (115),
165F (74C) rated, quick response sprinklers designed to provide a discharge pressure of 30 psig
(2.1 bar g). In addition to the main array, a target rack filled with product was placed across an 8 ft (2.4 m)
aisle. The target array was also provided with in-rack sprinklers. A second target consisting of tri-wall cartons
on pallets was placed across an 8 ft (2.4 m) aisle from the target array.
Fast operation of two in-rack sprinklers in the main array and one in-rack sprinkler in the product filled target
array quickly controlled the fire before any significant quantity of alcohol was released. No ceiling sprinklers
operated during the test. The tri-wall carton target array was not involved. This test result is acceptable.
The strong performance of the in-rack sprinkler system significantly limited the importance of the ceiling
sprinkler design. However, a reasonable ceiling density is still needed to ensure adequate protection for one
pallet high [5 ft (1.5m)] staged products and products that are in transit. Based on past testing of palletized
distilled spirits, a ceiling density of 0.30 gpm/ft2 (12 mm/min) is considered adequate for this product.
Test No. 4
This fire test was conducted on a 50% isopropyl alcohol/50% water mixture in 1 gal plastic bottles. The bottles
were in cartons and placed on pallets. The product was stored in a double row rack. The total storage height
was approximately 25 ft (7.6 m). The roof height was 30 ft (9.1 m). Protection was provided by 165F (74C)
rated ELO, K = 11.2 (161), sprinklers arranged to provide a 0.6 gpm/ft2 (25 mm/min) density. In-rack sprinklers
were installed at the 15 ft (4.6 m) level in the racks longitudinal flue space at each transverse flue
(i.e., approximately a 4 ft (1.2 m) on-line spacing). The in-racks were large orifice, K = 8 (115), 165F (74C)
rated, quick response sprinklers designed to provide a discharge pressure of 30 psig (2.1 barg). In addition
to the main array, a target rack filled with product was placed across an 8 ft (2.4 m) aisle. The target array
was also provided with in-rack sprinklers. A second target consisting of tri-wall cartons on pallets was placed
across an 8 ft (2.4 m) aisle from the target array.
This test setup was a repeat of Test #3 except one level of in-rack sprinklers was eliminated. The lack of
the additional level of in-rack sprinklers resulted in a larger fire that operated a total of 5 in-rack sprinklers
(3 main array, 2 target) and 4 ceiling sprinklers. The pool fire filled the 8 ft aisle between the main array and
the target array. The pool fire also extended out from each end of the aisle. By 15 minutes the fire in the
racks was controlled and the pool fires were extinguished.
This test result is acceptable.

3.6.6.6 Group 4 Water Miscible Liquid Fire Tests


A single fire test was conducted on a 30% isopropyl alcohol (IPA)/70% water mixture in 16 oz (500 ml) plastic
bottles. The bottles were packaged in cartons. The test was designed to determine if protection criteria that
were considered adequate for 20/80 alcohol-water mixtures could be extended up another 10%. The
protection required for 20/80 mixtures in plastic bottles was Class 1 commodity protection (based on a
nonflammable liquid in small plastic container).
The fire test consisted of a 4 tier high main rack with a total storage height of approximately 18 ft (5.5 m).
A target array consisting of one high tri-wall cartons was located across an 8 ft (2.4 m) aisle. A limited target
was used because a significant pool fire was not expected if the product actually burned like a Class 1
commodity. Sprinkler protection consisted of ceiling only standard spray sprinklers designed to deliver a
0.29 gpm/ft2 (11.8 mm/min) density.

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The fire test results indicated that the alcohol-water mixture did not burn like a Class 1 commodity because
a pool fire formed and spread to the target and beyond. Only two ceiling sprinklers operated but failed to
limit the release or spread of burning alcohol. Additional testing is not planned.
The protection criteria for Group 4 water miscible liquids are based on engineering judgment and past prac-
tice. The previous version of Data Sheet 7-29 would have recommended Class 4 commodity protection
criteria for Group 4 alcohol in 5 gal (20 l) of smaller plastic containers. This level of protection was contin-
ued for 16 oz (500 ml) and smaller plastic containers because the single fire test did indicate that although
the pool fire was not controlled by the Class 1 commodity protection criteria, it was still a small fire. It
appeared that the used of Class 4 commodity protection criteria would adequately handle the potential for
a pool fire in the small containers. Since many consumer products exist in up to 1 gal (4 l) containers, addi-
tional protection criteria is needed.
The weak fire witnessed in the fire test clearly indicated that a strong ceiling sprinkler system would easily
control the fire in the rack and dilute the potential pool fire quickly. This level of control was also expected with
larger containers. Based on this, large drop and suppression mode sprinkler protection criteria for a 30 ft
(9.1 m) building was considered adequate for use with plastic or glass containers up to 6.5 gal (25 l).
The success of standard spray sprinkler protection will depend on limiting the amount of liquid that is released.
The best way to limit the amount of released liquid is to provide in-rack sprinkler protection. Based on the
difficulty of preventing the failure of plastic or glass containers during a fire, it was felt that at least two levels
of in-rack sprinklers would be needed in a 25 ft (7.6 m) high rack with containers larger than 16 oz (500 ml).
To ensure an adequate number of in-rack sprinklers would be provided, protection criteria similar to what
is required for cartoned unexpanded plastics was used.

4.0 REFERENCES

4.1 FM Global
Data Sheet 1-0, Safeguards During Construction.
Data Sheet 1-20, Protection Against Exterior Fire Exposure.
Data Sheet 1-21, Fire Resistance of Building Assemblies.
Data Sheet 1-29, Roof Deck Securement and Above-Deck Roofing Components.
Data Sheet 2-8N, Installation of Sprinkler Systems (NFPA).
Data Sheet 4-0, Special Protection Systems.
Data Sheet 4-1N, Fixed Water Spray Systems for Fire Protection.
Data Sheet 4-5, Portable Extinguishers.
Data Sheet 4-7N, Low Expansion Foam Systems.
Data Sheet 4-8N, Halon 1301 Extinguishing Systems.
Data Sheet 4-10, Dry Chemical Systems.
Data Sheet 4-11N, Carbon Dioxide Extinguishing Systems (NFPA).
Data Sheet 5-8, Static Electricity.
Data Sheet 5-10, Protective Grounding for Electric Power Systems and Equipment.
Data Sheet 7-29, Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers.
Data Sheet 7-31, Storage of Aerosol Products.
Data Sheet 7-32, Flammable Liquid Operations.
Data Sheet 7-50, Compressed Gases in Cylinders.
Data Sheet 7-53, Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).
Data Sheet 7-55/12-28, Liquefied Petroleum Gas.
Data Sheet 7-78, Industrial Exhaust Systems.

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheets Page 53

Data Sheet 7-83, Drainage Systems for Flammable Liquids.


Data Sheet 7-88, Storage Tanks for Flammable Liquids.
Data Sheet 8-8, Distilled Spirits Storage.
Data Sheet 8-9, Storage of Class 1, 2, 3, 4 and Plastic Commodities.
Data Sheet 9-0/17-0, Maintenance and Inspection.
Data Sheet 10-3, Hot Work Management.
Approval Guide, a publication of FM Approvals.
FM Global Hot Work Permit.

4.2 NFPA Standards


NFPA 16, Installation of Foam-Water Sprinkler and Foam-Water Spray Systems, 1999.
NFPA 30, Flammable and Combustible Liquids Code, 1996.
NFPA 70, National Electrical Code.

APPENDIX A GLOSSARY OF TERMS


Approved: references to Approved in this data sheet means the product and services have satisfied the
criteria for FM Approval. Refer to the Approval Guide, a publication of FM Approvals, for a complete listing of
products and services that are FM Approved.
Flash Point: a flammable liquids flash point is the minimum temperature at which sufficient vapor is liber-
ated to form a vapor-air mixture that will ignite and propagate a flame away from the ignition source (flash fire,
not continuous combustion). Evaporation will take place below the flash point, but the quantity of vapor
released is not sufficient to produce an ignitable vapor-air mixture. A flash point can be determined by using
either a closed cup or open cup test apparatus. The closed cup test will produce lower flash points than
open cup tests because it provides greater vapor containment (i.e., increases vapor accumulation). The
closed cup flash point is used to classify liquids because it is conservative (i.e., produces lowest flash point
for liquid), and it represents the condition most liquids are handled in (i.e., most liquids are contained in closed
containers or equipment).
Fire Point: a flammable liquids fire point is the lowest temperature at which a liquid in an open container
will give off enough vapor to ignite and continue to burn. Fire points are generally slightly higher than the open
cup flash point for a particular liquid. Liquids can have flash points without having fire points. A liquid with-
out a fire point will not burn (e.g., 15% ethanol-water solution: closed cup flash point 107F [42C], no fire point;
15% acetone-water solution: closed cup flash point 49F [9C], no fire point).
Water Miscible: a water miscible liquid mixes in all proportions with water. When water miscible flammable
liquids are mixed with water, a homogeneous solution is formed. The flash point, fire point, heat of combus-
tion, and heat release rate of the solution will be different from the pure flammable liquid. The flash point and
fire point of the solution will increase as the water concentration increases. At a certain water concentra-
tion (varies for different flammable liquids), the fire point will no longer exist and the solution will no longer
present a fire hazard (e.g., 15% ethyl alcohol in water, 15% acetone in water).
Emulsion: an emulsion is a stable mixture of two or more immiscible liquids held in suspension by small
percentages of substances called emulsifiers.
Vapor Density: the weight of a volume of pure vapor or gas (with no air present) compared to the weight
of an equal volume of dry air at the same temperature and pressure. It is calculated as the ratio of the
molecular weight of the gas to the average molecular weight of air, 29. A vapor density figure less than one
indicates the vapor is lighter than air. A figure greater than one indicates the vapor is heavier than air.
Flammable liquids produce vapors that are heavier than air. The vapors will collect at floor level and exhibit
fluid properties (i.e., they will flow to low points and accumulate). Flammable vapor, if not removed by ven-
tilation, can flow to an ignition source and flash back to the vapor source.
Specific Gravity: the specific gravity of a substance is the ratio of the weight of the substance to the weight
of the same volume of another substance. The specific gravity for flammable liquids is provided using water

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as a basis. Specific gravities less than one indicate the liquid will float on water while specific gravities greater
than one indicate the liquid will sink in water. This information permits a determination of what effect water
will have on a flammable liquid fire. Liquids heavier than water will sink, indicating water would extinguish a
fire involving this liquid (cover liquid and smother fire). Liquids lighter than water will float indicating the fire
would not be extinguished but could be spread by water if adequate drainage is not provided.
Intermediate Bulk Container (IBC): defined by the U.S. Department of Transportation in CFR Title 49, Part
178, Subpart N, dated October 1, 1997, and the United Nations Recommendations on the Transport of
Dangerous Goods, Ninth Edition, Chapter 16. The container size is limited to 3000 l or 793 gal There are
no other specific requirements on the design or material of construction. All IBCs must pass the required per-
formance based testing designed to evaluate their resistance to leakage during transport. No existing test
requirements evaluate the containers performance when exposed to fire. The IBC category also includes the
containers previously defined as portable tanks or tote tanks. Some limitations on the type of liquid stor-
age allowed in an IBC used for transportation do exist. However, for most commonly transported flam-
mable liquids, there are few limitations.
In general, the maximum size IBC used for liquid transport is approximately 660 gal (2.5 m3) due to overall
package weight. More common sizes range between 250-330 gal (0.95-1.3 m3). Common IBC construc-
tion types include: all plastic self-supporting container, plastic supported plastic container (plastic compos-
ite container that consists of a rigid plastic frame supporting a plastic container), metal supported plastic
container (metal-plastic composite container that consists of a metal frame supporting a plastic con-
tainer). Since the only criteria for IBCs is performance based testing, there is very little consistency in the
design of IBCs produced by various manufacturers. A series of fire tests sponsored by the manufacturers
clearly showed that the fire performance of a particular type of IBC could not be generalized. This is likely due
to the variability of the designs.
Relieving Style Container: a relieving style container will release excess internal pressure without a signifi-
cant release of the stored liquid when exposed to a fire. The pressure relief prevents the violent rupture of
the container. It is also critical that the pressure relief does not allow significant liquid release. At this point in
time, only metal portable tanks (now included in the general container category of IBCs) are specifically listed
or Approved to vent under fire exposure. The determination for all other container types is qualitative.
Some examples of relieving style containers are:
1. A metal 55-gal (230 l) drum fitted with plastic plugs in both the 2 in. (5.1 cm) and 34 in. (1.9 cm) open-
ings in the top of the drum. Testing by FM Global Research and others using nylon and polyethylene plugs
has shown that the plug will fail when exposed to a fire and prevent a significant pressure buildup in the
drum as well as maintain the overall drum integrity. Full scale fire tests on metal drums filled with heptane
and fitted with plastic plugs has shown that the relieving action will allow for greater palletized storage heights.
Only Approved plugs are acceptable with the new protection criteria. Drums with relieving style plugs must
be stored upright. The elimination of a potential BLEVE is a positive factor when evaluating the exposure
created by outdoor yard storage.
2. A metal 5-gal (25 l) tight head pail (i.e., top and bottom are permanently attached to sides) with plastic
pour spout. Most tight head 5-gal (25 l) containers are relieving style. Testing has shown that the plastic pour
spout will melt and allow the container to vent and prevent the full release of the stored liquid.
3. A metal 5-gal (25 l) lug head pail (i.e., top is held in place by friction and lug tabs on cover, similar to a
large paint can) with plastic pour spout. Same performance as the tight head container.
4. A metal 1-gal (4 l) F-style (rectangular) can with either a plastic spout or a soldered metal spout. Both
spout arrangements will fail in a fire and allow internal pressure to vent while preventing the release of the
liquid.
5. A metal 1-gal (4 l) friction lid (circular paint cans) can. The friction lid will pop off when exposed to fire.
In many cases, the lid will only move slightly allowing pressure relief without significant liquid release. In some
cases, the lids move away from the container allowing liquid to spray out during the release and sprinkler
water to enter the can and displace the stored liquid. The small can size minimizes this negative performance.
6. Metal IBCs that meet DOT/UN rules.

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Some examples of non-relieving style containers or containers that are not acceptable as relieving style are:
1. A metal 55-gal (230 l) drum fitted with metal plugs in both the 2 in. (5.1 cm) and 34 in. (1.9 cm) open-
ings in the top of the drum. This container will not release internal pressure early in a fire. The end result of
a sealed drum exposed to fire is the violent failure of the container.
2. A metal 55-gal (230 l) drum fitted with a plastic plug in an openings located in the side of the drum or a
plastic container of any size. Both container types will vent any pressure buildup. However, they will also
release the stored liquid resulting in an uncontrolled fire.
3. A metal 5-gal (25 l) tight head pails (i.e., top and bottom are permanently attached to sides) with metal
caps over opening. This container will not vent pressure buildup early in a fire.
4. A metal 5-gal (25 l) lug head pails (i.e., top is held in place by friction and lug tabs on cover, similar to a
large paint can) with metal caps over the opening. The top of this type of container will vent pressure build
up similar to the 1-gal (4 l) paint can. However, the lid tends to release at a higher pressure and the vent-
ing of the lid results in a large quantity of liquid release. Also, once open, sprinkler water will enter the con-
tainer and displace the stored liquid. The suppression mode-based fire protection scheme for metal containers
could fail to control the fire if a couple of 5-gal (25 l) containers release their contents.
5. A metal 1-gal (4 l) F-style (rectangular) can with crimped on metal spout. These containers have failed
violently during full scale fire tests.
Heat of Combustion: the amount of heat released when a unit quantity of fuel is oxidized completely to yield
stable end products. The measurement is generally made in an oxygen bomb calorimeter. A similar term
is the chemical heat of combustion which represents the amount of heat release when a unit quantity of fuel
is combusted in air. The chemical heat of combustion is less than the heat of combustion due to the ineffi-
ciency of the combustion process in air.
Heat Release Rate: the rate at which energy is released in a fire. The heat release rate is a function of the
fuels heat of combustion, mass loss rate and the exposed surface area.
Fire Control: limiting the size of a fire by distribution of water so as to decrease the heat release rate and
pre-wet adjacent combustibles, while controlling ceiling gas temperatures to avoid structural damage.
Fire Suppression: sharply reducing the heat release rate of a fire and preventing its regrowth by means of
direct and sufficient application of water through the fire plume to the burning fuel surface. This term does
not mean the fire is completely extinguished. However, the high level of water application to surrounding
materials would result in minimal re-growth of the fire if the sprinklers were turned off before complete
extinguishment.
To date, ceiling sprinkler technology cannot extinguish a low flash point liquid pool fire with water alone.
Certain sprinklers (e.g., suppression mode) can achieve many of the elements that define a suppressed fire
(i.e., break up the fire plume, significantly reduce the heat release rate, and reduce ceiling temperatures).
However, once the protection is shut down, if fuel is still present, the fire will quickly grow back to its origi-
nal size. A fire involving low flash point liquids cannot be truly suppressed by water based fire protection. A
very high level of control is possible and if maintained until the fuel is consumed, the fire will be extinguished.
Fire Extinguishment: the combustion process is completely stopped. As stated above in Fire Suppression,
water-only ceiling sprinklers cannot extinguish a fire in liquids with a low flash point. A special protection
system such as foam-water sprinkler system (See Section 2.5.1.6 and Appendix A, Foam-water sprinkler
systems), dry chemical, or a gaseous extinguishing agent can extinguish flammable liquid fires.
Cartoned Storage: containers of liquid packaged in at least a single layer of corrugated cardboard are
considered cartoned storage for the purposes of this standard. The cardboard packaging must at least cover
the bottom and two full sides of the unit. The other two sides must be at least 80% covered. The top can
be open.
Uncartoned Storage: containers of liquid that are arranged on pallets without cardboard boxes is consid-
ered uncartoned storage for the purposes of this standard. This type of storage generally consists of con-
tainers arranged on trays or sheets layered on a pallet and held in place with shrink wrapping. Uncartoned
storage also applies to any storage that does not meet the definition of cartoned storage.

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Foam-Water Sprinkler Systems: for the purposes of this standard, a foam-water sprinkler system consists
of a closed or open head sprinkler system that is connected to a low expansion foam concentrate propor-
tioning system designed to deliver a fixed foam concentration. The major advantage to installing a foam sys-
tem is they can be added to an existing sprinkler system. Closed and open head foam-water sprinkler systems
are described in NFPA 16, Installation of Foam-Water Sprinkler and Foam-Water Spray Systems.

APPENDIX B DOCUMENT REVISION HISTORY


May 2004. Eliminated the exclusion for plastic or glass bottles that are 2 oz (60 ml) or less in size. Recent full-
scale fire tests have demonstrated that even small plastic or glass bottles that are filled with a flammable
liquid can produce a severe fire hazard. New protection criteria has been added in Table 16a.
September 2003. The following changes have been made for this revision:
1. Provided information on the Approved fusible plugs for relieving style drums.
2. Revised the title of Table 8 to eliminate the lower container size limit of 6.5 gal (25 l). The protection criteria
in this table can be applied to smaller containers.
3. Revised protection criteria in Table 10 for rack storage of small metal containers. Provided criteria for
high temperature ceiling sprinklers.
September 2002. Fire protection tables have been revised to be consistent with the new sprinkler approval
categories.
May 2000. This document has been reorganized to provide a consistent format. In addition to the reformatting
the following technical changes have been made:
1. New fire protection for products with less than or equal to 50% water miscible liquid have been added.
All of the water miscible liquid fire protection criteria for rack storage have been incorporated into two new
tables.
2. Space separation distances between low value unprotected flammable liquid buildings and main buildings
has been clarified.
3. ELO sprinklers have been expanded to include all control mode, area density spray sprinklers with a
K factor greater than or equal to 11.2.
4. Clarified use of flammable liquid storage cabinets in warehouse areas.
September 1999. Minor Technical Revisions
May 1999. The document represents a complete rewrite of this data sheet. All previous recommendations
were re-evaluated. Significant changes in the fire protection recommendations have been incorporated. The
recommended criteria better reflect recent test results and have eliminated a number of inconsistencies in
the old criteria. Fire protection design drawings have been provided to help clarify recommendations. The
majority of the fire protection criteria is provided in tabular format.

APPENDIX C NFPA STANDARD


The 1996 edition of NFPA 30, Flammable and Combustible Liquids Code, represents a significant change
from previous editions of this document. Fire protection criteria are now located within the body of the code
and are enforceable. The provided fire protection criteria are only based on actual fire tests and include
requirements for roof heights, storage heights, storage arrangements, and types of containers. Storage
arrangements or containers that have not been tested do not have fire protection criteria and buildings con-
taining the storage are now considered unprotected. Since this document is a minimum consensus code,
there are still exemptions for certain quantities of flammable liquid storage in general purpose warehouses.
These quantities do present a severe exposure to general purpose warehouse occupancies.

APPENDIX D JOB AIDS

D.1 Abbreviations Used in Fire Protection Tables


QR Quick Response Sprinkler
SR Standard Response Sprinkler
NA Not Applicable

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DRR Double Row Rack, 9 ft (2.7 m) wide


Ordinary Nominal 165F (74C) temperature rating
High Nominal 286F (141C) temperature rating

D.2 Fire Protection Illustrations

D.2.1 In-Rack Layouts


Figures 4 through 12 show in-rack layouts.

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Fig. 4a. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme.

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Fig. 4b. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme.

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Fig. 4c. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme.

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Fig. 4d. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme.

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Fig. 4e. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme.

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Fig. 4f. Double row rack sprinkler layout drum protection scheme.

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Fig. 5a. Single row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers.

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Fig. 5b. Double row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers.

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Fig. 5c. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers.

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Fig. 5d. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers.

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Fig. 6a. Single row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers.

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Fig. 6b. Double row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers.

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Fig. 7a. Single row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers.

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Fig. 7b. Double row rack sprinkler layout small metal containers.

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Fig. 8a. Single row rack sprinkler layout water miscible liquids in small metal containers.

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Fig. 8b. Double row rack sprinkler layout water miscible liquids in small metal containers.

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Fig. 8c. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout water miscible liquids in small metal containers.

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Fig. 8d. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout water miscible liquids in small metal containers.

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Fig. 9a. Double row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Fig. 9b. Double row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Fig. 9c. Double row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Flammable Liquid Storage in Portable Containers 7-29
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Fig. 9d. Double row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Fig. 9e. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Fig. 9f. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Fig. 9g. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Fig. 9h. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Fig. 9i. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Fig. 9j. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Fig. 9k. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Fig. 9l. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout suppression mode sprinklers protection scheme.

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Fig. 10a. Single Row Rack Storage of Group 4 Water Miscible Liquids.

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Fig. 10b. Double Rack Storage of Group 4 Water Miscible Liquids.

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Fig. 11a. Single Row Rack Storage of Group 4 Water Miscible Liquids.

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Fig. 11b. Double Row Rack Storage of Group 4 Water Miscible Liquids.

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Fig. 12. Double Row Rack Storage of Group 3 Water Miscible Liquids.

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D.2.2 Fire Protection Schemes

D.2.2.1 Fire Protection Scheme A


1. Provide plywood, minimum 38 in. (1 cm), or sheet metal, minimum 22 ga. (0.7 mm), barriers and in-rack
sprinklers installed in accordance with Figures 13a, 13b, 13c and 13d.
Note: A maximum vertical barrier spacing of 12 ft (3.7 m) is permitted for storage of liquids with a closed
cup flash point greater than 200F (93C).
2. Install Approved large orifice, 165F (74C) rated, quick response in-rack sprinklers below each barrier
level. Design the in-rack sprinklers to provide a minimum end head pressure of 50 psig (3.5 barg) out of the
hydraulically most remote six (6) sprinklers (three on two lines) if one barrier level or the most remote eight
(8) sprinklers (four on two lines) if two or more barrier levels are provided.
3. If there are adjacent bays of rack arrays not dedicated to liquid storage, extend the barrier and in-rack
sprinkler protection at least one rack bay, approximately 8 ft (2.4 m) beyond the liquid storage.
4. Ceiling sprinkler demand does not need to be included in the hydraulic calculations for in-rack sprinklers.
Calculate the water demand at point of supply separately for in-rack and ceiling sprinklers. Provide a 500 gpm
(1890 l/min) hose stream allowance in the hydraulic calculations for the in-rack sprinkler protection. Provide
the combined fire protection water demand for a 2-hour duration.
5. Design ceiling sprinklers to protect the surrounding occupancy. A minimum ceiling sprinkler design of not
less than 0.20 gpm/ft2 (8 mm/min) over 2000 ft2 (186 m2) is required if standard spray sprinklers are provided.
If the liquid storage does not extend to the full height of the rack, protect the other commodities stored above
the barrier in accordance with appropriate standards as if the entire rack height was filled with that commod-
ity. If in-rack sprinklers are required for the other commodities, each level of barrier and in-rack sprinklers
can be given credit as a level of in-rack sprinklers.

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Fig. 13a. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme A.

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Fig. 13b. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme A.

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Fig. 13c. Double row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme A.

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Fig. 13d. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme A.

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D.2.2.2 Fire Protection Scheme B


1. Install in-rack sprinklers in accordance with Figures 14a, 14b, 14c, 14d. Face sprinklers for the double
row racks must be staggered vertically.
2. Install Approved large orifice (LO), 165F (74C) rated, quick response in-rack sprinklers. Design the
in-rack sprinklers to provide a minimum end head flow of 30 gpm (114 l/min) out of the hydraulically most
remote 8 sprinklers (4 on two lines) if one level of in-rack sprinklers is provided or the most remote
14 sprinklers (7 on two levels) if two or more levels are provided.
3. If there are adjacent bays of rack storage not dedicated to liquid storage, extend the in-rack sprinkler
protection at least one rack bay, approximately 8 ft (2.4 m) beyond the liquid storage.
4. Provide an Approved extra large orifice (ELO) or LO 165F (74C) ceiling sprinklers designed to provide
a density of 0.3 gpm/ft2 (12 mm/min) over 2000 ft2 (186 m2). Balance the ceiling and in-rack demands at
the point of connection to the water supply. Provide a 500-gpm (1890 l/min) hose stream allowance in the
hydraulic calculations. Provide the combined fire protection water demand for a 2-hour duration.

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5 ft. (1.4 m)
Maximum
4 - 5 ft.
(1.2 - 1.5 m)

Plan View
Deflector a Minimum of 6 in. (15 cm)
Above Top of Storage

5 ft. (1.4 m)
Maximum
10 ft. (3 m) Maximum
10 ft. (3 m) Maximum

In-Rack Sprinkler Elevation View

Fig. 14a. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme B.

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5 ft. (1.4 m)
Maximum
4 - 5 ft.
(1.2 - 1.5 m)

Plan View
Deflector a Minimum of 6 in. (15 cm)
Above Top of Storage

5 ft. (1.4 m)
Maximum
10 ft. (3 m) Maximum
10 ft. (3 m) Maximum

In-Rack Sprinkler Elevation View

Fig. 14b. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme B.

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8 -10 ft.
(2.4 - 3 m)

9 ft. (2.7 m)
Maximum
4 - 5 ft.
(1.2 - 1.5 m)

Plan View
Deflector a Minimum of 6 in. (15 cm)
Above Top of Storage

5 ft. (1.4 m)
Maximum
10 ft. (3 m) to 12 ft. (3.7 m)
10 ft. (3 m) to 12 ft. (3.7 m)

Longitudinal Flue Sprinkler


Elevation View
Face Sprinkler

Fig. 14c. Double row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme B.

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4 - 5 ft.
(1.2 - 1.5 m)

Plan View
Deflector a Minimum of 6 in. (15 cm)
Above Top of Storage

10 ft. (3 m) to 12 ft. (3.7 m)

In-Rack Sprinkler Elevation View - First Three Tiers

Fig. 14d. Multiple row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme B.

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D.2.2.3 Fire Protection Scheme C


1. Install in-rack sprinklers in accordance with Figures 15a, 15b, 15c. No deviations are permitted.
2. Install Approved large orifice 165F (74C) rated, quick response in-rack sprinklers. Design the in-rack
sprinklers to provide a minimum end head flow of 30 gpm (114 l/min) out of the hydraulically most remote eight
sprinklers if one level of in-rack sprinklers is provided or the most remote 14 sprinklers (7 on two levels) if
two or more levels are provided.
3. If there are adjacent bays of rack storage not dedicated to liquid storage, extend the in-rack sprinkler
protection at least one rack bay, approximately 8 ft (2.4 m) beyond the liquid storage.
4. Provide an Approved extra large orifice (ELO) or LO 165F (74C) ceiling sprinklers and design the ceil-
ing sprinkler system in accordance with Table 22 below. Balance the ceiling and in-rack demands at the point
of connection to the water supply. Provide a 500-gpm (1890 l/min) hose stream allowance in the hydraulic
calculations. Provide the combined fire protection water demand for a 2-hour duration.

Table 22. Protection Scheme C Ceiling Sprinkler Designs


Ceiling Sprinkler Protection Criteria
Sprinkler Type
Roof Response,
OR Temperature
Ceiling Height Storage Height Orifice Rating Density Design Area
40 ft 35 ft ELO SR, 165F (74C) 0.6 gpm/ft2 2000 ft2
(12.2 m) (10.7 m) (25 mm/min) (186 m2)
30 ft 25 ft LO, ELO SR, 165F (74C) 0.3 gpm/ft2 2000 ft2
(9.1 m) (7.5 m) (12 mm/min) (186 m2)
Note: See Section D.1 for explanation of abbreviations.

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5 ft. (1.4 m)
Maximum
4 - 5 ft.
(1.2 - 1.5 m)

Plan View
Deflector a Minimum of 6 in. (15 cm)
Above Top of Storage

5 ft. (1.4 m)
Maximum
10 ft. (3 m) Maximum
10 ft. (3 m) Maximum

In-Rack Sprinkler Elevation View

Fig. 15a. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme C.

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5 ft. (1.4 m)
Maximum
4 - 5 ft.
(1.2 - 1.5 m)

Plan View
Deflector a Minimum of 6 in. (15 cm)
Above Top of Storage

5 ft. (1.4 m)
Maximum
10 ft. (3 m) Maximum
10 ft. (3 m) Maximum

In-Rack Sprinkler Elevation View

Fig. 15b. Single row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme C.

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9 ft. (2.7 m)
Maximum
4 - 5 ft.
(1.2 - 1.5 m)

Plan View
Deflector a Minimum of 6 in. (15 cm)
Above Top of Storage

5 ft. (1.4 m)
Maximum
10 ft. (3 m) Maximum
10 ft. (3 m) Maximum

In-Rack Sprinkler
Elevation View

Fig. 15c. Double row rack sprinkler layout fire protection scheme C.

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