Thorbjorn Laursen, FireEater www.fire-eater.com presented his personal experience from selling halon 1301 fire extinguishing chemicals in the past, to now developing and installing the Inergen fire extinguishing system today, which uses non halogen containing inert gases.
He presented Inergen systems now installed and validated in marine and offshore, where safety requirements are very stringent, in heritage buildings, cold storage installations, and in tyre storage. Halon extinguishers produced both HBr and HF toxic and corrosive gases in contact with fire, posing risks for both firefighters and occupants. They have been replaced with solutions (HFC and Fuorinated Ketone) decomposing into HF, TFA, MFA, PFIB, COF2, F-propionic, in contact with fire, heated surfaces, moisture or sunlight, and which can pose dangers to occupants in case of accidental leakages and during fire extinguishing actions. (see “Eight die in Thai bank after chemical fire extinguisher leak”, Guardian 14/3/2016. This accident involved particulate aerosol, another chemical fire extinguishing solution). The halogen-based extinguishers, can lead to incomplete combustion and considerably increase toxic carbon monoxide emissions. The Inergen system, because it generates turbulence, has shown on the contrary to reduce carbon monoxide emissions in the fire extinguishing process.