Urgent- Operation of the Crew Protection Spray System on 2.4C Medium Tankers

I need to bring to your attention an aspect of appliance design concerning only 2.4C medium tankers which could be a safety issue when operating the Crew Protection System when drafting or using soft suction.

It needs to be noted by all 2.4C users the following;

If the 2.4C Tanker is being used to draft or in a soft suction situation and the crew protection system is activated, the electronic 3 way valve will automatically shut off these types of water supplies and switch to the tank supply.

All deliveries continue to work normally and so will the side tank fill.

However the issue now arises of the crew only being limited to what water is in the tank and unless they are aware of this design feature, they may still be expecting the volumes of water from the drafting or mains to be available.

Therefore this feature of the design reverting automatically to the tank whenever the CPS is activated if unknown by the crews could leave them unexpectedly with only limited water.

CFA will soon notify impacted Brigades of this issue either using a safety alert or letter, however for expediency can you please let these Brigades with this type of tanker know the current situation.

From an operational prospective, this feature creates a risk only if the crews are unaware of the automatic supply change over as the pump is capable of supplying in excess of 900 lts per minute and in most situations if time permits the use of the deliveries is a better option for protection in a burn over than the CPS if reliable mains are available or large bodies of water for drafting. However if the crew decides to use both the deliveries and the CPS system simultaneously, they will run out of water very quickly when the tank empties. Or if they decide just to use the CPS, they will only be limited to the water left in the tank.

This design feature is being urgently evaluated to examine what changes need to be made. I'll keep you advised when a decision is made which should not be long away.

Can you please make the Brigades with this type of tanker aware of this situation as it does not appear in its training material or is there any indicator to alert the members of the automatic defaulting to the tank whenever the CPS is activated?

Regards

Gary Weir
Operations Manager, Wildfire Planning & Forestry Industry Brigades
Fire & Emergency Management Team

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