The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Institute has released results of a project undertaken in cooperation with UL and the Firefighter Safety Research Institute. Refrigerants classified by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers as A2L (lower flammability) were tested and compared with A1 (no flame-spread) refrigerants in real-world situations. The effort was undertaken to develop training programs for firefighting personnel when responding to fires in occupancies with both new (A2L) and existing (A1) refrigerants.
The project included scenarios designed by fire service professionals to develop training for tactical consideration to demonstrate hazards that may be encountered by the fire service for both A1 and A2L refrigerants. Since the industry started pursuing a phasedown of higher-global warming potential refrigerants over 10 years ago, more than $7 million has been invested in research to better understand the lower-GWP refrigerants that will replace them.
The FSRI training module, which incorporates videos from the project, will soon be released and available free of charge on its website at ulfirefightersafety.org.