The FAA has issued a request for comments on a final rule for an Airworthiness Directive (AD) for SICLI Halon 1211 portable fire extinguishers installed on various models of airplanes and rotorcraft, including some models built by Bombardier, Cessna, Dassault, Embraer and Eurocopter.
The FAA is seeking comments on an Airworthiness Directive aimed at contaminated Halon 1211 used in some handheld cabin fire extinguishers. According to the FAA, “The contaminated nature of this gas, when used against a fire, may provide reduced fire suppression.
The FAA is issuing an update of advisory circular AC 20-42D: Hand Fire Extinguishers for Use in Aircraft. It provides guidance for firefighting effectiveness, selection, location and mounting of hand fire extinguishers. The circular establishes halocarbons hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC) Blend B, hydrofluorocarbon (HFC)-227ea and HFC-236fa as FAA-approved replacement agents to Halon 1211.
The manufacturer of portable halon fire extinguishers targeted for mandatory replacement said the units involved “do not represent a safety problem,” even though they are not in compliance with technical requirements. In a proposed AD, the FAA is calling for the removal of some 39,000 of the extinguishers due to improper crimping of the units’ siphon tubes.
Nearly 40,000 Kidde Aerospace halon fire extinguishers will have to be removed from service, under a proposed airworthiness directive. The FAA said the discharge time of the handheld units (part number 898052 and serial number of W-389653 or lower in units built between 1995 and 2002) exceeds the maximum allowable discharge time due to an allegedly crimped siphon tube.
Kidde portable fire extinguishers that have been determined to be faulty must be replaced in some 39,000 aircraft, according to a recent AD. The manufacturer said the units involved “do not represent a safety problem,” even though they do not comply with technical requirements. The affected extinguishers (P/N 898052 with S/Ns from V-432001 to W-389653 and built between 1995 and 2002) exceed the maximum allowable discharge time of 10 seconds.
Halon fire-extinguishing agents have been used for many years to protect valuable electronics, oil and gas production facilities, military systems, aircraft and other critical operations. The Army Corps of Engineers developed Halon (short for halogenated hydrocarbons) in 1948 as a less toxic but highly effective alternative to methyl bromide.