February's Chapter meeting was a great one - other than attendance. A total of five attendees is not going to keep this chapter alive.
Those of you that did not attend missed a great technical presentation. Troy Wiltbank of Johnson Controls provided a very informative presentation regarding foam fire suppression systems. Troy is obviously an expert in this area. In particular, his knowledge of the issued and developing environmental regulations concerning AFFF really helped us understand the current and likely future options.
I say "likely" future options because the regulations that are controlling what kind of chemicals can be used are still variable. The current regulations are being phased in depending on the jurisdiction, which make keeping up with what is OK for a specific project difficult to determine. Recommendations regarding how to implement a system should also be considered, as some regulations prohibit new installations but not the purchase of AFFF concentrate to keep existing systems viable for some time.
Troy told us that is has been difficult to develop AFFF concentrates which meet the regulations. Current options are limited and are dependent on the type of chemicals needed (i.e., to address hydrocarbon fires or polar solvent fires, or both). Some applications can be addressed by high expansion foam systems, but not all.
There was a very good associated discussion among the attendees who shared their experiences, which varied significantly.
This was a great meeting. But attendance is obviously disappointing. On a personal note, what is really disappointing to me is the lack of feedback re why you are not attending. Location? Not a lunch meeting anymore? If it is technical content, I would be surprised as I have found the recent subjects informative and interesting. We are asking for input. Please reach out to the leadership team at email@example.com or me by me cell at 425-922-6573. Our goal is a strong vibrant chapter - but chapter participation is at the core. I know you're busy - but an hour once a month is not much.
Mark. R. Mannex, PE, FPE