Flare-like fire suppression systems?

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Peter Pegasus

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A number of new fire control systems are on the market that look like flares.
I call these units fire suppressors, not fire extinguishers, because they are not certified yet for the most part in the US, Australia, or Europe. Yet they seem to be widely adopted by first responders, racing cars, off road vehicles, etc.
The problem for boat operators like TF owners is that there is almost no independent professional review of these systems. Moreover, they make claims about effectiveness that are mostly not documented independently by competent people.
In one instance, for example, the video shows a man putting out a fire in a tray using a fire suppressor. He is standing downwind in the smoke plume inhaling the smoke. This doesn’t lend confidence that these folks know what they are doing. Anyone who knows fire response knows that the first rule is to not be downwind, not least because you are exposed to the carcinogenic, teratogenic and mutagenic combustion products plus whatever comes from the fire extinguishing agent into your lungs.
And, as a number of blogs attest in the offroad and sailing community, much of the marketing is of the breathless type that are typical of fraudulent scams --especially when claims are made that they are “certified” to various standards (but not fire extinguisher standards—when I called one fire extinguisher company in Australia to ask about these new units, they immediately referred to fraudulent claims about the certification, but didn’t actually know anything about them).
Conversely, there’s now a lot of anecdotal reporting of the widespread adoption of these systems by actual first responders (see the videos on the Swedish Maus website below).
The only professional review I could find was our old friend, Practical Sailor, here in 2020
https://www.practical-sailor.com/safety-seamanship/new-marine-fire-prevention-tools
which was the entry door for me to figure out more or less what is going on with these units.
The other problem is that the same unit is marketed under different names in different regions. Thus, in Australia, the (Italian?) Element E50/100 (that is, it fires a cloud of fire suppressing smoke for 50 or 100 seconds) that is sold in the United States
https://elementfire.com/collections/allproducts
is called Firestryker in Australia and sold mostly through two big retailers (Officeworks and Bunnings).
https://www.officeworks.com.au/shop/officeworks/p/firestryker-100-second-fire-suppression-system-fss100-bun2935955
https://www.bunnings.com.au/firestryker-fire-suppressant-100-second-discharge-time_p0487720
Their main competitor seems to be the Maus (like the Element 50/100, mentioned in Practical Sailor, the only unit that they actually tested). This is a Swedish design. Maus is found here
https://maussafety.com/
The Maus only fires for 9-12 seconds and seems to be more expensive than the Element/Firestryker. According to Maus in Sweden (via email), I was told that they don't have a distributor in Australia.
But then I re-read in the Practical Sailor review and found that the Firepal F50 is a UK version of the Maus Xtine, and in turn, that these are identical to what are marketed by Fireone in Australia.
https://fire-one.com.au/collections/value-packs
And indeed, when I called them, Fireone told me that yes, there are two units, the First Responder and The Adventurer, and that these are the same as Maus, with all the units being made by one factory in China by whomever has the patent and sold into different markets under different names.
OK, having mapped the marketing terrain, here are the questions I have before I buy some (which I will do as a supplement, not substitute for traditional powder FXs and the halon Fireboy in the ER aboard M/V Aquabelle to be used first, as as instant easy and likely less damaging suppressant for small fires before using powder FXs that will blast a snot like material over fires with a massive resulting cleanup--but are much cheaper up front).
1. Does anyone know of other independent professional reviews of these fire suppressors than the one by Practical Sailor?
2. Does anyone know of actual performance effectiveness of the 9-12 second units versus the 50/100 second units? (The distributors don’t, I asked them).
3. Has anyone actually used these units in a real-world fire on their vessel. They appear to be much easier to use and faster to deploy given size and lesser mounting requirements than powder units, but is that true in practice? And how do they vary across types? For example, Maus is designed to be fired from a meter or more away from the fire, the Firestryker type units appear to require the user to be much closer.
4. Has anyone looked closely at the design, quality control, and other aspects of the Swedish design “Maus” (which is also a marketing name, I don’t know if they are the patent holding progenitor of their version of this technology) versus the Element 50/100-Firestryker? And any other makes?

Stop the press, this email just came in from Maus Sweden--I will post the the two documents he refers to separately as PDF files:
Good morning.
Regarding products like Mangafuoco, FSS, Firstryker, Element etc. Please check this report we did:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1CIlDAPXZvinpPfyhmtQTNrhWD2WdKj06/view?usp=sharing
It has been banned in the EU and is evidently quite dangerous.
Firepal is not producing any products any more. They might have some old stock left, but no new production. I’m good friends with the UK distributor. We have currently moved production to the only factory in China that now produces our extinguisher. First batch from this new factory will be sent next week to Sweden. So there have been many copycats on the market. We will change the design to avoid future problems. This will be done in January 2024.
We are building a new website (will be launched this week - can send you the link to the English version):
https://maus.alectiv.com/bat/
Here is a Swedish boat video - will be in English as well:
https://vimeo.com/manage/videos/840361797/3b1a9c9fbe
We have also started to implement our new innovation the MAUS Stixx Pro 5 and 10 in boat engines or other spaces where a fire could occur on a boat.
See image of the unit in an engine room:
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1UT1y5prl_0qUPHQbH7F7RD5wYb9N0VJR/view?usp=sharing
Here are some good images from boats with MAUS:
https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1JkVVX7W6Su2k34OvvM7DvR_FtBZn2XER?usp=sharing
We also have the MAUS Xtin Grand that is 3x as powerful and would be the option for larger boats.
We are installing about 3000 x MAUS Xtin Klein every month in Toyotas vehicles in Indonesia for one model and hoping to increase the number of vehicles. Swedish Police, Swedish Ambulance etc are all using the MAUS Xtin Klein in their operations.
Attaching the product brochure. If you need images in hi-resolution please let me know.
I wish you a great day and please let me know if you have any further questions.
 
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Flare-like fire suppression systems attachments

Here are the two documents referred to by Maus in the first post.
 

Attachments

  • Maus on firestick type suppressors compressed.pdf
    3.1 MB · Views: 43
  • maus-stixx-pro-productsheet-2022-ENG. compressed more.pdf
    2.8 MB · Views: 38
I'll probably get a couple of them if they do have proper certification
 
More information from Maus overnight, followed by Element/Firestryker information...primarily for Ozzie readers.
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Is the Firestick which is the EU-banned unit the same as Firestryker/Element 50/100? or same design and subject to same design flaws?

Same product. Same starting technique. Just some changes in design.

***
Q1. Re the UK unit in Australia, as I note in the Trawler Forum essay, that unit appears to be available in Australia now here.
https://fire-one.com.au/collections/value-packs

Old supplier from the old factory. Not sure they are 100% active. They started 5 years ago, but never got anywhere. We are the only producer with a Module E and B certification that gives us as the only producer the CE certificate. I can share with you the complete test documents for module B and E if you wish.


Q2: Their units appear to have 5 year expiry manufacturer dates so they don't seem to be old inventory (I noticed on UK distributors that the Firepal unit's are 2017 manufacturer date and therefore expire after only a couple of years or even less).
Now is Firepal a Chinese knockoff, or is it the same product as the old Maus?!

Firepal is an early version of the original MAUS.

AND THIS FROM US-ELEMENT RE AUSTRALIAN VERSION FIRESTRYKER
I did not realize that they only sell the 100 second unit. Each regional distributor makes their own determination regarding their preferred product mix. These decisions most often are dictated by local market preferences. There is, for example, a 25 second version of the extinguisher that has done very well in some markets but has been a total non-starter for us in North America.
I know that the Australian importer has achieved several Aus/NZ certifications for the 100 second unit specifically. Perhaps they did not want to go through the trouble or expense of doing the same for the 50? Best to ask them if you have detailed questions about why they are carrying some products but not others.
 
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