Delft University of Technology
Faculty Mechanical, Maritime and Materials Engineering
Transport Technology

J. van Kasteren Fire protection and fire fighting on offshore platforms.
Literature survey, Report 87.3.2326.OS, Transport Engineering and Logistics / Offshore Engineering.

The risks of fire and explosions are high due to the presence of highly flammable hydrocarbons.
To ensure the safety of people, present on an offshore platform, and to protect the structure from damage, laws and recommended practices are set up which form the minimum safety requirements with respect to fire detection and fire fighting for an offshore installation.

The following detection systems are provided on an offshore platform:
  • gas detection
  • heat detection
  • flame detection
  • smoke detection. It is noticed that gas detection is a preventive detection system, because it gives an alarm even before fire occurs (the amount of flammable gas or vapour in air is detected).

    The fire fighting media applied on an offshore platform are:
  • water
  • foam (AFFF)
  • dry powder
  • Halon. These media are provided for by fixed as well as portable extinguishers.

    In the last chapter of the report is shown in which areas what kind of fire detection and fire fighting equipment generally is applied. A schematic drawing of a (seawater) fire main system is presented, together with the requirements of such a system, and the fire detection and fire fighting equipment for an (imaginary) helideck is worked out.

    In 49% of the total number of accidents damage is caused by fire of explosions. Thus it can be concluded that more care has to be taken with respect to fire prevention.
    Because of the fac that the accidents which resulted in fire alse caused acceptable damage, it can be concluded on as a satisfactory operation of the applied fire detection and fire fighting equipment.

    Reports on Transport Engineering and Logistics (in Dutch)
    Modified: 2008.01.27; , TU Delft / 3mE / TT / LT.