Fire Protection In a Deep-Freeze Warehouse
Causes and risks of fire in deep-freeze storage
A fire in a deep-freeze warehouse? That may seem illogical at first, since cold and ice conjure up associations quite the opposite to fire and heat. But fire protection is a major issue in refrigeration and deep-freeze logistics. The dry air inside cold storage facilities increases the risk of fire. Temperatures inside such warehouses can be as low as -28 °C, resulting in low air humidity levels that can facilitate the outbreak of fires. The wooden pallets and packaging materials commonly used to store goods are highly inflammable in the dry air. Increased automation carries additional fire risks: cable breaks, overheating conveyor motors on pickers and belts, and technical defects in refrigeration units or vacuum packaging equipment all represent potential fire hazards. And the insulation materials installed in deep-freeze storage facilities, such as mineral wool or Styrofoam, can pose fire dangers as well. The high, narrow spaces between racks in these ever-larger cold storage facilities help fires spread quickly, while also making it difficult for conventional extinguishing systems or the fire brigade to put fires out. As such, the most effective solution for cold storage facilities is to prevent fires from developing and spreading in the first place.