Office of Highway Safety Hazardous Materials Oxygen Cylinders

Office of Highway Safety Hazardous Materials Oxygen Cylinders

Office of Highway Safety Hazardous Materials Oxygen Cylinders 7 cylinders in luggage bay had minimal fire damage 11 cylinders in passenger

compartment had extensive fire damage Cylinder Design Cylinder contains large quantities of oxygen compressed to 2,015 psig

Valve assembly pressure relief device (burst disk) Burst Disk Actuates between 3,0253,360 psig

Fully pressurized cylinder reaches this range between 260315 F Aluminum Cylinder Failure Aluminum melting range between

1,0201,206 F Aluminum begins to lose its strength when heated Without a burst disk, internal cylinder pressure rapidly causes

failure above 600 F Valve Examination One burst disk actuated, relieving pressure as designed Two burst disks did not actuate,

indicating cylinder failure Aluminum Cylinder Pressurization Compressed Gas Association tests Fully pressurized cylinder in fire Burst disk actuates Prevents failure

NTSB study Partially pressurized cylinder <78% gas Heated in excess of 400 F Cylinder fails Burst disk does not actuate Rescue Efforts Burst of fire due to

cylinder failure Temperatures in excess of 400 F Conditions in motorcoach quickly became overwhelming Cylinders failed after

successful rescue no longer possible Aluminum Cylinder Hazards Significant pressure Fire exposure may result in cylinder failure, pressure surge, and

projectiles Danger to public and responders DOT regulations do not address partially pressurized cylinders exposed to heat Summary Standards needed for safe

transportation of partially pressurized aluminum cylinders to prevent failure Guidance necessary for protection of emergency personnel and public responding to vehicle fires

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