Is oxygen reduction a viable alternative to sprinklers in cold and freezer stores?

Sprinkler systems in cold and freezer stores are problematic and expensive. If a sprinkler head is broken accidentally, ice builds up on the floor before the water can be turned off. Mobile racks cannot be moved until the ice is cleared. Frozen product which has been soaked by sprinklers should not be sold. If a fire occurs close to the cold store floor, it has every chance of being well established before the sprinklers activate. Even if the fire is put out, product is smoke damaged.

As prevention is better than cure, the OXIT system from FX-Prevent in Holland decreases the air’s oxygen content from the normal 19.5% at sea level until there is insufficient oxygen for a fire to start.  In most cases employees can continue to work inside the freezer room.  Oxygen sensors keep the air composition constant by feeding in additional nitrogen when required.  Oxit systems for cold stores on the Highveld would have to take the increased altitude into account.

So, could oxygen reduction systems be a safe and cost effective alternative to sprinklers?  We look forward to your views.

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Nitrogen generator and Stearing, measurement and UPS
Nitrogen generator and Stearing, measurement and UPS