Class A firefighting foams are a biodegradable mixture of foaming and wetting agents that were developed in mid-1980s for fighting wildfires. “Class A” is the designation for all fires that involve common combustibles, such as wood, paper, cloth, plant materials, trash and plastics.
The majority of fire departments in the United States use Class A foam during firefighting events.
The U.S. Forest Service extensively tests Class A foams, and has found no environmental concerns with Class A, biodegradable firefighting foam. Class A foam will not hurt plants, pets, or homes. It also requires no clean up after use and will not discolor surfaces.
Frontline uses a brand called Buckeye Platinum Class A in the Frontline system. The US Forest Service has tested Buckeye Class A foam and has classified it to be biodegradable. There are no ingredients in Buckeye Class A foam that are considered toxic or hazardous, and there are no California Proposition 65 ingredients.
How Does It Work?
Class A foam accelerates the hydration of combustible materials, and by doing so prevents combustible materials from reaching a burn point. Whether the materials that are being hydrated are building materials, adjacent plants, leaves that have collected on a roof, or patio furniture, Class A foam will quickly hydrate these materials and make them “too wet” to burn.
Class A foam attracts carbon, and as a carbon-loving solution, it soaks into solid, combustible materials by breaking down the surface tension of water. The National Institute of Standards and Technology has estimated that water treated with Class A foam can wet a Class A fuel up to 20 times more rapidly than untreated water.
Class A concentrate also allows water to create a “foam blanket” on a combustible fuel and keep it there. The foam allows the water to remain and cling to both vertical and horizontal surfaces without runoff. The use of Class A foam allows a firefighter to use far less water than would normally be needed to extinguish the same fire.
Class A foam:
- Deeply hydrates combustible materials and making them “too wet” to burn;
- Provides a cooling effect by lowering the temperature of combustible materials;
- Creates a separation from burning embers contacting combustible surfaces;
Faster, Cleaner Mop-Up
Not only is Class A firefighting foam non-toxic, but it’s also non-staining and cleans up easily with water. That’s because it’s essentially comprised of strong detergents—not unlike those used for hand-washing dishes.
Wildland firefighters and municipal fire officials alike have learned to depend on the remarkable fire-suppression capabilities of Class A foam. This incredible compound allows the fire to be extinguished sooner and the overhaul completed earlier, significantly reducing the physical stress on firefighters
Keeping the Planet Green
At Frontline Wildfire Defense, we’re committed to safeguarding your home AND your environment. There’s no more effective system than ours, when it comes to protecting your home and family from the ravages of a wildfire.
You can trust us to ensure that your property and environment will remain green for generations to come.