fire system safety pins, in or out during race?

Questions and answers about CMC and NASA rules

Moderator: Al Fernandez

User avatar
MHISSTC
Posts: 1061
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2006 12:44 pm
Location: Goodland, Kansas

fire system safety pins, in or out during race?

Postby MHISSTC » Mon Dec 16, 2013 2:10 pm

Image

I found the above image in the TX year end video, thought it was funny/concerning, added the graphic comment, reposted it there, and received the following comments:

I keep mine pinned there as well. I know lots of folks who do this.
I only consider it a major issue if it is pinned at the bottle.


Having the pin in at the Handle is a good idea. It doesn't take any effort to pull it out and it's a disaster when it goes off accidentally not to mention a huge mess and pain to clean up haha.


Rather than contaminate that thread, I am following up on it here.

I'm interested in hearing opinions from others.

I do not believe it is a good practice to leave the safety pin in the fire system during a race.

I had to go back and review the CMC Rules and CCR. Both comments are right in that there is no specific requirement in either the CCR or CMC Rules stating the safety pin designed to keep the system from being accidentally discharged must be removed for a race. There is also no specific requirement that the extinguisher/discharge handle be easily accessible to anyone but the driver, even though it must be clearly labeled both inside the car and outside the car at the closest access point. I see the labeling requirement as an assumption that it would be beneficial for safety crews to know where it is, which would also make the assumption that they shouldn't have to go through an extra step other than just pulling the handle to make it work.

Unless I've stumbled upon my first RCR for 2014, I believe the various manufacturers installation instructions are clear enough about this that it shouldn't have to be specifically included in either the CCR or CMC rules.

A quick Internet search of instructions on three different systems yielded the following:

ESS:
Important: The safety pins must be
removed before the vehicle enters
the track. Failure to do so will
prevent the pull cable from
operating!

SPA:
� SAFETY WARNING Failure to remove
safety pin will render the system
inoperable when required.

Firecharger:
Please make sure all safety pins are in place and only removed at the
track to avoid accidental discharge during maintenance or moving. Please remember that the safety pins need to be removed while the
car is on the track in order for the system to operate.
Scott Lockhart
Team Incidental Contact
Sponsor - Hanksville Hotrods

User avatar
BADVENM
Posts: 372
Joined: Tue Jan 08, 2008 4:00 pm
Location: Goodland, KS

Postby BADVENM » Mon Dec 16, 2013 3:13 pm

Up until 2 years ago I would always forget to remove the pin. When I did remember I was on track and strapped in.

Since then I've always pulled the pin before getting on track.

I can see both sides. However, if I get in a crash that produces considerable smoke (we've seen those videos and heard first hand accounts the past year or so), so much that the driver is trying to exit the car with his eyes closed to avoid smoke in the yes, the last thing I want to try and figure out is where the pin is and trying to pull it so I can then pull the lever for the fire suppressant. Granted it may only take a second to pull the pin and then the lever, but that extra second could be a difference.

Also interesting to see where the cutoff switch is located.

EDIT: when I sent my reply I got this message

Ran into problems sending Mail. Response: 452 4.3.1 Insufficient system storage

DEBUG MODE

Line : 143
File : smtp.php
NASA Rocky Mountain - Camaro-Mustang Challenge car #8 Team Incidental Contact
3rd Place CMC - 2010 NASA National Championship
3rd Place CMC - 2015 NASA West Coast Championship PTB

Supercharged111
Posts: 372
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2013 9:18 am
Location: Colorado Springs, CO

Postby Supercharged111 » Mon Dec 16, 2013 7:30 pm

My concern here would be remembering to repin after a race. It would be a bitch to police, unless maybe pulling the pin becomes part of the GTFO of your burning car drill?
Rocky Mountain CMC Director
#45 Camaro Challenge Race Car

soundguydave
Posts: 123
Joined: Mon Apr 18, 2011 3:47 pm
Location: Chicago, IL

Postby soundguydave » Mon Dec 16, 2013 10:19 pm

Personally, I would avoid ANY extra steps involved in exiting a flaming vehicle.

Master off, get stopped.
hit the fire handle
Pop the belts
Drop the net
bail out.

By adding an extra step (remove pin) it sounds to me like you could be adding an extra 20% to the workload, and in those circumstances, that may not be a good thing.

Also, what about the scenario involving a corner worker trying to extricate you and having to fumble around to see if the pull is pinned or not before trying to actually put out the fire?

On the CMC car, we've got twin pulls, one in the passenger window, and the other on the trans tunnel.

I'm putting a fire bottle in the enduro car for next season (S197 chassis), and I'm planning on dual pulls there, as well. First on the A-piller right below the master switch just inside the window opening on the driver's side, and the second on the B-pillar on the passenger side, again just inside the window opening. I'm also leaving the hand-held in place, as well.
Dave Lowum
CMC2 #302 (Midwest/Great Lakes)

User avatar
cozog
Posts: 388
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2008 7:14 am
Location: Avon, IN

Postby cozog » Tue Dec 17, 2013 5:37 am

soundguydave wrote:Also, what about the scenario involving a corner worker trying to extricate you and having to fumble around to see if the pull is pinned or not before trying to actually put out the fire?


Most important issue here. Forget about what YOU are doing after a crash... what about the first responders (could be another driver, i.e. the Jim Pantas vid at 2012 nat'ls), especially if you are incapacitated or unconscious. IMHO, safety systems in a race car need to be as simple to use as possible.
Todd Johnston, #59

User avatar
cozog
Posts: 388
Joined: Tue Jan 29, 2008 7:14 am
Location: Avon, IN

Postby cozog » Tue Dec 17, 2013 5:37 am

soundguydave wrote:Also, what about the scenario involving a corner worker trying to extricate you and having to fumble around to see if the pull is pinned or not before trying to actually put out the fire?


Most important issue here. Forget about what YOU are doing after a crash... what about the first responders (could be another driver, i.e. the Jim Pantas vid at 2012 nat'ls), especially if you are incapacitated or unconscious. IMHO, safety systems in a race car need to be as simple to use as possible.
Todd Johnston, #59

D. Francis
Posts: 344
Joined: Tue May 23, 2006 11:53 am
Location: Pearland, TX

Postby D. Francis » Tue Dec 17, 2013 9:03 am

soundguydave wrote:Master off, get stopped.
hit the fire handle
Pop the belts
Drop the net
bail out.


I run with the pin IN the handle.

The handle is right at the headlight switch and there is a "remove before flight" flag on the pin.

I've thought about it often and when in grid before a race go through a "checklist" that includes acknowledging I will need to pull the pin to activate the bottle.
David Francis
#39 CMC Camaro
Orange is FAST!

User avatar
wastntim
Posts: 298
Joined: Tue Mar 31, 2009 7:07 pm

Postby wastntim » Tue Dec 17, 2013 11:48 am

I have my two pull cords in easy reach for corner workers. I would not want to have to rely on them reaching deep into a burning car to activate my extinguisher, no less make them try to figure out there is a pin somewhere.

As Todd said, make the corner workers job as easy as possible.

I'd much rather have to deal with an accidental discharge of an extinguisher than it not working for whatever reason. You can clean a car up, but third degree burns or worse yet, is not so easy to fix.

BTW, I had the pleasure of driving the world's fastest bubble maker when my canister slid in the holder and slightly pressed down the handle causing my entire car to fill with 4 inches of foam at Road America. Ever seen bubbles flying out of a race car's windows at 120mph? It's an interesting site to say the least.
Robert #24
NASA Midwest - CMC2
HeavyImpactMotorsports@gmail.com
Sponsor: Cassidy Tire/Tiresdirect.net & CTW Motorsports

User avatar
MHISSTC
Posts: 1061
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2006 12:44 pm
Location: Goodland, Kansas

Postby MHISSTC » Tue Dec 17, 2013 2:44 pm

Supercharged111 wrote:My concern here would be remembering to repin after a race. It would be a bitch to police, unless maybe pulling the pin becomes part of the GTFO of your burning car drill?


It's no more or less difficult to do or remember than hood pins, and can easily be incorporated into your pre and post-grid checklist when the process can be done at a leisurely pace before and after the race, instead of while you're in auto-panic mode during an on-track emergency. Flagging the pin with a "remove before flight" type ribbon is a handy reminder to remove them during your pre/post grid/race checklist.

While I like the idea of having a dual set of actuators for both the master switch and fire system, one for the driver inside the car and one for safety workers outside the car, my concern with that would be protecting the actuators during an accident or rollover. I think the best compromise situation would be to provide a clearly labeled actuation point for them both at the dash or in some type of cage mounted tab just inside the window opening on the driver side.

While centering these actuation points smack dab in the center of the dash, or somewhere else like the driveshaft tunnel may look good, provide easy driver access, and de-clutter other portions of the dash or egress area, I don't think they are the most conducive for safety worker access if the need arises.

cozog wrote:safety systems in a race car need to be as simple to use as possible.


soundguydave wrote:avoid ANY extra steps involved in exiting a flaming vehicle.


Those quotes sum up exactly what I'm trying to get at here.

EDIT: Obviously, I had more issues posting with error messages showing with my actual posts showing up later. Somebody please delete the following duplicates since I can't seem to do that either.
Last edited by MHISSTC on Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Scott Lockhart

Team Incidental Contact

Sponsor - Hanksville Hotrods

User avatar
MHISSTC
Posts: 1061
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2006 12:44 pm
Location: Goodland, Kansas

Postby MHISSTC » Tue Dec 17, 2013 2:53 pm

duplicate
Last edited by MHISSTC on Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Scott Lockhart

Team Incidental Contact

Sponsor - Hanksville Hotrods

User avatar
MHISSTC
Posts: 1061
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2006 12:44 pm
Location: Goodland, Kansas

Postby MHISSTC » Tue Dec 17, 2013 2:55 pm

duplicate
Last edited by MHISSTC on Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Scott Lockhart

Team Incidental Contact

Sponsor - Hanksville Hotrods

User avatar
MHISSTC
Posts: 1061
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2006 12:44 pm
Location: Goodland, Kansas

Postby MHISSTC » Tue Dec 17, 2013 3:16 pm

duplicate
Last edited by MHISSTC on Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Scott Lockhart

Team Incidental Contact

Sponsor - Hanksville Hotrods

User avatar
MHISSTC
Posts: 1061
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2006 12:44 pm
Location: Goodland, Kansas

Postby MHISSTC » Tue Dec 17, 2013 3:20 pm

duplicate
Last edited by MHISSTC on Tue Dec 17, 2013 6:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Scott Lockhart

Team Incidental Contact

Sponsor - Hanksville Hotrods

User avatar
MHISSTC
Posts: 1061
Joined: Thu Jan 26, 2006 12:44 pm
Location: Goodland, Kansas

Postby MHISSTC » Tue Dec 17, 2013 3:24 pm

duplicate
Scott Lockhart

Team Incidental Contact

Sponsor - Hanksville Hotrods

User avatar
TX#11CMC
Posts: 623
Joined: Thu May 19, 2005 2:14 pm
Location: Dallas, TX

Postby TX#11CMC » Wed Dec 18, 2013 2:19 pm

I am a little confused as to why the big deal if someone runs with their fire system pinned or not.
Running a fire system is not a requirement, it is an option. I don't have a fire system in my car so I don't even have the option to "pull a pin". From a legality standpoint, I don't see a problem.

From a personal choice standpoint, well that is a personal choice.

How many people race with the pin pulled from their handheld fire bottle?
-Michael Mosty
TX region #11
"Fox" driver and lovin it!!!
Texas Region - CMC Director


Return to “Rules Questions/Answers”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Google [Bot] and 1 guest