By Paul Keller
You now have an excellent, super-comprehensive “one-stop shopping” resource for insights and information on all ground ignition equipment standards and procedures.
Released this February, the 134-page “NWCG Standards for Ground Ignition Equipment” publication (https://www.nwcg.gov/publications/443) discusses everything from the advantages and disadvantages of using ATV/UTV torches to how to best transport flares and flare launchers.
Got a question about gelled fuel blivets, power torches, or terra torches? You’ll no doubt find your answer here. This 2019 document is an updated revision of the last 2011 version that now includes additional details for new equipment and manufacturer points of contact.
As stated in the publication’s introduction, its ground ignition standards include:
- Ensure that all ground ignition operations are performed in a safe and efficient manner.
- Provide a framework within which areas, regions, states, and local units can provide their own supplemental, site-specific guidance.
- Provide the minimum standards and specifications for ground ignition equipment.
- Provide basic information for each type of commonly used ground ignition equipment to aid with safe operation and to help with selecting proper equipment for the desired ignition results.
“NWCG Standards for Ground Ignition Equipment” is divided into nine chapters: “ATV/UTV,” “Drip Torches,” “Flares and Flare Launchers,” “Fusees,” “Gelled Fuel Blivets,” “Plastic Spheres and Launchers,” “Power Torches,” “Propane Torches,” and “Terra Torches.”
Each of these chapters includes: an equipment description, operational advantages and disadvantages, sources of equipment, situations favorable for use, safety requirements, qualifications, equipment inspections and fuel mixing methods, operating (normal and emergency) procedures, maintenance and storage, and resources.
If you’re going to be implementing firing operations, this publication provides a great reference resource!
Here is some context related to this topic:
“The Terra Torch wand was leaking burn mix near the trigger. The operator got some burn mix on his right pant leg around the calf area, which ignited.”
“It happens often. Second and third degree burns on the calf associated with using a drip torch.”