Sunnyvale, CA – To help Sunnyvale’s emergency responders fight fires in large buildings like high- and mid-rises and big box-style structures, Rescue Air Systems of San Carlos, CA has donated a firefighter air replenishment system (FARS) to the Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety (DPS). The system was installed at the DPS Training Center at Sunnyvale Fire Station #2, located at 795 E. Arques Avenue. It will allow firefighters to train on this important life safety system, which Sunnyvale requires in new high-rise construction. The donation is valued at $45,000.
Fighting fires in large, complex structures such as high- and mid-rise office buildings and large horizontal structures like big box retail stores, manufacturing plants and warehouses differs greatly from fighting fires in single story homes and businesses. To be ready in the event of an emergency, Sunnyvale DPS trains its crews on all types of buildings using many specialized pieces of equipment such as FARS.
FARS is a permanently installed air replenishment system that is part of a building’s structure. It is often called a “standpipe for air.” Just as water standpipes allow firefighters to access water for their hoses inside a building, FARS allows firefighters to refill their air cylinders inside a structure at designated fill stations during a fire or any emergency where air quality is compromised. FARS provides firefighters with quick access to a constant, safe and reliable source of breathing air. At a typical fill station, a firefighter can replenish the air in his or her air cylinder in under a minute.
FARS eliminates the need for highly trained firefighters to hand-carry large numbers of air cylinders from staging areas outside the building to a mobile air truck for refilling and back again. Well-trained firefighters using FARS can extinguish fires much faster with a lower risk of running out of air.
Sunnyvale was one of the earliest adopters of FARS and has required these systems since the late 1990s. Numerous buildings in Sunnyvale are equipped with FARS, including developer Jay Paul Company’s high-profile Moffett Towers, Moffett Gateway and Moffett Place developments. These buildings house such Silicon Valley giants as Hewlett Packard, Google and Motorola.
FARS was added to the 2015 ICC International Fire Code under Appendix L. More than 400 buildings across the United States are now equipped with FARS, which are now considered a fire service industry standard in life safety.
“Sunnyvale is a very forward-looking city, and the Sunnyvale DPS was an early adopter of FARS technology,” said Anthony Turiello, CEO of Rescue Air Systems. “FARS was invented here in Silicon Valley, and our company is headquartered here. We’re pleased to be in a position to donate one of our systems to Sunnyvale DPS so they can use our technology to improve life safety for first responders. Like our friends in the fire service, saving lives is not just a business for us. It’s a mission.”
“Air management in high-rise buildings is always a logistical challenge for the fire service,” said Chief Frank Grgurina at the Sunnyvale DPS. “Exposure to toxic smoke is proven to be life-threatening, and a safe and reliable supply of air to firefighters is key to life safety. Keeping Sunnyvale’s residents, workers and emergency responders safe is our top priority. We want to thank RescueAir for donating this system so firefighters throughout the Valley can train on it. We think it’s especially fitting that our department, in the heart of Silicon Valley, has partnered with a local firefighter safety technology company to improve safety for our crews. This is where innovation happens.”
Sunnyvale DPS is the City of Sunnyvale’s fully integrated provider of public safety services, including police, fire and EMS. The Sunnyvale DPS Fire Services Bureau prides itself on being a highly trained professional organization committed to providing outstanding response citywide and throughout the state. The Bureau provides emergency medical services, fire suppression, hazardous material incident mitigation, rescue operations, confined space rescue operations, fire prevention/investigations, and statewide mutual aid response. Six stations and 13 frontline pieces of apparatus comprise the Bureau.
RescueAir is the industry leader in FARS. The company’s mission is to build a legacy of safety, and the company advances its mission through its technology, its products and services, and its support of organizations such as the Fire Smoke Coalition, the Firefighter Cancer Support Network, the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation, and many more. RescueAir has donated FARS to numerous fire service training facilities including the San Francisco Fire Department, the San Jose Fire Department, the Phoenix Fire Department, the Tempe (AZ) Fire Department, the Glendale (AZ) Regional Training Center and the Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute (MFRI) at the University of Maryland.