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Thursday, 28 October, 2021

Member Alert: 2022 NFPA 409 Edition Incorporates NATA-Advocated Changes, Aligning with a Risk and Performance-Based Approach to Fire Protection

NATA is pleased to announce that the 2022 National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 409: Standard on Aircraft Hangars incorporates changes proposed and supported by NATA, providing aviation businesses significant tools to protect against fire without the use of foam fire suppression systems.

Earlier this week, the NFPA Standards Council approved and published the 2022 edition containing provisions that:

  1. Create an alternative Performance-Based Design process allowing modification of any part of the NFPA 409 standard 
  2. Create a Risk-Assessment process that allows businesses to propose alternative fire protection schemes with or without foam 
  3. Exempt Group II hangars that prohibit hazardous activities from foam requirements
  4. Approve the use of ignitable liquid floor drainage systems in lieu of foam systems 

NATA and its members have long advocated that aircraft hangar foam fire suppression requirements within the previous versions of the standard do not reflect the reality of the current risk of fuel fires, nor do they consider the public and private liability and expense of environmentally hazardous clean-up after accidental system discharges.

“The 2022 NFPA 409 standard better reflects the current operating environment, which has evolved significantly since its original writing in 1966. This breakthrough represents another example of NATA and its members uniting to leverage the broad support of industry experience and expertise to assist in aligning the new standard with the actual risk of fire,” stated NATA President and CEO Timothy Obitts. 

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 409: Standard on Aircraft Hangars is the primary standard for hangar fire protection and is referenced by the international building code (IBC); the international fire code (IFC); and state and local statutes, ordinances, and regulations. Prior to this revision, NFPA 409 required most modern general aviation hangars to have automatic foam fire suppression systems installed. 

Please note: NATA is hosting a webinar at 1:00PM today to review the standard changes

Additional information on NFPA 409 can be found at www.nata.aero. Questions may be directed to NATA’s Michael France at mfrance@nata.aero or Megan Eisenstein at meisenstein@nata.aero

For general press inquiries, contact Shannon Chambers at 703-298-1347 or schambers@nata.aero

The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) has been the voice of aviation business for 80 years. Representing nearly 3,700 aviation businesses, NATA’s member companies provide a broad range of services to general aviation, the airlines and the military and NATA serves as the public policy group representing the interests of aviation businesses before Congress and the federal agencies.