The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) released NFPA 855, Standard for the Installation of Stationary Energy Storage Systems.

NFPA said it is one of the first comprehensive collections of criteria for energy storage system (ESS) fire protection.

The standard provides requirements based on the technology used in ESS, the setting where the technology is being installed, the size and separation of ESS installations and the fire suppression and control systems that are in place.

NFPA said that certain ESS technologies can pack a lot of energy in a small envelope, which makes the technologies useful but also increases fire and life safety hazards such as the release of toxic/flammable gases, stranded energy and increased fire intensity. These potential threats are driving the need for first responders and those that design, build, maintain and inspect facilities to become educated and proactive about ESS safety.

“NFPA 855 is the culmination of several years of extensive consideration and dialogue at technical committee meetings, educational sessions and workshops attended by a broad spectrum of professionals,” said Christian Dubay, P.E., vice president and chief engineer. “Understanding how to safely use ESS is important to many different segments that NFPA serves – designers, engineers, builders, manufacturers, enforcers, responders, and policy makers.”

In addition to looking at where the technology is located, how it is separated from other components and fire suppression systems already in place, NFPA 855 considers the ventilation, detection, signage, listings and emergency operations associated with ESS. Current editions of NFPA 70 and NFPA 1 also contain requirements for ESS fire safety.

The effort to develop NFPA 855 began in 2016 as ESS technology usage began to grow due to consumer, business and government interest.

Founded in 1896, NFPA is a global, nonprofit organization devoted to eliminating death, injury, property and economic loss due to fire, electrical and related hazards.