A Guide for Methods to Transition and Decontaminate PFAS from Firefighting Systems

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requires U.S. airports to utilize aqueous film-forming foam (AFFF), which contains per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). As airports prepare to transition away from these legacy foams because of environmental risk factors, it is imperative that existing fire-suppression equipment, aircraft rescue and firefighting (ARFF) vehicles, and hangar foam-suppression systems be decontaminated prior to the use of fluorine free foam (F3). Airports should consider effective and efficient methodologies for the best approach of decontamination. As this matter continues to evolve, the following items should be considered: (1) current federal, state, and local laws and regulations that relate to the impact of PFAS on the environment; (2) emerging environmental guidance and current industry practices; (3) decontamination methods utilized, with an emphasis on the reduction of the downtime of firefighting vehicles to maintain airport index levels required by the FAA; (4) various types of materials that need decontamination; (5) other operational impacts during the decontamination and transition process from AFFF to F3; (6) minimization and disposal of rinsate and other waste materials during the decontamination process; and (7) decontamination costs. The objective of this research is to develop a guide for U.S. airport sponsors and stakeholders that have the responsibility of transitioning from using AFFF to F3, including decontaminating PFAS from firefighting vehicles and equipment, and hangar fire-suppression systems.


  • English


  • Status: Proposed
  • Funding: $310000
  • Contract Numbers:

    Project 02-103

  • Sponsor Organizations:

    Airport Cooperative Research Program

    Transportation Research Board
    500 Fifth Street, NW
    Washington, DC    20001

    Federal Aviation Administration

    800 Independence Avenue, SW
    Washington, DC  United States  20591
  • Project Managers:

    McDonald III, Edward

  • Start Date: 20230502
  • Expected Completion Date: 0
  • Actual Completion Date: 0

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01853998
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: Transportation Research Board
  • Contract Numbers: Project 02-103
  • Files: TRB, RIP
  • Created Date: Aug 9 2022 1:30PM