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April 6, 2010

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New fire safety product a big hit in Formula One

A Liverpool healthcare company has signed an agreement to provide Formula One team, Force India, with a new fire safety product.

Kays Medical has created Hexafluorine, which neutralises the deadly hydrofluoric acid that can be emitted from the Viton seals and tubing in and around the engine when a vehicle bursts into flames.
Contact with hydrofluoric acid is potentially lethal. Just a small amount of contact with the skin can cause severe burns and, left for any period of time, can cause hypocalcemia leading to cardiac arrest.
Kays’ Hexafluorine product has just been demonstrated as part of a new specialist F1 training course run by the West Midlands Fire Service (WMFS). A steel model of a Formula One car complete with dummy driver was set alight, the pit crew put out the fire out and then sprayed Hexafluorine on to both the vehicle and the dummy using extinguishers. The car was then safe to handle and any acid on the driver fully neutralised.

Kays Medical national sales and marketing manager David King said: “We were delighted to work with Force India and the WMFS on this important training. Hexafluorine is a unique emergency first aid treatment for hydrofluoric acid. It works by neutralising the acid and fluorides and, at the same time, absorbing any that has penetrated the skin or the eye.”

Force India health and safety officer Steve Martin added: “We are constantly striving to innovate and find new ways to reduce the risks associated with our industry. The Motorsport Fire Response Training day demonstrated the effectiveness of Hexafluorine in combating the dangers of exposure to hydrofluoric acid and its use is now integral to our first aid protocol.”

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