MagChloride Truth


Working Together Toward Progress

In the late 1950s, the United States Department of Agriculture’s U.S. Forest Service (USFS) began working with scientists and manufacturers on fire retardant efficacy and usage through its National Technology and Development Program (NTDP).

For wildland fire chemicals, the objective of this work included:

  • Application of innovative science and technology
  • Knowledge synthesis and transfer
  • Specifications and standards development

In 1962, PHOS-CHEK® was the first phosphate-based fire retardant approved for use by the USFS. This began the evolution of the USFS Qualified Products List (QPL) for fire retardant products that were eligible for use on United States Federal and State lands, which has become a de facto global standard for fire retardant products.

In 1986, the USFS created the first modern specifications for long-term fire retardants – Specification 45100-304. The specification covered a broad range of issues relating to efficacy and use of fire-retardant chemicals, including:

  • Uniform and intergranular corrosion
  • Product stability
  • Fire-retarding effectiveness
  • Physical parameters
  • Mammalian toxicity, including oral toxicity (ingestion), dermal toxicity (absorption through the skin), eye irritation, and skin irritation
  • Aquatic toxicity
  • Human health and ecological risk assessments using data from toxicity tests and safety data sheets (SDS)