Presentation on theme: "Fire-fighting & Rescue in Buildings with Engineered Solutions Roy Wilsher Director Community Protection & Chief Fire Officer."— Presentation transcript:
Fire-fighting & Rescue in Buildings with Engineered Solutions Roy Wilsher Director Community Protection & Chief Fire Officer
Fire Engineering is the application of scientific and engineering principles, rules [Codes], and expert judgement, based on an understanding of the phenomena and effects of fire and of the reaction and behaviour of people to fire, to protect people, property and the environment from the destructive effects of fire. Definition
Modern Buildings Traditional design limits designers and engineers of large innovative buildings Designers and engineers are actively seeking more cost effective solutions Are todays buildings potentially more hazardous to Firefighters? The Issue
Modern Buildings Information on buildings not being passed to Firefighters Focus now on community fire safety Advent of self assessment Maintenance of Knowledge
What are the issues? Facades/insulation Glazed panels from floor to ceiling level
What are the issues? Ventilation – in a fire, how can you effectively ventilate a compartment when there are no external openings?
What are the issues? Large open spaces
What are the issues? Compartment sizes
Galleria Harlequin Westgate Howard Centre Marlowes Jackson Square Firefighter Override Controls What are the issues?
Horizontal Dry Risers and Poor Fire Service Access
What are the issues? Increased travel distances Corridor length - 7.5m Can go to 17.5m Compensatory features (Automatic ventilation)
What are the issues? Innovative construction products & techniques
What are the issues? Timber framed construction
Rapid fire development
Two Hertfordshire Examples
News International, Cheshunt
Hillmead School, Bishops Stortford
Operational Considerations Summary of risk critical information Incomplete evacuation likely: persons reported Excessive noise levels: FA & mech. vents Excessive firefighter penetration distances Min. smoke level 2.5m Intense radiated heat (200ºc at 2.5m) Fire size > 5MW (good car fire): beyond smoke control design criteria: total smoke logging could lead to flashover Fire size > 216m² (½ a tennis court): beyond sprinkler (& smoke control) design criteria Ensure entrance doors remain open (for inlet air) Do not shut down sprinkler system.
Operational Considerations (cont.) Summary of risk critical information Smoke entering/exhausting from > 1 reservoir indicates system/s failure: dangerous conditions. Smoke control equipment rated at 300ºc for 1 hour West Gate, Marlowes and Jackson Square sprinkler systems fed from town main: use of incorrect hydrants could lead to supply failure/building loss Harlequin, Galleria and Howard Centre sprinkler systems on tank supply: 1 hour duration at the max. design capacity of 18 heads/216m² (½ a tennis court) Danger of backdraft, blow-torch effect from fire in sealed shop units out of hours (Marlowes, Westgate, Howard Centre and Harlequin). Consider overriding mechanical smoke control system.
What can we do? Ensure information is shared On Site Expertise Training – practice! Operational planning Involve Firefighters Changes to the building when in use compromises design & Firefighters!
What else needs to be done? An effective testing regime for building materials to ensure buildings are safe, not only for the occupants, but also for Firefighters This should include testing in their as built format in realistic conditions Information to local fire service (manual)