Can Your Building Handle a Fire?


With a severe draught like we're experiencing today, the chances of a fire penetrating our commercial buildings and warehouses just increases. Even without dry conditions, the threat of many flammable, stored products erupting in flames is real. If you are planning on building a large warehouse or need to renovate one, our team at Russell Industries suggest consulting with a fire protection engineer to develop the plan for fire protection.

You can save a lot of money and grief with an early application of fire protection in your design plans. The benefits of involving a fire protection engineer at this stage include design flexibility, construction innovation, better fire safety and maximum cost benefits.

Building Systems and Relevant Codes and Standards

Fire protection engineers generally design the following types of systems:

¢ Fire sprinklers

¢ Standpipes

¢ Fire detection and alarm

¢ Special hazards systems, such as clean agents, water mist, or CO²

¢ Smoke management

Interaction with Other Disciplines

Designing a building from a 'whole building' approach requires a fire protection engineer to coordinate the different types of fire protection that are designed into buildings including:

¢ Sprinkler system zoning with fire alarm system zoning

¢ Sprinkler system water flow and tamper switches with the fire alarm system

¢ Fire alarm and egress system with building security

¢ Smoke control systems with detection and HVAC system designs

¢ Fire separations with architectural designs

¢ Penetrations of fire rated assemblies with mechanical and electrical designs (e.g., piping, ductwork, and wiring penetrations)

¢ Means of egress with architectural designs.

If you need more information on a fire protection plan for your building, contact us today and we will get you more information. For more information on the role of the Fire Protection Engineer in the design of fire protection systems, see the SFPE Position Statement on The Engineer and the Technician: Designing Fire Protection Systems at www.sfpe.org.

Source: National Institute of Building Sciences