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Mike Hazell
Web Publisher, NFPA
Interests: NFPA, Fire Prevention, Fire Protection, Public Education, Public Advocacy, Home Fire Sprinklers
Recent Activity
Presenters at today's Suppression, Detection and Signaling Research and Applications Conference (SUPDET) In Orlando highlighted how the U.S. Air Force has developed replacements for the fire suppression agent Halon 1301 to protect "hush houses," or jet engine noise suppressor systems. The need to find an equivalency to Halon 1301 appears to be an environmental one--the agent is classified as an ozone-depleting substance. (The European Union discontinued use of Halon for noncritical applications in 2003.) SUPDET speakers Juan Font with the U.S. Air Force and William Meyring of 3M also outlined the steps taken to phase out the cleaning agent and... Continue reading
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Fire at Dubai's Torch building, courtesy of BBC.com A fire in a 79-story luxury apartment building in Dubai engulfed several floors and was extinguished three hours after it began with no deaths or injuries. The fire, at the Torch building, which contains 676 residential units and six retail spaces, is reported to have started on the 50th floor. CNN.com reports strong winds blew burning debris to lower floors on other sides of the building. The report says four other nearby buildings were evacuated as s precaution; the Dubai Civil Defense says the cause of the fire is under investigation. High-rise... Continue reading
We want to hear your ideas, too! How would you change your approach to the design of a warehouse fire protection system if final extinguishment will not be provided by the fire department? That’s the question being posed to leading fire protection engineering companies at the “High Challenge Warehouse Workshop” on February 17 in Orlando. Register now. The workshop, a special program offered at the Fire Protection Research Foundation’s annual “Suppression, Detection and Signaling Research and Applications" conference, will challenge the engineering firms – and meeting attendees – to think through the fire protection components of a hypothetical warehouse with... Continue reading
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The first panel of experts presented their ideas at today’s High Challenge Warehouse Workshop as part of the Fire Protection Research Foundation’s SUPDET 2010. Seven engineering firms took the challenge to design fire protection in a high challenge warehouse where the local fire chief has made it clear that no interior fire fighting will be attempted to achieve final fire extinguishment. Robots, foam and water mist were some of the concepts mentioned as the first panel presented their ideas. The first group to present today included Schirmer Engineering, Rolf Jensen and Associates and FPI Consortium. Panelists Garner Palenske and Dan... Continue reading
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Adding to a dynamic afternoon of discussion, the second panel of engineering experts shared their ideas for how they would protect a high challenge warehouse should a fire occur. Their task was full of challenges – protect people, save as much of the commodity as possible, minimize overall damage and extinguish the fire – because, as you remember, the mock scenario said the fire chief said that no interior fire fighting would be attempted. Communication, pre-incident planning and an analogy to the famed "Back to the Future" movie highlighted some of the thoughts as speakers rose to the challenge of... Continue reading
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Richard Gallagher of Zurich Risk Enginering presented the morning keynote at the Fire Protection Research Foundation’s SUPDET 2010 where he summarized the presentations of the previous day. On Wednesday, seven leading engineering firms presented their ideas on how best to protect a high challenge warehouse from fire. During his talk, Mr. Gallagher looked at the differences and similarities amongst the approaches put forward. He further looked at the design challenges of these types of facilities such as water sources, environmental concerns and the hazard of commodities in warehouses. Mr. Gallagher presented a one-slide snapshot of each firms approach and concluded... Continue reading
Workshop agenda (PDF, 84 KB) Introduction by Kathleen Almand (PDF, 193 KB) Overview of case study (PDF, 347 KB) Summary of presentations by Richard Gallagher (PDF, 495 KB) Case study presentations from the workshop: Collaboration: The University of Edinburgh, WPI, UCSD Jacobs, and Creative FPE Solutions, Inc. (PDF, 2 MB) presented by Michael Gollner, EIT Fire Protection International Consortium, Inc. (PDF, 930 KB) presented by Warde Comeaux Hughes Associates, Inc. (PDF, 489 KB) presented by Jerry Back, Dan Gottuk, and Joe Scheffey Rolf Jensen and Associates (PDF, 864 KB) presented by Richard W. Bukowski, PE, FSFPE Schirmer Engineering (PDF, 345... Continue reading
See the article in Brand Posten, the publication from the Fire Technology unit at SP Technical Research Institute of Sweden. Continue reading
This workshop has come and gone, but I would like to comment...anyway. According to statements made in the Annex to NFPA 13, "control-mode" sprinklers are capable of returning temperatures in a high challenge fire to ambient in 30 minutes without fire department intervention utilizing the concept of "pre-wetting". The data from the five large-scale tests sponsored by the National Fire Protection Research Foundation (NFPRF) in 1997/1998 demonstrates that the statements included in NFPA 13 are correct (although technically the sprinklers used in these tests were not "control-mode" sprinklers). Given this, it is my opinion that we already have a solution... Continue reading
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The July/August edition of the Fire Protection Research Foundation newsletter has been issued. Read the newsletter and subscribe today so you don't miss out on important news. In this issue: Final call to register for this week's "Summit on National Trends in Delivery of Health and Long Term Care: Implications for Safety Codes and Standards", in Baltimore. New project: "Smart Grid and the U.S. Electrical Safety Infrastructure" New project: "Validation of Installation Methods for CSST Gas Piping to Mitigate Lightning Related Damage" New report: "Antifreeze Solutions in Home Fire Sprinkler Systems: Literature Review and Research Plan" New report: "Quantitative Evaluation... Continue reading
The Fire Protection Research Foundation is co-sponsoring this week's "Summit on National Trends in Delivery of Health and Long Term Care: Implications for Safety Codes and Standards" in Baltimore, on Wednesday, July 21. Summary: Significant changes are underway in how delivery of healthcare, long term care and personal care is being handled in 2010 and beyond. Many of these changes or trends will influence NFPA health care codes and standards. This summit is designed to bring members of NFPA Technical Committees and health care industry leaders together to learn about these trends and changes, determine what areas can be addressed... Continue reading
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Saying it is one of the most important and timely events NFPA is involved with this year, NFPA President Jim Shannon opened National Trends in Delivery of Health and Long Term Care: Implications for Safety Codes and Standards Summit in Baltimore July 21. Sponsored by the Fire Protection Research Foundation, the summit brought together over 100 people to discuss the most pressing issues in health care and how those issues relate to NFPA Codes and Standards. Shannon explained that NFPA has a long history in health care when it comes to codes. The Building Exits Code, the predecessor to the... Continue reading
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At this week's summit sponsored by the Fire Protection Research Foundation in Baltimore, about 100 attendees considered national trends in health care and their implications on safety codes and standards. Bonnie Kantor of the Pioneer Network (pictured above), Karen Schoeneman of the Center for Medicare/Medicaid Services, and Gaius Nelson of Nelson Tremain Architects, were the first presenters at Wednesday's session, and addressed the topic "Culture Change and the Physical Environment." See their presentation below. Cultural change in the physical environment View more presentations from National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). Continue reading
Register today to attend the Fire Protection Research Foundations' symposium on the latest in dust explosionhazard control. Based on demand expressed at the successful event in 2009, the Foundation will again present this symposium highlighting updates in industry best practices for managing the dust explosion hazard. This year’s symposium will focus on the practical aspects of implementing good explosion mitigation practices and will include a keynote presentation from Imperial Sugar and a multi-industry panel presenting their latest best practices. Keynote speakers from OSHA and NASFM will describe federal and state legislative initiatives, and an update on the latest changes in... Continue reading
Presentations from the summit on National Trends in Delivery of Health and Long Term Care: Implications for Safety Codes and Standards are available here on the Fire Protection Research Foundation website. The July 21 event was co-sponsored by NFPA and the Research Foundation. Continue reading
The Fire Protection Research Foundation has received a $250,000 award from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) for a project to support the development of safety standards for the implementation of Smart Grid. NIST and other government agencies are undertaking a comprehensive series of programs to develop technology and information to enable the rapid transition to the next generation of power distribution through the Smart Grid initiative. This transition has major impacts for the safety of the built infrastructure as it interfaces with the grid through in-building energy storage systems, photovoltaics, metering and control systems, and other safety... Continue reading
NFPA 13, Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems, has included guidance on the use of antifreeze solutions in fire sprinkler systems since the 1940 edition. Recent fire incidents, analysis of available literature, and preliminary testing have identified concerns with the use of certain antifreeze solutions. Under certain conditions, solutions of glycerin and propylene glycol antifreeze have been found to ignite when discharged from automatic sprinkler systems. A literature review, preliminary testing, and a long term research plan were developed as part of Phase I of this project. This Interim Report has been prepared to outline the results of Phase... Continue reading
The Fire Protection Research Foundation has issued a report on the summit on National Trends in Delivery of Health and Long Term Care: Implications for Safety Codes and Standards, held July 20-21 in Baltimore, Maryland. The report contains an abstract, background, agenda, presentations summary, participant lists, speaker bios, and PowerPoint presentations. Continue reading
The Fire Protection Research Foundation has issued a literature review on Glovebox Fire Protection. NFPA 801, Standard for Fire Protection for Facilities Handling Radioactive Materials provides fire protection requirements for gloveboxes, which are sealed enclosures for handling certain hazardous materials. Reports and publications in the literature have appeared over the last half a century, but these are not conveniently summarized in one location. This study identifies and gathers the pertinent published literature addressing fire protection related concerns for gloveboxes. The Glovebox Fire Protection study is available for download at no cost on the Foundation website. Continue reading
The Fire Protection Research Foundation has issued a Call for Papers for Suppression, Detection and Signaling Research and Applications - A Technical Working Conference (SUPDET 2011). Abstracts are due October 29. This 15th annual event will be held March 22-25, 2011 at the Doubletree Resort in Orlando, Florida. SUPDET gathers researchers and research users from around the world for presentations and discussion of the current state-of-the-art in fire detection, suppression and signaling. This year’s conference will also feature an interactive workshop on fire protection challenges in data centers. Full conference information will be available later this autumn. Continue reading
In 2012, NIST’s Building and Fire Research Laboratory (BFRL) will complete construction of a new structural fire resistance testing facility with unique capability to test large scale structural elements, systems, and their connections in the fire condition. The goal for the facility is to provide a resource to the structural fire engineering community to enhance the understanding of complex structures in fire and the validation of performance based fire engineering methods. BFRL has asked the Fire Protection Research Foundation to assist in developing a prioritized research agenda for work in the new facility. We are seeking input from the research,... Continue reading
The September/October edition of the Fire Protection Research Foundation newsletter has been issued. Read the newsletter and subscribe today so you don't miss out on important news. In this issue: Early registration deadline approaching for "Dust Explosion Hazard Recognition and Control: New Strategies" symposium in Kansas City. New project: "Assessment of the Thermal Hazard from Fire Service Training Fires" Research planning: "Hazard Assessment of Low-Ignition-Propensity Aqueous Solutions in Combustible IBCs" Research planning: "Research Agenda for NIST's Large-Scale Structural Fire Performance Laboratory" New report: "Antifreeze Solutions in Home Fire Sprinkler Systems: Interim Report" New report: "Glove Box Fire Protection: A Literature... Continue reading
As part of its 2011 SupDet symposium on March 23rd in Orlando, FL, the Fire Protection Research Foundation will be featuring a ½ day workshop on emerging fire protection challenges for data centers. Industry leaders will identify suppression and detection issues in these facilities and fire protection engineers will discuss innovative approaches to address them. Visit the Research Foundation web site for more information. Continue reading
Health care operating rooms may require special protection for its electrical equipment depending if it is classified as either a wet or dry location. These requirements are based on providing a balance between a safe environment for patients and operating room personnel while at the same time providing a risk based solution and not over-designing the electrical distribution system. This study, just issued by the Fire Protection Research Foundation, defines and analyzes the hazards associated with hospital operating rooms to clarify the classification type (i.e. wet location versus dry location) of their electrical environment. It includes a review of the... Continue reading
As a mechanism to expand the installation of fire sprinkler systems in homes, the presence of “incentives” in a jurisdiction can potentially have a considerable impact on the building market and the overall cost of a sprinkler system. To evaluate the nature and impact of incentives, this study, conducted by Newport Partners, LLC for the Fire Protection Research Foundation, identified, characterized, and estimated the approximate value of sprinkler system incentives found in communities across the U.S. In-depth interviews were conducted with 16 communities that each offered one or more incentives to encourage the use of sprinkler systems in new single-family... Continue reading