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Kathleen Almand
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Effective April 1st, 2015, Casey Grant will assume the leadership of the Fire Protection Research Foundation, NFPA’s research affiliate, as its executive director. The Foundation supports NFPA’s mission through research planning, management and technology transfer, with a strong focus on the needs of NFPA’s codes and standards. Casey holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Maryland and a Master of Science degree from Worcester Polytechnic Institute, both in Fire Protection Engineering. He is a Registered Professional Engineer in Fire Protection Engineering in the States of California and Tennessee. Casey is a Fellow of the Society of Fire... Continue reading
​Yesterday, at the invitation of Transport Canada's Emergency Response Task Force, an NFPA team consisting of Shayne Mintz, our Canadian Regional Representative, Ken Willette and Tom McGowan from our Public Fire Protection Division and I spent the day with 50 members of the Canadian fire service, government, and rail and oil industries to discuss how we might meet their needs for standards, guidance and training for emergency response to crude oil railcar derailments. There have been an average of one of these incidents in North America every couple of months or so; the incident in Lac Megantic Quebec killed over... Continue reading
The Research Foundation is embarking on two new projects designed to provide information for NFPA Technical Committees developing fire suppression guidance. The first project is directed toward NFPA 13's provisions on fire sprinkler installation in sloped ceiling configurations in storage facilities. The project is beginning with a collaboration between the Foundation and FM Global Research designed to identify common sloped ceiling configurations and model sprinkler actuation. The second project is directed toward NFPA 75 and 76 and its focus is gaseous suppression effectiveness in data centers and telecommunications facilities. This first phase project is a literature review of available information... Continue reading
In addition to a full SupDet suppression and detection program this year, the Foundation will feature a workshop on inspection, testing, and maintenance of fire protection systems and emerging challenges. The workshop, (free to SupDet participants) will address recent questions raised about what constitutes proper ITM activities. Some of the questions that will be considered are: How much do current ITM requirements improve the effectiveness of fire protection systems? Are there gaps? How are ITM programs being implemented currently? What is needed by enforcers? Are additional activities, such as design evaluations or re-commissioning, warranted? On the other side, what is... Continue reading
The Research Foundation completed 30 projects in 2014. All are candidates for the Research Foundation medal, recognizing the project which best exemplifies the Foundation's fire safety mission, technical challenges overcome, and collaborative approach to execution that is the hallmark of all our projects. See the list of 2015 Foundation Medal candidates (PDF). The review process is underway and the winner will be announced at the NFPA Conference & Expo in Chicago, June 22-25. The winning project of the 2014 Fire Protection Research Foundation Medal was “Best Practices for Emergency Response to Incidents Involving Electric Vehicles Battery Hazards: A Report on... Continue reading
Casey Grant's article in the January issue of IEEE's magazine for high-tech innovators "Potentials", has challenged a whole new audience to consider the needs of the fire service and how cyber-physical systems might meet them. Co-authored with leaders on this topic from the National Institute of Standards and Technology, the... Continue reading
Posted Jan 16, 2015 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
As the number and complexity of data and telecommunications centers grows, NFPA standards are evolving to address their fire protection needs. The Research Foundation is initiating a study to explore the performance of gaseous fire suppression systems in high airflow spaces created by these centers. A Request for Proposals for Project Contractor has been issued; proposals should be submitted to Amanda Kimball by January 9, 2015, 5 pm EST. Continue reading
The Foundation has just published a report on this subject which we hope will be of value to a range of NFPA Technical Committees involved in developing spatial separation requirements for hazard protection. It reviews both risk and hazard based approaches to this topic and provides guidance on selection of... Continue reading
Posted Dec 24, 2014 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
The Foundation has initiated a program to develop a tool that can be used for providing reliable analysis of the impact of obstructions on ESFR sprinklers to develop the technical basis for new requirements and guidance for NFPA 13. The new requirements and guidance could reduce field installation uncertainties, increase... Continue reading
Posted Nov 7, 2014 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
Fire Technology brings the latest fire research to practical fire protection problems. Recent editions have covered such topics as an international comparison of firefighter injury, an assessment of aspects of the residential fire problem, wildland fire spread, and many other topics of interest to the NFPA community. Online access to... Continue reading
Posted Jul 15, 2014 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy and other recent events with major impacts on the built environment, the building and emergency response communities are reassessing their future preparedness for such events. NFPA codes and standards the full spectrum of preparedness – from built in resiliency in structures and systems, to... Continue reading
Posted May 13, 2014 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
There are many potential pathways for wildland fires to ignite buildings within the WUI. These pathways (including both fire and ember exposure) depend on the characteristics of the wildland, the characteristics of the community, and the characteristics of the interface. The Foundation is seeking a contractor to compile information on... Continue reading
Posted May 13, 2014 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
The Foundation and NFPA, with support from the insurance industry and coordination from other relevant groups, has launched an awareness program to reduce a serious yet frequently unknown risk for dangerous pool fires associated with intermediate bulk containers (IBCs) storing flammable and combustible liquids. The program provides factual information on... Continue reading
Posted Apr 7, 2014 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
The Foundation is conducting a multi phase research program to develop guidance for the protection of lithium ion batteries in storage. The first two phases of this project, a hazard assessment and a large scale flammability characterization, were completed in 2013. The latter program provided good information on the performance... Continue reading
Posted Mar 11, 2014 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
Cooking-equipment related fires are a leading cause of U.S. fire loss. Beginning in the mid 1980’s, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Consumer Product Safety Commission, and home appliance industry undertook a comprehensive review of strategies to mitigate death, injury and property loss from cooking fires. All strategies were... Continue reading
Posted Oct 26, 2013 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
The Foundation's symposium on the next five years in fire and electrical safety will explore major societal trends likely to affect fire safety and shape our protection strategies. Our session on the changing nature of building contents will feature Jan Lagerblad, the Director of Risk Management for IKEA, a global... Continue reading
Posted Oct 22, 2013 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
JOin us on November 13, 14 in Washington DC for the Foundation's symposium on the key issues likely to affect fire and electrical safety in the next five years. A featured session addresses the changing materials landscape and how trends in green building may affect fire safety. Bill Walsh, Executive... Continue reading
Posted Oct 16, 2013 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
As the Foundation's symposium on The Next Five Years in Fire and Electrical Safety approaches on November 13,14 in Washington, DC, I'd like to preview some of the insights of our presenters - this time from the session on the Changing Urban Landscape. Antony Wood, Executive Director of the Council... Continue reading
Posted Oct 3, 2013 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
As the Foundation's symposium on The Next Five Years in Fire and Electrical Safety approaches on November 13,14 in Washington, DC, we've had a lot of interest expressed in the session on Smart Building Technology and how it intersects with safety. Sandy Diehl, Chair of the American Architectural Foundation, will... Continue reading
Posted Sep 23, 2013 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
Home Fire Sprinkler Cost Assessment - 2013 Newport Partners, September 2013This report updates the report, Home Fire Sprinkler Cost Assessment (Fire Protection Research Foundation 2008). The primary purpose of this study is to review current home fire sprinkler system costs against the 2008 benchmark study to gain a better understanding... Continue reading
Posted Sep 19, 2013 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
In 2012, the Foundation brought together global owners and insurers of storage facilities and the research community to explore emerging fire protection challenges in this environment and protection solutions. Based on the success of this event, we will present the seminar again in May 22nd, 2014 in London at the... Continue reading
Posted Aug 12, 2013 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
NFPA 58, Liquefied Petroleum Gas Code, has requirements for installations in areas with heavy snowfall, which were first added in a TIA in the 1992 edition and then added to the 1995 edition. The requirements were the result of fatalities due to unusually heavy snow in Lake Tahoe, CA area... Continue reading
Posted Jun 18, 2013 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
The recipients of the 2013 Harry C. Bigglestone Award for Excellence in Communication of Fire Protection Concepts are Kristopher Overholt and Ofodike (D.K.) Ezekoye for their paper, “Characterizing Heat Release Rates Using an Inverse Fire Modeling Technique.” Overholt is a graduate student in civil engineering at the University of Texas... Continue reading
Posted Jun 13, 2013 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
New Project: Technical Basis for Separation Distances in NFPA Codes and Standards Recent events, such as the Carbide Industries explosion in Louisville, Kentucky in March of 2011, have raised questions regarding the technical basis for the separation distances between hazardous storage/processes and occupied areas in NFPA standards, many of which... Continue reading
Posted May 6, 2013 at Fire Protection Research Foundation
Separation distances are specified in many NFPA codes and standards and have been developed over a number of years with varying technical basis. The Foundation has initiated a project to revisit of the historical basis of selected requirements, and develop information and guidance which may inform a sound technical basis... Continue reading
Posted Apr 9, 2013 at Fire Protection Research Foundation