Fire Emergency Response
Rental storage units represent a serious and unpredictable risk for firefighters. For example, hundreds of rented units at a three-story, self-storage warehouse in Manchester, United Kingdom, were recently destroyed by fire. Fire in rental storage units There were 125 firefighters and 25 fire engines called to the scene. There were no injuries, but hundreds of customers lost thousands of dollars in stored goods in the fire. Notably, the facility was not protected by a sprinkler system, which n...
The front line fire and rescue teams have had their hands full during the pandemic, more so than one might think. In the UK, for instance, fire and rescue teams attended more than half a million incidents throughout 2020, with more than 150,000 of them regarded as serious fires. Across the Atlantic, the US Fire Administration has reported 42 firefighter fatalities so far this year, despite swathes of the country still being in lockdown as the vaccine rollout continues to pick up the pace. Thes...
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The flammable liquid challenges that have existed in the high hazard industries for over a century are still there today. Moreover, they are not going away in the short term, no matter how quickly we can achieve a carbon-neutral world. Foam, in its various forms, remains the medium of choice in tackling these complex emergencies. How can we best achieve the balance between fire performance & the environmental impact of an evolving emergency? What is behind the acronym ‘F3’? How c...
The Metropolitan “Metro” Fire Chiefs Association, a Section of the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) and National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) held its 2021 annual meeting virtually on May 10, 2021. More than 85 Metro chiefs attended the meeting and elected the Association’s 2021-2022 officers and board members. The officers are: Chief Don Lombardi, President; West Metro Fire Protection District, Lakewood, Colo. Chief Robert Rocha, Vice Pres...
Often considered the unofficial kick-off to summer, Memorial Day weekend typically includes lots of celebrations and cookouts, often with outdoor grilling as a focal point. As the holiday and summer months near, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reminds everyone of basic safety tips and precautions to grill and celebrate safely. NFPA data shows that from 2014-2018, fire departments responded to an annual average of 10,600 home fires annually involving grills, hibachis, or barbec...
The Josh Cellars brand is partnering with the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) to recognize volunteer firefighters by producing a limited-edition, NVFC-branded bottle of Reserve Lodi Cabernet Sauvignon. For every bottle sold, Josh Cellars will donate one dollar to the NVFC (up to $150,000) for initiatives that support volunteer firefighters. “We are so appreciative of the tremendous support Josh Cellars gives to our volunteer fire service,” said NVFC chair Steve Hirsch. “This year’s limited-edition bottle is a great tribute to our nation’s volunteer responders and will help provide essential tools and resources to support their critical work.” Assistance to volunteer fire departments For Joseph Carr, founder of Josh Cellars, the volunteer fire service is a cause close to his heart. Josh Cellars wine was created by Carr as a tribute to his father, a volunteer firefighter and U.S. Army veteran. “Growing up, my dad Josh, our family, neighbors, and friends were all volunteer firefighters,” explains Carr. “It is civic duties shared and understood by all where I come from that you always take care of your community. That’s why Josh Cellars partners with the NVFC to provide assistance to volunteer fire departments and the dedicated responders across the country.” The Josh Cellars Reserve Lodi Cabernet Sauvignon will be available for purchase nationwide from May 1 through August 31 in local retail stores across the U.S.
Academy Sports + Outdoors and Brooks have teamed up to support people who keep the world running with the launch of a special, limited-edition Brooks x Academy First Responder shoe collection. For every purchase, a donation of $10 is made to the National Volunteer Fire Council (NVFC) and American Nurses Foundation, up to $25,000 each, to support the frontline responders who serve the communities. First Responder Collection Brooks’s purpose is to inspire everyone to run their path to a better self by creating the best running gear, tools, and experience. As one of the nation’s sporting goods and outdoor retailers, Academy Sports + Outdoors believes in bringing their communities the gear they need to have more fun out there. Together, they created the First Responder Collection inspired by the enduring resilience and strength of firefighters and frontline medical workers. Recognizing first responder community “We are grateful to Academy Sports + Outdoors and Brooks for launching this special First Responder Collection to recognize and give back to the first responder community,” said NVFC chair Steve Hirsch. “Our nation’s volunteer firefighters and EMS providers do so much for their neighbors every day, and shining this spotlight on their work both honors these courageous men and women and raises awareness of all they do.” “From Academy and Brooks, we are grateful for all that our first responders do each and every day,” said Anna Morrison, running footwear buyer for Academy Sports + Outdoors. “Thank you for your diligence, your sacrifice, your compassion, and most importantly, thank you for showing up and risking your lives when we need you most. This collection is our thank you for all that you have sacrificed.” Available in 4 designs The collection includes four unique designs using bold and empowering graphics that capture the true essence of frontline heroes. The two firefighter designs embody the daring and courageous character, kinship, and strength of the men and women who serve their communities in this incredible way. The Brooks x Academy First Responder Collection is on sale till June 30.
Hi-line Industries, a UK manufacturer of high-quality compressed air purification equipment, has released the 2021 version of its energy-efficient Tundra refrigeration dryers. Most notable among the enhancements is a switch of refrigerant to R513a in models up to and including Tundra 115 (115 cfm, 195 m3/hr capacity). An HFC/HFO blend, R513a refrigerant has no ODP (Ozone Depletion Potential) and a much reduced CO2 impact in comparison with the previous R134a refrigerant. As a result, customers can rest assured that Hi-line is continuing its commitment to sustainability in manufacturing by minimizing its carbon footprint. F-Gas regulation The F-Gas regulation means that refrigerants with a GWP (Global Warming Potential) of more than 2500 are now subject to a ban. However, while R134a is below this limit and remains legal, it is sufficiently high for the regulation to stipulate an incremental phasing-down of production quotas to help reduce environmental impact. R513A is widely viewed as the optimum replacement. Sustainable and non-toxic R513a is an A1 safety group refrigerant and is neither toxic nor combustible Importantly, R513a is an A1 safety group refrigerant and is neither toxic nor combustible. Unlike flammable refrigerants, R513a is subject to less stringent regulations in handling, maintenance intervals, and compulsory leak tests, thus saving time and money. Switching to R513a builds on the sustainable credentials of the Tundra range, which is already renowned for its optimized energy efficiency via capabilities such as minimal pressure drop and lower absorbed power. Energy savings Reduced energy consumption is vital in an ultra-competitive marketplace, which is why Hi-line has worked hard to offer customers a dryer solution that drives down energy costs. The company’s integrated Direct Expansion technology delivers a constant +3°C dewpoint, unlike a chilled mass dryer, which can be as high as +10°C during its thermal cycle. Furthermore, the single-cell, all-aluminum heat exchanger module provides highly efficient heat transfer at a low energy cost, while a further notable energy-saving attribute is the variable-speed fan, which only consumes the energy necessary to meet essential operational needs. Robust model A robust, high-quality build standard is another attribute of these class-leading dryers. For instance, by controlling the fan speed on the refrigerant circuit there is no need for fan-pressure switches, which can often become defective in dryers of this type. The fewer moving parts, the more reliable the product, making it ideal for applications that include workshop air and machine air in general manufacturing, as well as further uses in sectors that include packaging, textile, food, beverage, medical, dairy and automotive. Comes with a dryer selection Hi-line’s standard Tundra range is available ex-stock from the company’s Burton factory for next-day delivery. Six models in the series feature R513a refrigerant, with dryer selection based on factors such as maximum compressed air flow, lowest operating pressure, maximum ambient air temperature, and maximum air inlet temperature. Expert assistance from Hi-line’s applications team can help customers to select the optimum dryer. Noting the carbon footprint As a final note, since the UK’s departure from the EU, new legislation has entered force concerning the import of Freons. Any company importing pre-charged refrigeration equipment that carries a CO2 impact of more than 100 tonnes per annum is required to register on the Environment Agency website for an F-Gas account and record the CO2 amount in tonnes relating to those imports. As Hi-line imports the refrigeration units for its Tundra range, the company has successfully obtained a new license and fully discloses its imports and volumes in order to comply completely with the legislation.
Comelit’s fire alarm and detection systems, including beam detectors, have been installed by Ozzas Security Systems at Art Hub Studios CIC, a non-profit, artist run community interest company. The inclusive, affordable artists’ studios, based in South East London supports over 235 creatives. It offers 24/7 access, free use of facilities, and a community gallery as an affordable platform for exhibiting studio members alongside local artists and students. Welcoming a high volume of members, clients, and visitors to the studios, including those attending dedicated art courses, fire safety, and security is an integral component of building maintenance. Risk assessment Ozzas Security was called to the site following a risk assessment on the fire alarm and detection system. With recommendations made for a new system, Comelit’s Atena Easy single loop system was fitted with point detection and beam detectors to offer simple and quick installation, without impacting on site aesthetics. Says a representative of Art Hub Studios: “We’ve been running art hub studios in East London for over 20 years, with an aim to raise the profile of such talented artists across our region. We welcome clients and visitors to view our members’ works alongside local artists, students and community groups.” “With so many people present at any one time, we need to ensure their safety and security, and we have regular checks and assessments planned. When issues were raised with our fire alarm and detection systems, we instantly contacted Ozzas as our local fire specialist, who fitted the Atena system quickly and efficiently and it is end-user friendly, which is a welcome bonus.” Easy single loop solution Comelit Atena Easy is simple and quick to install, with beam detectors aiding alignment for the large open areas Comelit’s Atena Easy single loop solution is a compact, entry-level fully addressable system. The system can accommodate up to 500 devices over 2 loops, making it ideal for small to medium applications, with a fully functional networked opportunity to expand with a facility or building requirement. Ozzas Security also installed eight beam detectors at the studios, equipped with an integral laser and set of passive reflectors to allow for simple auto-alignment made the install much simpler. Authority comments Rytis Ozolas of Ozzas Security added: “Any artist studio is a specialist consideration when it comes to fire safety, especially with the use of different materials and substances in every day works by the artists on site. The Art Hub Studios demonstrates good practice in having regular fire alarm system risk assessments and maintenance checks, calling on specialists to update equipment if issues raised. Comelit Atena Easy is simple and quick to install, with beam detectors aiding alignment for the large open areas.” Mandy Bowden, Comelit Fire BDM, concluded: “What is demonstrated with fire safety at Art Hub Studios is the significance of regular fire safety checks and the ability with approved installers and Comelit Atena systems to react quickly when required. The beam detectors are definitely an added advantage, and as demonstrated by Art Hub Studios, are suitable in buildings where point detection is not suitable for use due to the height of the building. It all amounts to a seamless customer experience from risk identification to project completion.”
Strategically located in Randburg, a prosperous district in the Gauteng province, Northlands Corner is a 40,000 square meter site divided into units leased to a wide range of businesses to utilize as retail, office, showroom, and storage space. The development is owned by Northlands Business Park Pty, a construction, property management, and maintenance company. Established in 1999, Northlands quickly recognized the growing requirement in the area for secure enclosed industrial parks designed to the client’s exact specification. CAST's Intuitive Devices Central to the life-safety systems is a network of C-TEC’s powerful CAST 2 loop 32-zone XFP addressable fire alarm panels integrated into over 350 CAST smoke detectors, heat detectors, sounder beacons, and call points. In an installation that took just under four weeks, the entire building including showroom, office, storage, kitchen, and bathroom areas, was equipped with CAST’s super-intuitive devices. Providing reassurance Donald Barnard, Detection and Special Risk Manager of Brigit Security Johannesburg, the specialist fire protection company that specified CAST. said, “All-embracing fire protection in multi-use areas is vital due to the fire risk associated with such facilities. As CAST is an integrated EN54-13-certified fire system designed to cover every aspect of the building, it provides reassurance to the property’s owners and tenants. The feedback we’ve received from the engineers who completed the project regarding ease of installation and commissioning has also been excellent.” UK Designed CAST is C-TEC’s own UK-designed and manufactured ‘distributed intelligence’ addressable fire detection and alarm system. Certified to all relevant EN54 product standards, including EN54-13, CAST is also fully compatible with ENVISION, C-TEC’s powerful new remote access, data management, and system testing software.
Bosch has introduced a new range of signaling devices that combine visual and audible alarms in a single unit. Optionally, any fire detectors from the Avenar family can also be combined with the new product in one unit, creating a cost- and space-saving complete solution that significantly reduces installation and maintenance effort. The new signaling units are certified to EN54-3 and EN54-23 category C, for ceiling mounting, and W, for wall mounting. Due to IP 42 protection, they are suitable for almost all indoor applications. Up to 125 devices on one ring bus Avenar all-in-one 4000 features low power consumption of 865 µA, allowing up to 125 devices to be installed on just one ring bus. The devices do not require complex and expensive E-30 cabling to ensure functional integrity and uninterrupted alarming in the event of a bus failure. This is possible due to the integrated battery with a service life of up to 10 years. With up to 125 units on one ring, this opens up completely new possibilities and significant savings potential" "With up to 125 units on one ring, we are defining a new category in fire protection," comments Sebastian Wehr, product manager at Bosch Building Technologies. "For planners, installers, and operators, this opens up completely new possibilities and significant savings potential." Focus on usability While developing the new product, Bosch placed particular emphasis on ease of installation and handling as well as flexible deployment options. For example, the new device can be pre-assembled and are equipped with plug-in terminals, which significantly simplifies and speeds up installation compared to screw terminals. operating and maintenance cost For different areas of application, users can choose between three intensities for both visual and audible alarms. Optionally, any fire detector of the Avenar family can be combined with the signal transmitter. This allows fire detectors to be replaced separately as part of maintenance if required, even without replacing the signaling points, saving operating and maintenance costs. Wide range of applications The combination of visual and audible alarms makes the product particularly suitable for use in office buildings as well as in buildings with a lot of public traffic. It is in such environments that the new alarm devices really come into their own, as the dual alarm with visual and audible signal enables all persons to be warned - including the elderly or persons with disabilities. Due to the high protection class IP 42, even demanding production environments can be secured. Device availability The device is available in four versions – in combinations of red or white housing with red or white LED flashing light for visual alarm. The service life of the battery and detectors are matched to each other so that no additional maintenance is usually required when the detector is replaced at regular intervals in accordance with the applicable standards. The new devices are integrated into Bosch's "Safety Systems Designer", a tool for easy planning of fire alarm systems.
The fire sprinkler system in your building is a critical safety measure and, when needed, it can save lives. Still, even the best systems can malfunction, and sprinklers do occasionally fail. When they do, they can drench the interior of your building, damaging everything from furniture and personal belongings to drywall and building materials. As a property manager, dealing with fire sprinkler failure can feel overwhelming. What do you do next? Where do you start? And why did the sprinkler system fail in the first place? In this post, we’ll discuss the common causes of accidental discharge, and what to do if it happens to you. Reasons for Fire Sprinkler Systems Failure Today, all building fire sprinkler systems must meet NFPA 13 standards. These National Fire Protection Association benchmarks define safety requirements for components and installation, and help ensure that sprinkler systems are well maintained and ready to perform. Still, fire sprinkler systems can fail. Here are a few of the most common culprits: Aging parts Building renovations (collisions with construction equipment, displacement or disturbance, etc.) Incorrectly placed heating systems that activate sprinklers Vulnerable pipes that freeze and cause sprinkler heads to burst Corrosion Fire sprinkler malfunctions can be incredibly problematic, causing extensive damage to your building Regardless of what causes the sprinklers to discharge accidentally, fire sprinkler malfunctions can be incredibly problematic, causing extensive damage to your building and requiring costly repairs from a water damage repair contractor. 5 Things to do if Your Sprinklers Fail There are no flames in your building, but your sprinklers are soaking everything in sight. You have to move quickly to avoid even more damage. Stay calm and follow these five steps: Get everyone out Even if there’s not an active fire in the building, water poses its own set of dangers. To avoid problematic slip and fall conditions, get everyone out of the area immediately. Move them to a safe location outside the building, preferably one you’ve agreed on in a previously established evacuation plan. Shut off electrical equipment Water and electricity are a deadly combination. To avoid electrical shocks, shut off all nearby electrical equipment and appliances, and then, turn off the building’s main power supply, as you exit the building. Turn off the water main Instead of wasting time shutting off broken sprinkler heads individually, go to the building’s main water supply immediately and shut it off at the valve. This will stop all water flow and prevent additional water damage. Take photos of the scene Once it’s safe to re-enter the building, document the scene. Use your smartphone to take photos of broken sprinkler heads or anything else you believe may have caused the accidental discharge. Additionally, take photos of the damage the sprinklers caused to floors, walls, personal belongings, and more. These photos can help response specialists understand the cause of the malfunction and may streamline your insurance claims process. Contact a restoration specialist Even if your water damage looks minimal, you’ll need to contact a skilled water damage restoration expert, like the Chicago-based maintenance and service company, ServiceMaster Restoration by Zaba. Accidental sprinkler discharges soak drywall, destroy carpets and textiles, and lead to dangerous mold and mildew growth, which can happen just 24-48 hours after water exposure. Prevent worsening damage and the dangerous conditions by contacting a sprinkler repair specialist right away. Cleanup and water damage restoration services Using your documentation, your insurance company will work to determine the cause of the sprinkler failure Using your documentation, your insurance company will work to determine the cause of the sprinkler failure. This can be a lengthy process that takes weeks or even months. As that happens, your cleanup team will focus on providing water damage restoration services. Typically, fire sprinkler water damage involves ‘blackwater’- a dangerous mixture of sediments and other contaminants that leave behind an unpleasant smell and a film that can destroy belongings. To reclaim your space, the water damage restoration service will focus on extracting the remaining water, drying the space to prevent mold and mildew formation, and decontaminating all surfaces. This is a critical step that you can’t afford to rush. Work with the best water damage cleanup company you can find to ensure positive results. Protecting Your Sprinkler Systems in the Future While it’s impossible to completely avoid every accidental discharge, there are certain steps you can take to safeguard your sprinkler system. Proper maintenance, for example, allows you to avoid preventable issues that could lead to malfunction. You should also take care to keep all remodeling and construction work away from sprinkler heads and systems to avoid accidental damage. These are simple tips, but they can help keep your building and tenants safe and dry - both now and in the future.
There is a sense in some markets that the paper and pulp industry will decline owing to the digital technologies with which people interact every day. While this might be considered logical, the reality is completely different. In fact, the paper and pulp industry has experienced a steady growth and will continue to do so in 2021. Production of paper increased by more than 450% in the last decades and the demand of paperboard in the world is expected to grow significantly, driven by e-commerce and big retailers increasing their presence in the online sales universe. This sustained growth in production capacity and paper consumption presents several fire risks to companies and exposes communities that develop around paper mills, to the impact of disasters caused by these fire risks. Fire risks in the paper and pulp industry Paper and cardboard are combustible, but this is not the only fire risk found in these types of industries. Raw materials and finished goods storage are sensitive to fire. In addition, the paper making process includes several stages where fires can occur, due to hot surfaces or poor ventilation. The most relevant fire risks on a paper plant are: Storage Areas: As mentioned before, paper and cardboard are combustible. Solid paper blocks and reels have hard surfaces that don’t ignite easily, but usually these reels can suffer minor damages or have loose sheets that significantly increase the fire risk. When paper reels are stacked in columns, gaps in the center can act as chimneys and when fires start in the bottom of the stack, this chimney effect will accelerate smoke and hot air spread, increasing vertical and horizontal flame spread. Wood and Bale storage fire risks Bale storage also presents a high fire risk, as loose materials are always present Raw materials for the paper making process can have two main sources, forestry products (mainly wood) or recycled cardboard and paper. Wood storage presents several challenges, especially due to wood chips that are highly combustible and, in some cases, even explosive. Bale storage also presents a high fire risk, as loose materials are always present. Fire in baled paper is difficult to extinguish and generates heavy smoke. In many recycling facilities, these paper bales are stored outdoors, where paper or rags soaked in flammable liquids, embedded between the paper sheets, can ignite resulting in a fast spreading fire. Chemicals, flammable liquids and gases In addition, it is possible to find different types of chemicals, flammable liquids and gases that are used in the paper making process. These materials have their own fire-related risks that need to be taken in consideration. Production Areas: In pulp factories, there are several long-distance conveyors that transport wood and wood chips. These conveyors constitute a fire risk and the most probable causes of fire are bearing damage, overheating of the conveyor and igniting chips in the environment. IR dryers, a common source of fire After the wood has been transported, chipped and digested, the paper making process becomes extremely humid, due to the large amounts of hot water and steam needed. But, as soon as the pulp fiber sheet starts to dry, the hot surfaces in contact with the paper sheets can be a source of ignition. IR dryers used in the process are also a common source of fire in the paper industry. When the sheet of paper is formed, close contact with reels and bearings moving fast can create static electricity that could ignite loose paper or airborne particles. Problems like these are likely to be more extensive in tissue mills. Paper dust is generated in certain parts of the process, especially where paper shits are slit or cut. Poorly insulated steam pipes lead to fire Poorly insulated steam pipes can ignite paper dust or even their own insulation materials. In addition, paper dust gathers in the ventilation grills of machinery, causing overheating and igniting as well. Heated oil is used in several parts of the process as well and if a malfunction occurs on the Hot Oil Roll systems, leaks might occur, exposing hot surfaces to this oil and causing ignitions. A paper mill has hydraulically operated machinery, where leaks or sprays might ignite as well. Service Areas: As in many other manufacturing facilities, several service areas can be found. Electrical and network equipment rooms have an inherent fire risk due to damaged wires or equipment, overheating or short circuits in high voltage circuits. Transformer and generator areas entail fire risks as well. High fire risk for boiler rooms Flammable gas distribution systems can be ignition sources, in case of leaks or damaged pipes or valves Hot water and steam are key components for the paper making process. For this reason, paper plants use high capacity boilers that can be powered by flammable liquids or gases. A high fire risk can be considered for boiler rooms. Flammable gas distribution systems can be ignition sources, in case of leaks or damaged pipes or valves. In addition to the fire risks mentioned in these areas, many maintenance operations can also pose fire risk, especially when hot works are being performed. Sparks caused by welding or the use of certain tools can ignite paper sheets or dust in the air. Poor housekeeping and buildup of paper dust, for example, increases the risk associated with maintenance and construction works. Prevention, the first line of defense According to the Health and Safety Executive from the United Kingdom, 60% of fires on paper mills are caused by machine faults and poor housekeeping. The first line of defense to avoid fire risks in paper plants is prevention. As mentioned before, a high number of fires in these types of facilities occur because of poor housekeeping and machine malfunction. The key is to identify the risks and possible ignition sources, and apply measures to minimize them. As in many industries, fire protection has two main components: Passive and Active protection. Passive fire protection measures Passive measures include fire rated walls, ceilings, and floors in the most critical areas. Chemical storage areas should be physically separated from other dangerous areas, if this is not possible then the walls separating areas should be fire rated and materials must be stored in a way that minimizes the risk of fire spread by radiation or conduction. Proper compartmentalization and intumescent protection of structural elements should be part of the package as well. Passive measures include proper ventilation and smoke control. As mentioned before, paper dust is a major fire risk, which is why ventilation and cleaning of hoods over the paper machine is important to minimize the possibility of ignition. Fire resisting construction should be designed with the following goals in mind: Protection of escape routes Form compartments to contain fires that might occur Separate areas of higher fire risk Protect load bearing and structural members to minimize risk of collapse Sprinkler systems, gas extinguishing systems and hose reels Active fire protection includes sprinkler systems, gas extinguishing systems and hose reels to support fire brigades Active fire protection includes sprinkler systems, gas extinguishing systems and hose reels to support fire brigades. Finished goods stored indoors should be protected with sprinkler systems and the same should be considered for chemical storage areas and certain raw materials. Paper bales, ideally should be protected by sprinklers that are suitably designed to cope with the height and located, in all cases, 3 meters above the level of bales stacked vertically (which should not exceed 5 meters height). Spark detectors in hoods, pipes and ventilation systems Dangerous sparks could be generated in several parts of the paper making process, which is why spark detectors must be installed in hoods, pipes, and ventilation systems. Water spray and CO2 systems can be used to protect machinery against these risks. Means to fight fires, like extinguishers and hose reels, should be provided to support fire brigades. All the elements should be properly identified and all personnel should be trained and made aware of the location of such devices. Importance of fire alarms Fire alarms are required in all paper mills and fire alarm call points should be provided in all locations, according to international guidelines, such as NFPA 72 or EN54. The spread of flames and smoke in paper, wood and chemical storage might become extremely fast. For this reason, early detection is critical. Many technologies might be applied in the different areas of a paper plant. Nevertheless, there are dusty or humid areas where regular heat or smoke detectors might fail under certain circumstances. For these areas, especially located outdoors, innovative state-of-the-art detection solutions might be applied, like Video Fire Detection (VFD). NFPA 72 standard for flame and smoke detection NFPA 72 provides guidelines to implement this technology for flame and smoke detection NFPA 72 provides guidelines to implement this technology for flame and smoke detection, opening interesting alternatives for designers and fire protection engineers. Many EHS managers and fire protection professionals selected VFD, because it is the only fire detection solution that effectively covered their needs. Many engineers, specialized in fire protection for paper plants, explained that they tested linear heat detection, aspiration smoke detection, IR/UV detectors and even beams, but none of these technologies performed as they needed on the dirtiest or more humid areas. Video Fire Detection (VFD) solutions Outdoor storage areas are often unprotected, because deploying flame or heat detection in large open areas can be costly and mostly ineffective. VFD solutions can detect smoke and flames in outdoor conditions, allowing the monitoring and protection of wood and paper bales in large areas. Fire detection and alarm systems should be designed with the following goals: Minimize risk of fires, including the use of fire detection technology in areas where regular detection technologies cannot be implemented or are not practical. Minimize risk of flame and smoke spread, with state-of-the-art detection algorithms that guarantee fast and effective detection. Also, reliable algorithms minimize the possibility of nuance or unwanted alarms. In case of a fire, fast detection gives occupants life-saving time to reach to a place of safety, before the flames and smoke have spread to dangerous levels. Global production of paper and pulp reached 490 million tons in 2020, with many industries and markets depended on the paper and pulp supply chain. That is why innovative ways to protect this supply chain, are key to sustain the paper market growth in the future.
Mathew Baxter is the Founder and CEO of the echelon group with responsibility for the management of echelon Consultancy, Pretium Frameworks and echelon Improvement Partnerships. Mathew has spent most of his working life in the construction sector. The devastating Grenfell Tower fire has prompted what the government has referred to as ‘the biggest change in building safety for a generation’. So what do the Building Safety and the Fire Safety Bills mean in terms of emergent legislation and is the housing industry prepared for substantive change on this scale? Fire Safety Bill Let’s start with the new Fire Safety Bill, which has been designed to give clear definitive guidance principally around areas of responsibility for fire safety. One way of looking at the new Fire Safety Bill is as a piece of legislation designed to beef up the existing legislation, focused specifically around the envelope of the building. The Fire Safety Bill makes it clear that the person designated as responsible has undertaken a fire safety survey around exterior walls (including cladding, balconies and windows) and individual flat walls entrance doors, where they open onto common parts to make sure they are compliant and if not, then to take any necessary remedial action and precautions to make that building safe. We suspect that demand for fire experts may rapidly outstrip supply. Building Safety Bill The Building Safety Bill proposes a significant amount of consultation is going to be required with residents The Building Safety Bill proposes a significant amount of consultation is going to be required with residents. Every ‘higher risk’ property has to have a strategy around the program of change that it will need. Resident consultation exercises will result in organic documents that will live as long as that building is occupied. Ideally all stakeholders (for example repairs contractors) coming in and out of properties should be encouraged and trained to take a holistic view of that property, and to be prepared to raise an alert, if they see something that is not right, for example, a fire door that has been propped open. Checking and replacing old appliances Many fires are caused by residents’ own appliances. Some local authorities are checking tenants’ appliances and if they seem unsafe, either removing or disconnecting them and in some cases, they are also providing free replacements. Housing associations and landlords will need to demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of their property and stock. For example, if you have a cladded building, you need to know exactly what the specification of that cladding is. Not all cladding is equal and risk profiles vary. Intrusive surveys may be required to ascertain the exact construction and product used. There is still a clear issue that many building owners/managers are unsure of what their building is clad in and how the cladding is fixed for the building. Effectively, this is something landlords need to get a comprehensive understanding of immediately, for fear of very rapid enforcement action from the Local Authority. Adherence to fire safety regulation compliance Local Authorities are entirely within their rights to approach housing associations and ask for copies of the fire safety regulation compliance of these buildings and if it has not been done then they can take action and that can include decanting the whole building and ordering remedial works As previously mentioned, two new roles are also specified within the Building Safety Bill, that of the Accountable Person within an organization for fire safety and the Building Safety Manager. It is anticipated that the role of the Accountable Person role will need to be fulfilled by a senior member of staff within the client organization and the Building Safety Manager will have a high level of responsibility and accountability for maintaining the safety of the building. Competency frameworks and resident engagement strategies The Building Safety Bill may have a grace period, before it comes into force on existing buildings The Building Safety Bill may have a grace period, before it comes into force on existing buildings and elements that are likely to be included are already being discussed, for example competency frameworks, resident engagement strategies and two separate roles, namely Building Safety Managers and Accountable Person. One of the most significant changes that the Building Safety Bill will create is a new definition of buildings as ‘higher risk’ buildings. This category will obviously include high rise, but also student accommodation and supported living accommodation. High risk buildings Any building over 18 meters, or more than six floors high is immediately defined as high risk. The Bill also makes it clear that the new Building Safety Regulator (created under the Bill) can also add other buildings to the category at their discretion. The Bill places a lot more responsibility on landlords and owners of those buildings. In fact, the Accountable Person has legal responsibility for those buildings, as long as they are occupied. Assessment of fire safety risks Responsibilities include the assessment of fire safety risks, co-operation with any remedial action in terms of fire safety, the registration of high-rise buildings, building safety information and the appointment of the building safety manager. The Accountable Person has a duty to report the name and details of the Building Safety Manager to the Building Safety Regulator. This individual’s contact details have to be available to everyone in the building, a safety case report has to be undertaken and managed along with a risk assessment and an ongoing strategy for the safety of the building and information provided to the new regulator. If the Building Safety Manager is found to be non-compliant then she/he risks a prison sentence. Many of the clients are appointing Building Safety Managers directly with a salary between £60,000 – £70,000. The guidance is that they should not look after more than five buildings each, as the responsibility carries too much weight for more and as such, this represents a significant resource for many landlords with a large portfolio of ‘higher risk’ buildings. Undefined transition period for Act rollout The new Building Safety Regulator will become the Building Control Authority for higher risk building There is expected to be an as yet undefined transition period before the Act applies to existing buildings. As well as the changes that will be necessary to existing buildings, it is essential that consideration is given to the design and thought process behind new developments and new builds. There is a whole new regime for the design and construction phase. The new Building Safety Regulator will become the Building Control Authority for higher risk buildings. Developers are no longer able to choose their building control authority at will. This imposes strict competency requirements on all duty holders working on higher risk buildings, including the client, the principal designer and principal contractor. Impact of the two safety bills The impact on these two Bills will have an enormous impact on leaseholders and indeed everyone involved in construction and building maintenance. The administrative burden and personal responsibility on those accountable will be equally enormous but, in our view, in the light of Grenfell, absolutely necessary. Our advice to all our clients is to start planning ahead and to develop a strategy of how they will deliver all the aspects of the Building Safety Bill once it becomes legislation.
Fire and EMS departments are eligible for reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) of their costs, related to the COVID-19 pandemic. A streamlined project application process eases the burden of applying for the program, but support documentation is required. Tracking costs For COVID-19 recovery Many departments do not apply for the money because they perceive reporting requirements as too difficult, and record-keeping as too big a challenge. To help, the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) provides simple Excel worksheets for tracking costs related to COVID-19 response and recovery. Customizable worksheets capture common reimbursable costs as they are spent. Departments seeking reimbursement should submit a project application online at the FEMA Public Assistance Grants Portal (no paper submissions are accepted). FEMA’s Public Assistance Program The mission of FEMA’s Public Assistance Program is to provide assistance to State, Local, Territorial, and Tribal governments The mission of FEMA’s Public Assistance Program is to provide assistance to State, Local, Territorial, and Tribal (SLTT) governments, and certain types of private nonprofit (PNP) organizations so that communities can respond quickly to and recover from major disasters or emergencies declared by the President. A submission request for public assistance must provide complete and accurate documentation of expenses and usage, including standardized Incident Command System (ICS) forms, Public Assistance Grant forms, verifiable receipts, personnel costs sheets and apparatus sheets. Applications submitted via jurisdiction serviced Applications are submitted through the jurisdiction serviced. Additional documents include supporting plans, assignments, activities and shift records (payroll), pay policy receipts for purchases and rental equipment, and a copy of the service agreement/contract with the jurisdiction. Some activities may be eligible for funding through both FEMA and other federal agency funding sources for COVID-19, including the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (ASPR). Public assistance cannot duplicate funding from another federal source. Public Assistance program Some activities may be completed through direct federal assistance. If an applicant does not have the capacity to directly complete the activity or oversee activity completion through contract or mutual aid, the Applicant may request that FEMA or another federal agency directly conduct the activity. The assistance FEMA provides through its Public Assistance program is subject to a cost share, with the federal share not less than 75% of eligible costs.
There is a long tradition of canines in the fire service, from Dalmatians riding shotgun in the fire truck to mixed breeds rescued from fires that later become the fire company mascot. The tradition has taken a hit recently in Chicago, where dogs are no longer allowed at firehouses after one station dog killed a smaller breed canine near a firehouse in the Englewood neighborhood. The incident The firehouse dog in Chicago, named Bones, was a mixed breed stray rescued off the street that was living at Engine 116 at 60th Street and Ashland Avenue. A neighbor was walking her smaller breed dog past the firehouse and watched in horror as Bones attacked and killed her small dog. After the incident, Chicago’s Acting Fire Commissioner Annette Nance-Holt issued a department memo: “Any and all prior permissions for dogs in the fire stations or on fire apparatuses are hereby revoked … effective immediately.” Chicago Firehouse dogs Most of Chicago’s firehouse dogs are strays that were picked up and brought to firefighters by the public. Fire crews and paramedics care for the dogs, train them, feed them and get them inoculated and spayed or neutered, then ask formal permission to keep the dogs on site. Historically, permission has been granted, in effect saving the dogs from being euthanized. Breed of choice The tradition of dogs and the fire service goes back centuries, to the 1700s, when carriage dogs first trotted alongside horse-drawn fire carriages. Dalmatians were the breed of choice, given their good temperament, calming effect on the horses Dalmatians were the breed of choice, given their good temperament, calming effect on the horses, and grace under pressure. The Fire Department of New York (FDNY) began utilizing Dalmatians as early as the 1870s. Dalmatians as firehouse ambassadors When motorized vehicles came on the scene, Dalmatians were already associated with firefighters, who continued to keep them on-site as firehouse residents and mascots. Increasingly, Dalmatians and other dogs became public ambassadors for firehouses and were involved in public education about fire safety and emergency preparedness for school and community groups. For example, Sparkles the Fire Safety Dog, a Dalmatian from Clarksville, Ark., was a character in her own set of children’s books about fire safety and traveled around the country teaching children about fire tips. reduce stress, provide comfort Currently, firehouse dogs are other breeds, too, many rescued from house fires or other tragedies. Firehouses often adopt dogs, who become symbols of resiliency, bravery, fortitude – and provide comfort and companionship for firefighters who face high levels of stress on the job. After the 9/11 attacks, two firefighters from Rochester, N.Y., gifted the FDNY Ladder 20 company a Dalmatian puppy, appropriately named Twenty. The dog served as a source of comfort to the firefighters, who lost seven members of the company in 9/11. Dogs recognize signals Taken in as a stray in 1929, a dog named Nip served 10 years with New York’s Engine Company No. 203. During his service, the dog was injured by broken glass, falling debris, scalding burns, and bruises from falling off the fire engine. Nip could recognize all bells and signals. On fire scenes, Nip could alert firefighters if he knew something was wrong and sometimes run into burning buildings to look for victims. Unfortunately, Nip was killed by a hit-and-run driver in front of the firehouse in 1939 (and was stuffed by a taxidermist and displayed at the firehouse until 1974). Dogs promote fire safety Dogs promote fire safety outside the firehouse Dogs also promote fire safety outside the firehouse. For example, accelerant-sniffing dogs are trained to detect minute traces of accelerants that may be used to start a fire, according to the State Farm Arson Dog Program. The special bond between firefighters and dogs is the stuff of legend, despite the recent unfortunate events in Chicago – an ignoble scar on a long, colorful history of dogs in the fire service. Hopes remain that the decision can somehow be reversed, based on social media postings. “This is the first tragedy I have heard of in … 25 years,” said the administrator of the Firehouse Pups group.
There are more than half a million homeless people in the United States, including many who deal with mental illness, drug addiction, and other problems. At homeless shelters where some of them are housed, attention to fire prevention may take a back seat to other concerns, such as adding capacity. More troubling are fire hazards at makeshift housing sites and homeless camps. Fire calls to homeless encampments run the gamut, including many of the same types of emergencies as other calls. Because homeless people often use fire for cooking or warmth, there are brush fires or abandoned building fires. Inside the makeshift tents in homeless encampments, residents may use or store propane, butane, car batteries, or other hazards. Fire hazards in homeless encampments Responding to fires at homeless encampments requires additional training for firefighters Homeless persons often run extension cords from nearby power poles that provide jerry-rigged power systems that can create additional fire hazards. Nearby fire hydrants may have been tapped for drinking or bathing and therefore are not available in an emergency. Responding to fires at homeless encampments requires additional training for firefighters, especially in issues such as mental health, addiction, de-escalation tactics, crisis resolution, etc. More personnel are often needed on a call; for example, someone may be needed to keep watch on equipment that might otherwise be stolen. EMS calls to homeless encampments also run the gamut from minor strains and sprains to overdoses, behavioral health issues, or shortness of breath. Causing Widespread damage Fires that start in homeless camps can obviously go on to cause widespread damage beyond the confines of the camps. For example, the Skirball wildfire in Los Angeles in December 2017 started in a homeless camp and later destroyed several homes. After the fire, Mayor Eric Garcetti had firefighters map out the locations of encampments in high fire danger zones, including in the dry, brush-covered canyons in the Hollywood Hills next to residential areas. In 2018, a 30-acre fire in Griffith Park was traced to a homeless encampment. Another fire in a homeless encampment started along Burbank Boulevard in the Sepulveda Basin. A fire in the Hansen Dam recreation area in Lake View Terrace also began in a homeless encampment. Nearby homeowners reported seeing people in the camps smoking and lighting fires for warmth and to cook in the midst of dry brush. Fire-safety education Fire hazards prompted a campaign to educate homeless individuals about fire safety, especially in the winter Fire hazards in homeless encampments drew attention in 2014 in Taylors, S.C., after emergency responders saw smoke coming from under a bridge and later found a homeless man with third-degree burns. The incident prompted a campaign to educate homeless individuals about fire safety, especially in the winter. Precautions to prevent fires among the homeless population include making sure campfires are confined to dug-out pits and/or are surrounded by rocks or other non-combustibles. Dos and Don’ts Furniture and other combustibles should be kept a minimum of 15 feet away from fire, and highly flammable items such as tents and tarps should be kept a minimum of 25 feet away from fire. Kerosene or other portable heaters should be kept a minimum of 3 feet from combustibles. Candles should not be left unattended or used near curtains or bedding. Gallons of water should be kept nearby in case of emergency to extinguish a fire. Smoking in bed should be avoided, and lit cigarettes should not be left unattended.
Home to 250 children and 66 childcare specialists, Rublik Kindergarten is located in the borough of Tõrvandi in Tartu County. Since 1969, children in the Kambja municipality have delighted in discovering the magic of learning and playtime with friends in the spacious building. In 2020, the decision was taken to completely revamp the Kindergarten and equip it with brand new technical systems including a state-of-the-art fire alarm system. BK Eesti, C-TEC’s official distributor in Estonia and a member of BK Group, the biggest wholesaler of security solutions in the Baltics, partnered with Pristis AS to recommend CAST XFP to the project’s general building contractor. Project checked and verified Janek Mesipuu, Sales Manager at Pristis AS said, "We specified CAST XFP as it is a powerful yet simple and reliable solution for small and medium-sized buildings that require high levels of security and fire protection." “As CAST is soft-addressing, our engineers were able to program over 230 detectors, call points, sounders, and other devices at the panel so eliminating the need to walk around site and physically program each device. This was, therefore, a very smooth and timely installation. The entire project was fully checked and verified before being handed over to local fire department inspector and building owner/manager.” Reliable and configurable fire alarm system CAST gives management and staff at Rublik Kindergarten complete peace of mind Said Alari Nahkur, BK Eesti Estonia’s Area Manager, "More and more Estonian installers are finding that CAST is the best option to offer building owners a safe, reliable and easily configurable fire alarm system. CAST’s instantaneous reception and transmission of changes detected in devices is ingenious as it allows fast recognition of alarms and faults so prompt action can be taken." “Fire safety and security must never be comprised especially in a building housing children, our greatest national treasure. CAST gives management and staff at Rublik Kindergarten complete peace of mind." UK Designed CAST is C-TEC’s own UK-designed and manufactured ‘distributed intelligence’ addressable fire detection and alarm system. Certified to all relevant EN54 product standards, including EN54-13, CAST is also fully compatible with ENVISION, C-TEC’s powerful new remote access, data management, and system testing software.
Award-winning Taktis fire panels, manufactured by Kentec Electronics Ltd., a globally renowned manufacturer of life-critical control systems, are protecting students and property at the University of Nicosia’s (UNIC) new state-of-the-art student residences, located in Cyprus. Integrated fire system The integrated fire system was installed by Kentec Installation Partner (KIP) Glosec Dragon Ltd. (GLOSEC), a Cyprus-based business that specializes in the design, installation and maintenance of security, surveillance, hazard prevention and hospitality systems. The UNIC student residences have been designed to set a new standard in modern student living The UNIC student residences have been designed to set a new standard in modern student living. They consist of two separate complexes, SIX and TRIANGLE, which provide a multitude of dining, relaxing and entertainment options including a cafe, mini-market, gym, TV rooms and games areas. Taktis addressable fire panels Split between six, 12-storey distinctive towers, SIX comprises 307 luxury student residences, and is protected by two, highly-sophisticated Taktis eight-loop addressable fire panels. TRIANGLE complements SIX with an additional 147 modern and spacious rooms, with one six-loop Taktis fire panel installed. Across both SIX and TRIANGLE residential complexes, the fire protection systems include 578 Apollo heat detectors, 530 sounder bases, 94 call points and 339 optical detectors. Additionally, three Taktis Vision Repeaters provide information on the status of the fire alarm system in key positions, across the residences via large and full-color, touch-screen graphical displays. Full-color resistive touch screen display Taktis provides an expandable solution, which includes a full suite of graphics, communications (copper and fiber), analytics and remote management tools. Multiple protocols can be supported on each panel to give installers and end users maximum choice in their systems’ design. Also, the scalable nature of the product provides the highest level of future proofing and networking capabilities. A 7 inches full-color resistive touch screen display and a clear, uncluttered intuitive interface make it easy to use, even for those with minimal or no training, which is essential in the event of an emergency. Fire system integration with CCTV and access control Stathis Ierodiaconou, Managing Director of Glosec Dragon feels the business has worked with Kentec for more than two decades and developed a trusting relationship. Taktis is easy to install, integrates with other systems well and customer feedback has been good" Stathis said, “Our experience with Kentec meant we knew Taktis was the right system for the project’s scope and needs. The project required that remote monitoring was possible from one control room to cover both SIX and TRIANGLE residences. It also needed to be an expandable system, which can grow as the development grows.” With Glosec Dragon also installing and maintaining a suite of other CCTV, wireless access control, intercom, parking and energy-saving systems, Stathis stated that integration was essential. He explains, “Taktis is easy to install, integrates with other systems well and customer feedback has been good.” Flexible fire safety system Anastasia Christodoulou, Manager, at UNIC Residences, believes that student safety is paramount. She said, “We required complete assurance that our fire protection system is providing the utmost protection. We were assured that Taktis does just that, and that its advanced integrative capabilities mean a future-proofed and user-friendly system.” Costas Constantinides, Head of International Development at Kentec, believes the Taktis panel with EN54-13 certification was the ideal choice for this development. He said, “The highly powerful and sophisticated Taktis panel was chosen to ensure the fire safety system had the required reliability, scale and flexibility to protect large numbers of students at such a prestigious development.”
Hush ActiV, C-TEC’s innovative new BS 5839-6 domestic fire alarm system, is providing first-class fire protection at a luxury apartment block in Bolton. Ensures fire protection Set in stunning landscaped gardens in Horwich, a small town on the edge of the West Pennine Moors, Swallowfields is a collection of 28 contemporary new-build apartments featuring spacious living spaces and high-specification fittings. Each dwelling has been equipped with Hush ActiV smoke detectors, heat detectors, and sounders, all connected to a Hush ActiV controller to reduce false alarms and ensure the highest levels of fire protection. Extra layer of safety Said Adam Baxendale of Lansafe Ltd, whose specialist fire division completed the project, “Recent fires, Grenfell in particular, demonstrate how absolutely vital enhanced fire protection is in residential developments. Hush ActiV offers another layer of safety, protection, and reassurance for residents in addition to the C-TEC ZFP touchscreen-controlled addressable fire system we installed to provide LD1 coverage throughout the building.” BS 5839-6 Grade C system Hush ActiV constantly interrogates the status of the system’s power supply and reports any faults to the main Controller As a fully-monitored BS 5839-6 Grade C system, Hush ActiV constantly interrogates the status of the system’s wiring circuits, battery, and power supply and reports any faults to the main Controller in the apartment so the resident can take appropriate action and contact the responsible person. Said Adam, “Hush ActiV gives building management and residents, particularly those living in houses of multiple occupations, peace of mind. Our client was delighted with the solution we provided.” User-friendly Hush ActiV’s accessibility was also a key factor in its specification at Swallowfields. Residents are provided with easy-to-use detection, alarm, silencing, and test facilities at a light-switch level so they can test their own devices, be alerted to system faults, and hush any false alarms. The fact that the Controller’s HUSH and TEST buttons can be operated whilst standing or sitting in a wheelchair at floor level means that the elderly and disabled can also test the system easily, therefore, facilitating full compliance with the Equality Act. Said Adam, “Resident safety has to be everyone’s top priority and Hush ActiV is a superb way of ensuring people are protected and feel safe. It’s easy-to-install, user-friendly and, as a BS 5839-6 Grade C system, provides outstanding levels of fire protection.”
C-TEC’s new CAST ZFP fire alarm system is protecting an exciting new hospitality venture in Cheshire, United Kingdom. Situated in the beautiful village of Tattenhall, The Bear and Ragged Staff has been radically transformed from a derelict shell into a high-end pub, restaurant and hotel, by a team of talented professionals, including Brian Mellor, an award-winning chef, and Martin Hilton, an industry-renowned beer sommelier. Featuring a fabulous bar/restaurant, eight en-suite bedrooms, and a first-floor function room, the magnificent venue is prominently positioned on the High Street and set not only to become a focal point in the village but also attract clientele from far and wide for celebratory and corporate events. CAST ZFP fire panel and detectors installed At the heart of the building’s life-safety systems is a C-TEC CAST ZFP fire panel connected to over 100 CAST detectors At the heart of the building’s life-safety systems is a C-TEC CAST ZFP fire panel connected to over 100 CAST detectors, sounders, VADs, and ancillary devices, spanning over four floors. The master 2-loop ZFP panel is located in a storeroom but relays key system information to a state-of-the-art Compact Controller, which is prominently displayed in the elegant reception area. With its bright easy-to-use touchscreen-control interface, the controller is stylish, highly visible and can be easily accessed by the fire and rescue service, and authorized personnel if required. L2 BS 5839-1 fire safety system John Westerman, Director of Wrexham-based Allied Fire Alarms Ltd, the company that specified, installed, and commissioned the system, said “We chose CAST ZFP as the cornerstone of The Bear’s L2 BS 5839-1 system, as it is powerful, intuitive, and has the capacity to connect to multiple intelligent devices. Our client also had some specific requirements for fire detection in certain areas which were facilitated using CAST’s innovative software and extensive programming capabilities.” John Westerman adds, “We were delighted to be involved with this project. As an NICEIC-approved specialist fire company, we pride ourselves on delivering top-quality life-safety systems to our client’s satisfaction and the CAST system we designed and installed has certainly exceeded everyone’s expectations.” CAST intelligent fire alarm system CAST is C-TEC’s own UK-designed and manufactured ‘distributed intelligence’ addressable fire detection and alarm system. Certified to all relevant EN54 product standards, including EN54-13, CAST is also fully compatible with ENVISION, C-TEC’s powerful new remote access, data management, and system testing software.
The Vizcaya Provincial Council in Spain, has invested seven million euros in its fire prevention, firefighting and rescue services. Almost 25 percent of the existing fleet will be replaced by new trucks, which will enhance efficiency and improve rapid response. The 15 new vehicles include six heavy-duty urban fire trucks, three heavy-duty large-tank pumpers, three first-response trucks and three automatic turntable ladders, all fitted with Allison fully automatic transmissions. Heavy-duty urban fire trucks VEICAR built the bodywork for nine of these vehicles, including the six heavy-duty urban fire trucks, which have already been delivered. The bodywork is mounted on a SCANIA P 410 B chassis with 4x4 traction and Allison 4000 Series transmissions with retarders. These trucks have water and foam tank capacities of 4,200 and 200 liters respectively. They are equipped with roof boxes that can be accessed from the ground, eliminating the need to enter the truck to access tools. An LED lighting mast provides supplementary lighting and a further feature is a monitor that provides a joystick-controlled flow rate of 4,000 liters per minute from the pump cabinet. Large-tank pumpers The Vizcaya Provincial Council’s order of three large-tank pumpers is also based on the SCANIA P 410 B chassis The Vizcaya Provincial Council’s order of three large-tank pumpers is also based on the SCANIA P 410 B chassis. The vehicles share the same features as the six heavy-duty urban fire trucks, including Allison 4000 Series transmissions with retarders. They have larger water and foam tank capacities of 9,000 and 300 liters respectively. Like many other vehicle bodybuilders, VEICAR has full confidence in the benefits of Allison fully automatic transmissions. The company has worked in close cooperation with Allison since 2009. Allison fully automatic transmission Rather than using the automated manual transmissions that come as standard in this SCANIA model, VEICAR opted for a fully automatic transmission with torque converter, in this case, an Allison 4000 Series model with retarder (GA866R in SCANIA nomenclature). “The vast majority of our fire trucks are equipped with Allison automatic transmissions. We consider them an indispensable firefighting tool as they maximize vehicle performance, and greatly improve acceleration, reliability and safety,” said Carlos Prieto-Puga González, CEO at VEICAR. Faster acceleration and increased torque Carlos Prieto-Puga González adds, “In addition, their superior acceleration and maneuverability are beyond question, which is vital when there is not a second to be wasted. Most urban firefighters prefer them because they provide greater safety. And if that weren't enough, the vehicles reach the final years of their service life in better condition.” Allison transmissions are designed to offer increased torque and up to 35 percent faster acceleration. When fire trucks respond to emergencies, they are heavily loaded, so the optional retarder has been incorporated to provide high braking capacity, enabling the vehicles to slow down quickly at intersections. Optimum maneuverability on varied terrains Allison transmissions have demonstrated exceptional reliability and durability in the most demanding conditions" “Allison transmissions have demonstrated exceptional reliability and durability in the most demanding conditions and are the transmission of choice for firefighting fleets around the world. As regular users of these transmissions, we have no doubts whatsoever. As bodybuilders, we are always much happier when vehicles are equipped with Allison,” said Prieto-Puga González. Allison automatic transmissions provide optimum maneuverability on soft ground and in tight spaces, greater control on steep grades, smoother driving, better starting capacity, and faster acceleration. This makes it possible to reach higher average speeds and save fuel. Prieto-Puga Gonzalez adds, “A two- or three-minute head start can be crucial. Not losing power during gear shifts means smoother, more continuous and consequently more effective acceleration. It also improves maneuverability and saves time, which, along with the reliability of the transmission, means greater safety for firefighters. These great benefits are even more extraordinary when we consider that Allison transmissions reduce fleet maintenance costs.” Featuring Chelsea 870 power take-off “The easy maneuverability of the vehicles simplifies the drivers' work. They don't have to shift gears and can concentrate fully on the job and the road when traveling at high speed. And with Allison, vehicles can include up to two power take-offs (PTOs) to keep hydraulic equipment working correctly, even while the vehicle is in motion,” said Trond Johansen, European Key Fleets and Market Development Manager at Allison Transmission. “The Chelsea 870 power take-off incorporated into the transmissions has allowed us to fine-tune the entire unit to achieve the best possible onsite fire pump performance,” concludes Prieto-Puga González.
FlamePro, a renowned British manufacturing specialist of life safety garments and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for firefighters, has been awarded a £4 million contract by Capita, to provide its firefighting PPE for the UK’s Ministry of Defence (MOD), across the next decade. Firefighting PPE tender The competitive tender, part of Capita’s contract with the MOD, saw four different PPE providers bid for the contract, with FlamePro being appointed to provide its full ensemble of Personal Protective Equipment, alongside a total garment care package. FlamePro was awarded the Ministry Of Defence’s PPE contract, due to its high-quality products FlamePro was awarded the Ministry Of Defence’s PPE contract, due to its high-quality products and the company’s dedication to providing support and expertise on Personal Protective Equipment care, use and maintenance. The contract includes a multi-million pounds initial roll out, with a total value of £4 million over 10 years duration. New fabric technologies and designs Nathan Bricknell, the General Manager at FlamePro, said “We’re absolutely thrilled to have been awarded this contract with Capita. It marks a key milestone for the company. Over recent months, we’ve worked with our partners to develop brand new fabric technologies and designs, including a 3D woven structure and new moisture barrier membrane, to ensure our PPE is the most advanced on the market.” Nathan Bricknell adds, “Our brand new structural fire suit has set a new benchmark across the whole industry. This, teamed with our shorter-than-average lead times, stands us in great stead to deliver top-quality products and service on this contract.”
Round table discussion
The COVID-19 pandemic has had ramifications for almost every industry, some more than others. With the pandemic stretching well into a second year, the non-medical consequences continue, and many are wondering about which of the required changes might become permanent. As regards the fire sector, we asked our Expert Panel Roundtable: What impact has COVID-19 had on the fire industry?
New tools and technologies are emerging that augment the efforts of the fire market to prevent and fight fires. Modern firefighting is benefiting from an ongoing sea change in technological capabilities, spanning equipment, electronic components, greater connectivity and firefighter monitoring, to name just a few. We asked our Expert Panel Roundtable: What technologies will have the greatest impact on the fire industry in 2021?
Equipment is an important element in fighting fires, and in keeping firefighters safe. But what new needs are driving the development of equipment? How can equipment expand its role in fighting fires, or in managing building occupancy and traffic flow for that matter? We asked our Expert Panel Roundtable: What are the new trends and opportunities in firefighting equipment?