Fire Scenarios or Scenario Fires? Can Fire Safety Science Provide the Critical Inputs for Performance Based Fire Safety Analyses?
Fire Scenarios or Scenario Fires? Can Fire Safety
Science Provide the Critical Inputs for Performance
Based Fire Safety Analyses?
Brannigan, V. M.
Fire Safety Science. Proceedings. Sixth (6th)
International Symposium. International Association for
Fire Safety Science (IAFSS). July 5-9, 1999, Poitiers,
France, Intl. Assoc. for Fire Safety Science, Boston,
MA, Curtat, M., Editor(s), 207-218 pp, 2000.
Sponsor:National Institute of Standards and Technology,
fire research; fire safety; fire science; scenarios;
performance based codes; fire risk; regulations;
uncertainty; fire models
Performance based codes promise to use modern
engineering tools to satisfy the social goal of fire
safety. Social fire safety goals can include life
safety, property protection, or even requirements for
redundant systems. But current proposals for performance
based codes do not contain any technical method for
connecting engineering designs to social goals. As a
result, designers, not society, have been setting the
key technical inputs, in particular designers have
proposed that performance based solutions should only
deal with a design fire, rather than providing the
promised overall safety. This change allows designers
substantial freedom, but at the cost of shifting key
decisions on safety from public to private hands.
Performance based codes will require a method for
specifying the social requirements for fire safety in
useable engineering terms, and enforcing those
requirements on the building as completed.