System for Fire Safety Evaluation of Health Care Facilities.
System for Fire Safety Evaluation of Health Care
Nelson, H. E.; Shibe, A. J.
NBSIR 78-1555-1; 150 p. May 1980.
U.S./Japan Government Cooperative Program on Natural
Resources (UJNR). Fire Research and Safety. 4th Joint
Panel Meeting of the UJNR Panel. February 5-9, 1979.,
Tokyo, Japan, 90-114 pp, 1980.
Sponsor:Department of Health, Education and Welfare, Washington,
Available from: National Technical Information Service
Order number: PB80-195795
sprinklers; building codes; building construction;
delphi method; fire safety; health care facilities;
hospitals; interior finishes; life safety code; nursing
homes; risk analysis; smoke detection; safety evaluation
A quantitative evaluation system for grading health care
facilities in terms of fire safety is described. The
system can be used to determine how combinations of
widely accepted fire safety equipment and building
construction features may provide a level of safety
equivalent to that required by the widely accepted Life
Safety Code of the National Fire Protection Association.
The system will provide flexibility to both the
designer of new facilities and to the renovator of
existing health care facilities. Three major concepts
form the basis for code equivalency: a. Occupancy
Risk--the number of people affected by a given fire, the
level of fire they are likely to encounter and their
ability to protect themselves; b. Building Safety
Features--the ability of the building and its fire
protection systems to provide measures of safety
commensurate with the risk; c. Safety
Redundancy-in-depth protection, through the simultaneous
use of alternative safety methodologies such as
containment, extinguishment, and people movement
methodologies. The design of the complete fire safety
system is intended to ensure that the failure of a
single protection device or method will not result in a
major failure of the entire system. In this system,
equivalency is judged to exist when the total impact of
the occupancy risk factors and the compensating building
safety features produce a level of safety equal to or
greater than that achieved by rigid conformance to the
explicit requirements of the NFPA Life Safety Code. In
this evaluation, safety performance is gauged both in
terms of overall safety implact and depth of redundance.
This report supersedes NBS report number NBSIR 78-1555
Published in November, 1978.