Fire Safety Engineering
Guests of the Newcastle branch recently enjoyed an informative presentation from Dr Ahmed Allam, Director of Fire Engineering, at Cundall, entitled ‘Is Fire Safety Engineering at a Crossroad?’
According to Dr Allam Fire Safety Engineering has become a critical aspect of building construction and it could be defined as the application of scientific and engineering principles, rules and best expert judgement to protect people, property from the destructive effects of fire.
During his presentation, Dr Allam indicated that big change is coming and just some of the matters he touched on included:
- The current lack of a degree course for fire engineering
- The current Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order requiring updating
- The need to give greater consideration and enforcement to the fire safety engineering of a building in use, rather than how it is constructed. This is particularly pertinent when it comes to conversions. For example, an office converted in to residential accommodation presents different challenges when it comes to fire safety.
- Amending Fire Safety Strategies which should always be designed around a building’s prime suspect.
- Giving more thought to how materials interact together. E.g. materials may have a Kitemark on but when used together become flammable
The event, which concluded with a lively question and answer session, was attended by members and guests from all built environment disciplines and representatives from Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service.