Sustainable Fire Engineering (#SFE)

Beyond Codes ~ Transformed Design Philosophy & Professional Discipline !

    • Sustainable Fire Engineering

      The creative, person-centred and ethical Fire Engineering response, in resilient built form and smart systems, to the concept of Sustainable Human and Social Development … the many aspects of which must receive balanced and synchronous consideration.
      Click for more …

    • 2015-Tianjin-Fire-Disaster

      SFE’s Aim

      The aim of Sustainable Fire Engineering is to dramatically reduce direct and indirect fire losses in the human environment … to protect the natural environment … and, within buildings, to ensure that there is an effective level of fire safety for all, not just for some !
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    • Fire Safety for All + Firefighters

      Building codes do not protect vulnerable building users in fire emergencies, e.g. People With Activity Limitations (2001 WHO ICF), i.e. frail older people, people with health conditions/disabilities, young children (under 5’s), women in the later stages of pregnancy, etc … or Firefighters.
      Click for more …

    • Environmental Impact

      Fire regularly causes enormous environmental devastation and social disruption.  It is also a significant drag on GDP in all economies, because of the damaging impacts on human health, flora, fauna, soil, air, water, business continuity and branding.  Post-fire refurbishment works are very costly !
      Click for more …

    SFE 2016 DUBLIN

    Join us at the Dublin Gathering,
    from 29-30 September, to explore Sustainable Fire Engineering !


    Firefighter Safety can so easily begin with Building Design …


    Special Fire Safety Measures are required in Residential Buildings !


    Beyond Codes – Realising a Safe, Resilient & Sustainable Built Environment for All …

Sustainable Fire Engineering’s Priority Themes

These Priority Themes lie outside, or beyond, the very inadequate fire safety objectives of current Building Codes & Standards – objectives which do not
protect Society or Fire Engineers’ Clients …

  • Fire Safety for All
    Fire Safety for All

  • Firefighter SafetyFirefighter Safety

  • Protection of PropertyProperty Protection

  • Impossible FiresEnvironmental Impact

  • Innovation & People

  • sustainable designSustainable Design

To Properly Protect Society … the fire safety objectives of next-generation Building Codes & Standards must adequately deal with the following
In the event of an outbreak of fire at any time in the life cycle of a building …

a) protection of the health, safety and welfare of All building users, most specifically including people with activity limitations … and firefighters,
together with other first response personnel ;
b) minimization of adverse environmental impacts ;
c) protection of property, only insofar as it is relevant to a) and b) above.

More cannot reasonably be expected from Building Codes & Standards.  For these fire safety objectives to be effectively attained … a system of stringent, independent Technical Control must operate.  Self-regulation is No regulation !

It is the duty and responsibility of a Fire Engineer to fully understand the scope of application, and the limits on that scope, of the fire safety objectives in
the Building Codes and Standards towards which he/she is directing compliance … and to clearly explain that scope, and those limits, to their client/client organization … and to the other members of the Project Design Team.

Reality – Reliability – Redundancy – Resilience !

To Respond Creatively to Sustainable Buildings & To Properly Protect Fire Engineers’ Clients … project-specific fire engineering design objectives,
beyond Building Codes & Standards, must deal adequately with the following additional concerns:

d) sustainability of the human environment (social, built, virtual, economic, etc) – including ‘fitness for intended use’, ‘life cycle costing’ and
‘resilience’ of fire engineering related products, components, systems, etc., fixed, installed or incorporated in the building ;
e) in order to avoid an outbreak of fire at any time in the life cycle of a building … generous commitment to fire prevention measures ;
f) in the event of an outbreak of fire at any time in the life cycle of a building … full protection of property, including business continuity, heritage
protection, reputation protection, etc ;
g) following an outbreak of fire at any time in the life cycle of a building … facility, ease & efficient cost of carrying out effective reconstruction, refurbishment or repair works ;

For these project-specific fire engineering design objectives to be effectively attained … Fire Engineers must subscribe to values in a robust personal
Code of Ethics (PDF File, 112Kb), supported by an overt emphasis on Continuing Professional Development.


New CIB W14 Reflection Document on Sustainable Fire Engineering

International Council for Research & Innovation
in Building & Construction (CIB)

CIB W14: ‘Fire Safety’

Working Commission 14 is an international, multi-stakeholder, transdisciplinary, pre-normalization forum for discussion and action,
on research and innovation in Fire Science and Engineering for the design, construction and operation of a
Safe, Resilient and Sustainable Built Environment for All.


#Reality    #Reliability    #Redundancy    #Resilience

A Reflection Document is not an academic or scientific paper, but a document intended to open up a sensitive aspect of fire engineering for wider discussion, re-examination, and re-imagining … to propose a framework for future progress and, if necessary, to posit some immediate solutions.  It is a document
written in a simple, generic language in order to be equally accessible to diverse design disciplines and interested groups.

This will be the third Reflection Document issued within CIB Working Commission 14: ‘Fire Safety’.  The first, back in April 2012, dealt with the subject of ‘Structural Reliability & Fire-Induced Progressive Damage’ ;  the second, issued in October 2015, explored Buildings & ‘Fire Incident Human Behaviour, Abilities & Perception’.

The challenging task at SFE 2016 DUBLIN is to commence the drafting and development of this New CIB W14 Reflection Document …
which is required most urgently.
It will cover the following subject areas and issues:

1. Conceptual Framework for Sustainable Fire Engineering (#SFE) – coherent, comprehensive and capable of adaptation/growth, with specific
references to the SFE Priority Themes … and a necessary Generic SFE Terminology.
2. Strategy for Future SFE Development – identify full range of stakeholders and barriers to future progress.
3. Full & Effective Implementation of 2005 & 2008 NIST WTC 9-11 Recommendations – consider more recent patterns of terrorist threat and
application beyond original ‘high-risk’ building types suggested by NIST. This is an essential prerequisite for a Reliability-Based SFE !
4. Fresh, New SFE Research Agenda – explore research which is actually needed, rather than narrow and/or questionable research which
all-too-readily attracts funding.
5. Practical & Resilient Implementation of SFE Research Agenda.

Sustainable Buildings: How can a creative response to these strange and wonderful new building types be encouraged and widely promoted within the International Fire Engineering Community ?

SFE Information & Research Network: In a small way … on the Links & Docs Page of this Website … we have gathered together information on
SFE-related real fire incidents and research projects.  There is a lot more information out there waiting to be collated … and a lot more practical research
waiting to get started !   Would you like to get involved ??

Sustainable Fire Engineering Group on LinkedIn:

Sustainable Fire Engineering Page on Facebook:

Sustainable Fire Engineering on Twitter:

After SFE 2016 DUBLIN … a Sustainable Fire Engineering Network will be established.