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EMS World Expo provides the perfect opportunity to update your clinical skills, learn about new operational developments, test-drive the latest EMS products, and network with thousands of fellow EMS providers from around the world. This year, it will also give emergency responders an opportunity to learn about electric and hybrid vehicles! The 2012 EMS World Expo, scheduled for October 29–November 2, 2012, in New Orleans has over 300 exhibitors and NFPA is one of them. 

Register 3-5 people right now for the 3-Day Conference and you’ll receive a discount off each registration. Register 6 or more people and receive an even greater discount off each registration prices, so act now! Swing by booth #1626 to learn more about all our EV training products and how they can help prepare you for emergency situations.


NFPA 25 ROC Meeting Recap

Posted by mattklaus Employee Sep 26, 2012

The NFPA 25 Technical Committee on Inspection, Testing and Maintenance (ITM) of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems has spent the last three days tackling public and committee comments as part of the A2013 code revision cycle. Not unlike previous revision cycles, the NFPA 25 technical committee was faced with many challenges to further refine the industry-standard on ITM activity for water-based systems.

During the ROP stage, there were several important items addressed that resulted major departures from the 2011 edition of the standard. Through the hard work of the technical committee members,  who have  put in a tremendous amount of time both during the meeting and working in task groups in the evenings (and in some cases till the early morning!!!), these contentious issues have been reshaped and consensus has been achieved (for now) across the broad spectrum of committee member interests.

Specific topics that were addressed included operating test frequencies for fire pumps, internal assessment of piping and the impairment/critical deficiency/noncritical deficiency table that appeared in Annex of the 2011 edition.

While none of the activity from this weeks meeting is final as it has not been balloted, the committee has established the committee action that will appear on the committee ballot. Pending the results of the ballot, the committee position at the ROC meeting was to reintroduce a requirement for internal assessments of piping either on a five-year periodic frequency or on a frequency established by a project specific risk assessment. This concept had been removed during the ROP meeting, however the committee found some middle ground between a mandatory 5 year internal inspection for all systems and the abolishment of a periodic frequency altogether. The 2011 edition Annex E will potentially be moved into Annex A and be "linked" to the chapter 3 definition for "deficiency".

Internal Pipe Corrosion (Courtesy of Terry Victor, SimplexGrinnell)

As for the ongoing fire pump operating test frequency debate, the position of the technical committee coming out of the ROC meeting is that the operating test frequency for fire pumps will vary depending on the type of fire pump (electric or diesel driven), the risk factors associated with the water supply and building where the fire pump is located, and the presence of a project specific frequency defined in a risk assessment.

While these positions have not been balloted and finalized by the technical committee they represent the consensus position established by the more than 30 committee members in attendance at the meeting. While the ROC meeting was not without it's fair share of discussion and debate, the work done by the committees and task group's will no doubt lead to even more exceptional guidance on how to maintain water-based fire protection systems to assure that they are functional when a fire event occurs. Thank you to the technical committee for their hard work and dedication over the last year to put us in position to produce another great edition of this important standard.


NFPA and Marsh Risk Consulting present 2012 EuroCon in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. The three day conference will take place at the Passengers Cruise Terminal, November 12 -14, 2012. This conference offers more than 25 educational sessions focused on safeguarding lives and reducing property loss taught by experts in their fields including NFPA technical staff, technical code committee members, instructors; and experts from across Europe. Three tracks are offered to help participants enhance their understanding of the latest codes that relate directly to attendees specific area of work. They are: Fire & Life Safety, Property Protection, and Property Risk Management.

Visit for more information on NFPA 2012 EuroCon or to preview the conference agenda and register today.

Home Depot
NFPA is teaming up with The Home Depot and Kidde to help raise awareness of fire safety throughout October with nationwide in-store fire safety workshops for kids and adults. In addition, The Home Depot will donate 50,000 Kidde 10-year sealed lithium battery smoke alarms to local fire departments across the United States. What's more,  a donation will be made to the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation’s “Be a Hero, Save a Hero” initiative!

“Nearly 20 percent of homes in the U.S. have smoke alarms that don’t work. This program will benefit thousands of families by providing long-life smoke alarms that offer maintenance-free protection for ten years. The recipients never need to remember to replace the battery because it’s sealed inside the unit, and will last the life of the alarm,” said Chris Rovenstine, marketing and sales manager for Kidde.

The majority of fire deaths occur in homes where there are no smoke alarms or no working smoking alarms, mainly due to dead (aged) or missing batteries or age of alarm. We recommend replacing smoke alarms every 10 years and testing your batteries twice a year. 

Fire departments can get involved and learn more by contacting their local Home Depot store manager or visiting

IBC Photo

Christopher Mealy and Joseph L. Scheffey of Hughes Associates,  Inc. authored the Fire Protection Research Foundation's latest report, titled "Assessing the Hazards and Protection Schemes Related to IBC’s in Operations Scenarios – Ph. II Testing.”

NFPA 30 Flammable and Combustible Liquids Code provides specific guidance for both containment and fire protection of Listed IBCs containing flammable and combustible liquids in storage configurations.  However, a common usage scenario involves the use of non-Listed, composite IBCs containing flammable/combustible liquids in operations scenarios.  The code does not provide specific fire protection criteria for these applications. 

In 2011, the Foundation initiated a research program to investigate the hazards of combustible liquids in composite intermediate bulk containers (IBCs) in operations scenarios.   Both passive and active fire detection/suppression systems were considered when identifying potential mitigations strategies.  The report concluded that the hazards associated with the use of composite IBCs in operations scenarios were severe and recommended that several different mitigations strategies be explored via full-scale testing. The use of a passive cellular glass insulation material, combined with a containment vessel, was identified as a potentially effective strategy.

This project outlines the results of Phase II program to address recommendations related to this passive approach made in the Phase I report and build on the findings of the report through full-scale testing.

Download the full report through the Foundation website


The International Association of Chiefs of Police has a reputation for providing top-notch education on the most pressing law enforcement topics of the day. This year, NFPA will be at the 119th annual conference educating attendees on the importance of EV Safety Training for law enforcement. With renowned keynote speakers, forums and technical workshops, and the largest exhibit hall of products and services in the law enforcement community, leaders from around the globe will come together to foster a continuing exchange of information.

The San Diego Police Department, along with city and state dignitaries, will welcome IACP members to the 119th Annual IACP Conference and Exposition.  Music, characters, and a colorful display of police ceremonial pageantry will mark the beginning of the conference.  The opening ceremony and all keynote addresses will be held in Ballroom 20 of the San Diego Convention Center.

You can also enjoy a truly unforgettable block party in the historic Gaslamp Quarter of San Diego.  For three hours IACP has reserved seven blocks – yes seven! - of downtown San Diego for an evening you won’t soon forget.  In true block party style, food, refreshments and entertainment will fill the streets. In addition, whatever type of food you enjoy, you will find it in the thirteen restaurants open exclusively to IACP members and their guests. American, Asian, Italian, Mexican are just some of the dishes that will be served.  Move freely among these eateries and the unique shops that also will be open.  Network as you wander between the five stages with a variety of entertainment, or just sit and people-watch at one of the many outdoor seating areas.    

In the midst of all the fun, don't forget to stop by booth #4904 to learn more about the upcoming release of our new EV Safety Training products for law enforcement. Its not too late to register!


!|src=|alt=CaseyGrant8547-800pixels|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=CaseyGrant8547-800pixels|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017c321b5655970b!Today’s fire service is in the midst of a research

renaissance, says Casey Grant in his column “Dual Purpose” in the

September/October issue of NFPA Journal.  While some of

this research is aimed at improving firefighter safety, much of it also addresses

the overall fire problem. 


One example is a set of recent studies on wind-driven

structural fires. According to Grant, firefighter line-of-duty deaths raised questions

about this hazard, especially in high-rise buildings where wind is often a

factor. One project, conducted by the National Institute of Standards and

Technology through the Fire Protection Research Foundation , replicated

conditions in which temperatures rose thousands of degrees Fahrenheit in seconds.

This clearly documented danger supports parallel research to develop new fireground

tactical approaches, which will, in turn, help improve civilian safety.</p>

Read Grant’s entire column for more information on

programs aimed at improving firefighter safety.&#0160;&#0160;

Man_Home_FireA four-year-old girl died of smoke inhalation and burns in a fire that started when she and her brother lit a pretend “camp fire” in the bedroom they shared in their manufactured home. When the boy was unable to extinguish the fire, he ran outside to tell his mother what had happened. One of the home’s occupants called 911, and responding firefighters advanced two hose lines into the home. They found the little girl in the fetal position by the door to her mother’s bedroom, but their efforts to revive her failed. Investigators believe that an operating air conditioner in the children’s bedroom contributed to the spread of the fire by feeding fresh air into the room. For the whole story and others like it, read “Firewatch” in the latest issue of NFPA Journal.

FSI newsletter 0912California is one of two states to mandate fire sprinklers in all new one- and two-family homes. Early on in the process, the Office of the State Fire Marshal brought together stakeholders in order to ease the implementation of the requirement. A task force was created comprising members of the fire service, building and public health officials, water purveyors, as well as state and national organizations. The September issue of NFPA's Fire Sprinkler Initiative newsletter offers up the comprehensive report issued by the task force that includes valuable recommendations that other states and municipalities can take to heart.

We also feature video of a Massachusets family whose new home includes sprinklers, which offer them peace of mind because twin sons live with spastic quadriplegia cerebral palsy and would have difficulty escaping a fire.

Subscribe today to automatically receive our monthly Fire Sprinkler Initiative newsletter. It's free, informative, and will keep you up to date on anti-sprinkler legislation, our advocacy efforts, and other sprinkler-related news.

Warehouse sprinklersToday's economic climate is forcing companies to transform empty warehouses into storage facilities instead of building pricier structures from scratch. Unfortunately, these revamped buildings might not be adequately sprinklered to handle the new commodities being housed in these spaces.

As columnist Matt Klaus explains in the latest issue of NFPA Journal, the authorities having jurisdictions (AHJ) tasked with permitting the building might not be aware of the new storage requirements, or a regulatory review of the new storage hazard never occurs.

"NFPA 25, Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems, requires owners to take the proper steps to confirm that the sprinkler system can handle the storage arrangements present whenever a change in hazard occurs," says Klaus. "A review of the sprinkler system for effectiveness should be conducted whereever there is a change in one or more of the critical characteristics that drive sprinkler system design for storage areas."

Read more about this issue in NFPA Journal.

Believe it or not, the 2013 edition of NFPA 80, Standard for Fire Doors and Other Opening Protectives, is now available.  Did you know that you can view the entire document on the NFPA 80 document information page? The new edition of this document contains many valuable and important changes related to fire doors, care and maintenance, glazing, and hardware, that all users should be aware of. 

Starting with #5, here are the top 5 changes to the 2013 edition of NFPA 80. 

#5.  Section - Hinges and Pivots

Many general updates have been made to Section regarding hinges and pivot sets on swinging doors with builder's hardware.  The language of the 2010 edition of NFPA 80 and other past editions did not adequately address pivots, or specific types of hinges and was unclear in its application. The language throughout section has been clarified so that it now applies to pivots and hinges, including continuous and spring hinges.  Anywhere in this section that the term "hinges" was used, the Committee made sure to clarify if it also applied to specific types of hinges such as spring hinges, continuous hinges, and also to pivots. 

New subsections of have been added to specifically recognize the use and installation of continuous hinges and pivot sets.  There was no language to adequately address continuous hinges or pivot sets in prior editions of the standard and it was unclear as to whether or not these types of hinges were permitted or prohibited by the standard or how pivot sets were installed. The new text adds language regarding the installation of continuous hinges and pivot sets to provide guidance and clarification when they are being used.

Check back soon for #4!

NFPA News The special September issue of NFPA News, our codes and standards newsletter, is now available.

In this issue:

  • First Draft Reports available for submitting public comments on Fall 2013 revision cycle documents
  • Committee titles and scopes revised and approved by Standards Council
  • New document on portable hand-held radios approved
  • New document and committee approved on mass evacuation planning
  • Committees seeking members
  • Committees soliciting public input
  • Committee meetings calendar

NFPA News is a free newsletter, and includes special announcements, notification of public input and comment closing dates, requests for comments, notices on the availability of Standards Council minutes, and other important news about NFPA’s standards development process.

Free subscription
Sign-in on NFPA’s web site and then select “NFPA News” from your e-mail options.

- Debbie Baio

EV Summit
The 3rd Annual Electric Vehicle Safety Standards Summit will be held on the 18th of October 2012 at the COBO Center in Detroit, Michigan, hosted by NFPA and SAE International.

The Summit will continue the dialogue and partnerships which have been successful in modifying codes, standards, and attitudes to enhance safety and support the ever-increasing fleet of electric and hybrid electric vehicles in North America. Join with leaders of the industry, including vehicle manufacturers, governmental agencies, standards developing organizations, and first and second responders. Previous Summits (October 2010 and September 2011) have generated collaborative efforts that examined fire and electrical safety standards affecting electric vehicles, breaking down potential barriers to these vehicles' successful integration. Join us, contribute to the discussion and learn how EVs and hybrids are here to stay!

Pre-registration ends on Friday, September 21st, so be sure to register this week to save $100!

Register, view the summit agenda, view sponsorship opportunities and more

On September 19, 1990, a fire at a board and care occupancy in Bessemer, Alabama resulted in four fatalities.  Fortunately, eleven residents were evacuated by the actions of a 16-year-old occupant, who was awakened by a smoke detector.

The fire originated in a centrally located room, where a couch was ignited by an elderly occupant attempting to light his pipe.  Soon the fire activated the smoke detector in the room, waking the owner’s son, who began to carry patients out of the building.  When he was no longer able to rescue occupants due to fire conditions, he alerted his parents in a nearby mobile home, and they called the fire department.

An inadequate water supply resulted in the building’s sprinkler system not working properly, illustrating important code enforcement lessons.  NFPA members can download the full report for free, and all site visitors can download a summary in Spanish

School decorationsJust in time for the new school year, the September/October issue of NFPA Journal includes information on safely decorating classrooms using provisions in NFPA 101®, Life Safety Code®.

According to the code, bulletin boards, posters, and paper attached directly to walls should only cover a specific percentage of the wall area. Adorning classrooms with material that's highly flammable or explosive in nature should also be avoided. The Life Safety Code also provides specific instructions for movable walls and partitions, paneling, and wall pads.

"The authority having jurisdiction shall impose controls on the quantity and arrangement of combustible contents in assembly occupancies to provide an adequate level of safety to life from fire," says NFPA Journal columnist Chip Carson. "Controlling combustible decorations is an important part of fire safety. The fall is a time of many celebrations, as well as the beginning of the school year, and enforcing the code requirements is necessary to keep everyone safe."

For more information about decoration requirements found in the Life Safety Code, read the column in NFPA Journal.

Another EV train-the-trainer session was delivered by NFPA Instructor Chris Pepler in Rochester, MN over the weekend. Now, there are nearly 2,500 emergency response instructors out training NFPA's EV course across 37 states! We've visited the following locations on our nationwide training tour...

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Connecticut
  • Delaware
  • Florida
  • Georgia
  • Hawaii
  • Illinois
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • Minnesota
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • North Carolina
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon  
  • Pennsylvania  
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Vermont
  • Washington
  • Wisconsin
  • Wyoming

Don't see your state listed? Find out how to attend a training in your area!


National Plug In Day is coming up!!! This year it will be held on Sunday, September 23, 2012. This nationally recognized day is an annual event intended to draw global attention to the environmental, economic and other benefits of plug-in electric vehicles through simultaneous events in many cities across the country. Events in many cities include a parade of electric vehicles along with several speakers and other presentations. The opportunity to test drive many new electric vehicles is also available in many cities. The event plans to highlight the range of electric vehicles out today as well as upcoming technologies.

Click here to find the closest event to you.

NFPA and LEGOLAND® Florida recently asked members of the public to submit a video that highlights their friends and families to video record their best rendition of the theme song, “Put the Wet Stuff on the Hot Stuff” from The Big Test show at LEGOLAND Florida.

We recieved so many amazing videos in our video contest, we had a tough time choosing between them to narrow down finalists. So - we thought we would let the public choose from all 10 entries to pick a winner!

Vote for your favorite finalist once per day through September 28th at midnight. Vote on Facebook or via this site if you don't have a Facebook account. The winner will be announced on October 4th – good luck to all of our finalists!

The person who submits the video that receives the most votes will receive LEGOLAND Florida two-day multi-park tickets for four people, two nights of hotel accommodations for four people, and $2,000 towards travel expenses.

Ad Week
We all know and love Sparky the Fire Dog, and now he is being recognized as one of the country’s top-notch mascots in the Madison Avenue Advertising Walk of Fame in NYC. Before he marches down the famous street in October, you can vote for him as your favorite icon!

SparkyVoting is now open . Established during the inaugural Advertising Week, the inductees are voted on by the general public and the winners are announced during Ad Week, October 1-5th. Let's help Sparky be chosen as one of this year's winners!

Help Sparky out by spreading the word and be sure to vote for Sparky now!

Animal housing facilitiesAt NFPA's Assocation Technical Meeting in June, NFPA members voted in favor of a motion for NFPA 150, Fire and Life Safety in All Animal Housing Facilities, that would have required sprinklers in an array of structures housing animals. However, the measure failed to pass the necessary balloting from the standard's committee, meaning the requirement won't make its way into the standard's 2013 edition.

The action ruffled the feathers of 14 animal rights organizations, which appealled the decision to NFPA's Standards Council and got a crash course in NFPA's codes and standards development process. A meeting on the issue took place in June and also included organizations supporting the committee's decision, specifically the National Pork Producers Council, which argued sprinkler installation costs would burden pork farmers.

Read about this debate and the Standard's Council decision on the sprinkler requirement in the new issue of NFPA Journal.

UL recently posted a Public Notice for a suspension of standard UL 2196 that impacts some fire resistive electrical cables and systems, specifically Electrical Circuit Protective Systems (ECPS) within the categories FHIT for UL and FHJR for ULC. NFPA recommends you review this public notice on UL’s website. UL offered the following additional background and recommendations:

These systems are primarily installed in mixed occupancy high-rise buildings, and in tunnels, bridges, and other commercial infrastructures.  In many circumstances, the referenced systems exist in conjunction with other fire mitigation system options, which are not in question.  Within a building or structure, the locations of these fire resistive circuit cable systems are typically found as part of in the following life safety installations:

  • Fire pump- Feeder/controls
  • Elevators
  • Smoke control equipment
  • Command center critical systems
  • Pressurized stairway systems
  • Smoke management systems
  • Fire alarm systems
  • Electrical Equipment Rooms -      Feeders/Service
  • Emergency Generators and Standby Power      Systems

UL is recommending you consider a “performance approach” to assessing the building’s unique situation. First, utilize a team to review and identify risks in the building (e.g. are there redundant systems in place and is there a need for an additional fire mitigating system?)  Specific to the installed or almost installed ECPS, guide the team to consider the following variables:

  • Distance of cable in ECPS
  • Location of current system
  • Redundant systems currently in place
  • Is COPS classification essential to owner?
  • Number of stories in building
  • Use of the building
  • Occupancy of building
  • Fuel loading
  • Sprinkler system coverage  
  • Fire alarm systems

Assessing these variables will help evaluate risk and determine next best steps.  Because there is so much variability to buildings that may have an Electrical Circuit Protective Systems (ECPS), it is impossible to recommend one solution to fit all building/structure types.

A FAQ is also posted on the UL website.

For additional questions, please contact, Bob James,; phone 813-956-8669. He is a member of UL’s Regulatory Services Staff, whose general email address is:

NFPA will be reviewing this Public Notice to determine its impact on any NFPA codes or standards and working with the appropriate technical committees. 


The number of people killed in this week's garment factory fire in Karachi, Pakistan, is neither final nor official, but the operative description in most press reports is "at least 289"—which, according to NFPA's Fire Analysis & Research Division, would make it by far the deadliest industrial building fire in history.

That unfortunate benchmark had previously been established by the Kader toy factory fire, which killed 188 workers near Bangkok, Thailand, in 1993. Before Kader, the deadliest such incident had been another garment factory fire: the Triangle Waist Co. fire in New York City in 1911, which killed 146 people and led to sweeping reforms in workplace safety in the United States, including the creation of NFPA's Life Safety Code.

Last year, when I was writing the story for NFPA Journal that marked the 100th anniversary of the Triangle fire, I was struck by the lockstep similarity of many of the deadliest garment factory fires over the last century, which now tend to occur in developing (and often struggling) nations from Honduras to Bangladesh: few accessible exits, locked doors, little or nothing in the way of fire protection systems, lax inspection, non-existent enforcement. Such conditions are part of the collateral danger associated with the global garment industry's so-called "race to the bottom," the ongoing search for manufacturing locations that offer the cheapest labor and the fewest regulatory concerns. Every day, millions of workers around the world walk into garment factories that can accurately be described as death traps.

That description is being widely applied to the Ali Enterprises factory in Karachi, which reportedly produced clothing for American and European labels. Reports estimate as many as 2,000 workers were in the multi-story factory on Tuesday evening when the fire began, but that only one exit was available—the rest had been locked. Most of the building's windows were barred. Some people were killed or injured trying to jump to safety, but most of the casualties were workers who, suddenly confronted by smoke and flame, had nowhere to go.

Early reports suggest the fire was caused by an electrical short, which would present yet another layer of regulatory need. "Wali Muhammad, a former electrical inspector, said that most accidental fires are caused by short circuits in equipment," The New York Times reported. "But since 2003, he said, inspectors had been forbidden by law from visiting factories in Karachi and Punjab; it was not immediately clear why." 

Perhaps, but it doesn't require a conspiracy theorist to come up with some plausible guesses—none particularly flattering to factory owners or local officials—as to why such a law might exist.

The sad and unnecessary events in Karachi come at a time when NFPA is working with stakeholders around the world to adopt our codes and standards, and when it is partnering with other standards development organizations to promote the use of the most up-to-date versions of safety codes. If anything, the circumstances around the Karachi fire highlight just how advanced and forward-thinking those efforts really are, while people across much of the planet, for a host of reasons, still face staggering fire risks in the course of something as simple as getting up in the morning and going to work. For much of the developing world, the question persists: What will it take to spur the adoption of relevant codes and standards, and even more importantly, what will it take to ensure even a modicum of enforcement?

Meanwhile, opportunity loves a vacuum. The global garment industry has time and again proven itself predatory, unapologetic, and largely unaccountable for its labor and safety practices, and until it is met with code adoption and the will to enforce those codes, it will continue with business as usual, and at a terrible cost. Yesterday's Triangle becomes today's Karachi becomes tomorrow's new deadliest industrial building fire. As a Triangle survivor once put it, the fire still burns.

(Photo: AFP) 

The First Draft Reports for 16 NFPA documents in the Fall 2013 revision cycle are now available.  Review the First Draft Reports for use as background in the submission of public comments. The deadline to submit a public comment on any of these documents is November 16, 2012. The list of NFPA documents in the 2013 fall revision cycle is as follows:

  • NFPA 37, Standard for the Installation and Use of Stationary Combustion Engines and Gas Turbines
  • NFPA 69, Standard on Explosion Prevention Systems
  • NFPA 82, Standard on Incinerators and Waste and Linen Handling Systems and Equipment
  • NFPA 730, Guide for Premises Security
  • NFPA 731, Standard for the Installation of Electronic Premises Security Systems
  • NFPA 750, Standard on Water Mist Fire Protection Systems
  • NFPA 921, Guide for Fire and Explosion Investigations
  • NFPA 1005, Standard for Professional Qualifications for Marine Fire Fighting for Land-Based Fire Fighters
  • NFPA 1192, Standard on Recreational Vehicles
  • NFPA 1194, Standard for Recreational Vehicle Parks and Campgrounds
  • NFPA 1521, Standard for Fire Department Safety Officer
  • NFPA 1561, Standard on Emergency Services Incident Management System
  • NFPA 1670, Standard on Operations and Training for Technical Search and Rescue Incidents
  • NFPA 1963, Standard for Fire Hose Connections
  • NFPA 1965, Standard for Fire Hose Appliances
  • NFPA 1975, Standard on Station/Work Uniforms for Emergency Services

The First Draft Report serves as documentation of the Input Stage and is published for public review and comment. The First Draft Report contains a compilation of the First Draft of the NFPA Standard, First Revisions, Public Input, Committee Input, Committee Statements, and Ballot Results and Statements. Where applicable, the First Draft Report also contains First Correlating Revisions, Correlating Notes, and Correlating Input. The Report also contains a list of Technical Committee and Correlating Committee Members and instructions on how to use the First Draft Report in submitting public comments.

Waldo_canyon_300x200“For years, NFPA has pushed hard through our Firewise® program for a much more active approach to reducing risk in the wildland/urban interface,” says NPFA President Jim Shannon in his "First Word" column in the most recent issue of NFPA Journal, “And we recently expanded the scope of our work with a grant from the U. S. Forest Service to launch the Fire Adapted Communities™ program.” 

With the support of the Forest Service, NFPA expects the Fire Adapted Communities program to get off to a fast start. According to Shannon, however, that is not enough. The whole fire safety community should understand that this is no longer a regional or seasonal problem that can be solved by a single agency, but an issue of urgent national concern with implications for all of us.

“At NFPA,” he says, “We are not waiting for this problem to get further out of control. We are acting now.”



The latest issue of NFPA Journal, featuring our stories on the Latin American prison fire problem and the impact of mitigation techniques on wildfires, is available as a digital reader and in app form—two great new ways to enjoy Journal anytime, anywhere.

The digital reader is a Web-based version of Journal that shows you the magazine exactly as it appears in print—except that all Web links and emails, in both stories and ads, are live and clickable. The digital reader also includes versions optimized for iPad, iPhone, and Android.

The NFPA Journal app, available through Apple's app store, lets you download the magazine and create your own library of Journals that you can read whenever you want, even if you're offline. If you're using it with a Web connection, you have all the flexibility that you do with the digital reader: watch embedded slideshows and videos, link to products and services, share stories with colleagues, and much more. The app is designed for iPad and iPhone.

The 2013 NFPA Conference & Expo will be held June 10-13 in Chicago, IL. The call for presentations is now open. Deadline has been extended to Friday, September 14 at 5:00 pm (EST). Submit your presentation proposal.

Submissions emphasizing a specific product, process or manufacturer will not be considered. NFPA will review all presentation proposals. Selections will be made based on quality, relevance, focus, practical application, and on the presenter’s experience and credentials.

If your proposal is accepted, you will be required to submit a handout. Continuing education credits (CEUs) will be awarded for all education sessions. More details.

Philip StittleburgWhat similarties exist between an assistant district attorney and a firefighter? There are many, says Philip Stittleburg, who has spent time in both the courtroom and the scene of a fire, situations that have prepared him for his new role as chair of NFPA's Board of Directors.

Stittleburg highlighted the board's goals in the latest issue of NFPA Journal. As chair of the National Volunteer Fire Council, he also aspires to utilize the synergy of both organizations to address a decline in new volunteer firefighter recruits.

"You can describe a whole array of  challenges for the volunteer fire service, but you can distill them down  to two categories: time and money," Stittleburg tells NFPA Journal. "Of the two challenges, the greater  one is time. What we’re seeing is the American worker spending more  and more hours at their job, which is contrary to what was being  predicted 30 or 40 years ago.  Lumped on top of that, we’re seeing a decline in the  economy, which is forcing people to take second jobs. The net result is  volunteers with less discretionary time. Concurrently, their work as  firefighters is placing greater demands on their available time, because  the role of the fire service — career and volunteer — is expanding." 

Read about Stittleburg's proposed solutions to this problem and his other aspirations for NFPA in the September/October issue of NFPA Journal.  

Fire_loss_600x300In 2011, public fire departments responded to 1,389,500 fires in the United States, 4.4 percent more than the year before, according to Michael Karter in his article “Fire Loss in the United States During 2011” in the most recent issue of NFPA Journal.These included an estimated 484,500 structure fires, virtually the same number as occurred in 2010. Of these structure fires, 386,000 were residential fires, accounting for 80 percent of all structure fires. For nonresidential structure fires, some property types showed notable changes compared to 2010: there were 6,500 fires involving institutional properties, an increase of 18.2 percent, and 10,000 fires involving industrial properties, an increase of 11.1 percent. In addition, 686,000 outside fires were reported in 2011, an increase of 8.2 percent over 2010. An estimated 338,000 of these were brush, grass, and wildland fires, a significant increase of 11.2 percent from the year before. You can read the article check out the complete report online.

A new Fire Protection Research Foundation report has recently been published, titled, "Validation of Modeling Tools for Detection Design in High Air Flow Environments – Final Phase I Report.” This report was authored by Daniel Gottuk, Jason Floyd, Joshua Dinaburg, Justin Williamson, Hughes Associates, Inc.

Research photoInformation-technology and telecommunications (IT/telecom) facilities provide critical services in today’s world. From a risk standpoint, the indirect impact of fire loss due to business interruption and loss of critical operations, sometimes geographically very distant from the IT/telecom facility itself, can far outweigh the direct property loss. In the past few years, there have been dramatic changes in the equipment housed in these facilities, which have placed increased demands on HVAC systems. As a result, airflow containment solutions are being introduced to increase energy efficiency.

From a fire safety design perspective, the use of airflow containment creates a high airflow environment that dilutes the smoke, which poses challenges for providing adequate detection, and affects the dispersion of suppression agents. Fire protection requirements for IT/telecom facilities are directly addressed by NFPA 75, Protection of Information Technology Equipment, and NFPA 76, Fire Protection of Telecommunications Facilities. Installation of detection systems are covered by NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, which is referenced by both NFPA 75 and NFPA 76. Annex Section B.4.5 of NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, states, “There currently are no quantitative methods for estimating either smoke dilution or airflow effects on locating smoke detectors.” Although tools exist to model fire development, detection time, and suppression agent dispersion, they have not been validated for this application.

Accordingly, the Fire Protection Research Foundation initiated this project with an overall goal to develop a validated set of modeling tools that can be used for providing reliable analysis of detection performance in IT/telecom facilities. The goal of the first phase is to develop a full scale fire test research plan and a list of models and data inputs to be used in the validation study.

Download the full report through the Foundation website

Two adults and four children died in a home fire in Ohio, which was attributed to a charcoal grill left unattended on a wooden porch at the rear of the home. (Photo: AP/Wide World)
Of the nearly 1.4 million fires that U.S. firefighters responded to in 2011, 23 of them were classified as catastrophic multiple-death fires, which are defined as a fire responsible for five or more deaths in homes or apartments, or three or more deaths in all other structures.


The latest edition of NFPA Journal highlights this statistic, taken from NFPA's new report Catastrophic Multiple-Death Fires. Nearly 115 deaths--16 of which were children under the age of six--were associated with these fires. The report also indicates that an unusually high proportion of these fires were caused by explosions.

"Three of the explosions involved storage  properties: a grain elevator, a fireworks storage bunker, and a pipeline  near an oil storage tank at an oil well," states the report. "Two others originated in  single-family homes, and one occurred at a steel powder manufacturing  plant. In the 10 years leading up to 2011, 34 explosions  were reported in the catastrophic multiple-death study, resulting in 194  deaths. Most notable of those were the West Virginia mine explosion of  2010 that killed 29, the Texas refinery explosion of 2005 that killed  15, and the Georgia sugar refinery explosion of 2008 that killed 14."

For more information on these fires and the role of smoke detection and suppression equipment, check out the September/October edition of NFPA Journal.

*NFPA is making it
easier to use your digital NFPA codes and standards with two major changes.*

First, all of our PDF products will no longer be locked with the
FIleOpen Digital Rights management (DRM) utility. This change simplifies access
to code. Many of our customers could not utilize the PDF products on mobile
devices like iPads and Android tablets because of technical

&#0160;issues. Still more

could not use them because of corporate or government security measures. Now

you’ll be able to use the code on any PDF-capable device. You’ll have the codes

when and where you need!|src=|alt=TabletandBooks|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=TabletandBooks|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017d3bf51d70970c! them.

The second change is to the watermarking tool. Until today,
watermarks were pre-filled with the customer information on the purchasing
account. Now, customers have two fields that separate
 “designated user” from
“owner/purchaser.” This will greatly enhance purchasing through purchasing departments
or agents. In addition, consultants, trainers and any other code user that buys
a copy of the code on behalf of another can easily designate the proper user
and owner of that purchase. This change will increase the ability of customers
to protect their investment in NFPA products.

We took care to design this new system to be as painless as
possible. You won’t need to do a thing to keep using the PDFs you already have.
They’ll keep working as they always have been.

But if you need your code on a tablet, buy a new computer or
just need a new document, you’ll be able to download it from your profile using
the new system. All of your purchases are there waiting for you should you need

*A changing landscape in
publishing – Digital Rights Management (DRM)*

Why is NFPA doing this? It lets the customer do their job
better. It increases access to life- and property-saving codes and standards.
And, as a publisher, it is the right thing to do.

Digital Rights Management (DRM) is a hotly debated topic in
the publishing world. As a policy, it is meant to address the fundamental
disconnect between copyright holders and the easy-to-distribute digital format.
Historically, a copyright was much easier to protect. If you wrote a book,
copying that material was often not worth the effort, so copyright was
sufficient protection. With the introduction of digital formats, the world of
copyright completely changed. Digital assets are highly portable and easily copied
– and computers are consummate copying devices.

As the technology rose, from photocopiers to audio tapes to
CD burners to digital downloads, the publishing industry has been engaged in
looking for a technological solution to combat piracy. Led by the music and
movie industries, publishers of all kinds have used a wide variety of DRM
software (and hardware) solutions to try to protect their intellectual
property. The escalation of the DRM arms race – ever more complex locks vying
with increasingly sophisticated lock picks – has left the customer as the
innocent casualty. The competing philosophies see the customer as either a mad,
scurvy pirate or a hapless baby seal. Ultimately, the reality is that we’re all
somewhere in between. Recent
shows that most people have used pirated software, though many
don’t even know it.

NFPA is making a change away from lock-and-key DRM to social
DRM. We have removed the software that locked our digital products because it
was making it too difficult for our customers to do their work – and when your
work is life and work safety, we can’t afford to slow them down. We are adding
a new watermarking system that allows appropriate use of our digital product
licenses geared for our customers’ needs.

isn’t the first publisher
to make this change. We are a business that
supports other businesses, and we will treat our customers like the
professionals they are.

As more code users embrace mobile technology,
NFPA wants to provide solutions to match your needs. Are you a tablet user? Do
you need codes in the field? Let us know what you think.

NFPA News The September issue of NFPA News, our codes and standards newsletter, is now available.

In this issue:

  • Comments sought on proposed TIAs on NFPA 25, 101, 1917, and 1983
  • TIAs issued on NFPA 13, 13D, 13R, 25, 72, 90A, 99, 269, 1124, 1971, and 1977
  • Errata issued on NFPA 70E, 285, and 1906
  • Standards Council meeting agenda available
  • Committees seeking members
  • Committees seeking enforcers
  • Committees soliciting public input
  • Committee meetings calendar

NFPA News is a free newsletter, and includes special announcements, notification of public input and comment closing dates, requests for comments, notices on the availability of Standards Council minutes, and other important news about NFPA’s standards development process.

Free subscription
Sign-in on NFPA’s web site and then select “NFPA News” from your e-mail options.

- Debbie Baio

ThumbnailLast February, a prison fire in Comayagua, Honduras, killed 361 people. It was the deadliest such fire in memory and raised new concerns over the safety of Latin American prisons. In his article “Lessons of Comayagua” in the September/October issue of NFPA Journal, Jaime A. Moncada takes a detailed look at the fire and discusses how NFPA codes and standards can be used to improve fire safety in prisons and other occupancies throughout Latin America. Since 2000, most of the largest loss-of-life fires worldwide have occurred in Latin American countries and other developing nations, and this trend is likely to continue, as ever-larger buildings are built in without adequate concern for fire safety. In 2004, for example, 428 people died in a fire at the Ycua Bolaños supermarket in Asunción, Paraguay. And just last May, a fire at the Villagio Shopping Mall in Doha, Qatar, built in 2006, claimed the lives of 19 people, most of them children. For many developing countries, Moncada says, adoption of NFPA codes and standards, as well as readily available training seminars and a local fire safety industry well-versed in NFPA requirements, can provide the start to a solution that local authorities may find impossible to ignore.

Early in the morning of September 9, 1973, a fire occurred in a 30 room, three-story hotel in Bath, Maine.  Four people were killed, and 18 others injured, including four firefighters.  The fire began with an oil-burning furnace that had originally burned coal.  The horizontal connector, the metal pipe that conducted furnace combustion gases to the chimney, was about 18 inches below a zinc plate on the ceiling.  The “normal” temperature in the room was quite hot, and this heat had dried out the wood ceiling above the zinc plate.  Eventually, a joint in the connector came apart, and hot exhaust gases escaped and ignited the ceiling above the furnace.  The fire eventually spread into the lobby, and ignited a couch, which was noticed by a hotel occupant.

Fire quickly spread up open stairways to the second and third floors, eventually, the fire became so intense that a center section of the building collapsed.  NFPA members can read the full Fire Journal article for free. 

Corn Starch Vent_2
Courtesy Fike Corp. From Deflagration Vent Demonstration at NFPA Combustible Dust Symposium 2010


A Brief Background:

In 2003, three major explosions occurred in separate industries and involved three different types of combustible dusts: polyethylene, phenolic resin, and aluminum.  These incidents sparked a study by the U.S. Chemical Safety and Hazard Investigation Board (CSB), Combustible Dust Hazard Investigation.  The study identified 281 incidents involving combustible dust between 1980 and 2005 that resulted in 119 deaths and 718 injuries. 

From this investigation (and others that followed), the CSB recommended to facilities that handle, store, use, process, and/or generate any type of combustible dust follow the NFPA dust standards. In addition, the CSB recommended that Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) develop a comprehensive regulatory standard that protects employees from combustible dust fires and explosions based on current NFPA standards.  Some of the major concerns that came out of the OSHA stakeholder meetingsfor the development of a comprehensive dust standard were:

  • NFPA dust documents have some inconsistencies between them
  • NFPA standards can be confusing to implement
  • NFPA standards provide little guidance on the “how” part of the requirements
  • Impact to small businesses

There are other concerns about the adoption of NFPA dust documents, but I believe these to be the key factors that started NFPA to consider a restructure of the current Dust committees.


NFPA Dust Technical Committee Restructure:

Currently, NFPA develops five major dust standards that target specific dust types:

These five documents are the responsibility of four technical committees:

  • CMD-AGR: TC on Agricultural Dusts (NFPA 61)
  • CMD-CMM: TC on Combustible Metals and Metal Dusts (NFPA 484)
  • CMD-HAP: TC on Handling and Conveying of Dusts, Vapors, and Gases (NFPA 91, 654, and 655)
  • CMD-WOO: TC on Wood and Cellulosic Materials Processing (NFPA 664)

Following the OSHA stakeholder meetings, NFPA staff made a request to restructure the current NFPA dust committees and documents.  The Standards Council in the March 2010 Standards Council Meeitng (Minute Item 10-3-19) voted to publish the notice to solicit comments from the public regarding the restructing of the NFPA dust committees and documents.

The following Standards Council meeting in August 2010 (Minute Item 10-8-36), the Standards Council reviewed the public input of the request to restructure the NFPA dust committees and documents, and established a task group to consider the issues and determine the best option for NFPA dust committee and documents. 

The task group consisted of the current chairs of the four dust committees, four additional representatives from the four dust committees, NFPA staff and a Standards Council member.  They met in early 2011 and from that meeting came up with recommendations and sent them to the Standards Council.  The following was the Standards Council's decision at the March 2011 Meeting (Minute Item 11-3-24):

  • Establish a Technical Correlating Committee (CMD-AAC) to oversee the work of the 4 dust committees and the proposed new committee
  • Establish a Technical Committee on the fundamentals of combustible dusts (CMD-FUN)
  • Task CMD-FUN with development of a new document that contains general requirements used to prevent and protect users of combustible dust from fires and explosions AND directed users to the appropriate industry or commodity-specific standard
The correlating committee’s role over the next few years is to help make the dust documents more consistent with each other while taking into account there will be differences due to industry specific processes and hazards. The fundamental committee's role over the next few years is to develop a draft to solicit public comment and from that a standard that contains general requirements used to prevent and protect users of combustible dust from fires and explosions and directed users to the appropriate industry or commodity-specific standard.

NFPA Dust TC Structure


For all NFPA technical committees, each committee member is assigned a classification based on their principle interest in the activity of the Committee. The interest classifications that NFPA uses to categorize the committee members are:

  • Manufacturer
  • User
  • Installer/Maintainer
  • Labor
  • Applied Research/Testing Laboratory
  • Enforcing Authority
  • Insurance
  • Consumer
  • Special Expert

No more than 1/3 from any interest category can make up a committee.  This is the key to keeping the balance of the NFPA technical committees. There was one other element when establishing the Technical Committee on the Fundamentals of Combustible Dusts, ensuring proper representation from the different industries that deal with combustible dusts.

From all the applications and over the course of the year (2011), the Standards Council appointed 28 voting members, 6 alternates, and 2 representatives from OSHA.  From these members, the representation from the different industries are as follows:

CMDFUN Industry Representation

Again, balance is the key in this technical committee that has been tasked with the development of a standard to develop the general requirements for all combustible dusts and then direct the users to the industry and commodity-specific standard.


What's going on now?

Both CMD-AAC and CMD-FUN have submitted their scope for approval from the Standards Council at the August 2012 Meeting.  Additionally, the fundamentals committee has been working over this past year on a draft document to present to the Standards Council.

At approximately 1:00 a.m. on September 8, 1990, a fire occurred at a fraternity house in Berkeley, California.  The fire killed three students and injured two others.  Local fire investigators determined that the fire started when a couch in the assembly room was ignited with a butane lighter.  The couch then ignited other combustibles in the room and the fire quickly spread through the building.  Fire protection equipment included fire extinguishers, fire hose cabinets, local fire alarm system with bells and manual pull stations, and single station, battery-operated smoke detectors in a few sleeping rooms.

The following factors significantly contributed to the loss of life and property in this fire:

  • Open stairways
  • Combustible interior finished throughout the building
  • Lack of compartmentation and occupancy separation with fire-rated construction
  • Lack of fire safety training and drills

NFPA members can download the full investigation report for free, and all site visitors can download a summary of the investigation in Spanish.  


!|src=|alt=Twin towers|style=width: 450px; display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;|title=Twin towers|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017d3bd46517970c!
This month marks the 11th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks and serves as a reminder of the numerous safety improvements by NFPA that followed a tragedy responsible for killing nearly 3,000 people.


Since 9/11, a healthy array of provisions have made their way into a variety of codes and standards, including updated evacuation procedures in NFPA 101®, +Life Safety Code®,+ and requirements for mass notification systems per N FPA 72[® |], National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code.</a> Fire service members have also gotten a boost; gear-related codes and standards protect emergency responders against nearly any sort of hazard. There&#39;s also been an increased emphasis on preparing for other manmade or natural catastrophes, evident by the 9/11 Commission Report encouraging the private sector to adopt NFPA 1600, +Disaster/Emergency Management and Business Continuity Programs.+<br />


NFPA President James Shannon told NFPA Journal in a feature story on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, &quot;The event will always be considered one of the worst days in American history, and it will certainly be one of the most important days in the history of NFPA. We have been a very important part of the country&#39;s effort to do everything we can to prepare, in case anything like 9/11 happens again.&quot; Read the feature for additional examples of NFPA&#39;s involvement.

Also, check out the video of Bob Duval, NFPA regional director and senior fire investigator, who examined the World Trade Center site weeks after the attacks:

Lithium ion battery cells and small battery packs (8 to 10 cells) are in wide consumer use today. Superior capacity has driven the demand for these batteries in electronic devices such as laptops, power tools, cameras, and cell phones. In 2011, the Foundation conducted a hazard and use assessment of these batteries, with a focus on developing information to inform fire protection strategies in storage. Since that time, the Foundation has conducted a survey of storage practices and developed a multi-phase research strategy.

The objective of this program phase is to provide a comparative flammability characterization of common lithium ion batteries to standard commodities in storage.

Based on the previous hazard assessment, and the recently completed storage survey, the scope of this program will include three different battery types:

  • 18650 format cylindrical lithium ion batteries
  • Prismatic lithiumion batteries in polymer gel packs
  • Packaged power tool rechargeable battery packs with cylindrical

The results will be analyzed in comparison with the flammability performance of standard commodities and, if appropriate, sprinkler protection criteria will be developed to inform NFPA 13.

Cloud ceilings are ceiling panels that sit beneath the structural ceiling of a room or space and are seen increasingly in commercial and industrial buildings.  “Cloud” panels range in area from discrete ceiling panels with large spaces in between, to close-to-full-room-area contiguous coverage with small gaps at the perimeter wall location. NFPA 13 does not have definitive guidance on automatic sprinkler installation requirements for these ceilings and in some conditions requires sprinklers at both the structural ceiling and cloud ceiling panel elevations.  Recent NFPA 13 change proposals were rejected based on a lack of validation of modeling results.

The objective of this project is to obtain an understanding of how cloud ceiling panels impact sprinkler actuation thresholds with an overall goal to provide the technical basis for sprinkler installation requirements. A primary focus  is determination of sprinkler installation requirements for large contiguous “clouds” with a specific objective of determining the maximum separation distance between the wall and cloud edge at which structural ceiling sprinklers are not necessary/effective. 

Both fire modeling and full scale testing will be conducted.



The first emergency responder community is currently experiencing the enhancement of existing and development of new electronic technologies for use with personal protective equipment (PPE) ensembles. After 11 September 2001, the rate of technological innovation has accelerated, with additional consideration given toward CBRNE (Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosive) type events. Protective ensembles used by first emergency responders include or will soon include electronics such as communications, GPS and tracking, environmental sensing, physiological sensing, and other components now becoming practical solutions at emergency incidents.

However, overall integration and coordination of these electronic-based technologies on a broad scale is lacking, and a standardized electronics integration platform/framework is needed. For the first emergency responder to remain effective, these electronic technologies must interact and operate synergistically, and provide an effective and efficient overall package for the first emergency responder. Integration of these components with the first emergency responder ensemble is required for managing weight, space, heat, and power requirements, as well as to create the least interference and burden to the wearer.

The goal of this project is to develop performance requirements for the compatibility and interoperability of electronic equipment used by emergency first responders.

The research program is made possible through funding from the National institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), and will be conducted under the auspices of the Research Foundation with the intent of having a final report 18 months from project initiation. The report will be made available electronically to the general public and presented to the relevant standards development committees of NFPA and ASTM.

Cooking-equipment related fires are a leading cause of U.S. fire loss. The National Fire Protection Association reports that in 2003-2006, for example, there were 150,200 reported home cooking related fires per year, with associated annual losses of 500 civilian deaths, 4,700 civilian injuries and $756 million in direct property damage.

Beginning in the mid 1980’s, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, Consumer Product Safety Commission, and home appliance industry undertook a comprehensive review of strategies to mitigate death, injury and property loss from cooking fires. All strategies were engineering strategies defined by a condition to be detected (e.g. overheat of pan or food in pan, absence of person actively engaged in cooking process, early-stage fire on stovetop) and an action to be taken (e.g., shut off cooking heat, sound alarm, suppress fire). As part of this study, a comprehensive review of existing technologies was done.

In February of 2010, a Vision 20/20 workshop on this topic was convened in Washington D.C. Participants recommended that a study be undertaken to identify the barriers to the utilization of these technologies and to develop an action plan towards improving cooking fire safety.

In 2010, the Foundation conducted a study supported by NIST to develop this action plan.  The project culminated with a one day workshop of 35 leaders from the kitchen appliance, fire service, and user communities who met to review the study's findings and identify gaps in information. From the workshop the goal of the current project was identified:  to develop standard cooking scenarios and to create candidate test methods and performance metrics to evaluate cooking fire mitigation technologies. 

The technical work will be done by Hughes Associates, Inc. and will be completed in about a year. The final report of the study will be made available electronically to the general public through the Research current Foundation website and directly transmitted to the relevant standards development committees of UL, CSA and to  the Vision 20/20 initiative on this topic. 


We have an ideal opportunity for a Project Manager, Editorial to plan, direct and coordinate activities of departmental projects. This person who fulfills this position will manage and direct all phases of the project to ensure that the goals or objectives are accomplished within the prescribed timeframe and budget.

The candidate will work out of NFPA's Quincy, MA headquarters. For a full list of job responsibilities, please visit our Careers web page

If you, or someone you know, would be a great fit - apply today! 

While our committees are always balanced to protect against any single interest dominating the process, we also work hard to attract enforcers to serve on our committees.  They provide an invaluable perspective on the practical application of NFPA codes and standards in the field.

Cecil Bilbo, a member of various sprinkler /water based suppression systems committees, recentlyCecil_bilbo stated, “Enforcers take the documents, NFPA Codes and Standards, and apply them out in the real world.  For me the value of being on a committee goes to the depth of knowledge. I know how to apply it in my work and is the same thing for enforcers”. 

 “When I was an enforcer, being on a technical committee helped me understandBill_koffel why the code required certain things and allowed me to better educate the people I was regulating.  The enforcer is the individual that is ultimately determining whether a condition, situation, building is in compliance with the applicable code or standard for that jurisdiction,” said Bill Koffel of Koffel Associates, once classified as an enforcer on many NFPA committees.

Some of the committees needing enforcer representation are:

• Hanging and Bracing of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems, NFPA 13

• Electric Generating Plants, NFPA 850, 851 and 853

• Shipbuilding, Repair, and Lay-Up, NFPA 312

• Telecommunications, NFPA 76

See the full list of committees seeking enforcers

NFPA understands that many municipalities are facing hard economical times which affects our mission of increasing enforcer participation on our technical committees.  In 2010 NFPA developed a new strategic plan and agreed that finding ways to get more enforcement officials involved in our process should be a priority.  The new “Enforcer Funding Program” will reimburse qualified enforcers 80% of their lodging and travel.  For more information on the enforcer funding program and other committees seeking enforcers please visit the website at

A college football game turned tragic last week, when a 20-year-old man fell to his death at the Georgia Dome Stadium on Friday. The Houston Chronicle reports that Isaac Grubb of Tennessee was apparently intoxicated when he fell over a 33-inch railing and plummeted to the stadium's lower level, landing on another fan, who suffered minor injuries from the impact.

A day prior at Reliant Stadium in Houston, a 25-year-old fan died after tumbling nearly 60 feet from a fifth-floor escalator. Media outlets, including the Chronicle, are comparing the incident to the death last year of firefighter Shannon Stone, who died from injuries he sustained when he fell over a railing while trying to catch a baseball at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Texas.

As discussed in a recent NFPA Journal feature story on improvements to Boston's Fenway Park and ballparks nationwide, these deadly falls have raised questions on whether these venues are safe as is, since the railing heights did comply with provisions in NFPA 101®, Life Safety Code®. The story's author, Steven A. Adelman, poses the question: If falling fans are a reasonably foreseeable problem that should be addressed, what should be done? View his response.

Another Journal feature highlights efforts under way to expand a component of the Life Safety Code, called the Life Safety Evaluation, to address non-fire emergencies and non emergency situations in assembly and non-assembly occupancies. Read about these endeavors today.


!|src=|alt=NEPM|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=NEPM|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017c31731e51970b!The period between September and October marks the transition from

summer to fall and the knowledge that winter is just around the corner.&#0160; Gardens and flowers are going into their

dormant state; the fall harvest of crops is about to be completed; and preparations

for the coming, shortened days of winter are underway-at least in the northern

climates.&#0160; A certain dog is also making

sure we are all thinking about fire safety as well.&#0160;


While the calendar can tell us when to think about certain tasks

requiring preparation because of the changing seasons, there is no similar

calendar that says what day a tornado will strike, when an earthquake will be

triggered or what day a fire might affect our home, place of work or community

in the case of a wildfire.&#0160; September is National

Emergency Preparedness Month-a time to pause and think about the what if’s:&#0160; what if I have a fire in my home; what if a

hurricane is imminent; what if I lose the power to my home for several days;

what if I have cope with extreme heat-or a severe winter storm.


Devoting a month to think about these perils and how you can best

handle them is good planning-and good preparation. &#0160;NFPA offers myriad resources to identify the what if’s and just as importantly, the how to’s;&#0160; how to react to a fire in my home; how to

prepare for a hurricane; how to deal with no power; how to manage in extreme

swings of temperature or other weather events. &#0160;Check out NFPA’s Emergency Preparedness page &#0160;for

ideas, planning, supplies and resources you and your family should have on

hand.&#0160;&#0160; See the numerous resources and

information available from FEMA on their Ready.Gov website.

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said-+ +An ounce
of action is worth a ton of theory
.  This
September, add a few ounces to your preparation cart. 

-Robert Solomon, PE, NFPA

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