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Fire protection and life safety features have significantly changed at the Pentagon during the ten plus years since the 9/11 terrorist attack on the building and its occupants. The featured presentation will discuss the changes made to enhance passive and active protection and life safety systems for the world’s largest office building. A project of this magnitude has many partners, unique problems, and “politics.” Case study examples will be shared, as well as the application and use of international building codes, NFPA standards, Department of Defense Uniform Facilities Criteria, and code “plus” additions to reach solutions. Don't miss this important presentation - register for the conference today.

Read more about the conference session topics, speakers and descriptions.


The Super Bowl is inching nearer, and a lot of eager cooks will start firing up their grills in preparation. However, there are dangers involved with grilling that are often unaccounted for. The NFPA has collaborated with ESPN SportsCenter anchor Hannah Storm to release a series of PSAs on those risks.

This past December, Storm was cooking dinner for her kids when the wind blew out the flame on her open grill. She turned to the gas and prepared to re-light it. Unbeknownst to her, propane gas had been on top of the grill, and it erupted into a fireball. She sustained first- and second-degree burns, and only returned to television on January 1st after extensive healing.

This PSA encourages responsible grilling practices, especially this weekend for the Super Bowl, and reminds the public to turn off the gas and wait for at least 15 minutes before attempting to re-ignite a grill that has gone out. A few moments of caution could save cooks and their families from burns and trauma.

Please check out our grilling safety tips at

Brazil fireJaime A. Moncada, director of International Fire Safety Consulting and the international fire safety training/NFPA joint venture director for Latin America, recently offered his opinions on the Brazil nightclub fire in an Associated Press (AP) article.

After examining a blueprint of Kiss nightclub, where more than 230 people died from the fire on January 27, Moncada told the AP that the building's one and only exit was permissable under law. He also noted that the club, if operating in the U.S., would have also failed inspection due to failure to treat the toxic foam soundproofing with a fire retardent and a lack of sprinklers.

Moncada told NFPA Journal in a recent feature story on a deadly prison fire in Honduras that increased adoption of NFPA's codes and standards in Latin America should be considered to prevent future tragedies from occurring.

"Adoption of NFPA codes and standards...coupled with readily available training seminars and a local fire safety industry well-versed in NFPA requirements can provide the start to a solution that may be impossible for local authorities to ignore," he states in Journal. "The only way to address the root causes of this horrific trend, which includes fires through clear, cost-effective fire codes, coupled with effective enforcement. Only then can we turn the corner."


We will be conducting a unique research planning exercise at Supdet and I hope you can participate.


We are using the interactive workshop  on Wednesday afternoon February 27th at Supdet in Orlando to take the first step to develop a research plan for three projects that have been on our list as projects of value to NFPA 13:V ictoria Valentine, National Fire Sprinkler Assocation, will lead a session on sloped sprinkler installations over storage; Matt Klaus, NFPA will lead a session on data needed to inform NFPA 13 obstruction rules; Steve Wolin, Code Consultants, Inc., will lead a session on high clearance sprinklers over operations (factory); Dan O’Connor, AON FPE will also lead a session on determining the equivalency between sprinklers and water mist.


The SupDet suppression program  also has a strong focus on information for 13 – including exposed expanded plastics, lithium ion batteries, and Chapter 21. 

I hope you can join us in Orlando.

!|src=|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!A preview of the Suppression, Detection and Signaling Research and Applications Symposium

!|src=|alt=|style=margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px currentColor; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%;!Registration is now open for Suppression, Detection and Signaling Research and Applications Symposium (SUPDET) conferenceScores of education sessions and seminars, hundreds of displays of industry products and services, and countless opportunities for professional networking: It’s the 2013 NFPA Conference and Expo®, and it’s headed back to the shores of beautiful Lake Michigan.

This year’s most important event for the fire, life safety, and electrical industries will be held at the McCormick Place Convention Center in Chicago, Illinois, June 10–13. Join NFPA experts and thousands of industry professionals as they gather for the 2013 NFPA Conference and Expo, widely regarded as the most comprehensive event in the industry. The event combines an unrivaled educational conference with an exhibition featuring more than 300 participating companies. It’s an ideal opportunity to rub elbows with industry innovators, bend the ears of our expert instructors, and meet others who are working through the same issues and challenges as you are.

Read more in our January/February 2013 Journal article, Chicago View: A Preview of the 2013 NFPA Conference & Expo

News reports say at least 231 people are now confirmed dead in the tragic nightclub fire in Santa Maria, Brazil that occurred early Sunday morning. CNN reports that 83 more people are hospitalized suffering from severe burns and smoke inhalation. CNN reports that police have arrested four people: one of the members of the band that was playing at the nightclub, the show producer and the club's two owners. Police have also questioned others to gain deeper insight into how the fire began and why it killed so many, according to CNN.


NFPA's Robert Solomon, division manager of Building & Life Safety Codes, was asked if he was surprised that a fire of this magnitude - and one so eerily similar to The Station nightclub fire that occurred in Rhode Island ten years ago - can still happen in this day and age.


[Learn more about fire safety at nightclub and other public assembly venues |].


Standards Council

NFPA Board of Directors appointed two new members to serve on the Association’s Standards Council for a three-year term effective January 2013: James E. Golinveaux of North Kingstown, R.I., and Bonnie E. Manley of Norfolk, Mass.

With 30 years of experience in the fire protection industry including both contracting and manufacturing, Golinveaux is currently a senior fellow of Water Suppression Products for Tyco Fire Protection Products. He currently holds 12 U.S. Patent families in Automatic Sprinkler Technologies. He is a past member of the Board of Trustees for the Fire Protection Research Foundation, as well as multiple other boards and councils including the Factory Mutual Advisory, AFSA, NFSA, International Fire Sprinkler Association and the Fire Sprinkler Association of Brazil. He has served on NFPA 13 Technical Committee for the past 18 years and has chaired the storage task group for the last 13 years. Additionally, he is a technical committee member of NFPA 88A, 101 and 5000.

Manley, P.E., M.ASCE, is a regional director for the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI). She is a current member of the NFPA Correlating Committee on Building Code and the Technical Committee on Structures, Construction and Materials. Manley also serves on the ASCE Codes and Standards Committee, which oversees their codes and standards development activities, maintains their ANSI accreditation, and enforces their rules for standards committees. Prior to joining AISI, she worked as a senior structural engineer for NFPA. 

The NFPA Standards Council, a 13 member body appointed by the board of directors of NFPA, is charged with overseeing the NFPA codes and standards making process. Generally, the duties of the Council include supervising activities related to NFPA codes and standards development, acting as administer of rules and regulations, and serving as an appeals body.

NFPA documents in the Annual 2015 revision cycle are now accepting Public Input (formerly proposals) electronically through NFPA's Electronic Submission System (e-PI). The system will automatically pull in the text and show any changes in “track changes” and even saves your input.

To submit input electronically, select the document from the list of NFPA codes and standards or search for documents available for public input using the search feature. Once on the document page, select "The next edition of this standard is now open for Public Input (formerly proposals)" to begin the process. You can submit input or just start and save your work in progress before the closing date.

Review further instructions on how to use the e-PI system

If you have any questions when you use the new system, you can contact Carolyn Cronin at (617) 984-7240 or by email.

Annual 2015 Revision Cycle documents:

NFPA 13, Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems
NFPA 13D, Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems in One- and Two-Family Dwellings and Manufactured Homes
NFPA 13R, Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems in Low-Rise Residential Occupancies
NFPA 20, Standard for the Installation of Stationary Pumps for Fire Protection
NFPA 24, Standard for the Installation of Private Fire Service Mains and Their Appurtenances
NFPA 40, Standard for the Storage and Handling of Cellulose Nitrate Film
NFPA 55, Compressed Gases and Cryogenic Fluids Code
NFPA 59A, Standard for the Production, Storage, and Handling of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG)
NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code
NFPA 73, Standard for Electrical Inspections for Existing Dwellings
NFPA 80, Standard for Fire Doors and Other Opening Protectives
NFPA 101A, Guide on Alternative Approaches to Life Safety
NFPA 105, Standard for the Installation of Smoke Door Assemblies and Other Opening Protectives
NFPA 110, Standard for Emergency and Standby Power Systems
NFPA 111, Standard on Stored Electrical Energy Emergency and Standby Power Systems
NFPA 150, Standard on Fire and Life Safety in Animal Housing Facilities
NFPA 160, Standard for the Use of Flame Effects Before an Audience
NFPA 291, Recommended Practice for Fire Flow Testing and Marking of Hydrants
NFPA 303, Fire Protection Standard for Marinas and Boatyards
NFPA 307, Standard for the Construction and Fire Protection of Marine Terminals, Piers, and Wharves
NFPA 312, Standard for Fire Protection of Vessels During Construction, Conversion, Repair, and Lay-Up
NFPA 400, Hazardous Materials Code
NFPA 409,Standard on Aircraft Hangars
NFPA 415, Standard on Airport Terminal Buildings, Fueling Ramp Drainage, and Loading Walkways
NFPA 423, Standard for Construction and Protection of Aircraft Engine Test Facilities
NFPA 556, Guide on Methods for Evaluating Fire Hazard to Occupants of Passenger Road Vehicles
NFPA 820, Standard for Fire Protection in Wastewater Treatment and Collection Facilities
NFPA 1071, Standard for Emergency Vehicle Technician Professional Qualifications
NFPA 1126, Standard for the Use of Pyrotechnics Before a Proximate Audience
NFPA 1145, Guide for the Use of Class A Foams in Manual Structural Fire Fighting
NFPA 1221, Standard for the Installation, Maintenance, and Use of Emergency Services Communications Systems
NFPA 1710, Standard for the Organization and Deployment of Fire Suppression Operations, Emergency Medical Operations, and Special Operations to the Public by Career Fire Departments
NFPA 1901, Standard for Automotive Fire Apparatus
NFPA 1906, Standard for Wildland Fire Apparatus
NFPA 1917, Standard for Automotive Ambulances

The public input closing dates for these documents are available on the links listed above.

Public input is a suggested revision to a proposed new or existing NFPA Standard submitted during the Input stage in accordance with Section 4.3 of the Regulations Governing the Development of NFPA Standards.

Backyards and Beyond
Registration for NFPA's 5th Backyards & Beyond® Wildland Fire Education Conference is now available online. The conference will be held November 14 – 16 in Salt Lake City, Utah where experts and stakeholders will gather to discuss wildfire safety issues and best practices for reducing risks.

With more than 50 breakout sessions in five educational tracks, the Backyards and Beyond conference offers leading wildland fire experts, community planners, civic leaders, homeowners and residents, insurance professionals, landscape architects, and physical and social researchers and scientists an opportunity to build relationships and explore answers to important wildland fire safety questions that can be taken back to communities and the workplace. 

A pre-conference workshop, Assessing Wildfire Hazards in the Home Ignition Zone, will be held on November 12-13. The two-day workshop provides important information about fire behavior and structure ignition from wildfires, and helps identify measures residents can take to reduce wildfire risks to their homes.

More information about the conference, workshop, accommodations and transportation can be found on the Firewise website. Registration for both the two-day workshop and the conference is available online, through the mail or by phone. Visit NFPA’s registration page for details. A discounted conference rate is available for those who register before October 11, 2013.

6a0133f27f7a03970b017ee803c544970d-450wi.pngOne question that I have received quite often since the publishing of the 2012 edition of NFPA 99, Health Care Facilities Code, is whether or not windowless anesthetizing locations still require smoke purge systems. The answer to this is that the 2012 edition does not require it. What had previously been in NFPA 99 and previously NFPA 56A was language that remained essentially the same for years and was in the 2005 edition as follows:


“ Supply and exhaust systems for windowless anesthetizing locations shall be arranged to automatically vent smoke and products of combustion. Ventilating systems for anesthetizing locations shall be provided that automatically (1) prevent recirculation of smoke originating within the surgical suite and (2) prevent the circulation of smoke entering the system intake, without in either case interfering with the exhaust function of the system.”


My research shows this requirement to have first appeared in NFPA 56A in the 1960 edition. The way it was presented and worded has been slightly altered throughout the years but the intent that the smoke and products of combustion be vented and that recirculation be prevented had remained. When NFPA 99 was reorganized for the 2012 edition the requirement was not incorporated in the new Chapter 9, Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning.

In the current revision process the technical committee on Mechanical  Systems has proposed language that specifically states smoke purge is not required in windowless anesthetizing locations. The main substantiation for this is that the requirement is considered to be a relic as when it was first incorporated into an NFPA requirement the use of flammable anesthetics was common and therefore the fire hazards in these rooms was much higher. of home fire sprinkler systems often cite extremely high costs associated with integrating NFPA 13D home fire sprinklers into a well water supply system. The following will explain how this is accomplished in an efficient and cost-effective manner.

Well systems incorporating fire sprinklers at the start of the building process are set up to address this fire protection application. Water sits in three areas in a well-fed system: in the well above the pump, refilling into the well as it is used, and in the holding tank in the home. Per NFPA 13D the refill rate can be counted on to help supply part of the demand, thus, the duration demand of 7 or 10 minutes can be met by the sum of these three sources.

Read this entire post by NFPA's Maria Figueroa on our Fire Sprinkler Initiative blog. Insider

NFPA members only! Register today for the next NFPA Insider presentation being held on January 31 at 2pm (EST). 

NFPA President Jim Shannon will give his first word. In this episode's 'Up to Code' segment, get the latest news and information on the codes and standards process. In the NFPA Journal Live piece, Chad Beebe, Director of Codes and Standards for the American Society for Healthcare Engineering (ASHE) and a member of the NFPA 99 health care facilities committee will join us to discuss, "The Superstorm and the Damage Done: Emergency Planning, Evacuation, and the Lessons of Sandy." And, lots more!

NFPA INSIDER is a live, bi-monthly online session that features expanded news and content from the latest issue of NFPA Journal® and other NFPA sources. Not an NFPA member? Join today.

What can we learn from nightclub fire tragedies, including The Station nightclub fire in Rhode Island in 2003, and the January 27, 2013, fire in Sana Maria, Brazil? Robert Solomon, NFPA's division manager of Building & Life Safety Codes, says that in addition to the adoption, implementation and enforcement of fire and life safety codes, it's vitally important that consumers learn how to protect themselves when they visit nightclubs and other public assembly venues.


Learn more at </p>

!|src=|alt=Looking_back_600|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Looking_back_600|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017c36580b15970b!Another deadly nightclub fire ...but this one happened 23 years ago.&#0160;In the wee hours of March 25, 1990, the Happy Land Social Club in the Bronx was packed with young Honduran immigrants celebrating Carnival when Julio Gonzalez, a 36-year-old unemployed Cuban refugee, was ejected from the club after a fight with his former girlfriend. Gonzalez filled a plastic container with $1 worth of gasoline at a nearby gas station, then returned to the club, poured the gas on the floor of the club’s only open entrance, threw in some lit matches, and left. Read about the horrifying aftermath in &quot;Looking Back&quot; in the latest issue of NFPA Journal .

<br /></div>


PublicAssemblySafetyTipsFires in assembly occupancies, like nightclubs, have shown to be some of the most deadly when the proper features, systems and construction materials were not present. Every so often, the unexpected happens. Anyone who enters public assembly buildings needs to be prepared.

Learn more about how you and your loved ones can be best prepared for an emergency at a nightclub or other assembly occupancy. Download our free safety tip sheet.

Just shot a quick interview with Robert Solomon, NFPA's division manager of Building & Life Safety Codes.  Robert is one of the resident experts on nightclub safety and he answered a number of questions about this weekend's deadly fire at the Kiss nightclub in Santa Maria, Brazil. 

As of this morning, the death toll currently stands at 231 dead and hundreds more injured. 

We should have the video interview edited and posted on this blog in the next few hours.  Stay tuned.


!|src=|alt=Wildfire suppression|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Wildfire suppression|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017ee7e46157970d!The cost to fight wildfires is massive (the government spent nearly $2 billion in 2012, for example), but this figure doesn&#39;t take into account the plethora of other expenses associated with these fires, argues columnist Molly Mowery in the latest issue of +NFPA Journal.+

For instance, Mowery points to direct and indirect costs, including facility damage, evacuation aid to displaced residents, long-term rehabilitation costs to watersheds, and public health impacts. A 2009 report released by the Western Forestry Leadership Coalition examined six wildfire case studies and concluded that the total expenses were between two to 30 times greater than reported suppression costs.

"If community leaders were more aware of these impacts, there would be a compelling argument to invest in up-front mitigation solutions that increase resilience to wildfire disasters," says Mowery.


For more information on these potential solutions, learn how a community can become fire adapted, read Mowery&#39;s column, and watch the following video:

About once a month I scan the web to see if there have been

any confined space fatalities.&#0160;

Tragically, I almost always find one, and it is not unusual to find

several fatal confined space incidents. Even worse, there are times I find multiple fatalities in a single confined space


The fatal confined space accident I found this month was
particularly disturbing to me. It seemed so blatantly obvious that the space
and work being performed would require at least some basic confined space entry
procedures, yet none appear to have been followed. 

A company that cleans industrial tanks was hired to clean
the bottom of a 40 x 50 foot 6000 gallon tank that previously contained the
highly toxic solvent, methylene chloride.  
It appears that he “fell” into the tank, and was found unconscious at
the bottom.  The 15 towns responding to
the incident with fire/hazmat/rescue personnel, very quickly realized after
testing the tank’s atmosphere that the 12% oxygen level meant that this would
be a body recovery and not a rescue. 
They then proceeded to take the necessary precautions to protect rescue
workers from suffering the same fate as the 37 year old worker. 


While this fatality is still under investigation by OSHA it

is clear that there were some major problems with this confined space

entry.&#0160; It appears that not just some,

but ALL of the basic confined space entry procedures were ignored.&#0160; If even ONE of the basic confined space entry

procedures had been followed this worker may be alive today.&#0160;&#0160; It appears that no gas monitoring was

performed prior to entry. &#0160;&#0160;If it had

been, the oxygen alarm would have sounded indicating that the atmosphere

required ventilation prior to entry.&#0160;&#0160; If the atmosphere had not been tested, even if the worker had been attached to a

tripod, harness, winch rescue system, he likely would not have fallen or if he

did, his coworker could have pulled him out.&#0160;&#0160;

And sadly, it appears that the worker was not wearing the proper PPE for entry.&#0160;&#0160; A half-mask air purifying respirator was

found near his body.&#0160; Air purifying cartridge

respirators do NOT protect against methylene chloride exposure and NO air

purifying respirator protects against an oxygen deficient environment.&#0160; If the worker did need to enter the tank to clean the residue while the atmosphere was still unsafe, he would have needed to wear a self contained breathing apparatus or an airline respirator with an auxilary self contained breathing supply.&#0160; Further information on the fatal accident can

be found on the web.&#0160;

The question I have is why would an experienced industrial
cleaning company worker have entered this tank without a confined space permit,
air monitoring, ventilation and non entry rescue capability?  Something just does not seem right.  An industrial tank cleaner (and certainly his
employer) should have recognized this was a confined space and should followed
at least some basic confined space procedures. The company website discusses confined space as one of their specialties so this was not a company that was unaware of the hazards of this type of work.   

The medical examiner has now reported that
the worker died of head trauma from the fall.  
 I have to wonder if perhaps the
worker was overcome by methylene chloride vapors in the space ADJACENT to the
tank opening and if he fell into the tank before he had a chance to assess the
hazards and to follow some basic permit required confined space
procedures.  The worker’s partner never
entered the tank but was also taken to the hospital with symptoms, leading me
to believe that he was exposed to  methylene chloride vapors in the adjacent
space outside the tank opening.  The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ASTDR) lists methylene chloride as a material that causes dizziness and unsteadiness. [ ASTDR |]indicates that even at low levels of exposure, workers may become less attentive and less accurate at tasks requiring hand eye coordination.  

Unfortunately hazards of adjacent spaces are not generally
recognized and are not covered in OSHA’s permit required confined space entry
standard.  The Chemical Safety Board has noted
the hazards of adjacent spaces in some of their investigations, including the
Valero Case
, and has encouraged NFPA to address adjacent spaces in their Best
Practices Document currently in development.  

The NFPA Technical Committee on Confined Spaces is working
on the development of a best practices document on confined space entry
designed to address gaps in existing confined space standards.   This document will go beyond the regulatory
requirements and provide more prescriptive guidance on how to safely enter,
work and exit from a confined space.  The
recognition and control of adjacent space hazards will be included in this
document.  Do you have any thoughts on
how to address adjacent space hazards or other ideas for what should be
included in the document?  If so please
leave a comment or contact npearce@ 


!|src=|alt=Cocoanut_grove_426x200|style=width: 450px;|title=Cocoanut_grove_426x200|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017d407e04bf970c!
The Cocoanut Grove nightclub in Boston was the deadliest nightclub fire in world. Over 400 peoplel died in 1942.

News accounts are reporting that more than 200 people have died
in an early morning fire in a nightclub in southern Brazil.  According to CNN, at least 245 people were
killed in the Kiss Nightclub in Santa Maria.

[NFPA provides a number of resources and information on this topic on its website. |]

News reports are
comparing the Kiss nightclub fire to the 2003 fire
at The Station nightclub in W. Warwick, RI, on February 20, 2003 that claimed
100 lives. Prior to the Kiss nightclub, the Station Nightclub was the fourth-deadliest public assembly and nightclub fire in U.S.
. Five of these fires were in nightclubs. Since that
fire, NFPA has enacted tough new code provisions for fire sprinklers and
crowd management in nightclub-type venues. Those provisions mark sweeping
changes to the codes and standards governing safety in assembly occupancies.

public assembly and nightclub fires


NFPA also offers safety tips for the public when in an assembly occupancy.

you enter

Take a good look. Does the building appear to be in      a condition that makes you feel comfortable? Is the main entrance wide and      does it open outward to allow easy exit? Is the outside area clear of      materials stored against the building or blocking exits?

    1. *Have a communication plan

      *Identify a
      relative or friend to contact in case of emergency and you are separated
      from family or friends.

    2. *Plan a meeting place

      *Pick a meeting
      place outside to meet family or friends with whom you are attending the
      function. If there is an emergency, be sure to meet them there.

When you enter

    1. *Locate exits immediately

      *When you enter a
      building you should look for all available exits. Some exits may be in
      front and some in back of you. Be prepared to use your closest exit. You
      may not be able to use the main exit.

    2. *Check for clear exit paths

      *Make sure aisles
      are wide enough and not obstructed by chairs or furniture. Check to make
      sure your exit door is not blocked or chained. If there are not at least
      two exits or exit paths are blocked, report the violation to management
      and leave the building if it is not immediately addressed. Call the local
      fire marshal to register a complaint.

    3. *Do you feel safe?

      *Does the
      building appear to be overcrowded? Are there fire sources such as candles
      burning, cigarettes or cigars burning, pyrotechnics, or other heat sources
      that may make you feel unsafe? Are there safety systems in place such as
      alternative exits, sprinklers, and smoke alarms? Ask the management for
      clarification on your concerns. If you do not feel safe in the building,
      leave immediately.


During an emergency

    1. *React immediately

      *If an alarm
      sounds, you see smoke or fire, or other unusual disturbance immediately
      exit the building in an orderly fashion.

    2. *Get out, stay out!

      *Once you have
      escaped, stay out. Under no circumstances should you ever go back into a
      burning building. Let trained firefighters conduct rescue operations.


!|src=|alt=130127071528-brazil-club-fire-story-top|style=width: 450px;|title=130127071528-brazil-club-fire-story-top|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017c364e62f2970b!

(AP Photo/Agencia RBS)

Multiple news sources are reporting that a fire at a popular nightclub in Southern Brazil has killed at least 220 people.


According to a report on CNN, the death toll is expected to climb as firefighters continue to pull bodies from the Kiss nightclub in Santa Maria. The regional coordinator of civil defense is quoted as saying that most of those killed appeared to have died of smoke inhalation. Local officials report that the fire started at about 2 a.m. after the acoustic insulation in the nightclub caught fire. They also say that there was a pyrotechnics show going on inside the club when the fire started, but stopped short of blaming it for the blaze, saying the cause was still under investigation.


As the 10th anniversary of The Station nightclub fire in Rhode Island, the current issue of NFPA Journal talks to Robert Feeney , a survivor of that tragedy. That fire was caused when pyrotechnics ignited accousitc foam around a concert stage. Mr. Feeney returns to the site of the blaze to remember the friends he lost that night and his efforts to recover.

Draft_NFPA652 the Standards Council approval to enter into a revision cycle, the NFPA 652, Standard on Combustible Dusts, draft entered into revision cycle, Fall 2014, and was open for Public Input (PI).  Now that the closing date has past, we finally tallied the number of PIs for NFPA 652. The final count is 470 PIs!

To receive this much input reminds us the impact that the document will have on the industry. It also shows how involved the industry is with our standards development process. Having the industry involved at the birth of a new standard is great as it will only strengthen the docuemnt and make it more applicable to the "real world". The Technical Committee (TC) meets at NFPA in a month (February 12-14) for an exciting First Draft Meeting.

Emergency powerLast year's Superstorm Sandy proved that power outages can wreak havoc on various types of facilities--a problem only exacerbated if necessary emergency power systems are compromised. (Read the NFPA Journal story on how the recent storm highlighted the importance of emergency power in health care facilities.)

Journal columnist Jeffrey Sargent recently highlighted the array of NFPA codes and standards addressing emergency power--including NFPA 70®, National Electrical Code® (NEC), and NFPA 101®, Life Safety Code®--and how provisions in one code assimilate well with requirements in others. For example, Sargent explains that the two classifications of emergency power supply systems, found in NFPA 110, Emergency and Standby Power Systems, align with provisions in the NEC

Read Sargent's column in the January/February edition of Journal for more details.


!|border=0|src=|alt=HOliday Lights|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=HOliday Lights|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017ee67ef1a0970d!While the winter months are the leading time of year for home fires, NFPA  says the post-[holiday season |] presents its own set of fire hazards. Dried out Christmas trees and holiday lighting are among the leading culprits.

As time goes by, Christmas trees continue to dry out and become increasingly flammable. For trees decorated with holiday lights, the risk increases because they’re in direct contact with an electrical source.

Dried trees should not be kept in the home, garage, or placed outside against the home. Check with your local community to find a recycling program.

To reduce the risk of holiday light fires and keep equipment in good condition for next year, follow these storage suggestions:

    • To unplug electric decorations, use the gripping area provided on the plugs. Never pull the cord to unplug a device from electrical outlets. Doing so can harm the cord’s wire and insulation and even lead to an electrical shock or fire.

    • As you’re putting away electrical light strings, take time to inspect each for damage. Throw out light sets if they have loose connections, broken sockets or cracked or bare wires.

    • Do not place a damaged set of lights back into the storage box for next year’s use.

    • Wrap each set of lights and put them in individual plastic bags, or wrap the lights around a piece of cardboard.

    • Store electrical decorations in a dry place where they cannot be damaged by water or dampness. Also, keep them away from children and pets.

NFPA and the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) have teamed up again to remind everyone about ways to keep warm and safe throughout the winter months. Their joint safety campaign, “[Put a Freeze on Winter Fires |],” includes a wealth of heating, cooking and holiday fire safety tips.

!|src=|alt=|style=padding: 0; margin: 0; border: 0; display: block; width: 80px; max-width: 100%;!Video compares flammability of dry Christmas tree with one watered regularly
!|src=|alt=|style=padding: 0; margin: 0; border: 0; display: block; width: 80px; max-width: 100%;!Christmas tree safety tips and see why you should keep it watered regulary
!|src=|alt=|style=padding: 0; margin: 0; border: 0; display: block; width: 80px; max-width: 100%;!NFPA, CPSC and Maryland State Fire Marshal warn against holiday fire risks with live burn demonstration

!|src=|alt=Outreach_240|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Outreach_240|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017d40663799970c!Amy LeBeau&#39;s friend, Brooke, had installed smoke alarms in all the necessary places throughout her home and checked the batteries regularly. When she had a fire in her home, however, the smoke smoke alarms never sounded. She didn&#39;t know that the alarms have to be replaced every 10 years. Amy&#39;s column &quot;Close to Home&quot; in the most recent issue of NFPA Journal tells Brooke&#39;s story and challenges us to get this important fire safety message out to friends and family.&#0160;

All eyes will be on Lady Liberty this weekend as she celebrates her 126th birthday in a special way.

On Sunday, the public will once be granted access to observation areas in the statue's pedestal and crown following a series of fire and life safety improvements initiated by the U.S. National Park Service, which maintains the monument on Liberty Island. With a pricetag of $29 million, the project married historical preservation with safety, a task made possible with the help of NFPA's codes and standards, including NFPA 72®, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code; and NFPA 101®, Life Safety Code®.

Visitors will notice improved handrails, guardrails, and protective glass sheets in and around the statue's double helical stairs leading to the crown. The monument's elevators have also been improved.

Read the NFPA Journal feature story highlighting all of the improvements at the monument. If you plan on visiting the iconic structure in the near future, take note that reservations are required to obtain access to the monument's interior.

Last week I was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to travel with 3 other NFPA staff to the Intersec conference in Dubai, UAE.&#0160; Upon my arrival, I was excited to learn about the great interest in our fire door standards!


Intersec is a leading regional trade event in the

security, safety and protection industries, featuring a brand profile

of 4 vertical sections: Commercial and Information Security, Homeland Security and Policing, Safety and Health, and Fire and Rescue.&#0160;&#0160; NFPA was in attendance in conjunction with NAFFCO.&#0160; NAFFCO serves as the distributor of NFPA codes and standards to the middle east region and is a great resource for those in the area wishing to have access to NFPA products without having to ship them internationally .&#0160;


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I was most excited to see the NFPA 80 buzz as I attended the expo and various other events and meetings throughout the week.&#0160; I was able to attend a meeting where one of the topics discussed was the differences between the European standards and the US standards related to fire door testing.&#0160; As cities such as Dubai and Abu Dhabi grow, they are looking towards already established expert standards to implement in their country.&#0160; One area where significant differences occur is with fire door testing.&#0160; I plan to bring back my findings to the NFPA 80 Technical Committee this fall in hopes that we can help bridge the gap between Europe and the US in our fire door regulations.&#0160;


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I also presented a short program on the inspection, testing, and maintenance provisions of the 2013 edition of NFPA 80 .&#0160; The session was very well attended, with all seats full and even some standing room only attendees.&#0160; The genuine interest in NFPA 80 was very positive!


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While in Dubai I also had the opportunity to do some sightseeing.  Highlights included going to the 124th floor of the Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building!  Dubai is a beautiful and unique city, with many engineering wonders!  It was a great trip!


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Fire service staffing levelsIn their latest NFPA Journal column, Ben Klaene and Russ Sanders justify the need for adequate, firefighter staffing levels. The columnists point to a 2010 report by the National Institute of Standards and Technology that noted the concerns associated with remote stations staffed with less than four firefighters.

"When an understaffed company located at a remote station encounters a working structure fire, it is forced to make difficult decisions regarding its personal safety versus its commitment to saving lives and property," note the columnists. "We advocate structural fire tactics and strategies that are both safe and effective, but sometimes staffing levels can make that dual goal difficult to achieve."

Read more on this issue in the January/February edition of NFPA's member magazine.

Spaceheater3ftMid-January is a great time to review some heating safety tips with everyone. Especially as energy costs rise, families are turning to space heaters as a less expensive alternative for keeping their houses warm this season. Space heaters may be a less expensive, but it is important to be aware of how to use them safely.

In 2010 alone, home heating equipment was involved in an estimated 57,100 reported home structure fires and 490 civilian deaths. Stationary and portable space heaters accounted for 32 percent of these reported home heating fires and 80 percent of the home heating fire deaths.

Independent of what equipment you use to heat your home, a fire can be prevented! If you decide to use a space heater this season to heat your home, keep the following tips in mind:

  1. All heaters need space. Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater
  2. Have a three-foot “kid-free zone” around open fires and space heaters.
  3. Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel-burning space heaters.
  4. Turn off heaters when you leave a room or go to bed

You can read more tips like these and download our safety tips sheets by visiting

-Anice Barbosa

It would be nice to think that we have answers to all of the worlds fire protection problems. Unfortunately, as the world evolves, new challenges and new questions arise that drive the fire protection community into problem solving mode. Some of these new challenges will be addressed at SUPDET 2013 during the Suppression Research Charrette. Topics from IBC storage of flammable liquids to sloped ceilings in warehouses will be up for discussion during the charrette that will take place on Wednesday February 27 from 1 pm to 5 PM. This event is free to all SUPDET attendees and will be fantastic opportunity to hear about the current challenges that face the suppression industry and discuss potential research tracks and design solutions with industry leaders.

For more information on SUPDET 2013 and to register for this event, please check out SUPDET online.  

An elderly couple likely died from smoke inhalation during a fire that was exacerbated by the tons of junk filling their Illinois home. 

The Pekin, Illinois, Fire Department responded to the fire, but their rescue efforts were thwarted by the heat, smoke, and massive amounts of materials filling the home, reports GateHouse News Service. The kitchen was so cluttered, for example, that it wasn't usable. The fire, according to a fire department official, was initiated in the basement, where the couple slept and ate from a "kitchenette."

The incident isn't the first time Pekin firefighters have encountered hoarders; GateHouse reports that they have met other seniors living in similarly dangerous--and cramped--conditions.

Read the NFPA Journal feature highlighting the dangers of hoarding and the ways NFPA is addressing this national issue.  

Firewatch_600A family of four escaped from their burning manufactured home through the back door but could not leave the small fenced yard because the gate was locked. Trying get the key to the gate, the man reentered the house and was just 3 feet (0.9 meters) from the back door when the ceiling collapsed on him. He died as a result of smoke inhalation and burns. Investigators determined that a string of Christmas lights on one end of the home short circuited earlier in the day, overloading the outlet into which they were plugged. The family left the lights on when they went to bed, and the overloaded wiring eventually ignited exposed paneling. For more case studies of fires, read "Firewatch" in the most recent issue of NFPA Journal.

The-doubletree-by-hiltonRegistration has just opened for the Fire Protection Research Foundation’s Suppression, Detection and Signaling Research and Applications Symposium (SUPDET 2013). It will take place February 26 through March 1, 2013 at Doubletree Orlando at SeaWorld, Orlando, FL

This is the 17th annual SUPDET, and it features more than 25 papers addressing the latest developments, advances and research. Some of the topics included are detection, sprinkler protection and clean agent technology. Attendees will be able to choose between the Detection and Signaling Program or the Suppression Program.

In addition, a special Suppression Research Charrette is being planned for February 27, which is open to all registrants. There are several interactive sessions focused on solutions to protection challenges, including an examination of water mist as an equivalent protection solution to sprinklers for selected suppression scenarios.

Aimed at professionals in the fire alarm, suppression and emergency communication industries, the symposium also makes attendees eligible to earn Continuing Education Units (CEUs).


Read the full press release on the event

Sprinkler testingIs it possible to design a sprinkler system for a given ignition scenario, commodity, and configuration without a full-scale fire test?

That's a question the Fire Protection Research Foundation wants answered, and has been undergoing a series of studies to see if less expensive testing methods are feasible. In her latest NFPA Journal column, Kathleen Almand, the Foundation's executive director, discusses two projects related to this issue. For example, tests were conducted on small-format, lithium-ion batteries (found in cellphones and laptops) to characterize the battery's flammability and compare it to other commodities.

"Each test saved tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of dollars in commodity and cleanup costs," says Almand. "New commodities, new storage configurations, and new protection solutions are emerging every day, and the Foundation's Automatic Sprinkler Advisory Council...has long lists of topics to address each of these categories."

Read the rest of Almand's column in the January/February issue of NFPA Journal.

Sprinkler Fact SheetA new report, "Sprinkler Impact on Fire Injury," authored by John R. Hall, Jr., Marty Ahrens, and Ben Evarts, all from NFPA, has been published.

Since the widespread introduction of home fire sprinklers, a significant amount of statistical data has been collected and analyzed showing their impact in reducing rates per fire of fire deaths and property damage.  However, the same fire statistics until recently did not address reductions in rates of fire injuries associated with home fire sprinklers. This project was initiated to develop better estimates of the impact of home sprinklers on fire injury costs, using a more sophisticated approach which explores the impact of sprinklers on fire size, the impact of fire size on burn and other fire related injury, and then assesses the data available on the costs associated with those injuries.

A fact sheet has also been developed that helps to tie the findings of this report in with other research regarding loss and sprinkler impact. The Home Structure Fire Loss in the U.S. and Fire Sprinkler Impact fact sheet is available online as well.

LevittOne of the great things about working at NFPA headquarters is that you can chat with NFPA president Jim Shannon in line at the salad bar and then bump in to one of instructors on the elevator. You never know who you will see as you turn each corner.

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of bumping in to Russ Leavitt, one of our senior instructors who teaches NFPA 20, NFPA 25 and NFPA 13. After a few minutes of talking to Russ I heard a few stories about teaching for NFPA in the Middle East. I knew I had to follow up with Russ so I could share some of his stories from the road.

After a few e-mail exchanges with Russ, I realized I had so much information that it had to be split up between 2 blog posts. What follows is Part 1 with Part 2 to follow in a few weeks.

Watch a video of Russ Leaviit talking about NFPA 13.



Q: What has been your favorite destination for NFPA training and why?

A: Trying to pick my favorite destination for training is akin to me trying to pick a favorite flavor of ice cream. Amsterdam is a wonderful location as the Dutch are among the most friendly people I have encountered anywhere, the city is so well preserved, and the museums (especially art) are outstanding. Dubai in the United Arab Emirates is a one of a kind city. When asked to describe it, I like to reply that “it is Las Vegas on steroids.” Everything is over the top and the fire protection challenges are among the most unusual I have ever encountered.

In contrast to Dubai, but just as intriguing, is Muscat Oman. A relatively small city of 750,000,it is full of classic Middle Eastern architecture and is very manicured. I call it the “white wash” city with nearly all the buildings having a white stucco type finish. It sits on the Gulf of Oman and lies among desert mountains giving it a unique look and feel from other Middle Eastern cities I have visited.

Finally, right at the very top of my list is Istanbul Turkey. There are few cities so full of history anywhere in the world. To stand on marble floors of structures that were built in single digit centuries is tough to beat for a history lover like myself. In all honesty though, I could also say my favorite location is Paris or Frankfurt or Mexico City or Riyadh or Doha or Cairo, and on and on. Everywhere I have taught is unique and has something that I cherish above all the others. However, the one common thread everywhere I have taught is fire and life safety is a fraternity full of special people.  Without fail, in every international seminar I have been privileged to teach, there is an unsurpassed passion for protecting lives and property and a desire to learn how to apply and understand the latest NFPA standards and codes. 

Q: What is the strangest thing that has happened to you while teaching for NFPA?

A: I could go on for pages answering this question but here is a fun one. On the second day of my first ever seminar in Saudi Arabia, several of the participants brought out a 3 gallon plastic jug full of what appeared to be milk.  It was milk—camel’s milk. They poured a glassful and offered it. Wanting to show that I was a good sport, I drank it down without hesitation and commented on how good it tasted. They were delighted with my boldness and offered me a second glassful and suggested I have it with ice as it was even better cold. I took it and as I was finishing, one of the group asked if I happened to know “what camel’s milk was “good for”?  I replied negatively and with an exaggerated motion using  both hands, the questioner replied, “It cleans you out!” I will not bother you with the “rest of the story” but we all had a great laugh, took plenty of breaks throughout the day, and I was made a permanent member of the fraternity of “Camel Milk Drinkers.” 

When Russ is not teaching for NFPA, he resides in Tempe, AZ where the cactus plant is plentiful and camel's milk is hard to find.

Find out where Russ is teaching in the U.S.

NFPA offers a number of scholarships for students, but you have to act fast - the deadline for each of the following scholarships is April 1, 2013.

Arthur E. Cote Scholarship
Who is eligible: Undergraduate students enrolled in fire protection engineering programs in the United States or Canada.

Distribution: There will be a minimum of one scholarship awarded per year of at least $5,000.

About Mr. Cote: Arthur Cote dedicated his career to the fire protection engineering community and is well known nationally and internationally. He is recognized as one of the leading authorities in fire sprinkler protection and technology. Prior to his retirement, he served as Executive Vice President and Chief Engineer at the NFPA, overseeing ten operating divisions.

Learn more, apply for the Cote Scholarship.

David B. Gratz Scholarship

Who is eligible: Graduate students enrolled in fire science or fire engineering programs outside of the United States.

Distribution: There will be a minimum of one scholarship awarded per year of at least $5,000.

About Mr. Gratz: Chief Gratz entered the fire service as a volunteer with the Silver Spring, MD, Fire Department in 1949. He became the first career Chief of the department in 1961 and served in that capacity until 1973 when he became the first Director of the Montgomery County, MD, Department of Fire and Rescue Services. He led NFPA's International Operations division for 22 years until his death in 1998.

Learn more, apply for the Gratz Scholarship.

John L. Jablonsky Scholarship

Who is eligible: Graduate students enrolled in fire protection engineering programs in the United States or Canada.

Distribution: There will be a minimum of one scholarship awarded per year of at least $5,000.

About Mr. Jablonsky: A person of unshakable integrity, John L. Jablonsky possessed a rare touch of fair play and justice and was quick to stand up for his convictions. He served for over thirty years in numerous capacities for the NFPA. In 1987, he received the Association's highest honor, the Paul C. Lamb Award and, at the time of his death, was chairman of the Standards Council.

Learn more, apply for the Jablonsky Scholarship.

George D. Miller Scholarship
Who is eligible: Undergraduate or graduate students enrolled in fire service or public administration programs in the United States or Canada.

Distribution: There will be a minimum of one scholarship awarded per year of at least $5,000.

About Mr. Miller: George D. Miller, a retired U.S. Air Force Lieutenant General whose military career included critical command responsibility and a superb record as a fighter pilot, was appointed president and chief executive officer of NFPA in 1992. Upon his retirement in 2002, NFPA's board of directors unveiled the George D. Miller Scholarship in tribute to Mr. Miller's exemplary service to the Association.

Learn more, apply for the Miller Scholarship.

See a full list of scholarships, awards, and grants offered by NFPA.

Electrical_safety_240Even though they are responsible for code compliance, many building owners and managers are unaware of the National Electrical Code® (NEC®) working space requirements, says NFPA's regional electrical code specialist Jeffrey Sargent. As a result, a requirement has been proposed for the 2014 edition of the NEC to better define the working space around electrical equipment that must be kept clear so that workers can safely access energized parts. Sargent explains the proposed requirement in more detail in his column "Keep It Clear" in the latest issue of NFPA Journal. 


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Amanda Kimball, project manager for the Fire Protection Research Foundation , came down to NFPA&#39;s &quot;Studio B&quot; this week to shoot a video for the upcoming SupDet 2013 .

SupDet is short for the "Supression, Detection and Signalling Research and Applications Symposium" (that's a mouthful). The annual event, now in its 17th year, will be held in Orlando, February 26 to March 1.  It will feature more than 25 papers, addressing the latest developments, advances and research on topics including:

    • Latest in detection research including cooking fire detection research, a new strategy to address the unwanted alarm issue, and detection of wildland fires

    • Latest in sprinkler protection strategies including lithium ion batteries and other high hazard challenges

    • Latest in clean agent technology research including a case study on a Halon replacement system at a military jet engine test facility

[Learn more and register today for SupDet 2013 |]. And watch for Amanda's video on this blog in the coming days.

!|src=|alt=|style=margin: 0px; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%; border: 0px; padding: 0px;!Detection in High Air Flow Telecom Environments - a new Foundation project
!|src=|alt=|style=margin: 0px; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%; border: 0px; padding: 0px;!Solutions presented at the fire/sustainability interface
CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum and NFPA's Greg Cade

NFPA, the Consumer Product Safety Commission and Maryland’s Office of the State Fire Marshal recently teamed up to bring needed attention to fire risks that frequently go hand-in-hand with holiday decorating. Greg Cade, NFPA’s director of Government Affairs participated in an event this week at CPSC’s new National Product Testing and Evaluation Center in Rockville, MD that included live burn demonstrations to underscore the importance of being aware of fire risks and taking action to avoid them.

“Christmas and the days around it are typically some of the top days for home fires," said Cade, "With an increased fire risk around winter holidays, following safety tips at this time of year is especially important to prevent fires."



The demonstration showed how quickly a dried-out Christmas tree goes up in flames.  Christmas tree fires don’t happen often, but when they do the consequences are usually very serious, according to NFPA. 

“Make sure you water your Christmas tree frequently, use holiday lights that are tested and certified and safe and not damaged, use candles carefully, and do not put a frozen turkey into a deep fryer,” said CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum. “We want consumers to avoid fires and injuries by adding “safety” to their holiday checklist.”

Take NFPA's holiday quiz to test your fire-safety knowledge.  Interested in spreading the word to help your community stay fire-safe this season?  Look to NFPA's "Project Holiday" online toolkit for easy-to-use resources. 

In 2008, the Fire Protection Research Foundation published its 5 year Strategic Research Agenda, which has played an important role in guiding our activities over the past four years.  That agenda was developed in part through a broad outreach in our community to identify emerging issues in fire safety likely to impact NFPA codes and standards in the future. 

We are beginning the process of updating this agenda and would like your help.  Please take five minutes to provide us with your feedback and help shape the Foundation’s activities in the future.

In 2012 and 2013, NFPA Public Education Division has been working with the Memphis Fire Department  on a urban project to develop strategies to reduce deaths and injuries in Memphis, particularly in high-risk-to-fire neighborhoods. Some of the partnership activities include using data to determine the highest-risk populations, conducting discussion groups among firefighters serving the communities with the most fire runs, conducting focus groups among residents of the high-risk communities and ministers and faith-based leaders serving those communities, Fire Prevention Week outreach, and training Memphis public education staff on NFPA public education programs .
Daryl Payton, chief of Operations for the Memphis Fire Department, said that he appreciates that NFPA is working with the fire department on strategies to reduce fire deaths in high-risk communities. He said that Memphis Fire Department personnel think that working with the faith-based communities will be particularly important to Memphis residents.

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Pictured below are the Memphis public education staff and firefighters from Station one who participated in a train-the-trainer session for Remembering When: A Fire and Fall Prevention Program for Older Adults conducted by Sharon Gamache and Judy Comoletti at the Memphis Fire Museum

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Remembering When training in Memphis includes role plays of teaching the Remembering When fire prevention behaviors.

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Pictured are firefighters from Engines 10 and 14 at Station 14 who participated in discussions about serving the people of their community conducted by NFPA.

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Deputy Chief Operations Daryl Payton and fire safety educators Marion Nance and Patrice Lester participate in an educational session on using NFPA’s website.

The NFPA Standards Council at its October 2012 meeting reviewed the current structure of the Technical Committee on Animal Housing Facilities and the influx of interested parties that have applied to the Committee were not represented on the Committee. As a result of that review, the Council has determined the current committee structure needs to be reviewed to allow the appointment of additional members with expertise in areas not currently represented on the committee.
All current members and anyone interested in serving on this committee should submit an application form by going to: . Under the category "apply to a committee", select the link "submit a committee application online". Applications along with a current résumé must be submitted by January 18, 2013.

!|src=|alt=Rebuilding_a_hospital_600|style=margin: 0px 0px 5px 5px;|title=Rebuilding_a_hospital_600|class=asset asset-image at-xid-6a00d8351b9f3453ef017c3573ca5e970b!One of the most powerful tornadoes ever recorded struck Joplin, Missouri, on May 22, 2011, and St. John’s Regional Medical Center took a direct hit. For about 45 seconds, winds of more than 200 miles (322 kilometers) per hour wreaked havoc in the building, obliterating ceilings, snapping water pipes, and blowing in hallway walls. Everything became a projectile, and wind hurled patients, still clinging to their beds, down hallways. When the tornado finally passed, St. John’s had been reduced to little more than a husk.

Yet the hospital vowed to rebuild, and ground was broken for a new $500 million permanent hospital in January 2012, scheduled to open in early 2015. What lessons from this experience will the new hospital incorporate? To find out, read “Rebuilding a Hospital” in the January/February issue of NFPA Journal.

During the November NFPA 101 and NFPA 5000 Correlating Committee meetings in Boston, some committee members joked about the “magic” that happens back at NFPA Headquarters. Submittals were processed, Technical Committee (TC) meetings were organized, ballots prepared and documents were created.

It would be nice if all it took was magic, but in reality, it’s just the product of great teamwork. What did it take to complete the First Draft of NFPA 101 and NFPA 5000?

17: Number of TC meetings

614: Number of TC participants (TC members, alternates and Chairs)

6: Number of NFPA Technical Staff

547: Number of PIs submitted for NFPA 101

302: Number of PIs submitted for NFPA 5000

602: Number of FRs created for NFPA 101

523: Number of FRs created for NFPA 5000

The NFPA process starts with submissions from the public. They signed into Nwalkerand submitted their “Public Inputs (PIs)” on sections of the code they wished to change. Input was submitted both online and on paper. Nancy Walker worked diligently to make sure all of the PIs (800+) submitted were completed properly. 

The First Draft meetings were held in May and August in Minneapolis and St. Louis respectively. PIs were reviewed and the committees generated “First Revisions (FR)” to make changes to the text.

Editorial staffThe editorial team worked with the staff liaisons to review all 1000+ changes and incorporate them into First Drafts. Special thanks go out to the editorial team at NFPA for their great work.(Pictured: Lisa Haapaoja, Nancy Wirtes, and Jackie Bock)

Diane Matthews and Kelly Carey worked together to compileDianeandkellyballots and to distribute them to TCs. They collected ballot submissions, calculated ballot results, and posted all of the information online. Check out the ballot results here: or

The Correlating Committee met in Boston in November.Their ballots are currently out and are due at the end of the month.

The First Draft Report including a draft of the documents and the committee's changes will be posted at the end of February and will be open for Public Comments until May 13th. Then we will begin working our magic on the Second Draft.

New Project Evaluation of Fire Service Training Fires

Each year thousands of fire fighters are injured
during training, and occasionally some are fatally injured.  Live fire
training evolution is an effective and popular training method, but it’s also
one that exposes the trainees to significant hazards.  One common cause of
fire fighter death and injury is a lack of understanding of the hazard
assessment of live fires used for training.  The Foundation has initiated a project with the Maryland Fire and Rescue Institute and the University of Maryland to better understand the hazards of live fire training evolutions and provide data and information to support a fire hazard assessment methodology
for fire training officers and fire fighters.  

In 2008, the Fire Protection Research Foundation published its 5 year Strategic Research Agenda, which played an important role in guiding The Foundation's activities over the past four years. That agenda was developed in part through a broad outreach in our community to identify emerging issues likely to impact NFPA codes and standards in the future. Survey

We are revising our agenda and we need your help. Please take a few minutes to provide us with your input on the key emerging issues likely to impact fire and electrical safety in the next five years. Your candid insights are very important to us. We value your feedback.

The survey will take about 10 minutes to complete. Your answers are confidential and will only be used in combination with responses from the other participants.

To participate, please click on the following link, or copy and paste the link into the address line of your browser.

We appreciate your taking the time to complete our survey. Thank you!

Comments or concerns? Contact Janet Halpern


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A new report, by NFPA&#39;s Michael J. Karter, Jr., presents an analysis of volunteer firefighter injuries between 2009 and 2011. The report was undertaken to compare the experience of volunteer firefighters to all firefighter injuries. Departments that protect communities of less than 10,000 population are comprised mostly of volunteer firefighters.

Among the findings of the report:

    • For injuries by type of duty, volunteers (56.6%) were more likely to receive injuries at the fireground than all firefighters combined (43.3%), and volunteers (12.1%) were less apt to be injured at nonfire emergencies than for all firefighters (19.9%). This is due to the fact that many smaller departments do not provide EMS service, so nonfire emergencies are a smaller component of their overall incidents, while fires are a larger component.

    • For injuries at the fireground, the leading types of injuries were strain, sprains, muscular pain, accounting for 2,145 injuries; wound, cut, bleeding, bruise, accounting for 1,450 injuries; frostbite, heat stroke, accounting for 1,200 injuries; and smoke or gas inhalation, accounting for 710 injuries. For all types of duty, wound, cut, bleeding, bruise and strain, sprains, muscular pain accounted for the largest shares of injuries.


Read the entire report, available for free on NFPA's website.

!|src=|alt=|style=margin: 0px; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%; border: 0px; padding: 0px;!Most firefighter injuries occur battling home fires
!|src=|alt=|style=margin: 0px; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%; border: 0px; padding: 0px;!Firefighter injuries in the U.S. and home fire sprinkler impact on firefighter safety
!|src=|alt=|style=margin: 0px; width: 80px; display: block; max-width: 100%; border: 0px; padding: 0px;!Firefighting deemed one of the most stressful professions

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