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JOin us at NFPA's Annual Conference in Chicago Jun 10-13 as we review the results of the Foundation's research over the past year.  20 presentations will feature recently completed projects on fire fighter tactics and PPE, suppression strategies for hazardous commodities including lithium ion batteries, evacuation strategies from tall buildings, and many other topics.  We are also sponsoring a look ahead at the issues likely to affect fire and electrical safety over the next five years.

Join us!

In_compliance_240As was the case in The Station nightclub fire 10 years ago in Rhode Island, combustible insulating foam appears to have been a major factor in how the Kiss nightclub fire in Brazil began and spread, says Chip Carson in his column "Finish Issues" in the most recent issue of NFPA JournalBecause textiles placed on walls and ceilings can burn very quickly, NFPA 101, Life Safety Code, includes a number of requirements for interior finish materials. For a closer look at these requirements, including those that address cellular and foamed plastic, go to page 32 of the March/April issue of NFPA Journal or read Chip's column online.

Are continuous (also known as piano hinges) permitted on fire doors? Yes they are!  New to the 2013 edition of NFPA 80, Section, which addresses hinges, is now inclusive of hinges, spring hinges, continuous hinges and pivots.

Prior to 2013, NFPA 80 did not necessarilty prohibit the use of this hardware, rather it was silent on the issue, thus causing confusion to users as to whether or not these types of hinges were recognized by the standard.  The Technical Committee accepted a proposed change to add continuous hinges to Section so that it was clear that they are recognized and permitted to be used on fire doors if installed properly and in accordance with the standard. 

Section and are also new sections specific to continuous hinges and state the following: The length of continuous hinges shall be within 1 in. (25 mm) of the height of the door leaves. Continuous hinges shall be labeled and shall meet the requirements of ANSI/BHMA A156.26, American National Standard for Continuous Hinges.

*You may view the current edition of NFPA 80 (and all NFPA documents!) free online by visiting the Document Information Page for NFPA 80 (shortcut where you will find a link to view the current edition. 

Koslowski Cropped PhotoTracy Koslowski, public education/information
manager and fire marshal for the Drexel Heights Fire District in Tucson, Arizona, has been named the 2013 Fire and Life Safety Educator of the Year.

A third generation firefighter, Koslowski began
using NFPA’s Learn Not to Burn Preschool Program in 1993 when she was a volunteer at the Tucson Fire Department. She continues to teach it. She has also taught Risk Watch and Remembering When for many years and has expanded Fire Prevention Week in Tucson into Fire Prevention Month. During the past 10 years, she has taken the campaign to all of the schools in the district, visiting more than
40,000 students.

In response to safety concerns in the community, Koslowski implemented a babysitter training course, which teaches kitchen safety, fire safety, CPR, first aid, poison  prevention, and other life safety skills. In addition, she developed the Fire Fit Cadet Program, which includes basic firefighting skills, fire and life safety training, physical fitness, and nutrition classes. Drawing guidance from NFPA’s Remembering When program, Koslowski created the Senior Citizen Fire Academy. She also created the Public Education Volunteer Team to keep the district’s public education programs operating in the face of budget constraints.

Koslowski will receive a $1,000 honorarium and will be flown to Chicago in June for an award presentation at the Opening General Session of the annual NFPA Conference & Expo. Drexel Heights Fire District will receive a $1,000 donation to support public education activities.

NFPA 72Non-fire alarm systems--elevator shutdown and release of electrically locked doors, for example--can work in harmony with a building's fire alarm system, if code provisions are properly applied. Adhering to these requirements ensures vital fire protection and provides important building emergency control functions, says Wayne Moore in his latest NFPA Journal column.

Moore also discusses how NFPA 72®, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, guides this process. "Fire alarm systems provide a vital fire protection function when they interface with non-fire alarm systems to provide important building emergency control functions or to monitor the safe operation of industrial processes,"  he says.

Learn more in the March/April issue of NFPA Journal.

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