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2019

This week’s post comes from Alex Ing, Associate Engineer in NFPA’s Hazardous Chemicals and Materials group and Staff Liaison to NFPA’s Special Effects Technical Committee responsible for the development of NFPA 1126.   Thanks to Alex for sharing his knowledge of this important issue in the Fire Code!

 

What is the first image that pops into your head when you say “4th of July”? If you imagined a fireworks display you would not be alone. The 4th of July, is the pinnacle fireworks holiday in the United States with cities and towns all over the country putting on their own displays. As the holiday approaches not only does the firework community get extraordinarily busy, but those fire inspectors tasked with permitting and approving these displays also get busy. NFPA produces two standards covering the safe display of fireworks and pyrotechnics, NFPA 1123 Code for Fireworks Display 2018 Edition, and NFPA 1126 Standard for the Use of Pyrotechnics Before a Proximate Audience 2016 Edition.

 

The main difference between the two standards is distance from the audience watching. NFPA 1123 sets the appropriate display distance for fireworks and pyrotechnics, and NFPA 1126 provides requirements for displays using pyrotechnics at distances closer than those required in NFPA 1123. There is a difference between fireworks and pyrotechnics, based on the fact that manufacture of fireworks is dictated by federal regulation. While most of the celebrations going on this 4th of July will be in accordance to NFPA 1123 some will also be in accordance with NFPA 1126. Additionally, NFPA 1126 will also be used for pyrotechnic displays at concerts and other similar events.

 

One issue that has been arising lately in the NFPA 1126 world has been the use of pyrotechnic effect simulation equipment. What pyrotechnic effect simulation equipment is, is equipment that is uses a chemical mixture, heat source, and the introduction of oxygen to initiate or maintain combustion and is used to produce visible or audible effects by combustion, deflagration, or detonation. The most common form that pyrotechnic effect simulation equipment takes are machines that imitate gerbs, the pyrotechnics that produce a spray of sparks in of a predictable duration, height, and diameter. These new simulation equipment, will take a chemical mixture (typically a metal mixture) heat it up, and then use a blower to produce a shower of sparks similar to gerbs. Traditional gerbs on the other hand contain a propellant in the mixture which will instead ignite the pyrotechnic material inside and propel it. Both of these pieces of equipment are considered pyrotechnic devices and fall under the scope of NFPA 1126. (see TIA- 16-1, TIA Log #1317) Therefore it is necessary that anytime pyrotechnic effect simulation equipment is used it follows all the same requirements as any other pyrotechnic devices under NFPA 1126. The 2021 Edition of NFPA 1126 will include more requirements specific to pyrotechnic effect simulation equipment such as requiring specific fuel based fire extinguishers, however for the 2016 edition there are no specific requirements for these devices.

 

Both NFPA 1123 and NFPA 1126 are referenced by NFPA 1 in Chapter 65.  Chapter 65 contains general provisions for regulating the storage, use, and manufacture of explosives, display fireworks, and pyrotechnical before a proximate audience; flame effects before a proximate audience; fireworks manufacturing; and model and high power rocketry.  This chapter covers the wide range of hazards, like those described above and addressed by NFPA 1126, and associated with the use of materials that potentially can have disastrous consequences if not applied and enforced properly. Adoption of NFPA 1 your jurisdiction also mandates compliance with NFPA’s suite of pyrotechnic documents all referenced in Chapter 65 unless amended locally by your jurisdiction. 

 

Do you have events in your jurisdiction where pyrotechnics will be used?  Comment below and share your stories of Code enforcement or compliance issues. 

 

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During the late 1970’s and early 1980’s master magician, Mark Wilson toured the United States with a jovial talking steam pump engine named Snuffy.

There were two versions of Snuffy used as part of the national radio and television tour promoting fire safety for children. Little Snuffy was designed and built by Doug Beswick and Carl Jablonski. He had moving headlights, a mouth, and a hat that “tipped.” It drove and did everything by remote control. Big Snuffy was created by John Gaughn, the master illusion builder, and was built on a golf cart chassis. The driver “magically” controlled it from inside the boiler.

 

For more information regarding this and other moments in fire history, please feel free to reach out to the NFPA Research Library & Archives. 

The NFPA Archives houses all of NFPA's publications, both current and historic. 

Library staff are available to answer research questions from members and the general public. 

The student reception held at this week’s NFPA Conference & Expo was an opportunity for NFPA student members and student conference attendees to learn more about career development and connect with other professionals and potential employers.

 

During the event, students heard from NFPA President and CEO, Jim Pauley, and NFPA Vice President of Outreach & Advocacy, Lorraine Carli, who shared their own career journeys and words of wisdom for these rising stars.

 

 

Using an interactive format, Lorraine and the students then discussed the importance of personal branding. “It’s who you are, what values you have, and how you want to be perceived,” shared Lorraine. The group talked about the ways one’s personal brand comes to life, both through in-person interactions as well as online through social media.

 

Following the interactive discussion, attendees participated in roundtable discussions with members of NFPA Women in STEM group and networked with FM Global, Johnson Controls, Honeywell, and Viking.

 

This week, NFPA 1300, Standard on Community Risk Assessment and Community Risk Reduction Plan Development, was released as a resource to help authorities determine what kind of emergencies are occurring in their communities, where they’re happening, and to whom.

NFPA 1300 provides guidance on conducting a community risk assessment (CRA), creating and implementing a Community Risk Reduction (CRR) plan, and establishing ongoing evaluation of that plan. The new standard also provides the framework for building a CRR team, fostering strategic partnerships, and applying data to conduct both a CRA and CRR activities.

CRR is defined a process that helps identify and prioritize all types of risks, and emphasizes the integrated and strategic investment of resources to reduce their occurrence and impact. While CRR is often understood and valued by fire departments, full implementation is frequently hindered by challenges. NFPA hosted a series of educational sessions and workshops at this week's C&E, which worked to help attendees address potential roadblocks, and to provide support and guidance as they develop and implement CRR strategies in their communities.

In addition, NFPA is developing a digital tool to help communities conduct a community risk assessment (CRA). In a dedicated effort to make this tool as effective as possible, NFPA is looking for 50 fire departments to participate in a pilot program where participants will be awarded access to the tool for one year free of charge in exchange for frequent feedback. The pilot will be deployed in two groups over the next 12 months.

For fire departments interested in participating in this pilot program, more information and applications can be found at www.nfpa.org/crr.

 

 

Above photo: Karen Berard-Reed, a public education program manager at NFPA, leading an interactive CRR workshop yesterday at C&E.

During today's NFPA Technical Meeting in San Antonio, the following action has taken place on NFPA 25, Standard for the Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems

  • 25-1 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 49 failed.
  • 25-2 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 42 failed.
  • 25-3 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 63 was not pursued. 
  • 25-4 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 40 passed. 
  • 25-5 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 60 passed. 

 

NFPA 25 was passed with 2 amending motions. NFPA 25 COMPLETED.

 

During today's NFPA Technical Meeting in San Antonio, the following action has taken place on NFPA 302, Fire Protection Standard for Pleasure and Commercial Motor Craft

 

  • 302-1 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 3 passed.
  • 302-2 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 4 passed.
  • 302-3 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 5 passed.
  • 302-4 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 5 passed.
  • 302-5 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 6 passed.
  • 302-6 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 7 passed.
  • 302-7 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 7 passed.

 

NFPA 302 was passed with 7 amending motions. NFPA 302 COMPLETED.

 

During today's NFPA Technical Meeting in San Antonio, the following action has taken place on NFPA 654, Standard for the Prevention of Fire and Dust Explosions from the Manufacturing, Processing, and Handling of Combustible Particulate Solids

 

  • 654-1 Group Amending Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No 11 and Accept Public Comment Nos. 11 and 9 failed. 

 

NFPA 654 was passed with 0 amending motions. NFPA 654 COMPLETED.

 

During today's NFPA Technical Meeting in San Antonio, the following action has taken place on NFPA 130, Standard for Fixed Guideway Transit and Passenger Rail Systems

 

  • 130-1 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 23 failed.
  • 130-2 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 19 failed.

 

NFPA 130 was passed with 0 amending motions. NFPA 130 COMPLETED.

 

During today's NFPA Technical Meeting in San Antonio, the following action has taken place on NFPA 502, Standard for Road Tunnels, Bridges, and Other Limited Access Highways

 

  • 502-1 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 1 failed. 
  • 502-2 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 6 failed. 

 

NFPA 502 was passed with 0 amending motions. NFPA 502 COMPLETED.

 

 

During today's NFPA Technical Meeting in San Antonio, the following action has taken place on NFPA 1961, Standard on Fire Hose

 

  • 1961-1 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 9 was not pursued. 

 

NFPA 1961 was passed with 0 amending motions. NFPA 1961 COMPLETED.

 

During today's NFPA Technical Meeting in San Antonio, the following action has taken place on NFPA 1851, Standard on Selection, Care, and Maintenance of Protective Ensembles for Structural Fire Fighting and Proximity Fire Fighting

 

  • 1851-1 Motion to Reject a Second Revision No. 37 passed. 

 

NFPA 1851 was passed with 1 amending motion. NFPA 1851 COMPLETED.

 

During today's NFPA Technical Meeting in San Antonio, the following action has taken place on NFPA 58, Liquefied Petroleum Gas Code

 

  • 58-1 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 69 passed. 

 

NFPA 58 was passed with 1 amending motion. NFPA 58 COMPLETED.

 

During today's NFPA Technical Meeting in San Antonio, the following action has taken place on NFPA 801, Standard for Fire Protection for Facilities Handling Radioactive Materials

 

  • 801-1 Motion to Reject a Second Revision No. 1 failed. 

 

NFPA 801 was passed with 0 amending motions. NFPA 801 COMPLETED.

 

During today's NFPA Technical Meeting in San Antonio, the following action has taken place on NFPA 855, Standard for Installation of Stationary Energy Storage Systems

 

  • 855-1 Motion to Accept Public Comment Nos. 912 and 454 passed. 
  • 855-2 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 458 failed. 
  • 855-3 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 9 was not pursued. 
  • 855-4 Motion to Accept Public Comment Nos. 462 and 206 was not pursued. 
  • 855-5 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 180 was not pursued.
  • 855-6 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 410 was not pursued. 
  • 855-7 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 138 failed.
  • 855-8 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 75 failed. 
  • 855-9 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 283 failed. 
  • 855-10 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 100 was not pursued. 
  • 855-11 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 173 failed. 
  • 855-12 Motion to Return Entire NFPA Standard failed. 

 

NFPA 855 was passed with 1 amending motion. NFPA 855 COMPLETED.

 

During today's NFPA Technical Meeting in San Antonio, the following action has taken place on NFPA 70, National Electrical Code®

 

Note: 70-2 was changed to be heard after 70-36, 70-3 was changed to be heard after 7-40 and

70-20 through 70-24 were changed to be heard in the following order: 70-21, 70-22, 70-24, 70-

23 and 70-20.

 

  • 70-1 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7891 failed.
  • 70-4 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8072 failed.
  • 70-5 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Correlating Revision No. 71 failed.
  • 70-6 Motion to Reject Second Correlating Revision No. 71 was not pursued.
  • 70-7 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 8104 failed.
  • 70-8 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 7697 including any Related Portions of First Revision Nos. 8119 and 7705 failed.
  • 70-9 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 7697 including any Related Portions of First Revision Nos. 8120 and 7705 failed.
  • 70-10 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7676 failed.
  • 70-11 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1381 passed.
  • 70-12 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 7657 failed.
  • 70-13 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7657 failed.
  • 70-14 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8074 passed.
  • 70-15 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7974 failed.
  • 70-16 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8048 failed.
  • 70-17 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 808 failed.
  • 70-18 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 444 failed.
  • 70-19 Group Amending Motion to Accept Public Comment Nos. 1470 and 445 failed.
  • 70-21 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1406 failed.
  • 70-22 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1406 passed.
  • 70-24 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1382 failed.
  • 70-23 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1382 failed.
  • 70-20 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1402 was not pursued.
  • 70-25 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 700 was not pursued.
  • 70-26 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 1502 failed.
  • 70-27 Group Amending Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8187 failed.
  • 70-28 Group Amending Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8189 failed.
  • 70-29 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 1123 failed.
  • 70-30 Group Amending Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8172 failed.
  • 70-31 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8162 was not pursued.
  • 70-32 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8164 was not pursued.
  • 70-33 Group Amending Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8222 failed.
  • 70-34 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7979 passed.
  • 70-35 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 7916 was not pursued.
  • 70-36 Group Amending Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Correlating Revision No. 30 passed.
  • 70-2 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 7776 failed.
  • 70-37 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7783 including any Related Portions of First Revision No. 8597 failed.
  • 70-38 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 1590 failed.
  • 70-39 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Correlating Revision No. 21 was not pursued.
  • 70-40 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 1480 was not pursued.
  • 70-3 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 1482 failed.
  • 70-41 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7522 failed.
  • 70-42 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7584 failed.
  • 70-43 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7586 failed.
  • 70-44 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 7588 failed.
  • 70-45 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8159 and any Related Portions of First Revision No. 8608 passed.
  • 70-46 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 315 passed.
  • 70-47 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7517 failed.
  • 70-48 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 501 passed.
  • 70-49 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 500 passed.
  • 70-50 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7509 failed.
  • 70-51 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 516 passed. 
  • 70-52 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 2147 failed. 

 

NFPA 70 was passed with 10 amending motions. NFPA 70 COMPLETED.

 

 

 

Vendome

From Fire Command vol.39, no.9 (1972):

“On June 17, a four-alarm fire in the former Hotel Vendome became the worst tragedy in Boston Fire Department history when a portion of the building collapsed, killing nine fire fighters. The old hotel was being converted into apartments when the fire occurred.”

 

For more information regarding this and other moments in fire history, please feel free to reach out to the NFPA Research Library & Archives. 

The NFPA Archives houses all of NFPA's publications, both current and historic. 

Library staff are available to answer research questions from members and the general public. 

 

NFPA released its annual “U.S. Firefighter Fatalities in the United States” report today in coordination with a presentation by Rita Fahy, manager of NFPA’s applied research division, at NFPA’s conference in San Antonio. According to the report, a total of 64 U.S. firefighter fatalities while on duty in 2018. This continues a five-year trend of fewer than 70 deaths per year. It is also the eighth time in the last 10 years that fewer than 70 on-duty deaths have occurred; the death toll is half what it was in the first five years that NFPA conducted this study.

Of the 64 fatalities, 34 were volunteer firefighters, 25 were career firefighters, four were employees or contractors for federal or state land management agencies, and one was a prison inmate.

 

Overexertion, stress and medical issues accounted for by far the largest share of deaths. Of the 28 deaths in this category, 25 were classified as sudden cardiac deaths (usually heart attacks). While cardiac-related events have accounted for 44 percent of the on-duty deaths over the past 10 years, 2018 represents the third consecutive year that the toll has been below 30.

 

“While the total number of on-duty firefighter deaths has been decreasing over the years, we continue to see many of the same overall results, with the leading causes of these fatalities tending to be cardiac deaths and crash deaths,” said Fahy.


According to the report, the second-largest share of on duty deaths typically results from road vehicle crashes, with 11 deaths in 2018. The death toll due to crashes is only slightly lower than the average 13 deaths per year that have occurred in crashes over the past 40-plus years, but in the same time-frame, fire department call volume has more than tripled.

 

One firefighter was murdered when responding to a fire call in 2018. Unfortunately, Fahy noted, this is not as unusual as might be expected.

 

Fahy also pointed out that while it’s encouraging to see the overall number of on-duty firefighter fatalities continue to remain relatively low compared to previous years, the full firefighter fatality picture is far broader than NFPA’s data.

 

“This report only reflects deaths that occur while victims are on-the-job, either as the result of traumatic injuries or onset of acute medical conditions,” said Fahy. “Studies have shown that years spent in the fire service can take a toll on a firefighter’s health, both physical and emotional, and can also result in exposures to toxins that eventually result in job-related cancer, cardiac and suicide deaths that are not represented in this report.”

 

A comprehensive study that enumerates all duty-related deaths in a year is not yet possible to accomplish.

 

The firefighter fatality study is made possible by the cooperation and assistance of the United States fire service, CDC's National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, the United States Fire Administration, the Forest Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Bureau of Land Management of the U.S. Department of the Interior.

At NFPA’s Conference & Expo in 2018, Jim Pauley introduced attendees to the Fire & Life Safety Ecosystem, telling them "we have failed to connect the dots. While everyone is so focused on their particular aspects of incidents, collectively, we have forgotten that safety is a system – not a singular action, piece of equipment, or event.”

 

At this year’s event, the focus has moved to urging all to recognize their role in the Ecosystem and to find ways to work together. From NFPA's perspective, the full Fire and Life Safety Ecosystem includes eight elements that play a critical role in protecting people and property. Time after time when we have seen calamities, we can almost always trace the cause of those situations to a breakdown in one or more of the elements of the ecosystem.

 

During opening General Session, Jim Pauley told the crowd that “Safety does not exist in a vacuum.  However, we have been treating it like it does.  The policy maker makes isolated or ill-informed decisions and all of you have to compensate for the consequences.  Valuable research falls on deaf ears because few outside of the research community are paying attention.  The fire departments focus on responding quickly with enough equipment.  The building owners worry about energy efficiency because fires are really rare, right? School officials talk about removing pull stations because they think they are not needed at a time when the threat of active shooters consume their attention.”

 

It’s time to change the way we are all thinking.  Safety is a system – an ecosystem. 

 

NFPA’s Guy Colonna presented an education session on the topic as well. When he asked attendees why they came to his session, most people said they wanted to learn more about how to apply the Ecosystem principles. Today’s audience consisted of at least one person from each cog, but Guy reminds people that even if they don’t feel like they fit into a specific area, everyone is included in the ‘informed public’ cog, so we are all affected by the Ecosystem.  

 

Guy likes to think of the Ecosystem as a safety management system as it helps show the importance of everyone talking to one another, working together, and striving for the same goals. When looking at the interdependence of two of the components, skilled workforce and investment in safety, we can see how they both demonstrate behavior change to build an enhanced safety culture, how skilled workers are needed for proper application of current code requirements, and that safety investments yield a more committed workforce.

 

Bringing up recent news events, where the government responsibility component failed, Guy solicited some reactions and thoughts from the crowd. He talked about London’s Grenfell fire and how changes have been slow in coming since its occurrence two years ago. He also talked about a recent fire in Bangladesh that reminded us to put safety first as it was almost identical to a 2010 event.

 

To conclude, Guy asks attendees, “how can you put the system to work?” He advises that to help answer that question, think about who your allies are in the community, what information you can provide to them, and stresses that this is not something you can do alone. Guy hopes that the ecosystem will eventually become the starting point for every conversation about fire & life safety.

A reception, dinner, and awards night was held Tuesday night at NFPA Conference & Expo in San Antonio, meant to congratulate and thank several National Electrical Code committee members for their outstanding service.

First up, the newest NEC Quarter Century Club recipients were honored, to all of those who have been involved with the NEC for 25 years or more. These awards were presented by NFPA Senior Principal Engineer and NEC Staff Liaison, Mark Earley. There were 15 eligible committee members this year, including:

 

            Ward I. Bower

James E. Brunssen

Julian R. Burns

Carl Fredericks

Barry N. Hornberger

Robert E. Johnson

Robert A. Jones

John R. Kovacik

Ronald Lai

Michael S. O’Boyle

James F. Pierce

Steven R. Terry

Lawrence E. Todd

Mark C. Wirfs

Michael L. Zieman

 

Then, the Richard G. Biermann National Electrical Code Outstanding Volunteer Award was bestowed, as a surprise, to NFPA’s Mark W. Earley (presented by NFPA President Jim Pauley) for outstanding accomplishments in the development, promotion or advancement of the National Electrical Code. This award intends to recognize an outstanding volunteer who has demonstrated a commitment in actively contributing to the advancement of the NEC through furthering the development of the NEC and/or promoting the implementation of the NEC.  Mark has worked for NFPA since 1986, and has served as staff liaison and Secretary to the NEC Correlating Committee since 1989, making him extremely well-deserving of this award.

 

The award was created in 2016 to honor the memory of Richard G. Biermann, former chair of the NEC Correlating Committee.  Mr. Biermann’s service on the NEC included serving as chair of Code-Making Panel 16 and as a member of several other CMPs.  He also served NFPA as a member of the Standards Council and as a member of the Board of Directors.  In 1995, Mr. Biermann received the Paul C. Lamb Award in recognition of his outstanding service to NFPA. 

Mr. Biermann, who represented the National Electrical Contractors Association, ran a successful electrical contracting business.  Yet, during his tenure as chair of the correlating committee, devoted at least one day per week to the National Electrical Code.  This award honors outstanding volunteerism on task groups, Code-Making Panels, the Correlating Committee, or promoting the adoption and application of the NEC during the membership adoption year of the NEC.

 

To close out the awards portion of the evening, Mark Early stood up once again, to present the dedication of the NEC 2020 Handbook. The handbook was dedicated to Donald R. Cook, Chief Electrical Inspector, Shelby County Department of Development Services in Pelham, Alabama. Donnie also currently serves as the Secretary of the NFPA Board of Directors.

 

Congratulations to all of this year’s awardees! 

It’s always such an exciting time of year when the NFPA Conference & Expo gets kicked off, and this year is no different. Opening General Session typically starts us off, and it’s where we get to hear from NFPA President Jim Pauley as well as the current chairman of the board of directors, Keith Williams, who give an update on what we have been doing at NFPA to help attendees do their jobs better. This year was a bit different. We did hear from Jim and Keith, but instead of an update on new tools, resources, and plans that attendees will learn about throughout the rest of the event, we heard more about making the world safer.

 

Safety does not exist in a vacuum.  However, Jim Pauley told the crowd that we have been treating it like it does.  The policy maker makes isolated or ill-informed decisions and everyone else has to compensate for the consequences.  Valuable research falls on deaf ears because few outside of the research community are paying attention.  Fire departments focus on responding quickly with enough equipment.  Building owners worry about energy efficiency because fires are really rare, right? School officials talk about removing pull stations because they think they are not needed at a time when the threat of active shooters consume their attention.

 

But as Jim pointed out, it’s time to change the way we are all thinking.  Safety is a system – an ecosystem. 

NFPA designed the Fire and Life Safety Ecosystem as the framework to tie all of the key efforts or components together – all of the essential elements to keep people and property safe in today’s world. It is a tool for everyone to use to organize their thinking and have a greater impact on fire safety. 

 

This is becoming the NFPA mantra. We have translated the information into a number of languages. We are speaking throughout the world helping those devoted to safety understand the ecosystem and work on the various elements. This notion is resonating from a post Grenfell London to the smallest of Caribbean islands.  It speaks to code officials thwarted by insufficient resources, policy makers designing a regulatory framework and first responders seeking to better protect their communities from fire and every other hazard they face.

 

We need a renewed commitment to the very things that have driven down the number of people who have lost their lives in fires and the amount of loss. It takes all of us working together, promoting and doing our part to shore up the Fire and Life Safety Ecosystem.

 

Jim’s challenge to the audience and all of you reading this now. is to change your thinking.  Don’t think only about your piece of the puzzle – think about the system.  Where there are gaps, work to fill them. What can you learn that will help you shore up the ecosystem?  What are you going to do once you have gotten that information?

 

Chairman of the Board, Keith Williams, added more weight to the importance of the Ecosystem by talking about how different shifts and changes occur internationally, in our respective backyards and in our industries, so does the safety landscape, and as a byproduct – the challenges ahead of us. And yet what is paramount is people, the communities that we serve, the professionals that use our resources, and seek our services – they rely on us to effectively keep up with new hazards that surface across the globe.

 

Keeping up with that progress or potential issues can be daunting. And at the same time exhilarating. Keith said that he knew “this from the work that [he does] at UL and sees it as a member of NFPA’s board of directors. NFPA’s board is especially excited about the direction the association is taking to meet the ever-changing needs of society. It truly is an invigorating time to be aligned with NFPA, whether as a member of the staff who works so hard to bring ideas to life, a member or a volunteer who adds your expertise to the codes and standards process, or as a professional, who benefits from the great research, resources and respected expertise that has been the hallmark of NFPA for more than a century.”

Last night, a very special evening was held here in San Antonio as NFPA Conference & Expo gets underway. The NFPA Board of Directors, our Standards Council and members of the NFPA staff gathered to recognize thirteen incredible individuals in seven distinct award categories which are the highest recognitions bestowed by NFPA.

 

These individuals have invested significant time and effort in reducing risk in our world through big ideas, careful consideration, progressive actions, and creative collaborations. Through their actions, they are advocating for the components of the fire and life safety ecosystems in ways that are resonating with the global community – and making our world safer.

 

Award: The Industrial Fire Protection Section Fire Prevention Week Award

Honoree: Robbie Stone

 

This award recognizes individuals and organizations that help educate neighbors, employees, and families about fire prevention and safety during Fire Prevention Week.  Robbie Stone is Emergency Management director and fire chief of the Atkinson County, Georgia fire department who was instrumental in creating a new fire safety program that resulted in a 30% drop in fire calls. This leader and his department have also stepped up their fire prevention efforts, even as they dealt with reduced staffing, spending a considerable amount of time educating the next generation of fire safety advocates in local schools, and raising awareness of Fire Prevention Week messaging.

 

Award: Fire and Life Safety Educator of the Year Award

Honoree: Barry J. Brickey

 

This award honors an educator who works for a local fire department or fire marshal’s office in the U.S. or Canada, and uses NFPA materials in consistent and creative ways. The recipient must demonstrate excellence and innovation in reaching out to the community, and view NFPA as the leading source for fire safety information.

 

Barry Brickey has been teaching NFPA’s Learn Not to Burn® program to elementary school children for more than a decade. Shortly after implementing Learn Not to Burn, he began educating elderly residents and community organizers about fire and fall prevention strategies using NFPA’s Remembering When™ program materials.

 

A passionate safety advocate, Barry has filled some big dog shoes over the years as the voice of Sparky the Fire Dog® during national campaigns and media tours. His ability to collaborate with others has resulted in billboard campaigns that have promoted Fire Prevention Week themes, home fire sprinkler information, and smoke alarms. He was also a key contributor to a team effort that reduced call numbers at a high-volume apartment complex in his jurisdiction.

 

Award: Fire Protection Research Foundation Medal

Honorees: Daniel Brandon, Matthew Hoehler, Brigit A.-L. Östman, and Joseph Su

 

This medal recognizes a Fire Protection Research Foundation project completed in the previous year that best exemplifies the Research Foundation’s fire safety mission, commitment to overcoming technical challenges, and collaborative execution of projects.

 

The winning project for this year’s Fire Protection Research Foundation Medal involved true collaboration to execute a study that aimed to isolate what contributions timber had on a compartment fire in order to compare the performance of cross-laminated timber systems to other structural systems commonly used in tall buildings. This work will serve in informing building codes, emergency response techniques, and in fact has already led to changes in manufacturing standards. 

 

This award recognizes everyone that was involved with the project and includes the research team, the project sponsors, and the technical panel.  For this project, the National Research Council of Canada and the Research Institute of Sweden were contracted for technical services, and full-scale testing was conducted at the National Fire Research Laboratory at NIST.  This study was sponsored by the American Wood Council (through a grant from the USDA) and the Property Insurance Research Group.

 

Award: Harry C. Bigglestone award

Honoree: Wojciech Węgrzyński

 

This award is given annually to the paper appearing in Fire Technology that best represents excellence in the communication of fire protection concepts. The award is accompanied by a $5,000 cash prize from NFPA.

 

This year’s Bigglestone award winning technical paper was selected out of an impressive array of 103 articles. The work focused on developing guidance for coupled wind-fire analysis, which applies to wildfires, tunnels, indoor flows, and other scenarios.  The paper provides valuable information for engineers and designers by presenting best practices for how to incorporate wind modeling into fire analysis.  The findings will help optimize computational fluid dynamics (CFD) analysis of wind and fire so that they can work to prevent and predict different scenarios. Wojciech’s work will have an impact on evacuation strategies, mitigation measures, and resiliency plans.

 

Wojciech has spent a significant part of his career focused on how architectural features of a building impact smoke control performance, and how to make smoke exhaust systems less expensive and more efficient. He is an assistant professor and deputy head of the Fire Research Department at ITB, the Polish Building Research Institute in Warsaw, a member of technical committees working to develop new European standards for smoke control, and a vice president of the Polish Chapter of SFPE.

 

Award: Standards Medal

Honoree: Stephen King

 

The Standards Medal recognizes and honors outstanding contributions to fire safety and the development of NFPA codes and standards, and represents the most distinguished award given by the NFPA Standards Council.

 

Stephen has enjoyed a 30-year career with the Fire Department of New York, eventually climbing to the role of Battalion Commander. On September 11, 2001 when the World Trade Center buildings were struck, he was the citywide safety chief, arriving on scene within nine minutes of the first strike. This fire leader was operating a command post when the second tower was hit, causing debris to come crashing down. His knee was shattered, resulting in a permanent disability. He retired after that fateful day, but has remained actively involved with the fire service since.

 

He serves as chairman of the NFPA Technical Committee on Structural and Proximity Fire Fighting Protective Clothing and Equipment, and as a member of the Correlating Committee on Fire and Emergency Services Protective Clothing and Equipment. He has 10 years experience with the Naval Reserve; has been a commercial instrument pilot for the United States since 1970; and holds a bachelor’s degree in fire service administration and a masters in protection management from John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

 

Award: James M. Shannon Advocacy Medal

Honoree: Jon Nisja

 

This award was established in honor of Jim Shannon, who served as NFPA’s president for 12 years. Shannon was a tireless advocate known for promoting fire safety in the interest of the general public and the fire service. Jon demonstrates comparable passion, he started his fire service career in 1978, and 15 years later began to focus his efforts on fire prevention and fire investigation. Serving as fire marshal for two communities, he has been a fire safety supervisor with the Minnesota State Fire Marshal Division for the past 10 years, where he oversees fire loss data, fire protection, and training. A former president of the Fire Marshals Association of Minnesota, our honoree is also a past president of the International Fire Marshals Association. He has authored chapters in five books, and is widely known for his knowledge of fire protection interests, including fire safety history, means of egress, fire protection systems, building construction, and using performance measures to show effectiveness.

 

Award: Philip J. DiNenno Prize

Honorees: Roger Allard, Robert G. Bill, Gunnar Heskestad, and Hsiang-Cheng Kung

 

The prestigious Philip J. DiNenno Prize recognizes groundbreaking innovations that have had a significant impact in the building, fire and electrical safety fields. The prize, which comes with $50,000 in prize money, is named for the late Philip J. DiNenno, the greatly respected former CEO of Hughes Associates, in recognition of his extraordinary contributions to fire safety.

 

This year’s DiNenno award is being given to the four individuals above who have played a significant and substantive role in the successful promulgation of truly effective, occupancy-specific, fast-response sprinklers, which involve three independent technologies related to sprinkler response.

 

Because of the four award winner’s hard work and perseverance, the following statements can now be made with certainty: first, the use of Response Time technology has been overwhelmingly accepted worldwide for the characterization of fast response links. Second, Quick Response residential fire sprinklers are widely accepted and used in residential settings worldwide. And last but not least, Early Suppression Fast Response fire sprinklers are broadly used in commercial and industrial settings worldwide.

Have you ever wondered what community risk reduction, or CRR, is? Well, you're not alone.

 

"Many different people have many different definitions of community risk reduction," Karen Berard-Reed, a community risk reduction strategist at NFPA, says in a video published last week on NFPA's YouTube channel. And for many people, she continues, they're "just not sure" what CRR is. 

 

Simply put, CRR is the process for identifying and prioritizing risks in a certain community and devising a plan to address those risks, Berard-Reed says. The definition comes from the new NFPA 1300, Standard on Community Risk Assessment and Community Risk Reduction Plan Development.

 

At the 2019 NFPA Conference & Expo happening in San Antonio, Texas, this week, CRR will take center stage. There are four education sessions slated for the next three days at C&E that relate to CRR, including three Berard-Reed will help present. 

 

Learn more about these sessions and NFPA's efforts related to CRR at nfpa.org/gotrisk, where you'll find a feature article Berard-Reed wrote for the May/June issue of NFPA Journal.

Our attendees have arrived, exhibitors have set up, our presenters are standing by, and we're gearing up to make the next few days as interesting and impactful as possible for the fire and life safety professionals who have gathered here in San Antonio, Texas to enhance their code-related knowledge and develop new skills.

 

We'll be offering more than 120 educational sessions on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, followed by the annual NFPA Technical Meeting on Thursday. We also couldn’t forget to mention the hundreds of exhibitors on the show floor that bring to life the products and services needed to meet and maintain compliance with prevailing codes and standards in the design, construction and operation of buildings and facilities of every kind, as well as many special events and activities!

 

If you weren’t able to make it down to Texas this year, be sure to follow along with this blog, and on social media using our hashtag #NFPAConf for updates throughout the show. Plus, you can start planning your trip to Orlando in 2020!

We also want to take a moment as NFPA Conference & Expo kicks off, to thank all of our generous sponsors who helped make this week's event happen. If you are an attendee, you won't want to miss stopping by these sponsors' booths in the Expo hall to see all of the new things they are up to!

 

 

We hope everyone has a great week here in San Antonio!

In recent years, there has been a marked increase in the deployment of lithium ion batteries in energy storage systems (ESS) in commercial occupancies.  Local Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJs) along with the ESS integrators and installers are challenged by the lack of clear direction on fire protection and suppression in these installations. 

The 2016 Fire Protection Research Foundation project “Fire Hazard Assessment of Lithium Ion Battery Energy Storage Systems” identified gaps and research needs to further understand the fire hazards of lithium ion battery energy storage systems. There is currently limited data available on the fire hazard of energy storage systems (ESS) including two full-scale open-air tests from the 2016 Foundation project and a separate project that included intermediate scale fire testing conducted at the module level to evaluate the performance of fire suppressants. The fire protection and fire service communities need guidance on protection requirements for these systems in a building.lithium ion battery

The Research Foundation initiated this second phase project, which was supported by the Property Insurance Research Group (PIRG), NEC Solutions, and Retriev Technologies, to determine sprinkler protection guidance for grid-connected lithium-ion battery based ESS for commercial occupancies.  As part of the study, FM Global conducted small-scale and large-scale free burn tests and large-scale sprinkler protected tests in order to develop sprinkler protection recommendations.  There are two reports published for this effort, the test report by FM Global and available on their website and the second summary report by Exponent and available through the Foundation.

Based on testing at the module level by others to evaluate the performance of various fire suppressants, including water, and supported by the large-scale testing completed by FM Global, it was concluded that water is the most effective fire suppressant.  All tests in this study were performed on donated battery modules of two different chemistries; lithium iron phosphate (LFP) and nickel manganese cobalt oxide (NMC).  While it is not possible to test every type of battery, testing two different chemistries provides useful information on how they each react and behave.  The predominant difference in the hazard was the battery chemistry and energy density. 

Read the report on the Foundation website to get details on the tests and the resulting guidance for general protection for lithium-ion battery based ESS located in commercial occupancies.  In addition, there will be a presentation at NFPA C&E on Tuesday, June 17 at 5pm Central and a sponsored Foundation webinar on Thursday, June 27 from 12:30 to 2pm Eastern.

Image: Reprinted with permission from FM Global. Source: Research Technical Report Development of Sprinkler Protection Guidance for Lithium Ion Based Energy Storage Systems, © 2019 FM Global. All rights reserved.

In Texas, the State Fire Marshal's Office has adopted the 2015 editions of both NFPA 101 and NFPA 1, with some noted exceptions. From their website, “The Life Safety Code® determines the design, construction and operation of occupied buildings. When other codes are utilized for building design elements, the standards of the Life Safety Code® prevail…. NFPA 1 is used by the State Fire Marshal’s Office staff when conducting inspections within their authority.”

 

Attendees Talking at NFPA Conference & Expo

 

Fortunately, inspectors from Texas don’t have to travel far to further their knowledge of the fire code and how to inspect for current code requirements as well as learn about upcoming, emerging code issues that will very soon be impacting the fire code community. Next week is NFPA’s flagship event, the Conference & Expo and is being held this year in San Antonio, TX. There will be over 130 educational sessions offered for the week along with other special events highlighting areas of fire protection, life safety, building construction and public education. To see the full details of the event (not too late to make last minute plans, regardless of where you are traveling from!), check out the Conference & Expo page.

 

If you plan to be at the event here is a list of some educational sessions (and their relationship to NFPA 1) that may be of interest to you as a fire inspector to further your knowledge about Fire Code related issues, use and enforcement. To see a full description of each session you can visit the Conference & Expo page or click on the individual links below.    

Hazardous Materials and Processes:

X09. NFPA 30, Flammable and Combustible Liquids Code — Production Facility Compliance (NFPA 30 is second only to NFPA 101 with the number of sections extracted into NFPA 1. The Code extracts over 1400 sections from NFPA 30 including definitions, mandated provisions and explanatory Annex sections)

T68. When Uber Meets Octane: Fire Code Requirements for On-Demand Fueling (NFPA 1 added requirements for on-demand mobile fueling via a Tentative Interim Amendment to the 2018 edition of the Code?)

T69. Additive Manufacturing (3D Printing) — Safety Considerations (NFPA 1 added a new chapter on additive manufacturing to the First Draft and will continue to discuss the topic throughout the remainder of the 2021 Code revision cycle)

W02. Flammable Refrigerants Regulations: Past, Present, and Future (Flammable refrigerants have been a topic of discussion by the technical committee for the last couple of Code revision cycles. The Code currently addresses these in Chapter 53.)

W16. NFPA 33 Spray Finishing Requirements — Practical Application from Autobody Shops to Yachts (Chapter 43 of NFPA 1 addresses operations involving the spray application of flammable and combustible materials and required compliance with NFPA 33. The Code extracts about 17 pages of material from NFPA 33 so it is important for fire inspectors to be aware of process that can occur in a number of different occupancies. )

 

W18. NFPA 30A and NFPA 58: Safe Refueling of Propane Autogas Vehicles (The Code extracts extensive requirements from both NFPA 30A and NFPA 58 that related to this topic.)

Fire Protection Systems:

T16. NFPA 13, Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems — Test Your Knowledge (NFPA 1 extracts from NFPA 13 and requires fire inspectors to be familiar with automatic sprinkler system operation.)

X10. What’s Wrong with This Picture? Identifying Water-Based System Deficiencies (NFPA 25 is the governing document for the inspection of water-based fire protection systems and is also extracted into NFPA 1.)

X17. Sprinkler System FAQs and Q&A (See notes above.)

Building and Life Safety:

M06. Enforcing the Extraordinary: Codes, Standards, and Best Practices for the Entertainment Industry (The Fire Code addresses all occupancies and special uses. Various sections throughout the Code will be needed to ensure building and occupant safety for entertainment events.)

P09. NFPA 241—Setting the Standard for Safeguarding Construction Operations (Chapter 16 of the Code addresses safeguarding construction and demolition operations and extracts from NFPA 241.)

P10. ASHER: A Public Session on Active Shooter/Hostile Event Response (NFPA 1 along with other model codes such as life safety and building codes will be addressing the balance of fire and life safety with security from non-fire events for years to come. Compliance with both NFPA 3000 as well as model codes will no doubt overlap and working together as a community is critical for occupant safety.)

T59. NFPA 3000™ (PS): Community Threat Assessment and Response Preparedness (See note above.)

W49. Fire and Life Safety for Large Festivals (Large festivals are likely classified as assembly occupancies and can present unique challenges to a fire inspectors. With festival season upon us, NFPA 1 and the inspector play a critical role in keeping people safe during these events.)

Other:

M14 - NFPA 1 - Requisitos de Ocupaciones Especiales (Special Occupancy Requirements) (NFPA 1 addresses occupancy specific provisions for fire protection systems, egress requirements, interior finish, and other processes and operations that can be found in many occupancies.)

M18. Consumer Fireworks — A Review of Recent Large-Scale Fire Tests (In August 2014, a TIA was issued in conjunction with a Standards Council decision to temporarily withdraw NFPA 1124 and end all NFPA standards development activities relating to the storage and retail sales of consumer fireworks. Since then, a 2017 edition of the standard was issued but without any provisions related to consumer fireworks in its scope.)

 

M19. A New Standard for Energy Storage Systems: NFPA 855 (NFPA 1 will extract from NFPA 855 if it is issued by the Standards Council this summer. Critical and necessary requirements for fire inspectors related to energy storage systems will be added to the 2021 edition.)

X16 - The NFPA® Fire & Life Safety Ecosystem (The Fire and Life Safety Ecosystem cannot function effectively without an effective regulatory environment, use of referenced codes and standards, and effective code compliance, all cogs where fire inspectors can play a critical role in the safety of buildings, occupants and responders.)

 

We want to hear from you. Are you planning to attend the Conference next week in San Antonio? If this is your first NFPA Conference & Expo, what are you looking forward to the most? What educational sessions do you believe will bring you the most value as a Fire Inspector? Check back in here after the Conference and let us know what you thought and how we can further help you do your job.

Don't miss another #FireCodeFridays blog! Get notifications straight to your email inbox by subscribing here! And you can always follow me on Twitter for more updates and fire safety news @KristinB_NFPA

Thanks for reading!

On June 9th, 1946 a fire at the Canfield Hotel in Dubuque, Iowa captured national attention when 19 people died and 20 others were injured.

 

The Canfield Hotel consisted of two buildings: the original four story brick joisted section and the six story fire resistive annex that was built in 1925. The original building did not have a sprinkler system and had installed a wooden stairway to connect the original building to the three upper floors of the annex. The annex had a closed non-combustible stairwell with automatic fire doors that lead to an exit on the ground floor.

 

Guests accessed the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th floors of the annex from a sub-standard elevator or the open stairway from the first floor of the original building. Additionally, corridors between the original building to the annex continued across all floors but were protected with automatic fire doors. Guests accessed the fifth and sixth floors of the annex from an elevator.

 

The fire started in a small closet in the Red Lounge on the first floor of the hotel. Waitresses were instructed to put cigarette butts in paper napkins and place them in a paper trash can in the closet. At 12:10 am, four guests had gone to play the juke box and heard a crackling noise and smelled smoke, went to investigate, and discovered that the wall in the closet was on fire. The guests and the hotel manager tried to extinguish the fire with a wet towel and a fire extinguisher but their attempts were unsuccessful. The fire quickly spread to the combustible finish on the walls of the bar. Fifteen minutes after the fire began, the hotel manager tried to warn guests on the upper floors. The night clerk notified the fire department at 12:39 am. Many escaped by using the fire escape on the annex.

 

When the fire department arrived, the fire had encompassed the lounge and the lobby. The fire department did not have enough staff to simultaneously fight the fire and save lives so they made the decision that life-saving took priority over fighting the fire at the time. At 12:42 am, another alarm was sent out by police radio to call for additional help. Civilians, the police department, and National Guardsmen assisted the fire department. They were able to rescue 35 people using ladders and 27 people jumped into life nets. It took the fire department 2.5 hours with six pumping engines, an aerial, and two ladder companies to extinguish the fire.

 

For more information regarding this and other moments in fire history, please feel free to reach out to the NFPA Research Library & Archives.


The NFPA Archives houses all of NFPA's publications, both current and historic.
Library staff are available to answer research questions from members and the general public.

This year's NFPA Technical Meeting (Tech Session) will be held at the Henry B. Gonzàlez Convention Center in San Antonio, TX, on June 20, 2019, starting at 8:00 a.m. in the Stars at Night Ballroom.  NFPA will be providing wireless internet access during the Tech Session so attendees have the option of downloading the agenda prior to or during the Tech Session.  Also, documentation such as First Draft Reports and Second Draft Reports can be viewed on the Next Edition tab of each specific document information page.

The Tech Session is an important step in developing a complete record to assist the Standards Council in determining the degree of consensus achieved on proposed changes to NFPA Standards. During this meeting, NFPA members are given an opportunity to vote on proposed changes and members of the public can voice their opinions on these actions. Only NFPA members of record as of December 22, 2018 who are currently in good standing are eligible to vote at this meeting.

Below is the order of the NFPA Standards with motions eligible for presentation and action at the Tech Session:

  • NFPA 25, Standard for the Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems
  • NFPA 302, Fire Protection Standard for Pleasure and Commercial Motor Craft
  • NFPA 654, Standard for the Prevention of Fire and Dust Explosions from the Manufacturing, Processing, and Handling of Combustible Particulate Solids
  • NFPA 130, Standard for Fixed Guideway Transit and Passenger Rail Systems
  • NFPA 502, Standard for Road Tunnels, Bridges, and Other Limited Access Highways
  • NFPA 1961, Standard on Fire Hose
  • NFPA 1851, Standard on Selection, Care, and Maintenance of Protective Ensemble for Structural Fire Fighting and Proximity Fire Fighting
  • NFPA 58, Liquefied Petroleum Gas Code
  • NFPA 801, Standard for Fire Protection for Facilities Handling Radioactive Materials
  • NFPA 855, Standard for Installation of Stationary Energy Storage Systems
  • NFPA 70, National Electrical Code®

 

The NFPA Technical Meeting, also known as "Tech Session," is an important element in the standards development process, ensuring that consensus is achieved on proposed changes to NFPA Standards prior to Standards Council review. During this meeting, supporters and opponents of certified motions voice their opinions and qualified NFPA members vote on proposed changes. 

Certificación de Especialista en Inspección, Prueba y Mantenimiento de Sistemas de RociadoresCuando los sistemas de protección contra incendios a base de agua funcionan correctamente, reducen significativamente la probabilidad de pérdida de vida y lesiones en caso de un incendio. Como tal, es crítico que las personas responsables por la inspección, prueba y mantenimiento de las condiciones de estos rociadores tengan un conocimiento práctico de los materiales cubiertos en NFPA 25, Norma para la Inspección, Prueba y Mantenimientos de Sistemas de Protección contra Incendios a Base de Agua.

La Certificación de Especialistas en Inspección, Prueba y Mantenimiento de Sistemas de Rociadores (CEIPMSR) fue creada con motivo de proveer un proceso consistente e imparcial para validar competencia professional en inspección, prueba y mantenimiento de sistemas de rociadores. Esta certificación es una oportunidad de demostrar la habilidad de manejar el cumplimiento de instalaciones para eliminar peligros, maximizar integridad de sistemas, y asegurar la rápida y eficiente respuesta a una emergencia de incendio.

Este programa fue desarrollado con la ayuda de un Grupo Consultivo de Certificación (GCC) compuesto de expertos en la industria representando un amplio rango de países (6 diferentes países en Latinoamérica), años de experiencia, y áreas de experticia. El GCC trabajó a lo largo de varios meses para completar un análisis de los criterios ponderados del examen, la evaluación de cientos de preguntas para el examen, y finalmente, para llevar a cabo un estudio para determinar la nota de aprobación para el examen.

Esta nueva certificación ha generado interés por adelantado en profesionales de la industria. Ayudará a cubrir una necesidad identificada por ustedes y le permitirá a autoridades, empleadores, y clientes a reconocer profesionales con el conocimiento requerido de los retos asociados con un programa adecuado de IPM, y que son capaces de mantener a las instalaciones en cumplimiento con NFPA 25.

Obtenga el reconocimiento que se merece como un experto en su campo con esta certificación de especialista. 

Visítenos en www.nfpa.org/ceipmsr para obtener más información, incluyendo el Manual de Candidatos, la tabla de criterios ponderados, formularios de registro y fechas agendadas.

Talk about stirring up a hornet nest. A few blogs ago, the most frequently asked question was discussed. That blog concluded by stating: I will only provide one answer in order to ensure protection of your employee. That answer is; yes, PPE is necessary for every task you authorize an employee to perform, including operating a circuit breaker or using a switch to turn a light on in an office. If you want a different answer train your employees and perform risk assessments. Many took offense to the need for PPE to turn on a light. However, if you read the blog, it states that without a risk assessment, I must make the determination that PPE is necessary to operate a light switch. This does not mean that a risk assessment is necessary every time a light switch is operated within your facility. It does not mean that PPE is necessary to turn on any light switch nor does it mean that normal operation of a light switch is not possible. It does not mean that only qualified persons can perform that task. There are many other things that statement does not mean. I have stated several times that something may be presented to prove a point in a blog. So what was the point in that blog? The point was that I have no way of knowing what is happening in your facility.

Look at the normal operating conditions that permit operation of a piece of equipment. Now consider what could be happening on-site. There is no one verifying compliance with National Electrical Code® (NEC®) installation requirements. Installations are done with materials available in-house to quickly get the job done whether the material was specified or not. The 15-ampere switch is used beyond its ratings and is protected by a 30-ampere fuse. The conductors are 14 AWG and are improperly installed to the switch box. The switch is also inappropriately used as a motor controller. The switch is improperly installed so that the yoke is not grounded. The faceplate is damaged thereby exposing energized parts. The metal box for the switch is not grounded. There is visible arcing when the switch is operated. With the misuse of the switch, there is visible discoloration. The employee has not been trained to understand normal operating conditions or to recognize signs of impending failure. An employee is at risk of injury by simply flipping that switch. Although an arc flash is not likely to occur there are several signs that a shock hazard may be present. Even though the restricted approach boundary is avoid contact, the employee is required to make contact with the switch. The yoke, the faceplate screw (or faceplate itself if metal) or the box could be energized. The employee does not know to avoid contact with any metal part and is put at risk of electrocution

My answer is for conditions that I do not personally verify. When pushed to provide an answer to the question; is PPE necessary for a specific task to be conducted on specific equipment, my answer will always be; yes, PPE is required unless YOU determine otherwise. I will always consider that an employee is exposed to a hazard. For me to do otherwise may put that employee at risk of injury. You may determine that the normal operation of light switches or anything else in your facility does not require the use of PPE. It is not typical for such tasks to require PPE. This is true at our facility. Hopefully, it is true at yours as well. 

For more information on 70E, read my entire 70E blog series on Xchange

Want to keep track of what is happening with the National Electrical Code® (NEC®)? Subscribeto the NEC Connect newsletter to stay informed of new content. The newsletter also includes NFPA 70E information such as my blogs.

Next time: Impending equipment failure.

Please Note: Any comments, suggested text changes, or technical issues related to NFPA Standards posted or raised in this communication are not submissions to the NFPA standards development process and therefore will not be considered by the technical committee(s) responsible for NFPA Standards development.  To learn how to participate in the NFPA standards development process and submit proposed text for consideration by the responsible technical committee(s), please go to www.nfpa.org/submitpi for instructions.

 

Electric sprinklers, automated inspection and testing, energized controllers, and much more: those are just a few of the topics addressed in a new feature story on the important changes to the 2020 edition of NFPA 25, Standard for the Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems. The story appears in the May/June issue of NFPA Journal, out now.

 

In the story, “Keeping Up With Technology,” author Chad Duffy, a principal fire protection engineer at NFPA and staff liaison for NFPA 25, looks at an array of changes to the code precipitated by “new technologies in sprinkler design and inspection methods that have kept the technical committee for NFPA 25 busy throughout the last revision cycle,” Duffy writes. “It’s important to stay on top of key changes in the field. The most up-to-date edition of NFPA 25 should be used for all inspection, testing, and maintenance activities.”

 

The article, part of the NFPA Journal coverage of the upcoming 2019 Conference & Expo in San Antonio, Texas, includes a listing of related education sessions and other events.

 

The May/June issue of NFPA Journal includes a comprehensive preview of this year’s Conference & Expo and is available in print, online, and through our free app, which can be downloaded at nfpa.org/journalapps.

 

The following proposed Tentative Interim Amendment (TIA) for the 2018 edition of NFPA 10, Standard for Portable Fire Extinguishers, is being published for public review and comment:

Anyone may submit a comment on this proposed TIA by the July 9, 2019 comment closing date.  Along with your comment, please identify the number of the TIA and forward to the Secretary, Standards Council by the closing date.

The following proposed Tentative Interim Amendments (TIAs) for NFPA 70®, National Electrical Code®, are being published for public review and comment:

  • NFPA 70, proposed TIA No. 1426, referencing 600.5(D)(2), proposed 2020 edition, closing date: 6/27/2019
  • NFPA 70, proposed TIA No. 1438, referencing 725.121(C), proposed 2020 edition, closing date: 6/27/2019
  • NFPA 70, proposed TIA No. 1442, referencing 210.52(C)(2), proposed 2020 edition, closing date: 6/27/2019
  • NFPA 70, proposed TIA No. 1444, referencing 725.121(C), proposed 2020 edition, closing date: 6/27/2019
  • NFPA 70, proposed TIA No. 1451, referencing 240.67(C) and Informational Note (new), proposed 2020 edition, closing date: 6/27/2019
  • NFPA 70, proposed TIA No. 1452, referencing 240.87(C) and Informational Note (new), proposed 2020 edition, closing date: 6/27/2019
  • NFPA 70, proposed TIA No. 1453, referencing 210.8 and Informational Note No. 3 (new), 2017 edition, closing date: 6/27/2019
  • NFPA 70, proposed TIA No. 1455, referencing Annex D3, proposed 2020 edition, closing date: 6/27/2019
  • NFPA 70, proposed TIA No. 1458, referencing 334.10(2) and (3), 2017 edition and proposed 2020 edition, closing date: 6/27/2019
  • NFPA 70, proposed TIA No. 1462, referencing 430.252, proposed 2020 edition, closing date: 7/9/2019


Anyone may submit a comment on these proposed TIAs by the closing dates listed above. Along with your comment, please identify the number of the TIA and forward to the Secretary, Standards Council by the closing date.

From The NFPA Quarterly v.43, no.1, 1949:

On Saturday afternoon, June 4, 1949, two employees under the direction of a foreman were unpacking goods in the Montgomery Ward warehouse in San Rafael, California, -- an innocuous operation from a fire hazard standpoint as long as somebody saw to it that the packing materials were properly disposed of. This foreman undertook to do when he detailed one of his men to burn the rubbish. Being new on the job and not having previously had the rubbish detail, the employee was instructed to proceed to the end of a certain corridor, go through a doorway and there he would find a place to burn. The employee was successful in “finding a place to burn”; when next he was seen racing back up the corridor closely pursued by a fast spreading fire that caused $350,000 damage before being controlled.

There were two doors at the end of the corridor, one to the outside where the incinerator was located, and the other a fire door to a paint spray room. As luck would have it, the latter was blocked open, so in he went, deposited the rubbish in a convenient metal enclosure with what looked like a smoke pipe in the back, and touched a match to it.

Fire apparatus arrived promptly in answer to an automatic alarm, but the unsprinklered one- and two-story wood frame structure was already beyond saving.

 

For more information regarding this and other moments in fire history, please feel free to reach out to the NFPA Research Library & Archives.


 The NFPA Archives houses all of NFPA's publications, both current and historic.
 Library staff are available to answer research questions from members and the general public.

 

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has announced “Not Every Hero Wears a Cape. Plan and Practice Your Escape™!” as the theme for Fire Prevention Week, October 6-12, 2019. This year’s campaign focuses on the importance of home escape planning and practice. It also recognizes everyday people who motivate their households to develop and practice an escape plan; these seemingly simple, basic actions can have life-saving impact!

 

Home escape planning and practice is more important than ever, particularly because today’s homes burn faster than ever. Synthetic fibers used in modern home furnishings, along with the fact that newer homes tend to be built with more open spaces and unprotected lightweight construction, are all contributing factors.

 

The true value of home escape planning and practice is often underestimated. “Not Every Hero Wears a Cape. Plan and Practice Your Escape!” works to remind the public just how impactful home escape planning can be, and to celebrate young students, parents, caregivers, and beyond, who learn about home fire escape planning and practice, bring that information home, and spur their households to action

 

A home escape plan includes working smoke alarms on every level of the home, in every bedroom and near all sleeping areas. It also includes two ways out of every room, usually a door and a window, with a clear path to an outside meeting place (like a tree, light pole or mailbox) that’s a safe distance from the home. Home escape plans should be practiced twice a year by all members of the household.

 

For more information about Fire Prevention Week and “Not Every Hero Wears a Cape. Plan and Practice Your Escape!,” along with a wealth of resources to help promote the campaign locally, visit fpw.org.

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