Special Issue "Fire Safety 2019"

A special issue of Safety (ISSN 2313-576X).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (29 February 2020).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Kuang-Chung Tsai
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Safety, Health and Environmental Engineering, National Kaohsiung University of Science and Technology, Kaohsiung City 824, Taiwan
Interests: fire safety engineering, building codes, investigation of fire accidents
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

“Fire Safety 2019”is a continuation of the previous and successful Special Issue “Fire Safety”.

The fire safety community continues to face challenges in fire safety research and design, although significant progress has been made over the last several decades. This challenge arises from the complexity associated with high, long, and deep infrastructures, including high rise buildings, long tunnels, and underground spaces, from toxic and high fire-load materials used in industry and residence to integration with green building objectives, etc.

Simultaneously, fire safety design benefits from progressive understanding of fire physics and chemistry, human behavior, and structural fire performance, from great capability in numerical simulation to novel concepts in performance-based design methods, etc. This Special Issue will focus on all of fire safety aspects. Researchers can submit papers dealing with any aspect related to fire safety.

Prof. Dr. Kuang-Chung Tsai
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Safety is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • fire safety engineering
  • human behavior
  • structural fire performance
  • fire toxicity
  • performance based fire design
  • fire risk assessment

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Mathematical Modeling of Heat Transfer in an Element of Combustible Plant Material When Exposed to Radiation from a Forest Fire
Safety 2019, 5(3), 56; https://doi.org/10.3390/safety5030056 - 15 Aug 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
The last few decades have been characterized by an increase in the frequency and burned area of forest fires in many countries of the world. Needles, foliage, branches, and herbaceous plants are involved in burning during forest fires. Most forest fires are surface [...] Read more.
The last few decades have been characterized by an increase in the frequency and burned area of forest fires in many countries of the world. Needles, foliage, branches, and herbaceous plants are involved in burning during forest fires. Most forest fires are surface ones. The purpose of this study was to develop a mathematical model of heat transfer in an element of combustible plant material, namely, in the stem of a herbaceous plant, when exposed to radiation from a surface forest fire. Mathematically, the process of heat transfer in an element of combustible plant material was described by a system of non-stationary partial differential equations with corresponding initial and boundary conditions. The finite difference method was used to solve this system of equations in combination with a locally one-dimensional method for solving multidimensional tasks of mathematical physics. Temperature distributions were obtained as a result of modeling in a structurally inhomogeneous stem of a herbaceous plant for various scenarios of the impact of a forest fire. The results can be used to develop new systems for forest fire forecasting and their environmental impact prediction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fire Safety 2019)
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Open AccessArticle
Examination of Strenuous Activity Preceding Cardiac Death during Firefighting Duties
Safety 2019, 5(3), 50; https://doi.org/10.3390/safety5030050 - 09 Aug 2019
Abstract
Sudden cardiac death accounts for approximately 45% of duty-related fatalities among United States firefighters. Strenuous physical exertion is recognized as a trigger of sudden cardiac events. This study describes the duration of strenuous physical exertion on-scene preceding a fatal cardiac event by situation [...] Read more.
Sudden cardiac death accounts for approximately 45% of duty-related fatalities among United States firefighters. Strenuous physical exertion is recognized as a trigger of sudden cardiac events. This study describes the duration of strenuous physical exertion on-scene preceding a fatal cardiac event by situation encountered during firefighting duties. Data provided by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Fire Fighter Fatality Investigation and Prevention Program for duty-related firefighter fatalities over a 9-year period were analyzed. Among the 235 fatalities investigated, 45% had a cause of death that was cardiac in origin. Time (mean ± SD) spent on-scene in strenuous work was 30 ± 26 min, 14 ± 15 min, and 47 ± 52 min for fire, non-fire emergency, and training situations, respectively. Across all emergency operations and training, 31% of fatalities occurred among firefighters who performed ≤10 min of strenuous work, whereas 13% of fatalities occurred among those who performed >60 min. Study findings indicate that there is considerable variability in the duration of strenuous work preceding fatal cardiac events during firefighting duties. Notably, a high percentage of fatal cardiac events occurred after a relatively brief period of strenuous work, suggesting that the performance of any strenuous work, even that of short duration, may be sufficient to provoke a cardiac event in a firefighter with underlying cardiac disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fire Safety 2019)
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Open AccessArticle
Performance-Based Fire Engineering Design of a Heritage Building: McDougall House Case Study
Safety 2019, 5(3), 45; https://doi.org/10.3390/safety5030045 - 17 Jul 2019
Abstract
The application of a performance-based fire engineering design has enabled the conservation of a heritage building in New Zealand. McDougall House is a two-story heritage building which suffered extensive damages during the Canterbury earthquakes in 2010 and 2011. The scope of the conservation [...] Read more.
The application of a performance-based fire engineering design has enabled the conservation of a heritage building in New Zealand. McDougall House is a two-story heritage building which suffered extensive damages during the Canterbury earthquakes in 2010 and 2011. The scope of the conservation plan included the preservation and restoration of the building external façade, the restoration of the ornamental plasterwork ceiling within the Ballroom, the reconstruction of all damaged internal lath and plaster linings, the adaptation of the fireplace, and the reconstruction of the damaged chimney. The fire engineering design adopted is the Verification Method C/VM2 with As Nearly As is Reasonably Practicable consideration for the heritage fabrics of the building. The combination of quantitative and qualitative analyses has demonstrated the building design compliance with the 10 design scenarios of C/VM2. These analyses include the assessment of minimum means of escape and fire protection provisions, the assessment of allowable unprotected areas in the external wall for horizontal fire spread, the assessment of firefighting provisions, the smoke and egress modelling of proposed design fires, and the benefit versus sacrifice analysis on the heritage fabrics. The application of C/VM2 results in an upgrade to the fire safety and fire protection systems of the building while also retaining and enhancing its heritage value. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fire Safety 2019)
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Open AccessArticle
A New Approach to the Assessment of the Reduction in Visibility Caused by Fires of Electrical Cables
Safety 2019, 5(3), 44; https://doi.org/10.3390/safety5030044 - 09 Jul 2019
Abstract
Electricity is the most important form of household energy and one of the most important forms of energy for industry and transport. Electrical distribution in construction and transport is almost exclusively implemented using electrical cables. One of the unresolved problems associated with electrical [...] Read more.
Electricity is the most important form of household energy and one of the most important forms of energy for industry and transport. Electrical distribution in construction and transport is almost exclusively implemented using electrical cables. One of the unresolved problems associated with electrical cables is the release of smoke and the resulting reduction of visibility in case of fire in the area. In this study, a new approach was developed to assess the reduction of visibility in an area affected by an electrical cable fire. This approach is based on the determination of the critical ratio of smoke volume (in the smoke layer and exhausted from the fire compartment) to the length of the burning cable, through which the visibility of reflective and illuminated signs was reduced to a lower limit value (a standard of 10 m). The input data for this approach was the extinction area of the smoke released from one meter of burning cable and the length of the cables in the area. This approach was used to test two power cables (CHKE-V J3x1.5 and CHKE-R J3x1.5) and one signal cable J-H(St)H 1 × 2 × 0.8 with the B2ca, s1, d1, a1 fire reaction class. The smoke extinction area of the examined cables was determined using a cone calorimeter at a heat flux of 50 kW/m2. The obtained data showed that in order to maintain a visibility of 10 m for reflective signs, the critical ratio of smoke volume to length of burning cable was 7.5 m3/m. For illuminated signs, the critical ratio was 2.8 m3/m. The relationship between burning length and visibility allows the calculation of visibility in the fire compartment affected by cable fire only from cables length. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fire Safety 2019)
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Open AccessArticle
Effects of 7-Day Ketone Ingestion and a Physiological Workload on Postural Stability, Cognitive, and Muscular Exertion Measures in Professional Firefighters
Safety 2019, 5(1), 15; https://doi.org/10.3390/safety5010015 - 08 Mar 2019
Abstract
Background: Postural stability and cognitive performance are challenged in firefighters. The purpose of this investigation was to examine the impact of 7-day ketone supplementation on postural stability, cognitive performance, and muscular activation before and after a physiological workload. Methods: Nine professional firefighters completed [...] Read more.
Background: Postural stability and cognitive performance are challenged in firefighters. The purpose of this investigation was to examine the impact of 7-day ketone supplementation on postural stability, cognitive performance, and muscular activation before and after a physiological workload. Methods: Nine professional firefighters completed two experimental sessions (pre- and post-workload) in a counterbalanced, double-blind design. Participants ingested either a ketone salt (KS) or placebo (PLA) daily for seven days, and had an eighth ingestion 30 min prior to testing. Each experimental testing consisted of maximal voluntary contractions (MVIC) for four muscles (knee flexors—BF, extensor—VM, ankle dorsiflexors—TA, and plantar flexors—MG) using electromyography and postural stability testing (eyes open (EO), eyes closed (EC), and eyes open-dual-task using a FitLight™ system (EOT)), before (pre-workload) and after (post-workload) a simulated physiological workload. The workload consisted of 35 min steady state exercise at 60% of peak oxygen consumption wearing firefighter personal protective equipment (PPE). Results: Significant differences were limited to time effects (pre-workload vs. post-workload), with no differences between groups (KS vs. PLA). Significantly lower muscle activity in VM, TA, and MG during MVIC, greater postural sway and muscle activity in BF during EC and EOT, and slower response time during EOT were evident post-workload. Conclusions: A 7-day ketone supplementation does not impact postural stability, muscle activity, and cognitive tasks, but a fatiguing workload causes significant performance reduction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fire Safety 2019)
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Review

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Open AccessReview
The Impact of Firefighter Physical Fitness on Job Performance: A Review of the Factors That Influence Fire Suppression Safety and Success
Safety 2018, 4(4), 60; https://doi.org/10.3390/safety4040060 - 14 Dec 2018
Abstract
Purpose: The objective of this review was to analyze the physiological impact of fire suppression on the human body. Design: The literature review included studies focused on workload requirements for common firefighting tasks, effect of health status on the firefighting profession, and attempts [...] Read more.
Purpose: The objective of this review was to analyze the physiological impact of fire suppression on the human body. Design: The literature review included studies focused on workload requirements for common firefighting tasks, effect of health status on the firefighting profession, and attempts to establish a minimum physiological workload capacity for successful performance of firefighting. Findings: The existing literature provides evidence of the high degree of physiological stress that firefighters are under during fire suppression tasks and the great degree of maximal physical capacity that firefighting often requires. Firefighters often operate close to maximal aerobic capacity while performing tasks common to the profession. This is especially true due to the added physiological stress placed on the human body while wearing personal protective equipment during firefighting. Conclusions: Future investigations are necessary to further explore markers of physiological stress during firefighting and the impact that it may have on the ability to withstand the development of disease as well as fire suppression safety. Using completion time of fire suppression tasks as a criterion of success may be an important consideration in addition to the physiological requirements of the occupation when assessing the appropriateness of an individual to be a firefighter. An important future consideration is the effect that fire suppression activities may have on reaction time in critical situations in which life-and-death decisions must be made. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fire Safety 2019)
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