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UL Firefighter Safety Research Institute advances fire research knowledge and develops cutting-edge, practical fire service education aimed at helping firefighters stay safe.
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UPCOMING EVENTS
Fire Dynamics Bootcamp
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UL FSRI Research Update
Normally, firefighters enter the front door of a structure to access a fire to extinguish it. This approach, enabled by the personal protective equipment firefighters wear, has provided positive results, especially if the firefighters can easily locate the fire from their point of entry. However, there have been many cases where the firefighters did not find fire. Instead, the fire found them. In fire incidents where firefighters were overtaken by the fire, the “one size fits all” fire attacks were not effective. Unfortunately, there are a number of these incidents where firefighters were killed or injured. In this presentation, the latest Underwriters Laboratories Fire Service Research Institute firefighting research results, supported by physics, are coupled with examples from fireground incidents to demonstrate why additional options are needed in your tactical tool box. Size-up, understanding what the fire is showing you, and then deciding the best strategic and tactical approach is key to an effective fire attack.
Fire Research, Tactics, Training and Application
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UL Xplorlabs & Close Before You Doze
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Interior vs. Exterior Attack
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FireCARES and NFORS
Local government decision makers often alter fire department resources faster than fire service leaders can evaluate the potential impact. These decisions can leave a community without sufficient resources to respond to emergency calls safely, efficiently, and effectively. The Fire Community Assessment/Response Evaluation System (FireCARES) enables fire departments to add a technical basis to what has historically been an anecdotal discussion regarding community hazards and risks as well as the impact of changes on fire department resource levels. FireCARES provides three scores for each community based on the available data: the Community Risk Score (fire and EMS), the Fire Department Performance Score, and the Safe Grade. These scores are generated from exploiting an expansive, multilayered data set combining fire incidents, outcomes, and community risk characteristics. Fire and EMS incident data are not without flaws, as they primarily rely on firefighters for data entry. Additionally, there is a two-year data lag on the national level. To overcome this obstacle, we have built the National Fire Operations Reporting System (NFORS), a real-time data analysis tool that leverages modern data practices while removing firefighters from data entry. This presentation highlights both projects and provides a live demonstration of each.
Impact of Ventilation on Fire Patterns
Changes in home construction materials, contents, and geometry have resulted in changes on the fire scene. Today, structure fires are predominantly fueled by synthetic fuels and commonly become ventilation-controlled. How and where the fire receives oxygen impacts the fire dynamics and resulting fire patterns. This presentation will include videos, photos, and data from full-scale fire experiments conducted at the UL Large Fire Laboratory. A one-story and a two-story structure were used for the experiments. The test scenarios ranged from room fires with no exterior ventilation, to room fires with flow paths that connected the fires with remote intake and exhaust vents throughout the structures. Elevated fires originating in the kitchens were also examined. This project was supported by a grant from the U.S. DoJ NIJ.
Tactical Considerations Based on UL Firefighter Research
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UL Firefighter Safety Research Institute is dedicated to increasing firefighter knowledge to reduce injuries and deaths in the fire service and in the communities they serve.