UL FSRI Launches Positive Pressure Attack Online Training Program
Robin Zevotek
April 19, 2016

UL Firefighter Safety Research Institute (FSRI) is proud to announce the release of “Study of the Effectiveness of Fire Service Positive Pressure Ventilation During Fire Attack in Single Family Homes Incorporating Modern Construction Practices” – an online course that serves as a culmination of the cold flow, and full-scale experiments performed by UL FSRI as part of a research study funded by the Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program. The purpose of this study is to increase firefighter safety and effectiveness by providing the fire service with scientific knowledge on the performance characteristics of PPV fans and the way in which their use affects fire dynamics.

The interactive training takes learners through all of the details that went into the experiments, experiment results, and tactical considerations derived from the results.

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Experiments included 24 cold flow tests and 25 full scale tests. UL FSRI Director Steve Kerber shared, “This training program brings science to the streets by providing tactical considerations to the fire service. Through the use of video, data, and 3D drawings of the structures, firefighters are given information that directly relates to the fireground. For the scientifically inclined, there are also links to the detailed report as well as the data graphs and full experiment video.”

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Tactical considerations derived by a fire service technical panel and supported with video and interactive features include: The setback of the fan is not as important as the exhaust size; An ongoing assessment of inlet and exhaust flow is imperative; PPA is exhaust dependent; An outlet of sufficient size, must be provided, in the fire room to allow for effective PPA; During PPA, creating additional openings not in the fire room will create additional flow paths making PPA ineffective; The safety of PPA is decreased when the location and extent of the fire is not known; PPA will not be effective on a fire located in an open concept floor plan or any floor plan with high ceilings; The application of water will increase the likelihood of a successful outcome; PPA is not a replacement for using the reach of your hose stream; During PPA, extension into void spaces is directly related to the exhaust capabilities of the void space; PPA does not negatively affect the survivability of occupants behind a closed door; In single story residential structures, the more openings made in the structure during PPV the more effective it is at ventilating the structure; When PPV is used, it is important to assess for extension; When PPV is used, starting or turning in the fan immediately after fire control will provide the most benefit.

CLICK HERE TO ACCESS THE COURSE. For mobile users, the course is compatible with tablet devices and iPad via the Articulate Media Player application in the App Store.

For those interested in the full scientific report and fire service summary report CLICK HERE TO VISIT THE PROJECT PAGE.

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.