Holistic Fire Safety Design

Christina attended the SFS and SFPE Joint International Conference on Holistic Fire Safety Design held in Brisbane from the 26-28 July 2023.

The conference featured a range of technical presentations on best-practice fire engineering, effective communication of fire safety concepts and strategies, and case studies. Keynote speakers included Dame Judith Hackitt, Peter Johnson, and Dr. David Lange. Delegates had the opportunity to learn about the latest research and developments in the field and to network with other professionals in the industry.

The conference aimed to help attendees:

  • Gain an understanding of the principles and best practices of holistic fire safety design, including the differences between this approach and traditional ‘departure-based’ analysis.
  • Learn about the latest research and developments in fire safety engineering, and how these can be applied to improve fire safety strategies and designs.
  • Explore the involvement of different stakeholders in the fire safety design process and understand the importance of effective communication of fire safety concepts and strategies.
  • Discuss the need for appropriate engineering standards and supporting legislation to underpin holistic fire safety design and understand the role of research in underpinning this approach.

The conference also included three options for site tours. Christina attended the University of Queensland, Fire Engineering Laboratory, where she was able to view the interesting research being conducted by PHD students there.

The major conclusions regarding holistic fire safety design are:

  • Fire engineering reports should be written in a manner that is understandable for all stakeholders, not just for the certifier.
  • Fire engineers should be employed as early as possible in the planning process.
  • A standard guidance document is needed for holistic fire engineering design.
  • Building maintenance manual should be provided for building managers to outline fire safety requirements and procedures.

Christina keeps up to date with current and evolving issues and topics in the construction and engineering industry.

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