Today’s fire service is in the midst of a research renaissance, says Casey Grant in his column “Dual Purpose” in the September/October issue of NFPA Journal. While some of this research is aimed at improving firefighter safety, much of it also addresses the overall fire problem.
One example is a set of recent studies on wind-driven structural fires. According to Grant, firefighter line-of-duty deaths raised questions about this hazard, especially in high-rise buildings where wind is often a factor. One project, conducted by the National Institute of Standards and Technology through the Fire Protection Research Foundation, replicated conditions in which temperatures rose thousands of degrees Fahrenheit in seconds. This clearly documented danger supports parallel research to develop new fireground tactical approaches, which will, in turn, help improve civilian safety.Read Grant’s entire column for more information on programs aimed at improving firefighter safety.