New fire safety engineering research calls for major overhaul to guidelines, practices and methods

Fire safety design and verification methods should be clearly defined, with neither process interfering with the other, new research from the Warren Centre recommends.

The research, Fire Safety Engineering: The Methods Report, explores the functional value of the International Fire Safety Engineering Guidelines, Fire Safety Verification Methods and Practice Guides issued by the relevant professional bodies. It also considers how the use of each approach could impact the fire safety engineering design of individual buildings.

The report, published in June 2019, makes several recommendations, including:

  • revising the Fire Safety Verification Methods so they respect the independence of the design process and adequately verify that Performance Requirements are met
  • updating the International Fire Safety Engineering Guidelines and phasing out previous editions; and
  • clarifying the purpose of Practice Guides to ensure they are compatible with existing articles of reference.

The Warren Centre research was sponsored by the Victorian Building Authority and seven other government and industry bodies.