What is a high-rise building?
- A fully-engineered structure.
- Reinforced concrete or steel frame.
- NFPA: >6 storey’s (25m); underwriters: >9st. (36m).
- Higher than longest aerial ladder.
- A single high-rise contain 50,000 people.
- Total or partial collapse of building.
- Collapse of exit stairs.
- Collapse of façade or glass on exterior.
- Foundation Failure.
- Damage to interior fittings.
- Racking (swaying distortion).
- Loss of window glass (racking, ballistic impact, wind pressure, faulty installation.
- Wind and water damage inside the building.
Fire protection- design and construction measures
- Stairs and stairwell design: fire-protected.
- Floors, columns, interior fire-walls of 4-hour, fire-resistant construction.
- Vertical window spacing limits ability of fire to spread up outside.
- Lifts return to lobby when alarm activates.
Fire Protection- Safety Systems
- Automatic pressurized sprinkler systems.
- Water pumps and wet stand-pipe systems.
- Air conditioners vent smoke from building.
- Back-up electrical systems.
- “Smart” alarm systems (addressable, transmitting).
Fire Protection- Human Systems
- Trained fire wardens and deputies on each floor.
- Regular fire drills for all building users.
- Maintenance detects poor workmanship and removes flammable materials.
At the scene…
- Specific alert procedures.
- Triage point at one exit: emergency vehicles and equipment directed here.
- Specialized triage tags for victims.
- Secondary triage point for lightly injured: buses to get them there.
- Pre-designated transport routs to hospitals.
At the Mortuary
- Mass-casualty facilities and plan.
- Specific coroner’s autopsy arrangements.
- Plans for notifying next-of-kin and identifying bodies.
- To save money, the richest borough in the land housed some of its citizens in actually dangerous conditions.
- Emergency response across London is not uniformly good.
- In the UK, there is deep, highly politicized resistance to the introduction and prosecution of safety measures.
- Security seems to be more important than safety.