Author: FME Magazine

A huge explosion in an illegal cannabis factory inside a block of flats at Hornchurch in London required more than 70 firefighters to tackle the blaze it started. Witnesses said that the front of the flats had been blown across the streets by the blast which...

A month long spell of frost, fog and freezing temperatures is reported to have  made the air quality in England’s capital London more polluted than Beijing in China. Residents have been blamed by the government for contributing to the decline by using wood burning stoves to...

Official statistics produced by Investec at the end of Intersec are forecasting that the annual fire and safety market turnover in the Middle East will grow from $2.5 billion in 2016 to  $4.4 billion in 2021. Around half of the money will be spend on fire management systems,...

All passengers and their cars escaped injury and damage when a fire started on a ferry operating in the Solent waterway between the Isle of Wight and the English mainland. The fire broke out in a wing of the ship’s bridge as it was on en...

At least 16 people were killed and some 40 injured after a bus carrying Hungarian students, their teachers and some parents burst into flames on a highway in northern Italy,. Girolamo Lacquaniti, from Verona city’s highway police,and  the bus went off the road near a highway...

An official ‘state of catastrophe’ has been declared in central Chile where firefighters have been trying to control forest fires described as the ‘worst in decades’. In the O’Higgins region just to the south of the Chilean capital Santiago more than 175 square miles of landed...

With temperatures falling below freezing point in London in early January the city’s brigade issued a strong warning about the dangers of fire being caused by electrical heaters. Figures released at the start of the month showed that fires that had started in  heaters had led...

Civil defence teams had to rescue six residents from  a two-storey villa in the Al Muroor area of Abu Dhabi after a blaze quickly spread upwards from the ground floor. A neighbour reported seeing a fireman on a ladder rescue a three-year-old girl from the roof,...

The long awaited new fire safety codes for construction in the UAE will be published on January 22nd at the Intersec Fire safety conference to be held at Dubai’s International Convention and Exhibition Centre. Updating the code has been a priority for Dubai Civil Defence since New...

An estimated 20 firefighters were killed when a high-rise building in Tehran caught fire and collapsed, but the final death toll will not be revealed until after thousands of tons of rubble have been scoured. Two hundred firefighters had been battling the blaze in the landmark...

21st century firefighter helmets are a blend of centuries old practical styling and modern materials and technologies. European fire helmets have moved further away from the classic look which is still favoured in the USA but, around the world, manufacturers strive to produce headgear which...

Search & Rescue is a misnomer when relating it to Unmanned Aerial Vehicle as, in reality, it can currently only perform the Search role - not the Rescue nor Recovery – yet. So really its Search & Rescue mission should be described as Search and...

Design fires have great influences on the fire safety concepts and safety measures, and are the basis for any assessment and calculation in tunnel fire safety design. However, the costs of full scale carriage fire tests are large and the number is typically limited. Ying...

We all know how vital it is that electrical cables meet the correct criteria for all construction projects. Now Jonathan Rawlinson, Technical Manager of Prysmian UK takes a look at the importance of reducing the risk in building design with fire resistant cable fixings. Lives and...

Offshore platform managers are now engaged in radical cost-cutting exercises, but even the most insignificant shortcut on procedures can result in disaster. When it comes to fire safety, full functionality is non-negotiable writes Simon Rooks, Operations Director oil and gas, Tyco Fire & Integrated Solutions. The...

The humble warehouse has gone through many changes in the past 20 years; some obvious and others more subtle, yet more profound, in terms of the risk to a business operation. It is perhaps time that as fire professionals we stop to take another look...

A report produced in November 2016 by a group of fire resistant glazing experts looks at the current state of play in the way glass is used in fire-sensitive areas of buildings and questions whether the current regulations are fit for purpose. A major trend in...

To ensure a successful fire safety regime is implemented within a shopping mall it is vital to develop a sound understanding of the key elements that provide the basis to develop and implement a successful fire strategy. Regular contributor to FME and Associate Director of...

It is essential that a public address system delivers announcements which can be comfortably heard by all people with normal hearing in all parts of the area which it is intended to cover. alison cousins, of Baldwin Boxall explores how clarity and quality of sound...

In the winter months when air temperatures fall below zero forest fires are a rarity in the North Indian state of Uttarakhand. However, since the first week of November residents of the high altitude remote areas of Dharchula and Munsiyari have reported seeing smoke from forest...

At least 23 passengers were killed and 17 more were missing after a ferry caught fire just 15 minutes after setting sail from the Maura Angke port in Jakarta, in Indonesia. The Zahro Express ferry was carrying more than 230 people to New Year celebrations at...

Four firefighters suffered injuries while trying to extinguish a blaze in a chemical factory at Ganga Nagar near the city airport of Kolkata in India. The injuries occurred when the original fire was later followed by an explosion. After treatment at a local hospital the firefighters were...

Fire safety experts have welcomed a ruling that makes smoke alarms compulsory in all homes built in Sharjah from next year. The Emirate’s Civil Defence said that as of 2018 all new apartments and villas must have smoke detectors throughout to increase protection for tenants. "It will...

The London Fire Brigade has received official approval of a draft plan which it says outlines a “ four year vision to make the capital the world’s safest global city”. The plan, approved by members of the London’s Fire Authority, has a main two-pronged approach to...

The recent arrest of four suspected arsonists may give Swedish police strong clues as to the reason why nearly 200 cars have been deliberately set on fire in Copenhagen in 2016. A lot of the fires have been started in a poor ‘no go’ areas of...

Three people died and 14,000 others were forced to feel their homes as wildfires swept through one of America’s most famous rural holiday resorts. The flames which flashed through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park were driven by wind gusts of up to 90 miles an...

Balconies are a growing feature of urban development as designers strive to harness precious outdoor space, especially in high rise buildings. But careful consideration must be given to materials and structural design to mitigate the risk of a balcony fire spreading to other parts of...

The night sky over Dubai was lit on 13th December up by another big tower block fire which engulfed the last 12 floors of a residential building. The scene of the blaze was the Oceana Block on the man-made island of Palm Jumeirah. Civil Defence firefighters were...

Mass transit design has become more complex over the years with hubs becoming recognisable, focal points to a city’s architecture. It is an opportunity to welcome people to the city and impress on visitors a strategic vision where the boundaries of design are stretched to...

After a summer of severe wildfires decimating thousands of hectares of land on the continent of North America scientists and weather experts have warned there could be a slow but steady growth of such outbreaks throughout the 21st century. The prediction from the Massachusetts based Union...

An English pensioner’s eight-year labour of love building an iconic Austin-Healey kit car in his garage ended in a fireball that not only destroyed the vehicle but also wrecked his £550,000 home. After spending thousands of hours on the  project Rob Avant, aged 70, was just...

Five members of a family, including the parents and a 16-month-old baby were reported to be fighting for their lives after fire swept through their house in Swindon, England. The cause of the blaze which is thought to have started in the kitchen shortly after midnight...

The Solberg Company, an innovator of firefighting foam concentrates and systems hardware, announced the company has achieved CAN/ULC S560; Standard for Category 3 Foam Liquid Concentrates Certification on the company’s ARCTIC™ 3% and ARCTIC 6% MIL-SPEC AFFF foam concentrates.  ARCTIC™ foam concentrates from SOLBERG are PFOS-free synthetic firefighting...

A report into an aborted take off and subsequent engine fire on a plane at Chicago’s O’Hare Airport has been blamed on a weakness discovered in an alloy used in making a turbine disc 30 years ago, which fell apart. Investigators looking into why 170 passengers...

Multiple car crashes on the Sheikh Zayed Road around the Al Manara Rd interchange towards Sharjah and also at the Abu Dhabi Junction appear to have been caused by smoke from a fire in a local restaurant. A Dubai Civil Defence spokesman said: “City firefighters were...

The under-construction  Mall of Qatar has experienced its second fire in the past six months. The incident occurred at a store that is undergoing fit outs. In April a much-larger blaze took hours for Civil Defence to put out and 14,000 labourers and staff were safely evacuated....

The extent of the damage caused by a fire which destroyed part of the main building at Gower College in the Welsh city of Swansea could have been reduced had local fire hydrants been position better. About 100 firefighter tackled the blaze which started in the...

Twenty passengers and crew were taken to hospital after they sustained minor injuries trying to evacuate an American Airlines jetliner that caught fire while preparing for take off from Chicago’s O’Hare airport. Investigators later conclude that the fire was started by a rare malfunction which they...

A building considered historic in the English tourism industry is to be demolished after it collapsed during a fierce fire. The blaze in the Royal Clarence Hotel in Exeter started in a nearby art gallery and spread to the building which was built in the 17th century. The...

One of Berlin’s top shopping malls had to be closed down when fire engulfed its roof sending palls of smoke into the sky. The 20-story Europa-Center is a landmark in the Charlottenburg dirstrict of  western Berlin as its high-end shops have made it a major tourists...

Following a blaze in an 18-storey  tower block which took 120 firefighters to bring under control The London Fire Brigade has renewed its campaign to get a total recall of the type of tumble dryer which an official investigation has blamed for the cause of...

A big clean up operation was ordered after a dhow carrying 50 tonnes of cargo caught fire in Dubai Creek. A gas cylinder explosion was reported to have start the fire on the Dhow which loaded with electrical equipment and food items. A section of the Creek...

Do you know the protection level of the buildings within your response area? Do you know which structures present the greatest risk of fire incident or safety to life? Are your tenants, employees and customers really safe, or are they truly at risk, with just...

Ray McCormack, Lieutenant Ladder 28 with the New York Fire Department has attended several high rise fires and spoken about his experiences at the HROC High Rise Operations Conference. Here Ray shares his thoughts with FME readers regarding fighting balcony fires in high rise buildings.  Balcony...

BuroHappold Engineering has been involved in major rail and aviation projects in the region including KAFD and Olaya Metro stations in Riyadh KSA in which evacuation modelling has helped develop fluid, functional designs. Sophie Washington is a BuroHappold Senior Fire Engineer based in Dubai where...

A fire which erupted at an electrical plant sparked a massive blackout in Puerto Rico  leaving nearly 1.5 million homes across the island without power and businesses, universities and government offices  also had to shut down. It took more than 24 hours for the Puerto Rican...

Eight Russian firefighters were killed as they battled a blaze at a warehouse in eastern Moscow even though more than 100 workers had been safely evacuated from it earlier. The fire spread rapidly through a 4,000 square metre building that was being used as a plastics...

An oil tanker loaded with more than 160 thousand tons of gasoline and diesel oil caught fire while it was anchored in the Gulf of Mexico off the coast of Boca Del Rio, Veracruz. All 31 members of the crew of the Burgos, which was built in...

A 1,200 acre wildfire at America Vandenburg Air Force Base in Santa Barbara forced official to postpone the launch of a commercial satellite that is to be used to take high resolution images of the earth. The Atlas V rocket that was due to carry the...

A new study undertaken by researchers at Harvard and Columbia Universities in America has reported that in 2015 the clouds of smokes produced by wildfires in South East Asia had caused more than 100,000 premature deaths. The smoke mainly originated from fires on the islands of...