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Tactical Considerations Web Series: Ep. 21 - Building Construction Affects Fire Behavior

In Episode 21, check out UL's Fire Safety Research Institute (FSRI) Research Engineer, Jack Regan, as he discusses a tactical consideration from our recent Training Fires project: How Building Construction Affects Fire Behavior.

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Previous research conducted by FSRI has shown that the increased use of plastics in residential homes has resulted in fires which are more likely to become ventilation-limited prior to fire department arrival. This emphasizes the importance of fire department ventilation tactics. Realistic live-fire training is an important tool that can allow firefighters the opportunity to learn how a fire may actually react to those ventilation tactics on the fireground.

Most concrete live fire training buildings are built for durability to withstand repeated live fire training evolutions rather than to replicate the types of residential structures to which firefighters may actually face in the field. There are several aspects of concrete live fire training building construction that have a pronounced effect on fire dynamics, making it a challenge to actually teach ventilation limited fire tactics.

Some instructors have found innovative ways to modify concrete live fire training buildings to conduct ventilation limited live fire training. Since this may not always be possible, it is important that instructors and students understand the difference between their training props and the fireground.

Go to Study of the Fire Service Training Environment: Safety, Fidelity, and Exposure to access reports and peer-reviewed journal articles to learn more about this tactical consideration.