When designing a new building it’s critical to hire a fire protection engineer early on in the design process. Only fire protection engineers can develop solutions that meet various building and fire codes, and which ensure life safety and help mitigate risk factors. A fire protection engineer (FPE) can also save a client time and money, but the FPE should be introduced early on in the design process.
Real life example: A property owner lists a building for sale. The building was a combination office building, residential, and contained a parking garage underneath the building. A buyer had the building evaluated by a general building inspector. The inspector claimed that the fire sprinkler system in the parking garage was designed and installed incorrectly, and so wanted a $150,000 reduction in price. The Property Manager (the seller) hired us to examine the installation and design, and to report. Our examination revealed that the original design and installation was correct. The inspector was unfamiliar with the Beam and Girder sprinkler spacing rules in NFPA 13. CFP wrote a report to that effect, and our in-house FPE stamped the report. For a small fee the property manager saved $150,000. The buyer paid the full price.
Fire protection engineering is not limited to the design of fire sprinkler systems. The discipline includes much more.
Fire Detection – fire alarm systems and fire department call systems
Active Fire Protection – fire suppression systems, water, foam, etc.
Passive Fire Protection – fire and smoke barriers, space separation
Smoke Control and Management
Escape Planning – Emergency exits, Fire lifts etc.
Building Design, Layout, and Space Planning
Fire Prevention Programs
Fire Modeling and Fire Dynamics
Human Behavior During Fire Events
Risk Analysis and Mitigation – including economic factors
A Fire Protection Engineer is a valuable asset to have on your side. FPEs bring value to their clients by serving as a liaison between other engineering disciplines, architects, contractors, owners, property managers, and developers. When dealing with complex building designs, MEP engineers (mechanical, electrical, plumbing) do not possess the in-depth knowledge of local fire and building codes necessary to resolve challenging and complex compliance issues. An FPE specializes in building fire codes and effective fire protection systems.
Above all else, save time and money by bringing an FPE in early in the design process. It’s far easier to fix a code or compliance problem, or even a life safety issue, on paper than it is onsite.
In addition to property managers, our customer base at CFP includes architects, engineers, contractors, owners, and developers. We give every project and customer the same attention to detail and the same prompt service, no matter the size of the project. We tailor our work to the needs of our clients. CFP has worked with government and commercial clients down the street in New Hampshire and on projects throughout New England and across the US. Contact us for your fire protection design needs on your next project.