This presentation examines stakeholder concerns with the fire and safety risks posed by wood frame residential construction. The talk commences by discussing the background to the concerns from the fire service with respect to these structures, and how these contrast with the benefits that have been identified for these buildings.
The specific nature of the concerns that have been raised by the key stakeholders are outlined and discussed with respect to research findings that have examined these issues, including an overview of the work that has contributed to the safety margins relied on in the new building codes, and a retrospective analysis of recent fire outcomes for relevant structures in British Columbia and Canada.
Vulnerabilities with previous constructions that have been identified will be discussed, along with an explanation as to how the amended building code addresses these. The talk will conclude by explaining that, based on available simulation and retrospective data, and acknowledging the amendments that have been made to the building code to protect these new, taller wood frame buildings, there does not appear to be data-driven support for the concerns raised by key stakeholders with respect to these structures.
Len Garis, (ret) Fire Chief for the City of Surrey, British Columbia, Canada, Professor at the University of the Fraser Valley, Affiliated Research Faculty, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, New York, Associate Scientist Emeritus, British Columbia Centre for Injury Reduction, will discuss research undertaken in partnership with Dr. Joe Clare, Senior Lecturer in Criminology , The University of Western Australia.