How Concerned Should Civil Engineers be with Fire Protection—

by Virginia Fairweather, Asst. Editor; Civil Engineering, 345 E. 47th St., New York, NY 10017 York, N.Y.,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1975, Vol. 45, Issue 3, Pg. 57-61

Document Type: Feature article


During the last five years, there has been increasing concern and interest in fire safety in buildings, especially tall buildings. This has resulted in new federal legislation, a new General Services Administration systems approach to fire protection and New York City's new Local Law 5, which contains new fire and building code provisions and applies to existing buildings as well as new ones. Elements of new trends in fire protection systems, such as stairway pressurization, communications, sprinklers and compartmentation are discussed. The structural integrity of the structure has been the main concern of the civil engineer; should he be concerned more with the total fire package? Adequacy of present testing methods, the problems with new materials such as plastics and some new methods for protecting steel are also discussed.

Subject Headings: Fires | Fire resistance | Building codes | Federal government | Legislation | Existing buildings | Communication systems | Protective structures

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