Print Сite this

Building Design: Fire Service

Building based occupancy types follow certain specific designs in their constructions that uniquely identify the final operational structure. The domestic building designs usually fall under five broad categories depending on the construction models and occupancy. These include garden apartments, row houses, condominiums and townhouses.

Our experts can deliver a customized essay
tailored to your instructions
for only $13.00 $11.05/page
308 qualified specialists online
Learn more

According to Author Brannigan’s long-term investigations for National Institutes of Standards and Technology (NIST), the details of building based on occupancy and types reflect particular interest of the real occupants in the building design. Thus, in the case of garden apartments, the exterior comprise of solid masonry, brick veneer pasted over wood frame. Sometimes, wood and brick veneer partially go in the wall finishing and design. Previously, garden apartments could only rise up three stories. However, four floors dominance in most suburbs have scored the attention of firefighters. This type of design may therefore require that occupants place long ladders and separate stairs to facilitate quick rescue incase of fires. Since people generally live in one floor out of the entire storey, the concentration of people in a particular area of the apartment poses serious threats to the occupants as access to their location may prove challenging (Corbertt & Brannigan, 2008, p. 252).

Condominiums usually arise from additional space on existing commercial designs. Such “condos’ ‘ usually remain in isolation from the strongholds of the main building up on which they stand. Hence, the law requires that condominiums erected as lollypop-condos be revoked and the structures bound to stand from a ground based foundation. In contrast, townhouses and row houses cover many floors as some apartments consist of double or triple units. Balconies inherent in most building based occupancy types for relaxing, have recently adopted the beauty of using various combustible and nonflammable materials. In the case where balconies provide usual access to the building, incidence of fire outside the house may destroy the girder used and strain access to the house. As fire burns upwards, widely extensive anterior balconies account for continuation of fires. Row houses also comprise of limited access areas to the building, while fire fighters’ ladders may not reach the rear windows of top buildings in multi-floors.

Townhouses design also makes use of various materials in decorating the walls and floors including the roofs. Unfortunately, the occupants value their interests more than recognition of the material used in meeting their requirements. Worst-case scenarios involve the occupants’ decisions to use a particular synthetic or natural material in furnishing the building type. For example, in the design of clubs, restaurant and pubs, Brannigan found out that occupants tend to use polyurethane to improve the aesthetic appearance of the building. From the lighting equipment to floor tiles and wall veneer, offices and other commercial designers use attractive materials to enhance the client friendly ambience in offices and recreational areas alike. (p. 252).

Occupancy specific building codes in different states do dictate particular safety features. This depends on the frequency of using the building for various purposes. Depending on the occupancy, building construction requires fire resistance materials to function effectively and minimize the hazards involved in fire fighting in case of an accident. Thus, a mall would require fire-enduring materials as an office tower needs fire resistant materials that would limit the effect of fire spreading from an initial source. The minimum admissible level of safety for townhouses varies from the use of concrete on walls with sizeable windows to allow for proper ventilation and steel to reinforce the joints of buildings wherever the storey rises beyond the normal height. For every part of the building, the building code defines the level of materials used and its significance in utilization in the quantity specified for the particular unit of the house.

In a garden apartment just like in the mall or factory, the occupants need fire resistant columns to protect the building from collapse associated with high heating on columns. Again, use of brick tiles or porcelain tiles to minimize the spreading of fire that might result in collapse of such designs as condominiums and multi-storey buildings. In row houses, factories and Balconies, use of steel and glass provide the basic requirements for limiting the extension of fire to units with noncombustible materials. The universal code of proper ventilation and emphasis on finishing that poses little threat to people live in people. This rule primarily serves in structures designed with wood and veneer materials. Concerning building code, this usually facilitates rescue efforts as it helps counter the effects of smoke choking on the occupants in case of fire and smoke clogging. The losses associated the firefighter’s efforts to navigate through wooden doors or small windows without a safe exist on the rear side would significantly reduce the risks of injuries involving combustion of materials used as building material in the structure(Corbertt & Brannigan, 2008, p. 256).

Despite the fact that dangers associated with natural and human induced fires have similar associations. The unique details and hazards related to specific occupancies may include narration such as the famous polyurethane that multiplied the deaths of people in various separate incidents. For instance, in the 1981 fire battle involving flaming polyurethane previously used as a beautification product in pubs and restaurants. In sum, polyurethane intensified the fire as firefighters struggle to put it off. Some inflammable materials used in enhancing the interior design of various occupancies may not seem as combustible as they appeal to the users. However, in the event that they catch fire, they increase the degree of burning almost three fold thereby putting the lives of the occupants in great danger.

On-Time Delivery! Get your 100% customized paper
done in
as little as 3 hours
Let`s start

In the case of brick walls coupled with veneered wood finishing on the wall and tiled roofs, smoking and rapid spreading of fire usually present the greatest challenge to the firefighters as they struggle to reach fourth rise and beyond row houses and apartments. Many times, constructs fail to include structural planning that allows for rapid and easy access of main residences of the occupants using locally available technology of firefighters. Another serious challenge faced by firefighter’s points towards weak structures in factories and steel buildings. Though separate staircase for emergencies may help overcome this difficulty, the problems associated with such rescue efforts are insurmountable compared to the ultimate objectives. Similarly, gaining access to most garden apartments has always delayed rescue efforts of fire department. Following the vertical alignment of plumbing installations in the garden apartments, fires easily penetrate though voids that transmit materials via the internal systems of the house. Definitely enclosed condominiums and long protruding balconies are particular vulnerable to the devastating effects of fires beginning from lower floors. The flame increases vertically as it covers the condominiums from the external setting. This usually limits the efforts of the firefighters to salvage property as such buildings inevitably collapse to the floor (Corbett & Brannigan, 2008, p. 258).

All firefighters must have certain basic skills to perform rescue operation at a collapse structure such as knowledge of the latest and most suitable life saving tips that makes use of technology to make accurate diagnosis and allows for application of simple techniques. Since, training provides the necessary knowledge that helps them escape injuries. The modern day firefighters require basic computer skills, certification in dealing with emergency medical condition and dealing with hazardous material besides other normal training and requirements. Today, the dynamism of firefighting highly encourages the officers in the fire service to continue with their education and double as Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT). In addition, training of today firefighters should f focus on practical aspects of the exercise as the service seriously considers further training through mechanisms that nurture personal development and sharpen the skills of the officers towards specific orientations (Corbertt & Brannigan, 2008, p. 254).

In order to reform the services of firefighters, their practical training should cover even the greater fields of human intelligence and psychology. This way they would have greater insight in their work. The specialization applied by the officers at high levels of training would help them in challenging difficulties and suit well in dynamic situations. Therefore, the officers would consider executing the motives seniors because they have more skills and aptly show the results of problems resolved lately and account for their latest actions. As the importance of more knowledgeable firefighters takes centre stage, the modern day officer tends disregard tags of war as the means of measuring competencies instead; they look for further accomplishment in extra certificates to show how their grades much with their capability. Whenever incidences of fires occur less frequent, firefighters may require mock exercises since they cannot just afford to sit on their possibilities. Over time, if the officers fail to exercise their skills, it gradually fades and such an officer may remain empty, only doing routine day in day out (Corbertt & Brannigan, 2008, p. 254).

In most occupations, structural collapse usually occurs following extensively heating of the material that holds the building in position. Thus, the building may subside on its debris if it comprised of three or less floors. However, in many instances, when the collapse involves a multi-storey building, the upper part of the building may topple over many victims. This incident would then require a number of safety hazards from rescuers who must also know about various types of collapses. In any given situation, a building may experience either full collapse or partial collapse in its structure. Any slight disruptions in a building main structure may cause it to partial collapse if it induces fire that consumes a large proportion of the building. On the other hand, in the event of fire and shaking, that interferes with the major architectural design of a building then it may fully collapse. Moreover, such collapses commonly occur in old buildings that have lasted close to a decade. However, this does not rule out the case of collapsing buildings under construction. This latter case concerns overloading of the underlying structure beyond its tension strength, thus yielding a breaking point that forces the building to collapse. Again, this can also result from poor curing procedure that leaves the concrete ineffective in handling the blocks added when the building still undergoes construction (Corbett & Brannigan, 2008, p. 254).

Like in every situation of an emergency, fire ground safety forms integral part of the exercise as it helps in keeping the mission successful. In the event of fire, observing order may prove challenging to the people concerned, but the officers still ought to manage the situation and direct the people to safe ground as running here and there while worrying may not help much. The officers from the fire department should arrive with some extra protective clothing to keep the people involved from more harm as emergency services provision proceed only form the hands of qualified physicians. As the officers continue to rescue more people from the burning house, they should distribute themselves in such a way that their efforts balances the treatment of survivors without creating to them anxiety. Proper use of tools and equipment like fire extinguishers should observe the risks involved in inhaling the substances from such equipment so that no survivor loses his/her life due to the officer’s negligence. When the officers mark the operation area and uses ladders and water to access the people who may remain trapped in the burning house. Shout may only create confusion as the firefighters try to save those trapped in the flames (Corbertt & Brannigan, 2008, p. 274).

In the fire ground, the people need to develop resilient and forget their possessions left in the offices as this may only result into further complication. All attempts to go into a burning building would eventually result into harm to the person taking the risk. The use of exclusive emergency stares to rescue the people trapped in the fire should also followed the normally systematic pattern but only make sure they keep the presence. When such efforts continue, the officers need to use sufficient amounts of water to create to put of the fire and remain mindful of the fate of the people trapped in the fire. The fire department should keep ambulance at bay in the site of the injury to keep taking those seriously injured to the hospital. However, the officers must remain aware of the materials used in making the building in order to take urgent precautions of any possible explosion that may follow the one already observed (Corbett & Brannigan, 2008, p. 264).

World trade center commonly referred to as the twin towers experienced partial collapse. Conventionally, the WTC had only structures that would only absorb up to a certain level of heat energy. The impact of the jet upon hitting the building structure coupled with the aviation fuel fires ignited the aluminum material that burned the subsequent structures of the building. Molten aluminium concentrated on beams and tie joints in the building’s substructure continued to seep through the floor as it burned into large bubbles. Engineers estimated the temperature of the molten aluminium at somewhat 1800 degrees Celsius. The combination of heated steel and aluminum at this temperature caught office furniture and other material in mixed flames that saw external design of the buildings lose their jointing. The weakening of the structure at the point where WTC collapsed and entombed many people had a significant destruction by slag that form due to the burning of aluminium and concrete at 1765 degrees Celsius. Scientific observations confirm that further accumulation of aluminium ash maintained the temperature of the materials heating to bring the upper part of the TWC down. Though WTC could withstand the force of Boeing 707 that hit it, the collusion of fuel from the two jets ignited the fire that instantaneously set the planes ablaze before reacting with the building in flames to consume it interior architecture. As some of the energy went into lighting flames that burned the building, the rest of the energy dissipated into bombarding the materials used in building the structure thereby rendering useless in supporting its load (Corbett & Brannigan, 2008, p. 274).

We’ll deliver a custom paper tailored to your requirements.
Cut 15% off your first order
Use discount

The community should come up some risk assessment and resource utilization model and identify a grass root. When offering such humanitarian aid, any evil plot needs not to cause the survivors to suffer more because they have already had trouble with the fire incident. If the saturation prevails, more professionals should come in to assess the magnitude of the problem. Head count is a very important exercise in the ground, as this would help relive the relatives of the victims from the worries while knowing about their situation. Developing an evaluation schedule that uses available techniques to crosscheck the community’s capacity in relation to the. The three main areas to address include injuries and death, civilian death and injury including the level of economic impact on the wider society.


Corbett, G. P. & Brannigan, F. L. (2008). Brannigan’s building construction for the fire service.London, UK : Jones and Bartlett Publishers, Inc.

Cite this paper

Select style


StudyCorgi. (2021, December 6). Building Design: Fire Service. Retrieved from


StudyCorgi. (2021, December 6). Building Design: Fire Service.

Work Cited

"Building Design: Fire Service." StudyCorgi, 6 Dec. 2021,

* Hyperlink the URL after pasting it to your document

1. StudyCorgi. "Building Design: Fire Service." December 6, 2021.


StudyCorgi. "Building Design: Fire Service." December 6, 2021.


StudyCorgi. 2021. "Building Design: Fire Service." December 6, 2021.


StudyCorgi. (2021) 'Building Design: Fire Service'. 6 December.

This paper was written and submitted to our database by a student to assist your with your own studies. You are free to use it to write your own assignment, however you must reference it properly.

If you are the original creator of this paper and no longer wish to have it published on StudyCorgi, request the removal.