Keith Todd - Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
This dissertation focuses on the pre-movement phase of evacuations in Heritage buildings used for office and educational purposes. A literature review was carried out of material relevant to the topic. Research in support of the dissertation involved carrying out monitored, unannounced egress drills as evaluation exercises at a number of premises. Analysis of fire safety management at the premises was carried out, and further training was provided to occupants of one of the sample buildings, in which a CFD simulation was shown to occupants. Following the further training, another monitored, unannounced egress drill was carried out to determine whether the training was effective in reducing pre-movement times.
Whilst there were difficulties in establishing direct correlation, a number of points were raised in support of using CFD simulations as training tools. In particular, occupants did engage with the training, and this was expressed in the form of positive feedback. Consequently, there are a number of points relevant in terms of using egress drills as an evaluation exercise, as well as using CFD simulations to enhance fire safety training provided to staff in single staircase Heritage (and other) buildings. The benefits identified from this approach to training are not limited, simply to evacuation behaviour, but also apply to understanding fire safety measures in buildings by building occupants, such that they are less likely to compromise these measures and may even be proactive in identifying deficiencies.