Two of the projects involved health care facilities: "Evaluating Occupant Load Factors for Ambulatory Health Care Facilities" and "Egress Modeling in Health Care Occupancies."

Fire Safety Research Foundation Medal Review Under Way

One of 30 research projects completed during 2014 will win the medal, with the winner announced during NFPA's 2015 annual conference. The medal recognizes the project that best exemplifies the foundation's fire safety mission, technical challenges that were overcome, and a collaborative approach to execution.

Thirty projects completed during 2014 by the Fire Safety Research Foundation are eligible for the Research Foundation Medal, which recognizes the project that best exemplifies the foundation's fire safety mission, technical challenges that were overcome, and a collaborative approach to execution.

The list of candidate projects shows the breadth of the foundation’s research. Titles include two involving health care facilities ("Evaluating Occupant Load Factors for Ambulatory Health Care Facilities" and "Egress Modeling in Health Care Occupancies"), along with titles such as "Smoke Alarm Nuisance Source Characterization," "Literature Review on Hybrid Fire Suppression Systems," and "Fire Hazards of Exterior Wall Assemblies Containing Combustible Components."

NFPA reports the review process is under way and the winner will be announced during this year's NFPA Conference & Expo, which takes place June 22-25 in Chicago.

A report by NFPA's Marty Ahrens issued in November 2012 showed that from 2006-2010, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated average of 6,240 structure fires at health care properties per year that caused an average of six civilian deaths, 171 civilian injuries, and $52.1 million in direct property damage annually. While 46 percent of them were at nursing homes, 23 percent occurred were in hospitals or hospices. Cooking equipment was involved in 61 percent of these fires; dryers were involved in 7 percent, 6 percent were intentionally set, and 6 percent were ignited by smoking materials, according to the "Fires in Health Care Facilities" report.

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