Case Study – Development of a fire risk control plan and fire safety management strategy for a remote ski lodge.
The project consisted of carrying out a fire safety risk assessment and developing a risk control plan and fire management strategy for a ski lodge. The building was constructed of timber and comprised a basement, ground floor, first floor and attic. Sleeping accommodation was provided for up to 50 occupants on ground, first and attic floors.
Appointment of Fire Risk Design Co.
Fire Risk Design Co. were appointed to prepare a fire safety report outlining a fire risk action plan and to prepare a fire safety risk management strategy, demonstrating that the design and use of the premises as a minimum met the mandatory standards.
The objective was to ensure that the fire safety risk within the premises was maintained at a tolerable level and complied with the regulatory requirements of the duty holder(s) as defined by the Fire (Scotland) Act 2005.
The ski lodge is operated by the Club’s office bearers on behalf of it’s members. During the skiing season the lodge is used by club members for social events and for sleeping accommodation for up to 50 persons.
Off season the ski lodge is available for other groups and organisations to rent for use as sleeping accommodation.There are 3 exits [including 2 fire exits] from the ground floor of the building and one fire exit from the first floor.
The occupant characteristics of the ski lodge were considered as [club members including children] sleeping and familiar with the premises, and [non-club members including children] sleeping and non-familiar with the premises.
It was apparent that the design of the first floor bedrooms and attic/roof space had been converted over a period of time by club members utilising roof voids/spaces to create additional sleeping areas and storage spaces.
In creating a fire risk control plan and fire strategy for the premises, a holistic approach was taken.
This included a building design analysis to ensure that any recommendations made provided a level of safety for occupants, and a means of escape in the event of a fire.
This involved taking steps to minimise the risk of fire spread. These were combined with the provision of sufficient facilities for the fire and rescue service to safely tackle a fire. It was the combination of all of these elements that determined the fire strategy.
Every building must be designed and constructed in such a way that the spread of fire and smoke is inhibited from spearing beyond the compartment of origin until any occupants have had the time to leave safely.
Dormitory and bedroom doors were replaced by fire resisting doors and fitted with intumescent strips, ambient temperature smoke seals and self-closing devices.
Timber wall and ceiling cladding was treated [intumescent coating] to ensure that it achieved Class 1 fire classification for surface spread of flame. Installation of self contained-emergency lighting luminares acting as a stand-alone emergency lights.
Installation of an automatic fire detection and alarm system incorporating smoke and heat detectors fitted in all rooms and common areas of the building, with the exception of toilets, shower rooms and bathrooms [considered low fire risk], including installation of manual operated call points.
Working closely with the client Fire Risk Design Co. developed a package of fire safety measures that were cost effective and proportionate to the risk within the ski lodge. This involved consultation and liaison with fire alarm engineers, building standards verifiers and club office bearers.
As a result building design modifications were carried out improving the layout, safety of occupants, management and use of the ski lodge for club members and visitors.