Lawrence Webster Forrest (LWF), Fire Engineering and Fire Risk Management Consultants
Lawrence Webster Forrest (LWF), Fire Engineering and Fire Risk Management Consultants



Navigation

Client login
Forgotten password
Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Facebook Subscribe to our blog

Lawrence Webster Forrest
Legion House
Lower Road
Kenley
Surrey
CR8 5NH

Tel: +44 (0)20 8668 8663 Fax: +44 (0)20 8668 8583
E-mail: fire@lwf.co.uk

Fire Safety for Healthcare Premises - Compartmentation - Part 34

Posted by LWF: 08/08/2018 9:40

In LWF’s blog series for healthcare professionals, the aim is to give information on best practice of fire safety in hospitals and other healthcare premises. In part 33 of this series, we looked at the potential for fire spread through the internal structure of the building, particularly the minimum periods of fire resistance provided by elements of the structure. In part 34, the use of compartmentation is discussed.

Compartmentation is provided by the fire-resistance of walls, floors and apertures to prevent the spread of fire between areas within the minimum period of fire resistance. In areas accessed by patients, compartmentation can be used to provide temporary places of safety for refuge in case of fire. In general, compartmentation prevents the rapid spread of fire throughout the building. 
Where a building has more than one storey, each floor should be a compartment floor to avoid the spread of fire between levels. 

In a healthcare venue, the maximum size of a compartment should be dictated by its usage. It is a strong recommendation that the size of a management department dictates the size of the compartment. 

The maximum size of a compartment should not exceed 2000 m2 in a multi-storey building or 3000 m2 in a single-storey building.

The minimum period of fire resistance previously mentioned refers to both integrity and insulation of compartment walls. For a single-storey healthcare building, the minimum period is 30 minutes unless this conflicts with prescribed requirements. Where a building is sprinklered throughout, the minimum period remains 30 minutes and for all other healthcare buildings, including ones with basements more than 10 m deep and/or which have four storeys or more above ground level, the minimum period is 60 minutes.

It should be noted that all compartment floors are considered elements of structure and so should satisfy the same requirements.

Materials used to meet the provisions are classed as ‘Materials of limited combustibility’ and are tested in line with BS 476-11. Where sprinklers are installed throughout a healthcare building, the necessity for elements of structure and compartment walls to be constructed of materials of limited combustibility does not apply.

In part 35 of this series of fire safety in healthcare premises, LWF will look at openings in compartment walls and floors and how these should be protected to provide at least the minimum period of fire resistance. In the meantime, if you have any questions about this blog, or wish to discuss your own project with one of our fire engineers, please contact us.

Lawrence Webster Forrest has been working with their clients for over 25 years to produce innovative and exciting building projects. If you would like further information on how LWF and fire strategies could assist you, please contact Peter Gyere on 020 8668 8663.

While care has been taken to ensure that information contained in LWF's publications is true and correct at the time of publication, changes in circumstances after the time of publication may impact on the accuracy of this information.

Leave a reply

  *

  *

 


CAPTCHA Image

[ Change the image ]


*Required

Subscribe to our fire safety blogs

Bulletins
Email Format
* indicates required

FIRE SAFETY BLOGS

  • Fire Engineering Design and Risk Assessment - Compartmentation - Part 1

    In LWF’s blog series for architects and others in the building design business, we talk about fire engineered and prescriptive solutions for use in England and Wales. In part 1 of this series, we discuss compartmentation of buildings for fire safety purposes.Without effective compartmentation, fire would simply be able to move through a building using the structure as fuel to grow very quickly. Compartmentation is the sub-dividing of a building using fire resisting walls...

    Read more...

  • Fire Safety for Healthcare Premises - Compartmentation - Part 35

    In LWF’s blog series for healthcare professionals, the aim is to give information on best practice of fire safety in hospitals and other healthcare premises. In part 34 of this series, we looked at the role of compartmentation in limiting the spread of fire from one area to another for at least the minimum period of fire resistance required. It was ascertained that this would allow evacuation from the area of fire origin to a...

    Read more...

  • Facilities Management & Fire Safety - Special Duties in the Fire Procedures - Part 9

    In LWF’s blog series for those people who work in Facilities Management, or who have an interest in or responsibility for Fire Safety, we have been looking at what should be contained within an organisation’s Fire Procedures. In part 8 of the series, the duties of a fire warden were discussed. In part 9, the process of accounting for occupants in case of a fire will be outlined.An effective evacuation is one where each...

    Read more...

  • Fire Engineering Design and Risk Assessment - Water Mist System Components - Part 15

    In LWF’s Fire Engineering blog series for Architects and others involved in building design, we have been looking at methods of fire suppression and most recently, water mist systems. In part 14, the basis for design was discussed and in part 15, those components which go into making a water mist system are outlined. Water mist nozzles are primarily designed to generate the very fine droplets of water necessary and to provide momentum for delivery...

    Read more...

  • Fire Safety for Healthcare Premises - Compartmentation - Part 34

    In LWF’s blog series for healthcare professionals, the aim is to give information on best practice of fire safety in hospitals and other healthcare premises. In part 33 of this series, we looked at the potential for fire spread through the internal structure of the building, particularly the minimum periods of fire resistance provided by elements of the structure. In part 34, the use of compartmentation is discussed.Compartmentation is provided by the fire-resistance of...

    Read more...

Case Studies

The Wohl Neuroscience Institute - Fire Safety, Strategy & Engineering
Key Facts: Client: King’s Clinical Neuroscience Institute Project Manager: MACE Ltd Designers: Devereux Architects/Allies and Morrison Approximate Size: 7,400m2 Description of the Project:...

Read more..

General Bulletins

Fire - The External Risk
When we consider fire safety, our focus is normally from within, what can we do to prevent the occurrence of fire and how we can limit its damage.  Whilst this is the correct stance to take, we m...

Read more..

Technical Bulletins

Evacuation Modelling - Factor in Human Behaviour
Evacuation of buildings can be analyzed in different ways. Approved Document B (ADB) which provides guidance on meeting the requirements of the England and Wales Building Regulations with regard to fi...

Read more..

Site map | Web development London