Water requirements for fighting highrise building fires in Hong Kong

Pao Yue-kong Library Electronic Theses Database

Water requirements for fighting highrise building fires in Hong Kong

 

Author: Yu, Kam-shan Simon
Title: Water requirements for fighting highrise building fires in Hong Kong
Year: 2005
Subject: Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Tall buildings -- China -- Hong Kong -- Fires and fire prevention
Fire pumps -- China -- Hong Kong
Department: Dept. of Building Services Engineering
Pages: xiii, 108 leaves : col. ill. ; 30 cm
Language: English
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b1793878
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/617
Abstract: Although modern highrise industrial and commercial buildings are installed with sprinkler systems, internal fire fighting by fire brigade using building fire hydrant supply is still the ultimate means of fire extinction. Since there is a ceiling flowrate on every building fire hydrant system, additional fire fighting water may mean highrise water relay from the street fire hydrant which takes considerable effort and time to get one jet to work. The main objective of this dissertation is to enhance fire fighting efficiency for highrise building fires of great magnitudes in Hong Kong. Water requirements for effectual fire fighting have 2 components. The first is the estimation for required quantity of water which in turn for prompt summon of fire fighting resources needed. The second is the successful delivery of the required amount of water using optimal mix of brigade equipment. In doing so, an extensive literature review on dominant factors contributing to the required flowrates, fire extinguishing mechanism, hydraulic calculations and specifications of fire hydrant systems has been conducted. The estimation of flowrates for fire suppression ranging from thermal theories, laboratory experiments, fire tests, statistical equations of real fires from Thomas, Labes, Baldwin and Sardqvist, to the risk assessment model of the Insurance Standard Office (ISO) has been delineated. After comparison with the real fire data, it is found that the modified ISO equation based on largest floor area is a simple and reliable model for estimating required flowrates and target jets for highrise buildings in Hong Kong. The designed flowrates of the building fire hydrant systems are then compared with the flowrates calculated from the ISO equation to determine the acceptable flowrates for a working jet from 300 1pm to 900 1pm and the target flowrate of 450 1pm. Hydraulic calculations on the performance of a hoseline in terms of acceptable discharge rates from both building water supply and highrise water relay, sufficient reach of 20 m, jet reaction within 400 N and maneuvering without overexertion have been performed. It is found that the SM-30F branch currently in use and the proposed 50 mm fire hose provides for optimal performance. Highrise water relay for more than 15 floors is very ineffective and inefficient. A building fire hydrant system with highrise water relay capability is therefore recommended.

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