Main School of Fire Service
Warsaw, Poland
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Wegrzynski W.,Building Research Institute ITB | Sulik P.,Main School of Fire Service
Bulletin of the Polish Academy of Sciences: Technical Sciences | Year: 2016

This paper presents modern application of fire safety engineering (FSE) in the shaping of civil engineering development. Presented scientific achievements of FSE become tools used in typical modern engineering workflow. Experience gained through successful implementations of these solutions is then further crafted into prescriptive laws that shape future fire safety. This diffusion of knowledge is limited by law requirements themselves, technical limitations, and yet unresolved challenges that are still being worked on by the researchers in this field. This paper aims to present the achievements of the FSE discipline that may and should be used by civil engineers and other participants of the building process. Explanations given for the choices of fire safety engineers allow a better understanding of their gravity by representatives of other engineering branches. That way it is possible to build empathy between different engineering disciplines, which may significantly improve both the building design process and safety of the buildings itself. The chosen framework of this paper is Appendix A to EU Construction Products Regulation defining basic goals for a fire safe building, with a possible application of FSE given for each of these goals. The current framework of performance-based FSE is presented in relation to the Polish legal system, with recommendations on how to improve both FSE and civil engineering in the future.

Szajewska A.,Main School of Fire Service
Procedia Engineering | Year: 2017

The article presents the history of the development of Thermal Imaging Camera (TIC) in fire protection. It also includes the advantages of such cameras and how to use them. Manufacturers have developed cameras adapted to the needs of fire service units. Such cameras are easy to operate and suitable for harsh fire conditions. The cameras are usually used during extinguishing fires in buildings. They are useful primarily to assess the fire situation, detect the sources of ignition and search for fire victims. © 2017 The Authors.

Today more people than ever are threatened by disasters, with no regards if natural or man-made. Furthermore, CBRN contamination risks can occur as a consequence of these events. Regions affected are wider and wider and reconstruction and recovery operations are longer-lasting, costly and complex, especially when decontamination is necessary. DESTRIERO aims at developing a next generation post-crisis needs assessment tool for reconstruction and recovery planning, including structural damage assessment through advanced remote sensing enriched by in-field data collection by mobile devices (buildings, bridges, dams) and related data integration and analysis, based on international standards, novel (automated) data and information interoperability across organisations and systems, in combination with an advanced multi-criteria decision analysis tool and methodology for multi-stakeholder information analyses, priority setting, decision making and recovery planning. Earth observation images will contribute to fast damage assessment and monitoring of the areas, together with data acquired by relief units on the field using novel smart-phone apps. Identified needs will be recorded, stored and made available to all organisations involved. Coordination and collaborative work at all levels of the organisations and among different ones will be possible through a network centric approach for the interoperability of information and service and the decision support tool. Critical infrastructure recovery will be considered with priority, as essential for the recovery of social and economic aspects (roads, bridges, schools, hospitals, plants, etc.), CBRN contamination and humanitarian aspects will be taken into consideration, as aggravating circumstances, while support to accountability of humanitarian aid contributions will be facilitated.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2013.5.1-1 | Award Amount: 4.41M | Year: 2014

The management of crisis is one of the great challenges of the 21st century. The ever growing human, economic and environmental losses due to natural and man-made disasters evidence the need for a systematic approach to the management of crisis. A multi-disciplinary understanding and disaster risk management is required. In such situations, Collaborative Crisis Management (CCM) is usually coordinated by local authorities or dedicated civil protection organisations, supported by a variety of different national and international crisis management organisations, all acting relatively autonomously. The process is typically coordinated through periodic physical meetings of the involved organisations, in which information is shared about the situation, priorities are set and responsibilities allocated. Follow-up and execution of tasks is managed by each individual organisation, typically supported by a range of not interoperable information management tools, depending on the level of informatisation of the local or national crisis management systems. SECTOR aims at establishing the foundations of future Common CCM Information Spaces by expanding the European scientific knowledge base on (cross-border) multi-agency CCM processes and the complications these imply when aiming at setting-up and design cross-border supporting information Systems.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: SEC-2010.4.2-2 | Award Amount: 11.69M | Year: 2011

The objective of PRACTICE project is to improve the preparedness and resilience of the EU member states and associated countries to an attack from a terrorist group using non conventional weapons such as CBRN (Chemical, Biological, Radiological and/or Nuclear agents) materials. The existing situation is characterized by a fragmented structure as regards technology, procedures, methods and organization on national level as well as EU-level. The project will be based on the development of a new toolbox focusing on 1) identification, organization and establishment of knowledge of critical elements in the event structure thorough studies of a wide selection of scenarios, real incidents and exercises and 2) analysis and identification of gaps in the current response situation and organization and integration of the allocated response capabilities or functions in a toolbox of equipment, procedures and methods and 3) an allocated system or kit for public information, decision-support, first-responder training and exercises. These response capabilities functions are to a great extent universal in character and independent of national organizational structures. The concept and developed system will therefore provide EU and member states with a flexible and integrated system for coordinated response to CBRN terrorist attack, which is easier to adapt to various national organizations and regulations. Particular attention will be given to integration and understanding of human factors and societal aspects in all the parts of the project. The final concept and integrated response system (toolbox) and subsystems will be tested and validated. A whole system demonstrator will be shown and tested in the final phases of the project.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-IP | Phase: SEC-2012.1.5-1 | Award Amount: 36.02M | Year: 2013

The accidental or deliberate release of CBRNE materials are low probability events that can have a significant impact on citizens and society. Whenever and wherever they occur, they usually require a gradual and multi-facetted response as they tend to provoke severe and unexpected physical, psychological, societal, economical and political effects that cross EU-borders. Successful CBRNE resilience requires a global System-of-Systems approach. The EDEN project will leverage the added-value of tools and systems from previous R&D efforts and improve CBRNE resilience through their adaptation and integration. The concept of the EDEN project is to provide a toolbox of toolboxes EDEN Store to give stakeholders access to interoperable capabilities they deem important, or affordable, from a certified set of applications. It will share the burden of development and allows for lessons to be learned and applications to be enhanced. The benefit of the EDEN concept is that integration will be applied at the application level. This means that all countries and stakeholders, irrespective of their existing capability levels, will gain immediate advantages through improved interoperability. EDEN Store will allow capabilities to be shared among multi-national CBRNE stakeholders, which is paramount in cross-border incident management, and through time allow for a build up of common capability across European boundaries. EDEN will be validated by three themed end-user demonstrations (Food Industry, Multi Chemical, Radiological) covering multiple hazards (CBRNE), phases of the security cycle, response tiers, and stakeholders. The EDEN consortium includes CBRNE domain end-users, major stakeholders, large system integration and solution providers, including SMEs with innovative solutions, and RTOs. The impact of EDEN is to provide affordable CBRNE resilience and market sustainability through the better integration of systems in real operations and thus enhancing the safety of citizens.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP-FP | Phase: SEC-2013.4.1-2 | Award Amount: 5.21M | Year: 2014

SnowBall is a 5M STREP R&D proposal of 36 months. Its overall objective is to increase preparedness and response capacities of decision-makers, emergency planners and first responders in respect to amplifying hazards in large disasters. SnowBall consists in a deep analysis of cascading effects and development of methods to anticipate them; and in a Decision Support System able to display current crisis monitoring and results of simulated decisions integrating cascading effects, thanks to a data collection system, an Events Log Database, Simulators and a Dashboard. SnowBall innovates in its modular approach to crises, its modelling techniques, its agent-supported coupled grid simulations, its generic Events Log Database and tools to follow public behaviour (Emergency Alert, social networks, mobile application). SnowBall encompasses 8 work packages: 1- Management; 2- Technical supervision; 3- Cascading effects methodology; 4- Event log database; 5- Simulation tool; 6- Crisis Management dashboard; 7 Experimentation; 8- Dissemination and Exploitation. SnowBall comprises 11 partners from 8 countries covering the full competence scope required: 2 industrials (Gedicom - Emergency Alert System; Cofely INEO - Events log database), 2 Research Institutes and 3 Universities focussed on different segments of risks assessment: LUPT-PLINIVS (natural hazards); Fraunhofer EMI (critical infrastructure socio-technical simulation); EMAUG (human behaviour); UCL (public health) and ISMB (cloud, data process, mobile services), 3 end-users (Polish Fire School; Ministry of Interior of Finland represented by ESC; and Hungarian Red Cross) and 1 consultancy (EP). The main expected impacts of SnowBall are a substantial scientific contribution, a fosterer of capacity to face complex crisis situations by better predicting cascading effects and integrating population behaviour in simulations, a contribution to the security of EU citizens; and a commercially viable project contributing to EU competitiveness.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CP | Phase: SEC-2007-6.1-02 | Award Amount: 2.71M | Year: 2008

The aim of the proposed project is to investigate cross-cultural and ethnic differences of human behaviour in crisis situations in order to better tailor security related communication, instructions and procedures with a view to improving evacuation and protection. The project will provide evidence that will be useful to first responders, building designers and those involved in the development of emergency operating procedures for buildings. The BeSeCu project employs two research strategies: A) A cross-cultural survey of individual experiences will be conducted to identify determinants of inter-individual differences in people who have experienced evacuation situations, fire disaster survivors and survivors of similar crisis situations, but also workers and first responders as well as those affected in the community. This retrospective study will be carried out across 7 European countries with diverse cultural background. B) Experimental trials will be carried out in three countries simulating real time evacuation scenarios in standardized settings including objective measures (e.g. response time) as outcomes as well as video-tape analysis. Results will be analysed to identify similarities and differences between cultures and ethnic groups as well as a range of socioeconomic factors. The analysis will triangulate findings obtained with objective measures, subjective experiences and behavioural observations. Two types of research findings and products will be provided by the BeSeCu projects: (A) An evidence base that will enable designers of buildings to develop culturally appropriate emergency operating procedures. (B) An evidence base of inter-individual differences that will be employed to develop a culture sensitive communication training to improve emergency interventions. The research will be carried out by a consortium of 8 European partners including end-users (e.g. fire service colleges) in the process of research.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: FP7 | Program: CSA-SA | Phase: SEC-2012.4.2-3 | Award Amount: 1.19M | Year: 2013

The objectives of the call with regard to knowledge gathering, categorisation, analysis and evaluation for the goal of post-crisis lessons learning and use of this learning in practice define implicitly the need of a Community of Practice (CoP) for crisis response. Therefore, the ELITE consortium has a strong representation of experienced crisis managers and responders across all phases of crises and of knowledge management experts embedded within a CoP. The role of the ELITE knowledge management experts is to secure the best acquisition, categorisation, and analysis of tacit, fragmented knowledge acquired by crisis management responders, and to ensure best practice insights. The ELITE CoP is assembled around a web solution comprising a repository of best practices and guidelines as well as social media features (ELITEs living document). During the projects lifetime, ELITE uses a holistic method that addresses all relevant phases of major crises along with their systemic relationships. After ELITEs project period, the living document is targeted as a Wikipedia-like solution with the necessary infrastructure and funding system so as to attract and serve the whole spectrum of end-users and crisis decision makers in Europe. Finally, to promote future research on this topic, ELITE will identify major remaining gaps and deliver recommendations for future research.

Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: IA | Phase: GALILEO-2-2015 | Award Amount: 1.24M | Year: 2016

Unmanned vehicles (UVs) now play an increasing role in Public Protection and Disaster Relief (PPDR) missions such as border surveillance, cropping monitoring or local law enforcement. However, fast location of isolated people in the case of natural or man-made disasters still continues to be a crucial and arduous task. MOBNET will design a Search and Rescue (SAR) system for the location of isolated victims in the case of natural or man-made disasters such as earthquakes, hurricanes or large snow storms. It will also help first responder services to find fugitives or smugglers hidden within buildings. To that end, the use of European Global Navigation Satellite (EGNSS) systems (both Galileo early services and EGNOS) and Digital Cellular Technologies (DCT) will play the key role in these situations in which it is difficult, dangerous or even impossible to access the affected areas. The EGNSS and DCT technologies will be tightly synchronised to provide accurate positioning. However, this demanding synchronisation exceeds the current capabilities of most GNSS and cellular equipment. In order to achieve the required performance, novel EGNSS and DCT methods will be applied. Furthermore, an effective and reliable communication link between Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and the ground station will be designed. This datalink will ensure uninterrupted command and control communication among devices and the integrity of communication signals. Thus, the UAVs will always operate as intended. Research will be driven by the end-user and industrial partners to ensure that it addresses the needs of the PPDR services. The potential for a fast and reliable SAR system will be illustrated by a prototype that will work at long distances. The developed SAR system will take advantage of the Galileo and EGNOS capabilities and will strengthen the position of European Industry in the field of security services. It will greatly facilitate their missions and the rescue of isolated victims.

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