08/02/2018

Every Second Counts! – More Time for Rescue in the Event of Fire

Installation Cables Can Prolong Evacuation Time

In an emergency, fires can have disastrous consequences on both human lives and buildings. Highly combustible materials in buildings advance the rapid spread of fire and destroy not only stock and buildings, but also put people’s lives at risk. Public buildings have a high user-traffic flow and thus, in the event of fire, need to ensure an optimum and quick evacuation.

In the event of an evacuation, when people are forced to flee fire and smoke, violent reactions often occur, panic sets in or unusually long queues in front of the fire exits block the escape routes. Visibility is limited due to the build-up of smoke, and hazardous fumes develop, which can lead to shortness of breath or, in the worst case, unconsciousness.

In cases where people who are unable to escape by themselves must be rescued, there are additional challenges in terms of the evacuation time.

Highly frequented public buildings such as hospitals, care homes, schools and playschools are subject to strict building regulations that aim to facilitate both the escape and rescue.

Since 2017, the Construction Products Regulation for cables and conductions (BauPVO, EN 50575) has set a new standard, in which the fire performance requirements for cables also play a major role.

Manufacturers and distributors must reclassify the performance of their products with regard to fire behaviour. Minor fire spread and the prevention of smoke gas development are included on the performance certificate. For example, a low-smoke layer must be guaranteed for the duration of the evacuation.

For these cases of application, Melos has developed compounds with low fire propagation properties and that release minimal toxic fumes and gases. This ensures more time for evacuation in the event of fire, and is less harmful for protective equipment, thereby making it easier to save people’s lives.

Melos’ Mecoline compounds and filler materials use highly effective halogen-free fireproofing materials that prevent the spread of flames and the development of smoke and flaming droplets. Consequently, precious time is saved and can be used to quickly flee the area affected by fire, allowing rescue workers to carry out a safe evacuation.

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