You might be wondering what a fire engineer is required to do in a church. However, you have to know that fires are not choosy. As such, a church, like any other facility, can fall victim to an outbreak.
As a steward when it comes to the safety of your flock, non-zero-sum thinking on professional recommendations should prevail. And so, to speak, the fate of people in the church building hinges on you, but you can prevent any bizarre occurrences by hiring an FPE.
Each church building is unique, and so are the difficulties when it comes to fire protection. Any church must maintain fire protection tolls and carry out highlighted actions from the fire risk assessment conducted.
As a legal obligation for people in charge of non-domestic buildings, you have to carry out fire risk evaluation. The same applies to churches to ensure that every member around the place is safe. It’s always logical to let professionals do the work.
Who is a fire protection engineer?
A fire engineer is a person who specialized in applying scientific engineering principles to protect people from fires. They may work with designers, architects, and in system manufacturing, they help prevent fire breakouts. Their scope involves researching how fires break out and put the right prevention measures in place. By working with the organization, these guys’ saves live on a daily basis before the fire is triggered.
They may work at refineries, plants, and architectural firms. But since fire is not selective, any faculty needs their expertise, and churches are not left behind.
The role played by fire protection engineers on churches.
1. They apply their expertise on Church construction
Churches usually expand as they get larger congregations. For this reason, construction of new buildings or renovations is much needed. As a measure of safety, the building schematics should be designed to combat fire breakouts.
A fire protection engineer, in this case, will offer technical support that guarantees the building’s fire safety to designers. It’s the engineer’s work to help the designer create the plans that will see the accommodation of fire detection equipment.
Also, the engineer will point out where the fire escape route should be positioned. Additionally, the fire engineer will help the designer evaluate the building’s lifetime. That way, the persons affiliated with the church get to know when the building will collapse.
Still, on architectural designs, the engineer ensures that the building is built in accordance with the fire safety association rules. Further, architectural layouts for churches should enable all members to egress the building quickly. Also, it should be accessible for the fire brigades to get in and out.
2. They oversee fire safety installation.
In as much as fire safety installation sounds easy, things can go south without a professional taking charge of the program. The critical part played by fire engineers in the installation is their abilities to predict behavioral responses. These predictions are mainly based on how people may behave during the breakout. As such, they will know the areas where the installations should be mounted during a breakout and panic state.
After installation, maintenance of the fire equipment might come in handy. Still, it’s within the scope of the engineer to conduct it and ensure full functionality.
Should everything from construction to the installation be done, they will inspect if they are accurately done. In most cases, the accuracy is determined through fire drill performance testing. Should there be flaws, they will recommend the necessary rectifications. Owing to this, having the fire protection engineer do the church building inspection is a safety guarantee.
3. They offer investigative services.
Fire protection engineers’ job requirements demand that they should be able to point out and weigh faults in buildings entirely. The engineer will therefore inhibit future fire breakouts in the church building by retarding the starting points.
On the other hand, if there has been a breakout in the church’s building, the engineer will determine the cause. If it were not deliberately done, they would come with ways to prevent similar occurrences.
Still, a church can hire a fire protection engineer from an insurance firm covering their building. If there has been a breakout recently, they will determine if the cover should be applied by investigating the cause. Further, if the church’s building has a soft spot for fire incidents, the engineer shall help with the inhibition.
4. The engineer will conduct fire safety training for church officials.
Fire protection engineers are well renowned when it comes to fire safety training sessions. In companies, it’s sufficed for supervisors. Still, when it comes to churches, there is coherency.
There are the clergy members and other official people responsible for the congregation. These training sessions are mainly conducted to impart to the church members fire regulations, prevention methods, and how to act. Should there be fire policy changes, the fire engineer will keep the church members in the loop.
5. They write documented reports.
The work of a fire protection engineer is not outlived in the field of preventing fire. Their experience can also be used to write scripts for fire prevention procedures. Further, they not only write prevention plans but updated reports regarding the previous fires to the officials. The reports can be used to avoid similar cases or prevent new ones from ever happening.
6. They do researches on safety.
Churches, like other buildings, may at times experience fire breakouts. There may be fortunate times where it can be prevented, and sometimes, luck may not happen. It’s the work of a fire engineer in such cases to investigate why the protection efforts prove inefficacy.
Owing to the knowledge obtained, they can redesign fire safety equipment to ensure functionality. Further with the researches, they help the eradication of fire sources that may cause future disasters.
7. They help in the creation of paths of egress.
As aforementioned, the paths of egress are usually integrated into the architectural layout. Typically, the work of a fire engineer is pointing out where it should be located. But it doesn’t end there. Paths of egress need to have minimal ventilation.
They have to be in a way that prevents smoke entry and the spreading of fire. Since churches may be flocked during the outbreak, the engineer has to help architects design the building with sprinklers on the egression path. It’s done to delay rapid spread and ensure that everyone within the church will get out of the building safely.
Further, since they are familiar with the fire escape routes, the engineer will use the workshops’ knowledge. As a result, every member will have detailed knowledge on how to use these paths, should there is an emergency.
8. They can create fire prevention plans.
The plans for fire prevention are what is documented and issued to relevant church authority. The filed plans are usually based on recent incidents. However, if there are no recent incidents, they are lucidly based on predictions.
Moreover, educating the church officials is still part of the prevention plan. With such knowledge, they can be able to identify flammable materials and act appropriately. If they cannot handle them, they can also call for help. Still, all these details during the workshop can be documented, printed out, and shared with every church member.
9. They do maintenance in church buildings.
Church buildings are active places with different activities and multitudes of people. Wearing off of the building is something common that maintenance to keep it up to standards. Since the whole building is being maintained, fire safety installation paths are no less. Also, the ways of egress must be uniform with the entire building.
During maintenance, the engineer will help to remove combustible materials out of the paths. Besides that, he will check if the recent works carried out have interfered with the ventilation system. Should there be damages, the engineer will call for maintenance of these parts anew.
Further, the engineer has to ensure that the egress zones have proper lighting to avoid tumbling. Also, if there is loose electrical; wiring, he will oversee the fixing and proper installations.
10. They can Educate church officials on how flammable materials should be handled.
The most common fire cases are attributed to recklessness. And that starts from poor storage of flammable materials. In churches, there may be fireworks for celebrations of significant events.
If not, there may be fuel for the electricity backup system. In these cases, the fire protection work shows the members responsible for how poor storage can cause damages. Since fire protection engineers write reports, they will explain how the church’s flammable materials should be stored.
Further, if the church intends to purchase candles for certain events, the engineer will point out the right ones. It’s critical to note that there are variations of candles, and some pose major risks, should they be mishandled.
Again, the engineer will work with architects on designing the storage apartments. He will ensure that these rooms are not close to aisles and egress zones.
11. The engineers conduct training on fire response teams.
The church, unlike any other place, is usually with masses of people. For this reason, one has to take responsibility, especially during an emergency. Sufficed to say, during a fire incident, an emergency team should be in place.
As a church hiring a fire engineer to train your emergency team can be a good turn. The unit shall be imparted with knowledge on fire prevention methods within the building. If the situation exceeds the limits, they will still be able to combat it. The lesson also makes the emergency team proactive and less panicked during a fire incident.
12. They carry out assessments on purchased systems.
Most of the modern churches working nowadays depend on systems. However, one should not fail to appreciate that these systems are disguised fire sources. Nevertheless, you can stay free from paranoia by having a fire protection engineer. They work with system manufactures to assess faults in the newly manufactured electrical systems. Even though the system may be certified for use, damages may at times be disguised. Having a second eye to assess the issues can be ideal.
On the other hand, should you be using dryers, a fire protection engineer will prevent electrical malfunctioning. Failure to assess such issues and prevent them is a recipe for disaster. On the other hand, if the church is fitted with sprinklers and alarms, fire protection engineers evaluate its functioning.
Owing to the saying, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure; in as much as fires may seem to be an inevitable incident- doing prevention can turn things different. Of course, fire results in regress on the economy and may cause injuries and deaths. To prevent this, you have to enlist the help of a fire protection engineer. Their work is promising, and day by day, it saves lives, and fires are inhibited.
A church is one of the most active faculties in the world. There are masses of the congregations that gather around, and their safety relies on the officials. As a show of care ad respect for human life, hiring a fire protection engineer for your church is a must-do. If they prevent your church from a fire outbreak, your property remains safe, and it’s a win for you. Also, they avoid your congregation from injuries and even death. And that way, you will have responded to your legal obligation; hence, it’s still a win for you.
These engineers play an important part in our daily living. They are committed to saving lives and preventing the community against fire outbreaks. Each faculty worldwide is appreciating their work and even embracing them as part of their employees. The same applies to churches, and every official should recall that fire has no conscience. It attacks even the most sacred places. So, hire a fire protection engineer lest your flock fall, the victim. Watch out!