Hundreds of leaders from the international fire service gathered for the CRR Leadership Conference in Reno, NV. The Community Risk Reduction Leadership seminars were designed to educate fire and safety leadership on demonstrating the need for CRR programs, educating the benefits of implementing a program and training leadership to conduct analysis and develop and implement CRR in their departments.

Homes of Today and Their Contents are Burning Faster

Chris Roberts, President of GHS Companies and Brands stated, “As a brand, we are known for being the Rolls Royce of early warning residential fire protection. No other home network provides the features and benefits of our product. Because we understand upgrading our safety requires effort and expense, we’re always proud to assist the fire service and their leadership in their mission to improve. This conference is especially gratifying because of the alignment with our brand’s noble mission. The impact made by a conference like this is unquantifiable for the lives and property saved. Let’s face it, when it comes to protecting our communities, our families and our lives, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
Global Health & Safety was proud to sponsor “The Role of Home Fire Sprinklers in CRR.” This session was led by Lorraine Carli, Vice President of Outreach and Advocacy, NFPA. If you have a home fire today, you are more likely to die than you were in 1980. Home fires burn fast. In less than two minutes a fire can become deadly. The way homes are built today and the contents in them are creating dangerous fire scenarios for occupants and first responders. Polyurethane foam-filled furniture and other synthetic objects such as carpet and electronics burn fast and produce billowing, poisonous smoke.

Unprotected lightweight materials, such as engineered floor systems, along with open construction designs fail sooner in a fire compared to older dimensional lumber systems. Airtight construction and energy-conserving building materials such as double glazed (vinyl) windows, synthetic insulation materials and foam sheathing can make for faster-spreading fires. Home fire sprinklers, in conjunction with early warning alarms, are the proven technology that can prevent a fire from becoming deadly and are a critical component of a community risk reduction program.

Gail Minger, President of the Michael H. Minger Foundation, provided an inspirational keynote address, sharing some of the significant work of the Michael H. Minger Foundation and the challenges of changing the culture about the reality and devastation of fire. The Foundation works closely with programs that deal with access and functional needs in our campus communities and raises awareness of how to better serve this demographic.

In addition, the GHS team attended sessions pertaining to the future requirements for new “smart” smoke alarms. UL collaborated with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to develop the first Standard on smoke alarms (UL 217) which was first published in 1976. Participants learned how research has enhanced technology that can recognize different fire and smoke characteristics created by changes in home design, building techniques and modern furnishings and how this new technology will be incorporated in new smoke alarms that are expected to be in the market place no later than 2020.

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