UL Joins Forces With Members of the International Fire Safety Standards Coalition
UL Joins Forces With Members of the International Fire Safety Standards Coalition to Advance Global Improvements to Building Fire Safety and Management. Approximately 80 fire safety organizations worldwide have come together to publish a consistent approach to save lives by reducing risks and preventing devastating fires in buildings and infrastructure.
UL, a global safety science specialist, announced recently that it is among approximately 80 organizations comprising the International Fire Safety Standards (IFSS) Coalition that contributed to the recently-released Global Plan for a Decade of Action for Fire Safety. The plan aims to help ensure an internationally consistent approach to the safety and management of buildings and infrastructure to save lives by reducing risks and preventing devastating fires. According to the IFSS, global fires and burns result in more than 150,000 deaths, over 7 million injuries and displacement of tens of thousands of people every year.
The Global Plan for a Decade of Action for Fire Safety aims to stabilize and then reduce the forecast level of fire fatalities, injuries, economic cost and environmental impact around the world by 2032, even as the global population increases. Countries can use the plan from the IFSS to accelerate the adoption of sustainable and cost-effective fire safety programs and standards, while also using it to improve their fire safety performance and as a platform to share their experiences and knowledge with others.
“In countries around the world, we are seeing growing population, rapid urbanization, new methods of building construction and new technologies that present fire challenges. This has led to a greater number of populations and buildings that are at risk for fire hazards,” said Dwayne Sloan, director of Principal Engineering for Built Environment at UL. He was one of the standard-setting committee members acknowledged for his contributions to the Global Plan for a Decade of Action for Fire Safety. “UL is among many organizations that recognized this problem and came together with the IFSS to establish an ambitious, yet feasible, target for reduction of fire-related fatalities and injuries by 2032. The Decade of Action builds upon the IFSS – Common Principles that were published in October 2020.”
The Global Plan for a Decade of Action for Fire Safety delivers a clear goal, performance-based objectives framework and common actions that align with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. These activities can occur at the individual, community, city, national, regional and global levels. The plan outlines 15 objectives, along with a list of over 60 representative action items, presented within the framework of five central pillars:
- People – Actions to help individuals and groups understand fire and what they can do to increase their understanding
- Products – Actions to reduce fire hazards associated with appliances, contents and building components
- Structures – Actions to reduce fire hazards related to structures, including planning, design and operation
- Infrastructure – Actions to help enhance firefighting infrastructure
- Communities – Actions to facilitate sustainable and fire-resilient communities
“This new initiative is unprecedented, being the first agreement on fire safety actions on this international scale, with its development supported by the United Nations in line with its own Sustainable Development Goals,” said Gary Strong, chair of the IFSS Coalition. “Our coalition has worked hard to produce this globally applicable way to bring improvements and consistency in fire safety to buildings and infrastructure, new and old, and reduce the risk to lives.”
The IFSS Coalition is an industry-led global response to address differing or, in some cases, non-existent fire safety requirements in countries across the world. The Decade of Action for Fire Safety (2022-2032) and more information on IFSS is available on the Coalition’s website.
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