Salas O’Brien’s fire protection engineers (FPEs) use science and engineering to provide one of our most important services, safeguarding life and property and preventing economic loss and environmental damage. Even though many of our clients are surprised to learn that we offer it, our fire protection experience and portfolio are extensive.

Fire protection relies on expertise and insight from multiple engineering disciplines, including mechanical, electrical, chemical, civil, and structural, as well as knowledge from other scientific fields such as combustion, heat transfer, thermodynamics, and fluid mechanics.

“Fire protection is the cornerstone of life safety,” Salas O’Brien Senior Fire Protection Engineer Tim Campbell said. “People have an inherent trust when they walk into a building that there are features in place to keep them safe in an emergency. Fire protection engineering is what provides that sense of security.”

As a discipline, fire protection engineering takes a four-pronged approach focused on detection, suppression, mitigation, and safety. Detection involves designing fire alarm systems that perceive the presence of smoke or heat and warn people through visual and audio appliances. Suppression includes systems that actively suppress or prevent the spread of fires; these measures include sprinkler systems, foam fire suppression systems, clean agent systems, and more.

Similarly, mitigation is focused on controlling the spread of fire and smoke should a fire occur, by using fire and smoke barriers, spacing design, and smoke control and management principles. And lastly, safety encompasses planning for human safety in the event of a fire, such as ensuring proper emergency exits, fire lifts, communication systems with first responders, and space planning.

Our FPEs have a comprehensive understanding of fire dynamics and how different materials interact with fire. They pay close attention to materials that have been or will be used on a project, and they analyze the intended purpose of each room of the building, the potential hazards that exist, and the types of products or chemicals that will typically be present in a building. Using this information, they design systems that prevent fires and reduce the potential damage should one occur.

Some of the fire protection services we provide include:

  • Fire hazard analysis
  • Fire investigations
  • Design of:
    • Foam fire suppression systems
    • Dry chemical suppression systems
    • Sprinkler system
    • Detection systems
    • Warning systems
    • Communication systems
    • Emergency exits
    • Smoke control and management
    • Fire and smoke barriers
  • Engineering and construction drawing review
  • Fire modeling
  • Site visits
  • Systems analysis

If you’d like to learn more about how our team’s technical skills can help ensure the highest level of fire safety on your next project, contact us today!