Pre-Conference Events, October 4, 2023

Hosted by the Atlanta (Ga.) Fire Rescue Department and the Georgia Tech Environmental Health & Safety Division.

The Pre-Conference events took place on the Georgia Tech campus and included a live burn demonstration, a "Meet & Greet" session for conference attendees, and a screening of the documentary film, "PTSD911: The Movie."

Live Fire Demonstration: The Effectiveness of Residential Fire Sprinklers

The Live Fire Demonstration provided attendees with a powerful demonstration of the difference between the outcome of two fires, one in a room without fire sprinkler protection, and the other with a single residential fire sprinkler head.
FSPA Psychologist, Dr. Carla Moore, provides directions to burn simulation attendees. Dr. Moore also served as FSPA’s Conference Planning Lead.

Demo #1: A Room Not Protected by a Residential Fire Sprinkler

Personnel from the Atlanta Fire Rescue Department (AFRD) prepare the simulator’s two rooms by using household furnishings that would commonly be found in a living room.
The first demonstration fire is ignited in the mock living room without residential fire sprinkler protection. Within just a few minutes the fire has reached rapid growth and the interior temperatures in the room would quickly to a degree incompatible with human life.
By the time a fire department unit has arrived and starts putting water on the fire (Typically 6-10 minutes from the time the fire department was dispatched), the fire has reached “flashover stage.” This stage is when all the combustible materials in the room have reached their ignition temperature at the same time. Human survival is not possible once the room flashes over.
It took a minute or more for the fire crew to extinguish the fire using about 100 gallons of water!
Firefighters from AFRD who put out the fire!

Demo #2: A Room Protected by a Residential Fire Sprinkler

The room is set up exactly as was the first room. The fire is ignited in the same manner as the previous view.
AFRD Firefighter points out the location of the single sprinkler head for the demonstration room. A typical residential fire sprinkler hear can from 8-15 gallons of water per minute once activated.
The fire is ignited in the same manner as in the non-sprinkler protected room.
When the ceiling temperature—where the fire sprinkler head is located—reaches 165-degrees F, the fire sprinkler head activates and begins discharging water on the fire.
Within seconds, water from the fire sprinkler head is already stopping fire growth. The temperature in the room is already decreasing giving any occupants additional time to exit the home.
And extinguishment is completed in a matter of minutes with minimal damage to the room’s contents from the fire. More importantly, the fire would never have extended out of the livingroom and room temperatures throughout the home would never have risen to a level incompatible with human life. A residential fire sprinkler may not completely extinguish a fire in all cases but it will keep the fire from increasing until firefighters can arrive and complete the job!
FSPA Fire Service Member, Dr. Burt Clark, provides attendees with his perspectives on the psychological impact of fire on people.
Burn Simulation Attendees.
Members of the Georgia Tech Environmental Health & Safety Division who assisted with the burn simulation.

"Meet & Greet" for Conference Attendees Following the Live Burn Demonstrations

Screening of “PTSD911 the Movie”

MC for the movie, Ms. Angela Bowers , Atlanta Fire Rescue Department
This powerful documentary followed lives of a cop, a dispatcher, and a firefighter who suffered from PTSD.
Conrad Weaver, director for PTSD the Movie, and Shannon McQuaide, FireFlex Yoga.

The End

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