SFPE European Chapter News
The SFPE Benelux Chapter has focused on developing and (re)aligning its strategy with the developments in the Benelux market, especially with respect to education of FSE practitioners and their alumni associations. As a result, the Board of Directors has changed, and specific tasks allocated to its members. The young Chapter has had a number of very active and successful years, especially with a sequel of very well attended and appreciated tunnel fire seminars, but with relatively limited and skewed growth and limited awareness of the Chapter in the Benelux.
The planned activities for 2015 / 2016 include a totally new website, membership growth, development of the network in education (universities in the Benelux, and their alumni), company c.q. manufacturers (of active and passive protection measures) visits and some seminars on issues such as high rise buildings, car parks and sustainable buildings. On top of that, the Chapter will launch some working groups, with a mission to develop codes of best practice for typical Benelux FSE issues. More information about the SFPE Benelux Chapter can be found at http://www.sfpe-benelux.org/.
Information about the SFPE French Chapter can be obtained by contacting email@example.com.
Information about the SFPE Italian Chapter can be found at http://www.aiia-sfpe.org/chisiamo/chisiamo.html.
Information about the SFPE Polish Chapter can be found at http://www.sfpe.pl/index.php/charpterpl.
The Spanish chapter is preparing a technical seminar/formal inaugural event for this autumn. Our idea is to give a high standard technical seminar and at the same time present and explain the background/purpose of the chapter and the SFPE. Currently the chapter board is in the process of formalizing the chapter into a legally recognized non-profit organization.
The SFPE España website was launched in June; please take a look: http://www.sfpe.es.
SFPE Sweden is currently experiencing a tremendous amount of activity. As president, I feel honored to be leading this work; which is carried out both by our members and chapter friends, as well as our elected board members. The activities during the first half of 2015 can be summarized as follows:
- SFPE Sweden has responded to two letter of referrals from the Swedish Fire Protection Association (on evacuation lifts) and from the National Board of Housing (on structural design rules).
- Apart from being represented in the fire safety reference group of the National Board of Housing, SFPE Sweden is now also represented in a regulation group for sprinklers, connected to the Swedish Fire Protection Association.
- SFPE Sweden had an active part in the organization of the first SFPE Europe conference.
- SFPE Sweden has increased its communication on the chapter webpage, Facebook and Twitter. Local groups in Sweden are now also able to spread information about their activities, both on our webpage and via our mailing list.
- SFPE Sweden’s local groups have had one meeting each. In Gothenburg, the topic of the meeting was evacuation of disabled people. In Malmö, the topic was structural design rules, and in Stockholm a past fire. At each meeting, representatives from the BOD have been present to inform members about ongoing activities.
- SFPE Sweden will arrange a national conference in 2016, and the work is ongoing with this.
- Work to form an internal strategic document for the chapter has been ongoing by a number of board members. The plan is to release the result of this work during the autumn in 2015.
- A new chapter guideline is currently being circulated among members of the reference group tied to that guideline. The topic is rescue operations in high-rise buildings and the drafted guideline will be circulated among SFPE Sweden’s members later this year.
- SFPE Sweden has published a general recommendation on how to follow structural design rules considering small deviations from the rules (a term used in the regulation).
- SFPE Sweden has provided input to the National Board of Housing regarding references to standards in national regulations.
- Daniel Rosberg, member of SFPE Sweden, took part in an international SFPE Webinar on the proper use of CFD models. The webinar was based on a chapter guideline published a couple of years ago.
More information about the SFPE Swedish Chapter can be found at http://www.sfpe-biv.se/.
The UK chapter ran two events over the summer including a CPD on Regulation 38 of the Building Regulations as well as a summer party. Both events very well attended by both existing and new members. Membership, including 80 chapter supporters, is now at 124. We have just closed entry to our new competition to find the best fire engineering strategy and best fire research project of 2015 and we had seven entries. While this is a good number of submissions, we would like to have even more and may open the competition up to European candidates next year (subject to ECCG and our own AGM approval).
We are continuing our engagement with our institutions and have managed to organise closer links with Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) North West Branch who have been publicising our events. We have our September AGM and CPD event coming up on the 17th of September and we look forward to continuing to deliver services to our members over the years to come.
Overall, we are continuing to grow and get stronger with the biggest threat to us being the heavy level of work load on the committee and membership.