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Understanding Structure Ignition Vulnerabilities Using Reduced Size Sections of Building Components



Samuel L. Manzello, Sayaka Suzuki


The 2016 Fort McMurray, Canada, Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI) fire displaced more than 80,000 people, destroyed nearly 2,400 structures, and shut down nearly a quarter of Canada’s oil production. Large outdoor fires in Japan mainly occur due to post-earthquake fires. Once structures are ignited in large outdoor fires, firebrand production from structures becomes a key factor in fire spread. Based on numerous post-fire disaster investigations, attached building components are known to be prone to ignition in WUI fires, and may provide pathways to structure ignition. The basis of this paper is to present ignition results for sections of full-scale building components using the recently developed experimental capability at the National Research Institute of Fire and Disaster (NRIFD). The building component sections were exposed to firebrand showers using a custom built continuous-feed firebrand generator with firebrand size and mass distributions similar to those measured from structure combustion. The results of this study are presented and discussed in this paper.
Proceedings Title
Proceedings of the 54th Japanese Combustion Symposium
Conference Dates
November 23-25, 2016
Conference Location
Sendai, -1


Firebrands, WUI Fires, Ignition
Created November 23, 2016, Updated July 18, 2017