2016 Fire and Life Safety Study: Seven key findings
Respondents to the Consulting-Specifying Engineer 2016 Fire and Life Safety Study identified seven high-level findings impacting the fire and life safety industry:
- Building structures: Building respondents specify, design, or make fire and life safety system product selections for are office buildings (75%), industrial/manufacturing facilities/warehouses (56%), government buildings/military facilities (49%), and college/university buildings (49%).
- Systems specified: Three-quarters of respondents specify or expect to specify detection products—including control systems, dampers, and fire, smoke, heat, and linear detectors.
- Systems value: The average total annual dollar amount of fire and life safety systems specified for new and existing systems is $2.2 million.
- Challenges: When asked about fire and life safety system design challenges, six in 10 respondents indicated they were challenged by subjective interpretation of regulations by code authorities, inadequate design budget, designing for interoperability and integration of systems, codes and standards, and education as constant hurdles.
- Disciplines: Local authorities having jurisdiction (AHJs) or fire officials have the most input and impact on fire and life safety design, according to 72% of respondents, followed by owners (43%), architects (40%), and electrical engineers (38%).
- Design factors: Product quality (70%), service support (47%), and manufacturer’s reputation (42%) were identified as extremely important to respondents when selecting fire and life safety systems.
- Experience: The average engineer involved in fire and life safety systems has been in the industry for 23 years.