Posted on 09/06/2016 in News 32
Reducing the risks of bus and coach fires

A presentation by SP Sweden summarises the need for improved fire safety standards in buses and coaches, and developments currently underway. Applicable regulations are UN ECE 118 for fire behaviour of interior materials (see J. Troitzsch in pinfa Newsletter n° 65) and UN ECE 117 for fire detection.

Full scale tests show that UNECE 118 is inadequate: flashover occurs rapidly if fire reaches the passenger compartment, and toxic fumes become critical within minutes. Statistics show that bus fires are increasing (the number has doubled in Finland over the last decade), with 350-400 bus and coach fires per year in Germany and over 2 100 school bus fires in the USA. New systems are needed for detecting and fighting fires. Component failure is a key fire cause, and addressing this reduces operating costs. Fire standards’ developments need to take into account the tendency towards lightweight materials and the importance of both flammability and of smoke toxicity.

“Reducing the risk of bus fires”, F. Rosen, SP Sweden, 51 pages, Intersec Dubai 19th January 2016, online
Upcoming conference: 4th International Conference on Fires in Vehicles FIVE, 4-6 Oct. 2016, Baltimore, USA

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