Team Investigators –
The Right Intel Solves the Problem
While the potential for monetary losses due to a fire are an important factor, ultimately the goal of fire protection is to increase safety for the occupants by reducing or preventing fire-related injuries and property damage. The components that make up life safety systems include safe building design, detection and alarm devices, and smoke and fire-suppression systems. In order to provide a comprehensive investigation, a wide range of disciplines and areas of expertise are often necessary. Issues can also arise during initial design and construction, or occur over time due to renovations and improper maintenance.
Safe Building Design
Safe building design begins with the layout of exits and means of egress, selection of fire-resistance rated assemblies and interior finishes, inclusion of occupancy/use-specific criteria, and the design of fire detection, alarm, and suppression systems. AEI employs licensed professional engineers, NFPA-Certified Fire Protection Specialists, and fire-protection industry experts to evaluate and investigate cases involving these issues.
Smoke Detection and Alarm
In an emergency, fire detection and smoke alarm systems provide early warning for building occupants. The proper operation of these systems hinges upon their correct design, installation, and maintenance throughout the lifetime of the system. Failures can be caused by improper or lack of maintenance, incorrect installation, electrical system failures or anomalies, or lightning strikes. AEI can evaluate codes and standards, system design and installation, and electrical components to determine if the system functioned properly.
Fire Suppression Systems
Incidents involving fire suppression systems generally fall into one of two categories – water or excessive fire damage. These losses can occur due to a variety of factors including: poorly maintained and serviced systems, damaged system components, defective system components, improperly installed system and/or components, and change in use/occupancy from the original design criteria. Our knowledge of the system components, system installations, industry practices, and applicable codes and standards allows us to identify the relevant factors that contribute to an incident. Common suppression system and component investigations conducted by AEI include kitchen hood, clean agent, vehicle, wet pipe, antifreeze, dry pipe, pre-action, deluge, paint booth, fire extinguisher, and backflow prevention devices.
Fire protection investigation services include:
• Fire-rated building components
• Construction and installation defects.
• Maintenance and periodic inspection programs.
• Fire and life-safety code compliance.
• Freeze and water losses.
• Fire damage from faulty suppression systems.
• System design and installation.
• System maintenance and service.
• System parts and components.
• Codes and standards compliance.
• Industry standard of care.