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Case Study: Sophisticated fire safety systems enable rapid isolation of incidents and evacuation of occupants

Taipei 101, a 101 story tower in Taiwan, sees 40,000 people pass through its doors each day. Fire prevention and emergency reaction plans have been paramount since the start of construction in 2000.

The building houses very early warning fire detection systems, smoke detection and expulsion systems and automated fire extinguishing systems, which are coordinated via a central disaster prevention center. Infrared detectors and cameras are installed to detect fire anywhere in the building. Taipei 101 is also equipped with state-of-the-art emergency elevators that travel from ground level to the 90th floor in 50 seconds, allowing emergency personnel to reach a disaster in the fastest possible time. Air pressure in the emergency staircases is automatically controlled to minimize smoke intrusion, allowing people to evacuate from lower levels. Emergency shelters are distributed throughout the building to provide temporary shelter for escaping personnel. These advanced emergency systems offer a ‘layered’ approach to fire safety and ensure rapid response in the event of a disaster. A similar approach has been employed at London’s iconic new skyscraper, The Shard, which now stands as the tallest building in Western Europe.



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