In terms of safety, one area of concern for citizens is how well protected they are in the event of a fire breaking out. In this document, The Concrete Initiative outlines its views on what needs to be done to ensure a high level of protection for people in buildings, tunnels and other infrastructure.
Together with architects, firefighter associations, and insurance entities, we have a responsibility to address the growing issue of safety and to identify solutions to tackle the concerns of European citizens. Every year more than 4 000 people die in fires in Europe, 80% of which start in their own homes. In the drive towards ever more energy efficient buildings, fire safety needs to be kept in mind in order to avoid increasing fire loads in buildings. Otherwise, we will continue to see an increased risk of fires occurring, more and more often with devastating consequences.
Concrete does not burn and concrete elements retain their strength at high temperatures, so concrete structures can withstand the effects of a fire without requiring any other form of active or passive protection. This safety comes at no additional cost and will always be there, even if the building changes over time (due to refurbishment or accidents). This means that concrete has much more to offer than other structural materials when it comes to safety.
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