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FireOx International is a professional and multi-disciplinary fire engineering, research, technical control and consultancy practice - unique in Europe for the high level of integration between fire engineering, architecture and technical control. With our physical locations in Ireland, Italy and Turkey, we are operational throughout the European Union (EU) and European Economic Area (EEA), in collaboration with other leading design & consultancy practices.

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What can we do for you ?  These are just some of the areas in which we specialize ....

We also provide support services to other fire consultants - with confidentiality assured.

For more information, please contact us by phone at  + 353-1-838 6078

or e-mail us at

Read CJ Walsh's Technical Blog:


e-mail  FireOx International e-mail  FireOx International

Chief Technical Officer

C J Walsh is a Member of :
CIB Working Commission 14 - Fire
CIB Working Commission 108 - Climate Change & Built Environment
European Union 2004 Expert Working Group on Urban Environment Research
Institute of International & European Affairs in Dublin (Life Member)
External Review Panel for Structural Engineering International (IABSE)
National Fire Protection Association - USA
(AEBO & Research Sections)
External Review Panel for Fire Technology (NFPA)

Important Practice Announcements

Fire Engineering After 9-11 (2001) in New York

Dublin Stardust Fire Re-Examination Now Due !

Will the Dublin Port Tunnel be Safe - When It Opens ?

Ethical Fire Engineering Practice

In Ireland - FireOx International's Approach
to Fire Safety Certificate Applications




Fire Engineering
for a

Sustainable Human Environment (Social, Built & Virtual)

Protection of Human Health, Property, the 'Built' Environment,
Flora & Fauna, and the 'Natural' Environment from Preventable Fire

Click Here to Search for Related Books & Audio-Visual Material

At a time of unprecedented advances in science and technology and, in the European Union, a stricter legal climate concerning public health and consumer protection, it is no longer acceptable for a person to stagger out of a building, during or after a fire incident, and be considered a 'survivor'. It should, however, be reasonable to expect that people would remain in a state of physical, mental and psychological wellbeing throughout the duration of an incident. To put it more directly, human health should be routinely assured in the development of a building's fire defence plan.

The World Health Organization, in the preamble to its Constitution, defines 'health' as ....

' A state of complete physical, mental and social wellbeing, and not merely
the absence of disease or infirmity.'


US Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC)
7th April 2006      MMWR Report SS-2

Surveillance for World Trade Center Disaster Health Effects
Among Survivors of Collapsed and Damaged Buildings

Click to Download PDF
(PDF File, 418kb)


Furthermore, social justice now demands that a consideration of the health, safety and welfare of everybody in a 'sustainable built environment' (and this does include people with disabilities) should be placed in a wider social, cultural and economic context of 'anti-discrimination', 'equality of opportunity' for every person, and full 'social inclusion' for minority groups.

And we define 'environmental impact' as ........

' Any effect caused by a given activity on the environment, including human health, safety and welfare, flora, fauna, soil, air, water, and especially representative samples of natural ecosystems, climate, landscape and historical monuments or other physical structures or the interactions among these factors; it also includes effects on accessibility, cultural heritage or socio-economic conditions resulting from alterations to those factors.'

See Principle 18 of the
European Charter on Sustainable Design & Construction

The 'Precautionary Principle'

Chemical Accident Prevention & Seveso II Directive
Go to the European Commission's WebSite - CEC DG Environment

Tuesday, 25th May 2004 - BioLab Chemical Warehouse Fire in Conyers, Georgia 

Tuesday, 25th May 2004
BioLab Chemical Warehouse Fire in Conyers, Georgia (USA)

In designing a building for conditions of fire, and its aftermath, project-specific fire engineering objectives should typically cover the following broad spectrum of concerns ........

( i )
the protection of the health and safety of all building users, including people with disabilities, visitors to the building who may be unfamiliar with its layout, and contractors or product / service suppliers temporarily engaged in work or business transactions on the premises ;  
( ii ) the protection of property, including the building, its contents, and adjoining or adjacent properties, from loss or damage ;
( iii ) the health and safety protection of rescue teams / fire-fighters ;
( iv ) protection of the 'natural environment' from harmful impacts ;
( v  ) the buildability of necessary reconstruction after a fire ;
( vi ) sustainability of the 'built environment' - including the proper selection and life cycle assessment of fire safety related materials, products, components, systems, etc., fixed, installed or incorporated in the building.

Within the European Union, it is a legal imperative that correct emphasis be placed on the proper protection of people, property and the environment, and not on the unreliable, and currently half-baked, assessment of risk to safety ........

' The Commission, in its proposals envisaged in paragraph 1 concerning health, safety, environmental protection and consumer protection, will take as a base a high level of protection, taking account in particular of any new development based on scientific facts. Within their respective powers, the European Parliament and the Council will also seek to achieve this objective. '

EU Amsterdam Treaty 1997


Our goal, at international level, is to participate actively in the development of a robust, practical and modern engineering approach to fire protection and safety in a ....

Sustainable Human Environment

CIB Report 269, October 2001

Rational Fire Safety Engineering Approach to Fire Resistance in Buildings

Click Here to Download PDF
(PDF File, 954kb)

C J Walsh
One of the Principal Contributors

A Practical Approach to
Fire Resistance Performance in Buildings

Extended Version of C J Walsh's Contribution to the Initial Chapters
of CIB Report 269 above.

In the immediate aftermath of New York 9-11 (2001), CIB Report 269 (above) should have had something to say, however small, about progressive collapse and disproportionate damage caused by fire ......

CIB W14 Discussion Document - November 2003

Fire Engineering
in the european context of
Sustainable Human & Social Development

C J Walsh

Click Here to Download PDF
(PDF File, 440kb)



8th February 2007
Fire & Safety Association of India (FSAI) National Seminar
Le Royal Meridien, Chennai, Tamil Nadu.

C.J.Walsh Keynote Paper on

'Green' Buildings -
Everything You Always Wanted To Know About
Sustainable Fire Engineering .... But Were Afraid To Ask

The application of Sustainable Design Principles to
frontline, Everyday Fire Engineering Practice is a major concern
for our Fire Engineering Division - FireOx International.

The Relationship between this
Uniquely Innovative Approach to Fire Engineering
and the 2005 NIST Final Report Recommendations (Chapter 9)
on the 9-11 WTC 1 & 2 Tower Collapses
is Fundamental.

Other Important Issues Tackled in this Presentation:
- Are 'Green' Buildings really 'Sustainable' ?

- Structural Reliability in Fire, Resistance to Progressive Collapse
& Disproportionate Damage ;
Fire Evacuation for People with Disabilities ;
Ethical Fire Engineering Practice.

Click Here to Download PDF
(PDF File, 1.77Mb)

Important Background Paper ....

Presented at the
23rd Conference on Passive and Low Energy Architecture (PLEA)
Geneva, Switzerland - 6-8 September 2006

Ruchita Sutaria - Lord, Aeck & Sargent Architecture, Atlanta, USA
& Aalok Deshmukh - Rocky Mountain Institute, Boulder, USA

Whose Sustainability Is It Anyway ?
The LEED Green Building Rating System (USA Green Building Council)
is not a 'universal' rating system for Sustainable Building Design.

Click Here to Download PDF
(PDF File, 220kb)


Sustinable Fire Engineering - Related Links

Towards Implementation of a Sustainable Human Environment

1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights
(in Hindi, Tamil, and other languages)

DakshinaChitra - The Culture
& Indigenous Architecture of South India

FSAI in India - A Social Partnership
in Support of Federal & State Fire Safety Policies ?

(a collective of groups and individuals, i.e. the social partners,
business, industry, civil society and experts, which acts
as a 'catalyst' in enhancing and broadening implementation
in an area of human and/or social policy.)

European Guideline Principles on Social Partnerships
revised and updated for International Application ....
See Appendix V in the
2004 Rio Declaration on Sustainable Social Development, Disability & Ageing



FireOx International Practice Announcements

After 25 Years ....
Dublin Stardust Fire Re-Examination Due !

The time is now due for an Independent and Impartial Technical
Re-Examination of the Stardust Discotheque Fire Incident, which occurred in Dublin during the early hours of 14th February 1981.

Such a Re-Examination must exclude any involvement by the
Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government (DoEHLG).

Fire Engineering After 9-11 (2001) in New York

On 26th October 2005, the US NIST Final Report on the 9-11
WTC 1 & 2 Tower Collapses (NIST NCSTAR 1) was
presented to Congress in Washington DC.

Click Here for a Link to the Official NIST WTC 9-11 Investigation WebSite and/or .... Download the Report directly from this WebSite.

Chapter 9 of the Report contains 30 Very Important Recommendations,
which apply to All Building Types
- not just to very tall buildings involved in large scale emergencies.
[ See Footnote 17 in the Report. ]

It Is Our Very Clear Expert, Professional and Ethical Position ....
that proper account must be taken of these Recommendations in any
of our future projects.

AND .... until National Building & Fire Regulations in Europe, and their
Supporting Design Codes, have been satisfactorily revised
to take account of these same Recommendations ....
they are inadequate.

'Cost Effectiveness' has, up until now, seriously compromised
the health of building users and the safety of firefighters/rescue teams.

In North America .... the various Model Building Codes
and NFPA Standards must be similarly revised.

More specifically in the European Union ....
the Essential Requirements (Annex I) of EU Construction Products
Directive 89/106/EEC are adequate,
but Interpretative Documents 1 & 2, and their Supporting
Harmonized European Standards are not.
The relationship between Essential Requirements 1 & 2 in Annex I
is sufficiently robust.

In Sweden, where the Essential Requirements of the
EU Construction Products Directive have already been incorporated
in the National Building and Fire Regulations ....
the fire-related Functional Statements in the Regulations
are adequate, but their Supporting Guidance in the Regulations
and Supporting National Design Codes are not.

Click Here for More Information on ....
Structural Fire Engineering & Fire Serviceability Limit States

In Ireland .... the fire-related Functional Statements
in the National Building and Fire Regulations are inadequate,
while the supporting Guidance in Technical Guidance Document B
is entirely inadequate !
The required relationship between Parts A and B (Second Schedule) of the
1997 Building and Fire Regulations (as amended) is little recognized,
and is not operated in everyday practice.

In England & Wales .... similar comments apply in the case of
Part B of their Building and Fire Regulations,
Approved Document B, and the tenuous relationship between
Parts A and B of the same Regulations.
The 'deemed-to-satisfy' nature of the Guidance
in the Approved Documents is a serious technical barrier to trade
within the European Economic Area.

In Ireland .... Fire Safety Certificates which do not
take account of adequate Functional Statements in Part B of the Building
and Fire Regulations .... and do not take account of the required
relationships between Part B and Parts A, D, K & M of the same
Regulations are merely worthless pieces of paper, and
a meaningless charade

Architect's and Engineer's Opinions on Compliance
with Irish Building and Fire Regulations which do not take sufficient
account of the inadequacies inherent in the current 1997 Regulations
(as amended) provide no protection to consumers.

Entirely inadequate attention is being paid to the proper implementation
of Fire Engineering Related Construction on Irish Building Sites.

Internationally .... compliance with the MINIMAL Fire Engineering Performance Criteria established in National Building and Fire Regulations must be clearly distinguished from Good Fire Engineering Practice.

Will the New Dublin Port Tunnel be Safe -
When It Opens ?

EU Directive 2004/54/EC
Minimum Safety Requirements for Tunnels
in the Trans-European Road Network

Click to Download (PDF File, 275kb)

Before this Directive was adopted, on 29th April 2004, representatives
from each of the different EU Member States spent a significant
amount of time preparing and discussing its contents.

However, when it eventually opens ....
Will the New Dublin Port Tunnel be Safe ?

Ethical Fire Engineering Practice

"to properly protect society's interests
and the interests of the client or client organization"

Good Fire Engineering Practice involves much more than
'cost-effective' compliance with the minimum performance criteria
established in Fire Codes & Regulations.

Issues such as ....
Particular attention being paid to the protection of people with activity limitations from fire - because of their far greater difficulties during and after evacuation ;

Resistance to Progressive Collapse in Fire ;

Safety of Firefighters/Rescue Teams

Protection of Property & the Natural Environment

Sustainable Human & Social Development ....

.... should be incorporated in an effective Fire Engineering Code of Ethics,
which is regularly reviewed and updated
.... using as a basis ....

World Federation of Engineering Organizations (WFEO)
Federation Mondiale des Organisations d'Ingenieurs (FMOI)

2001 Model Code of Ethics

Click Here to Download PDF
(PDF File, 298kb)

In Ireland - FireOx International's Approach
to Fire Safety Certificate Applications

To Protect the Full Interests of our Clients and the People who Use
our Buildings
, there must always be a valid relationship
between the 'Property Paper Chain' (which very often
can be utterly meaningless and of no value to anybody) and the 'Reality'
of the completed / modified / refurbished / extended building.

For a Fire Engineer .... 'Reality' is a 'Real' Fire in a 'Real' Building,
which is used by 'Real' People who have varying abilities.

Because of their greater difficulties both during and after Fire Evacuation,
particular attention must be paid to the protection of
People with Activity Limitations


The Easy Way !   And Our Preferred Approach to Applications !

We assist the Design Team, at strategic and all technical levels of detail, to make the Application themselves. This will also involve,
as appropriate and as necessary, sufficient Fire Engineering related awareness raising and training - to enable a member, or members,
of the Design Team to exercise an adequate level of technical control
during the actual process of construction.

The Hard Way !   And Our Professional Fees Are Much Higher !

We can make the Full Application ourselves ... but ... we must also be commissioned as Technical Controllers (Fire) throughout
the full period of construction.





Contents of this Division

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activity of the practice is not available.

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Click here to go directly to CIB Working Commission 14: Fire  -  USA