Research has documented that compartmentation, including room doors, is an effective means to slow the spread of fire and smoke in home fires and thus increases the available egress time for home occupants. However, another important factor in home fire safety and safe occupant egress is smoke alarm effectiveness which may be impacted by the barrier to sound created by these doors. Education messaging for home fire evacuation must consider both of these dimensions.
This project will focus on the smoke alarm effectiveness implications of the open/closed sleeping room door scenario. Some of the unanswered questions include: Will a closed door delay early warning from a smoke alarm located outside the sleeping room?; Will a single station smoke alarm, installed in the sleeping room with the door closed, provide early warning to a fire outside the sleeping area to allow for safe escape?; What is the impact of a closed door when the fire originates in the sleeping room and no smoke alarm is present in the room? What may be other human behavior issues associated with a closed bedroom door that may impact evacuation?
Research goal: The goal of this project is to assess and document the impact of a closed sleeping room door on smoke alarm early notification and home escape in the modern fire environment of residential dwellings.
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