The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) announced that it is adding $4 million to the endowment for the Fire Protection Research Foundation (Foundation). The Foundation is an independent nonprofit that plans, manages, and communicates consortium-funded research on a broad range of fire safety issues in collaboration with scientists and laboratories around the world. It is an affiliate of NFPA.
NFPA established a $6 million endowment for the Foundation in 2008.
“Having solid research on fire and life safety issues is fundamental in supporting our codes and standards process and advancing our mission, which is to reduce the worldwide burden of fire and other hazards,” said Jim Shannon, NFPA’s president. “Committing additional funds to the Fire Protection Research Foundation ensures that important research in this area will continue.”
In 1982, upon approval of NFPA’s board of directors, the Foundation was established to encourage and support independent research to coincide with NFPA’s mission. Findings from Foundation projects are used by NFPA codes and standards technical committees as they develop new documents and update existing versions, as well as a varied audience in the fire protection community and beyond.
“This recent pledge of additional funds further solidifies what NFPA started in 2008,” said Kathleen Almand, executive director of the Foundation. “Strengthening our operations ensures our ability to continually develop research independently that is shared with those in the fire protection community who have come to rely on it.”
The Foundation’s work supports NFPA’s advocacy initiatives such as home fire sprinklers, as well as major research programs on fire detection and suppression systems. One of the more notable projects in the early history of the Foundation involved halon, a chemical widely used in fire protection communities, which was found to contribute to the depletion of the Earth’s protective stratospheric ozone layer. During the 1980’s, the Foundation directed research to identify best practices in the management of existing halon resources.
More recently, the Foundation completed several research projects on issues related to the implementation of home fire sprinklers. In 2008, they released a groundbreaking research report titled Home Fire Sprinkler Cost Assessment, which looked at ten communities with sprinkler requirements and found the average cost of installing sprinkler systems to the home builder to be $1.61 per sprinklered square foot.
For more information on the Fire Protection Research Foundation or to view its research reports, visit www.nfpa.org/foundation.