Fire protection has evolved from encasing steel with concrete using elaborate forming devices to applying intumescent (fire retardant) coatings and paints directly onto the steel supports. These various methods are all used to achieve levels of fire resistance expressed as hourly rating, which are mandated by codes and good construction practice. This is referred to as “passive” fire protection – passive in that no ongoing maintenance is required.
There is no repair of applied passive fire projection materials, or active renewal of the applied materials. The passive fireproofing simply stays in place and does its job when and if a fire engulfs a structure. The fire-resistant material enables the building occupants enough time to vacate in the event of disaster.
Active fire suppression takes the form of installed systems such as sprinklers. But sprinkler systems are complex, costly, and, according to statistical evidence, rarely foolproof. The reason? Mechanical systems fail, electricity is often cut during a fire, or the sprinkler heads malfunction. Because of this potentially high failure rate, passive fire protection should be a requirement for all buildings designed for a high degree of occupancy. In fact, many codes mandate it.
Passive fire protection typically costs about 1-2% of the total cost of a given structure. But the sure knowledge that a building’s occupants will have time to evacuate in the event of a fire provides a level of comfort to the building designers, contractors and owners. The business of fireproofing a building’s structural elements is thus about preventing loss of life. In fact saving lives is what Promat-Firetemp is all about.
Planning for passive fire protection is paramount in both design and construction. Promat-Firtemp offers architects, engineers and contractors the tools they need to design with passive fireproofing in mind from the beginning of design through completion of the structure.
We produce cost-effective materials that meet or exceed codes and perform their preventive tasks as required. Overall, we are committed not only to producing innovative solutions for passive fire protection but also to meeting the most stringent requirements set by the commercial design industry.