Thirty Years in the Making – One Meridian Plaza Fire

The One Meridian Plaza fire continues to be one of the most iconic high-rise structure fires in American history. On February 23, 1991, a fire caused an unprecedented fire loss of over $4 billion dollars in litigation, $100 million in direct property loss, 24 firefighter injuries, eight firefighter near-misses and the ultimate tragic loss of three Philadelphia firefighters.

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Why aren’t all Fire Hydrants – Red?

The consistency of color coding is widely varied by localities and jurisdictional preferences. It is also governed by many national agencies like American Water Works Association (AWWA), Occupation Safety, Health Administration (OSHA), National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and the International Codes council (ICC) to name a few.  Typically, there are three types of fire hydrants, public, private and yard.

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IBC – Water Supply for Buildings Under Construction

During construction, buildings are extremely vulnerable.  This construction or renovation period requires extra precautions along with specific risk management planning. Many fire protection systems, both passive and active, are just beginning to be installed or shut down and cannot provide required protection. This unprotected period has led to some major catastrophic fires in exposed buildings. While unoccupied, they present a significant hazard to workers, fire service personnel and property that must be mitigated through adoption of specific code requirements.  

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The Tragedy of High-Rise Fires

In November of 2019, we suffered what appeared to be just another tragic high-rise fire in a string of devastating high-rise fires spanning decades. We once again began to ask ourselves if this is the one; the one that speaks to the Honorable Judge Hayes’s quote. We have done so much and yet we continue to suffer tragic high-rise fires. The question is not about what has been done, the question is, are we living “above our ability”? The answer is, “No.” This trend continues despite all that we have accomplished in the model codes. 

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