This paper presents survey results on fire loads distributions for hotel buildings in the cities of Hefei, Lanzhou, Shenyang, Chengdu, Yantai and Tianjin surveyed in China. Details of the survey methodology, data collection and processing are given. Furthermore, the influence of the hotel rating, room type, region and room floor area on fire loads are discussed in detail. Based on the probability statisticsand test of normality, the fire load densities of all the surveyed hotels show a lognormal distribution with the mean value of 349.2 MJ/m2, the maximum value of 886.4 MJ/m2, the minimum value of 117.8 MJ/m2, and the standard deviation of 142.1. The fire loads obtained from the survey have been compared with those of similar surveys in other countries. According to the survey results, the fire dynamical theory and characteristics of building fire, the evaluation methods of the fire duration time and the collapse probability of building caused by fire are also developed in this paper. The statistical parameters of the fire load presented in this paper will be useful in the design of fire prevention and fire fighting measures of hotel buildings.
In the coming decades, the demand for fire engineers will be on the rise in South East Asia. There, supertall buildings, large atria, deep underground subway stations, long tunnels and huge green architectural features are constructed. Fire engineers will be expected to design, build and maintain ‘traditional’ fire engineering systems; they will also need to handle fire engineering approach for performance-based design, which projects having difficulties to comply with the fire codes adopt. Consequently, fire engineering evolved from vocational training to a high-level engineering discipline. The necessity of providing higher education at degree and above levels in fire engineering will be discussed in this paper. Problems encountered in performance-based design which are caused by an inadequate number of well-trained engineers will also be pointed out. The education programmes which are running in Hong Kong now will be used as an example. The subjects on fire engineering are described. Two points to note are discussed. Firstly, in contrast to other engineering subject disciplines, fire engineering must integrate basic fire science with real-life practices. Integration of professional experience in conjunction with fundamental fire science is essential. Professional accreditation of the fire engineering programmes is very important. Secondly, practicing fire engineering curriculum are mainly designed for solving fire problems encountered in developed countries, not for the ones encountered in South East Asia. Quality teaching on those topics should be provided with in-depth research.