@2009Fire and the Build EnvironmentIntroduction Fires in buildings have been of catastrophic effects whenever they emerge. A number of people have lost their lives with lots of properties being destroyed in various major building fires. Many of these fires erupt without any prior warning making it very hard to precisely state the cause of the fire. In assessing the catastrophe, fire experts are entrusted to establish the cause of the fire and later formulate safety measures that can help in preventing similar occurrences in the future. To ideally protect buildings from fire catastrophes, ‘various safety measures are put in place at the’ time of construction.
A number of critics have however indicated that the failure to advocate for installation of various safety appliances in some buildings is to blame for a number of big fires. Over the last twenty five years, a number of building fires have been recorded in various buildings in the United Kingdom and around the globe. This paper examines building fires for the last twenty five years with regard to England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The ‘Bradford City Stadium Fire in England’On the 11th of May 1985, the Bradford city stadium was reported to have been consumed by a terrible fire.
This fire broke out when the home bound foot ball team was meeting the Lincoln city foot ball team in a match that was to sum up for the celebration of the win earned by the Bradford foot ball team in the League division Trophy. A large number of people escaped with severe in injuries with fifty six people succumbing to the fire.
The fire is said to have emerged at about forty minutes in to the first half. At exactly five minutes prior to half time, a glowing light was spotted from the rear of the stadium in block G. One of the spectators is believed to have dropped a glowing splint or probably a burning cigarette that landed on to a heap of rubbish in the lower section of the stadium. Spectators seated in the upper sections of the stadium are said to have felt the surging of the heat beneath them. This is said to have prompted one of the spectators to dash for a fire extinguisher within the rear of the stand but to his dismay got none (Firth 2005). A nearby police officer went ahead to raise alarm for an extinguisher only for his call to be wrongly interpreted.
The fire then spread very first forcing police officers on the watch to embark on the evacuation of the spectators. Various wooden stands and the roof of the stadium were first to catch the fire which according to an eye witness was rapidly spreading.
Most of the spectators were covered in the thick choking smoke that made it very difficult for them to clearly see the exit and breathe. The game had to be terminated at about three minutes to half time (Firth 2005). The raging fire is said to have quickly consumed the roof that had been covered in tarpaulin and further sealed with both asphalt and bitumen. The fire is thought to have escalated owing ‘to the effects of the blowing wind’. The fire thus spread quickly from one stand to yet another.
A number of spectators were severely burned by molten matter that fell from the burning roof.