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Human behaviour in fire and emergency evacuation design

BRE Global has a proven and internationally recognised expertise in this field.

It has been at the forefront of the application of research to the development of regulatory tools and systems. 

Through our extensive research programmes into human behaviour in fire incidents and experimental evacuation studies, we have developed a unique knowledge and understanding of the factors influencing occupant escape behaviour (such as alarm systems, fire-safety management, occupancy type and building complexity) important for the development of effective evacuation strategies.

We use this knowledge base to develop methods for the quantification and modelling of human behaviour during emergencies, which have been incorporated into engineering calculation and computational tools. We understand the impact on physical means of escape provisions, which constitute one of the greatest restraints and cost elements in building design and construction.

Safe means of escape in fire and other emergencies is a principal requirement for design and operation of buildings and transport systems.

BRE Global has developed and is continually improving, a state of the art egress simulation, CRISP. The model treats each person individually with a detailed model of their decision-making process, actions prior to egress, and uses a fine network to regulate the movement process.

It is possible to create pictures of the evacuation process, either by taking a number of 'snapshots' at regular intervals, or 3D animations can also be created.

The CRISP model also incorporates an integral simulation of fire growth, smoke spread etc, enabling it to be used for quantitative fire risk assessment.