Inherent fire safety engineering in complex road tunnels – Learning between industries in safety management
Ostrem, Lene;Sommer, Morten
University of Stavanger (UiS), Department of Safety, Economics and Planning, Stavanger, Norway
Gassco AS, Department of Asset Technology, Haugesund, Norway
Inherent safety;Fire safety design;Complex road tunnels;Lessons learned;Risk management
Road tunnels in Norway are becoming increasingly complex, and several long subsea tunnels are either under construction or planned for the near future. The Office of the Auditor General in Norway recently stated that there is a need to improve fire safety in road tunnels. By systematically examining safety management in an industry dealing with high risks on a daily basis and combining this with knowledge gained through investigations of tunnel fire accidents and existing research on tunnel fires, this paper aims to identify some areas for improvement in the fire safety engineering of complex road tunnels. The 'inherently safer' philosophy is used as a starting point for safety management, and there appears to be some potential for improvement within tunnel fire safety engineering, when taking into account parameters and uncertainties regarding fire growth, heat release rates, smoke stratification toxicity, and time available to escape with different ventilation strategies.