New terminal at Abu Dhabi to have 300 evacuation zones

Each of the zones at the Midfield Terminal will be linked with advanced technological systems in a bid to ensure smooth evacuation operations
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The Midfield Terminal has 300 zones and over 20,000 devices
The Midfield Terminal has 300 zones and over 20,000 devices

The upcoming Midfield Terminal project in Abu Dhabi comprises 300 evacuation zones, a senior official said. 

John Boyce, head of fire and life safety at Abu Dhabi Airports Company(ADAC), said the aviation landmark is being constructed with the highest fire safety standards.

Speaking at Intersec 2016's Middle East Fire conference, Boyce said each of these evacuation zones is linked with advanced technological systems in a bid to ensure smooth evacuation operations. 

Boyce also highlighted the significance of integrated fire testing in large-scale complexes. 

"People test the fire alarm and test the [fire suppression or detection] device and the interface, but integrated cause and effect testing is very rarely done, in my opinion," he said. 

"Cause and effect testing is about how the building responds in the fire; so it's about end devices. 

"Do the doors open? Do the fans operate? Are they integrated together?"

Boyce added it is key to test for such coordination across an airport's evacuation zones, such as airside, landside, concourse, and so on. 

"Midfield Terminal has 300 zones and over 20,000 devices.

"The focus then is to check to cause and effect, because that's what deals with fires," Boyce continued. 

He added that airport fire safety is the prerogative of every party involved at an airport. 

"In my view, anyone at an airport has a role to play in fire safety. 

"Even cleaning companies, which you wouldn't really think [initially] have any role to play, really do, because if we are to raise awareness about fire prevention, then it reduces the probability of fires.

"The best risk management strategy is to prevent fires in the first place, and that's by providing the right culture in the first place.

"That's something ADAC has been very supportive of, and it's very important to have that governance in place to help you deliver that," Boyce added. 

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