Fire risk models support decision making for engineering problems under the consistent consideration of the associated uncertainties. Empirical approaches can be used for cost-benefit studies when enough data about the decision problem are available. But often the empirical approaches are not detailed enough. Engineering risk models, on the other hand, may be detailed but typically involve assumptions that may result in a biased risk assessment and make a cost-benefit study problematic. In two related papers it is shown how engineering and data-driven modeling can be combined by developing a generic risk model that is calibrated to observed fire loss data. Generic risk models assess the risk of buildings based on specific risk indicators and support risk assessment at a portfolio level. After an introduction to the principles of generic risk assessment, the focus of the present paper is on the development of a generic fire risk model for single family houses as an example. The risk model considers the building characteristics of a single family house as well as the uncertainties associated with the fire spread in a building and the intervention of the fire brigade.
Fire Safety Journal, 2014, Vol 70, p. 23-33
Generic risk assessment; Probabilistic approach; Model calibration; Fire spread; Fire brigade intervention