Fire Detection Systems in Road Tunnels - Lessons Learnt From an International Research Project

Systemes De Detection Incendie De Tunnels Routiers - Enseignements Tires D'Un Projet International De Recherches

There has been an increase in the incidence of fatal fires in tunnels as a result of today's increases in road traffic and proportion of heavy vehicles, as well as the diversity of materials transported on a "just in time" basis. Recent catastrophic tunnel fires in Europe have resulted in loss of life and severe property damage. Reliable and early fire detection in tunnels facilitates an early fire incident warning, allowing for timely emergency system activation. Detection thus can make the difference between manageable and out of control fires. An international research project was completed by the Fire Protection Research Foundation, with the objective of evaluating the performance of various types of detection. Response time and the ability to accurately locate and monitor a fire and the effect on the road environment were studied, using nine fire detection systems covering five types of currently available technologies. Experimental installations used and a synthesis of results are presented in this article. The full reports are available online at

  • Availability:
  • Authors:
    • Liu, Z G
    • Kashef, A
    • Lougheed, G
    • Debs, Alexandre
    • Gottuk, Daniel T
    • Almand, Kathleen H
  • Publication Date: 2009


  • English
  • French

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Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01145270
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI
  • Created Date: Nov 19 2009 4:40PM