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09/07/2015 / Graham Lowe

BIM and Fire Safety: a brief explanation

As the UK Government’s Level 2 Building Information Modelling (BIM) targets draw ever closer, many industries are undergoing a transition towards unified modernisation.

In our latest blog, we take a look at BIM, its role in fire safety, and explain why we have been the first company of our kind to provide BIM components for the UK’s NBS National BIM Library.

Put simply, BIM aims to provide a complete digital representation of any building, including all of its components and the complex information regarding their performance capabilities and maintenance requirements. BIM is expected to completely transform the way the world designs, builds, maintains and demolishes its buildings, as well as everything in them.

By allowing quick and easy access to information regarding the location and qualities of all elements appearing in building designs, BIM improves efficiency, reduces waste, and cuts costs for all parties involved in a building’s lifecycle.

As a BIM model can provide a virtually limitless source of information, health and safety professionals have everything they need to be able to simulate how a fire might progress through a building.

By being able to identify the safest routes for a building’s occupants to avoid hazards in an emergency, BIM users can tailor evacuation procedures and the placement of emergency safety systems to be as efficient as possible.

In addition to this, as a building’s wall, insulation and flooring products can have their fire resistance codes embedded in their BIM model, fire safety managers can ensure materials remain compliant with fire safety regulations.

Manual call points, beacons and sounders can also be easily plotted out within a building with BIM – meaning the possibility of over-ordering is no longer an issue.

Preventative maintenance can deliver major reductions in costs throughout the life of a building too. As cost, maintenance requirement, and life-cycle data is embedded in BIM models, facilities managers can examine exactly when each building component will need to be checked, updated and replaced.

By tracking the life-cycle of their building’s equipment, systems and components, site owners are able to future-proof themselves against unnecessary expenditures.

At Hochiki Europe, efficiency has always been at the heart of everything we do, and the decision was not whether to invest in BIM, but when to invest. This is why we have funded the creation of new comprehensive BIM content based on a selection of our core fire detection and emergency lighting products. Hochiki Europe has become the first company of its kind to provide BIM components for the UK’s NBS National BIM Library.

As the UK has a new Government that have already announced carbon reduction targets, so we must make sure that our industries maximise efficiency and reduce costs. With this in mind, manufacturers of building components and systems also have a responsibility to support this by getting on board with BIM.

Our new BIM range has been designed to meet all prescribed content standards and is available to download from the NBS National BIM Library. For more information visit:

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