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Fire Protection Engineer Expert Witness

Provides Opinion & Testimony In:

fire protection engineer, engineering code consulting, fire, fire protection, campus fire safety, hazardous, fire safety training, fire detection, fire alarm, smoke, prevention, fuel control, fire barriers, construction types, emergency site access, water supply, means of egress, emergency lighting, fire protection engineer, fire suppression, hazard analysis, fire defense master planning, Fire Dynamics, Fire Chemistry, Zone Computer Fire Models, Heat Transfer, Explosion Calculations, Fluid, Mechanics, Hydraulics, Technical Writing, Risk Assessment, Fault Tree Analysis, Building Fire Codes Related Standards including, IBC, IFC, IMC, IPC, NFPA including NFPA 921, ANSI, ASME, UL, ASTM, ADA, FM data sheets, Fire Investigation Origin Cause Determination

Expert Witness No. 3760

Accomplishments

  • Salamander Honorary Fire Protection Engineering Society, Inducted 1987.
  • Employee of the Year Award, University of Colorado at Boulder, 1999.
  • Procured approximately $50M of Federal and State funding (distributed over 17 years) to correct code violations discovered during inspections and to provide fire sprinklers in 6 million square feet of University of Colorado at Boulder buildings.
  • Recognized for significantly improving the level of campus fire safety and for establishing a strong collaborative relationship with Boulder Fire Department (BFD) by a founding member of the Center for Campus Fire Safety, Newburyport MA and by BFD past and present Chief Fire Marshals.

Experience

Principal
9/2011 – Present
Focus Engineering and Code Consulting

  • Fire Protection Engineering (Design, Review, Inspection, Commissioning)
  • Building and Fire Code Consulting, Interpretation and Analysis
  • Performance-Based Design
  • Code Compliance Consulting and Plan Review Services
  • Fire Investigation, Failure Analysis and Litigation Support
  • Hazardous Material Inventory and Classification
  • Employee Fire-Safety Training

Campus Fire Marshal and Building Code Official
 3/1993 – 9/2011
University of Colorado at Boulder (UCB), Boulder, CO

  • Conducting and administering plans and shop drawing reviews, approvals, code analysis, and fire-safety systems engineering including ignition prevention, fuel control, fire barriers, construction types, emergency site access, water supply, means of egress, emergency lighting and signage, smoke management, fire suppression, fire detection/alarm, and emergency communication systems.  Providing engineering solutions during planning and construction phases. Administering fire prevention inspections throughout campus. Plan review and value engineering solutions resulted in more than $10M in documented cost savings while meeting or exceeding the applicable code requirements.
  • Conducting internal fire and explosion investigations to determine origin and cause for more than ten fire and explosion incidents. Used the scientific method and fire dynamics principles in investigations.
  • Designing fire protection systems for in-house projects.  Designing highly accurate and specific in-house fire protection system projects resulting in fewer change orders and more projects completed within budget.
  • Spearheading the fire-safety upgrading of all campus buildings in addition to reviewing and approving more than 1.5 billion dollars in new construction projects at UCB.  Consistently procured.
  • Federal and State Funding (1994-Present) to correct code violations and to provide sprinkler systems in an additional 6 million square feet of the campus (only 3 million square feet was sprinklered before 1994).
  • Providing well recognized fire-safety training material, conducting training and publishing guidelines for fire prevention on campus, including campus fire-safety website that is frequently visited by many other institutions seeking guidance. 

Consulting
Senior Professional Fire Protection Engineer
The Sigel Group, Inc. Narberth, PA
4/92 – 3/93

Senior Professional Fire Protection Engineer
Foehl Sherman, Inc., Burlington, MA
12/89 – 3/92

Fire Protection Engineer FirePro, Inc.
Wellesley Hills, MA
9/87 – 12/89

  • Conducted plan and shop drawing reviews, fire and building code analyses, and designed fire-safety systems including smoke management, water supply, fire suppression, fire detection/alarm, emergency lighting and signage, fire barriers, construction types, ignition prevention, fuel control, emergency site access and egress . Performed building audits, hazard analysis, fire-risk assessment, and fire-defense master planning. Provided engineering solutions during planning and construction phases. Supervised acceptance tests for detection/ alarm, suppression and smoke-management systems.  Took part in numerous fire and explosion investigations including site documentation, computer modeling, and analysis.  Investigations included fire incidents in garages, single family homes and apartments and a power plant. 9/87 – 3/93
  • Took part in the investigation of the Puerto Rico Dupont Plaza Hotel Fire.  Performed computer fire modeling using fire dynamics, fire chemistry and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) computer fire models for both design of buildings and fire investigations. 9/87- 3/92
  • Wrote guidelines for fire-safety auditing for the National Park Service buildings on the east coast. Represented Foehl Sherman, Inc. in Europe for one year during the planning phase of two large projects and the construction phase of a third.  Applied computer fire models of USA and Europe. 12/89 – 3/92

Early Career Notes

12/79 – 9/87
WPI Center for Fire-Safety Studies, Worcester, MA: Research Assistant.  Hammurabi and Seinos Construction Contractors, Iran: Project Manager for HVAC and fire sprinkler work.

Education

  • M.Sc. Fire Protection Engineering, Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), Worcester, Mass. (1988)
  • Master’s Thesis (Funded by the National Science Foundation): Investigation and Theoretical and Experimental Evaluation of Occlusion in Fire Protection Water Piping Systems Using Non-Invasive Gamma-Ray Techniques.
  • B.S. Mechanical Engineering, 5-year program.  Shiraz University, Shiraz, Iran. Ranked 2nd in class in Mechanical Engineering. (1979)

Active Registrations

  • Registered Professional Fire Protection Engineer  P.E., CO
  • State of Colorado Fire Suppression System Inspector CO
  • International Code Council (ICC) Certified Building Code Official (CBCO); Building Plans Examiner, Commercial Buildings Inspector, Residential Buildings Inspector, Building Official
  • National Association of Fire Investigators  Certified Fire and Explosion Investigator (CFEI) and Instructor, CFII

Publications and Presentations

Available Upon Request

Professional Memberships

  • Society of Fire Protection Engineers (SFPE)
  • Gamma Chapter, Salamander Honorary Fire Protection Engineering Society
  • International Fire Marshals Association (IFMA)
  • National Association of Fire Investigators (NAFI)
  • National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES)
  • International Code Council (ICC)

Areas of Expertise

Fire Dynamics, Fire Chemistry, Zone Computer Fire Models, Heat Transfer, Explosion Calculations, Fluid, Mechanics, Hydraulics, Technical Writing, Risk Assessment, Fault-Tree Analysis, Building and Fire Codes and Related Standards including, IBC, IFC, IMC, IPC, NFPA including NFPA-921, ANSI, ASME, UL, ASTM, ADA, FM data sheets, Fire Investigation and Origin and Cause Determination.

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