DOI: 10.3390/fire6090342 ISSN:

An Experimental Study for Deriving Fire Risk Evaluation Factors for Cables in Utility Tunnels

Hyun Jeong Seo, Yon Ha Chung, Tae Jung Song
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Safety Research
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality
  • Building and Construction
  • Forestry

In this study, we performed three tests to measure the fire-retardant performance of power cables installed in utility tunnels. The standards we applied for testing are ISO 5660-1, NES 713, and IEEE 1202. Specifically, we performed a cone calorimetric analysis, calculated the toxicity index, and measured the flame spread length on material surfaces. Even though the same fire-retardant chemical composites were applied, various differences in fire-retardant performance were found depending on the chemical properties of the cable sheath and insulation. We also found that gaseous substances generated during the burning of cables can serve as important risk assessment factors in fires. We determined that, in addition to the heat generated when the cable burns, the toxic gases emitted at this time can also be a risk factor. This is because it is important to consider any potential risk to a person entering as part of an initial response to an event or accident involving cables installed in utility tunnels. Moreover, in the event of a fire in the cable, there is a risk of hazardous substances flowing into the city center as toxic gases are released. Therefore, we determined that the risk of hazardous gases emitted during cable fire should be reflected in the fire-retardant performance standard.

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