What Needs To Be Done To Bring Our Education Buildings Up To Standard

A one-day conference

Talbot Hotel, Stillorgan (Formerly Stillorgan Park Hotel)

Date: 7th March 2018

Sponsored by:

Safegard Systems logo

Fire safety audits carried out in recently-constructed primary schools identified serious cases of non-compliance with fire safety standards.

Less fire resistant products were used in the construction of the education buildings, and the audits advised immediate remedial work needed to be carried out.

In all the schools the audits found that many areas did not achieve sufficient fire resistance to provide the required time for an evacuation.

The audits detailed that immediate and essential improvement works should be carried out in the buildings to bring them up to fire safety compliance standards.

This conference will assess and examine what went wrong in recent audits and what we need to do to bring our education facilities up to standard or avoid these complications on new builds.

Book your place now!

6 Structured CPD Points

This event will be of real interest to all education facilitators, fire safety managers, Facilities managers, build and design professionals including schools, third level educators, property managers, contractors, sub-contractors, engineers, architects, local authorities, semi-state agencies, government departments, manufacturers, suppliers, universities, health & safety managers and legal consultants.




Registration with tea, coffee and pastries


Opening Remarks – Conference Chair Person
Brendan Kavanagh, Chartered Fire Safety Practitioner & Fire Scientist Practicing Professional Fire Prevention Officer, Fire Safety Inspector, Fire Surveyor and Independent Verifier

  • An Overview of what has happened in recent reports and what needs to be done to bring our schools up to standard


The Fire Safety of Products Regulatory Regime in Ireland, the UK and the EU
Speaker: Terry Edge, independent fire safety expert who between 2004 and 2016 was the UK government’s lead on the fire safety of products, particularly furniture

  • Ireland has identical furniture fire safety regulations to the UK, and they are the toughest in the world, but clash with EU requirements – where are the main pitfalls?
  • The Dame Judith Hackitt review announced in December 2017 that the UK fire safety regime was not fit for purpose. Schools at risk due to overlapping requirements between domestic and non-domestic fire safety regulations for furniture.
  • Huge threat to health in schools and homes due to large amounts of toxic flame retardants used in furniture that do little to prevent fire spread.
  • After Brexit, Ireland cannot continue with its present furniture flammability regulations. But solutions do exist!


Fire Safety in Education Buildings Including Modular:
Speaker: Tom Woolley, Consultant

  • Increasingly schools are being constructed with modular off-site buildings – are these up to standard
  • Due to concern about the fire safety of PIR insulation Materials following the Grenfell disaster, questions have been raised about the fire safety of PIR and SIPS – which will be discussed and solutions identified.
  • Research carried out 5 years ago indicates worrying problems about the potential flammability of such materials.
  • Alternative fire safe materials are available and these can also ensure better standards of indoor air quality – details discussed
  • There are over 700 fires in schools in the UK every year. Why is this number so high and how does it compare to the Irish Market


Role of the Facilities Manager in Educational Buildings
Speaker: Michael Woods, Facilities Officer, DCU

  • What should we be looking out for as a Facilities Manager
  • Building Regulations at a glance, A to M.
  • Contractor Management
  • PPM’s and Audits
  • Fire and Insurance claims at our campus


Coffee break and chance to network


As a Fire Safety Inspector or Facilities Manager
Speaker: Paddy McDonnell Dir., Fire Safety Consultant., PIIE (Corporate)., Phoenix STS Ltd

  • What key points do you need to consider when inspecting and auditing educational buildings
  • What areas to inspect, assessment and analysis of inspection
  • How to control Arson attacks


Challenges Associated with doing remedial and repair works in Education buildings
Speaker: Kieran Linehan, MSc, CFIOSH, Ayrton Group

  • Requirements for safe planning of your projects
  • Defining ‘remedial’ & ‘repair’ works, as well as ‘construction’ works
  • Using existing information, Safety File, Asbestos reports and seeking other information before you commence
  • Safety Regulations & prevention; Clients Role (Board Of Management), PSDP role, PSCS role
  • What should a Board Of Management (BoM) prepare in advance, what do you need during?
  • What remedial & repair works can we do ourselves? When do we need a competent contractor?
  • Working within live school environments
  • What should a BoM check after the project has completed?


Q&A Session


Lunch and chance to network


Evacuation Strategies in Education Buildings Explained
Speaker: Alan Oliver, Business Development & Compliance Manager, TagEvac

  • Evacuation Strategies; Problems and Solutions
  • Different evacuation strategies available outlined
  • How strategies need to be tailored to an individual building
  • Why they sometimes fail with tragic consequences (with case study)
  • Solutions (with case study)
  • Effective testing and evaluation
  • Insurance issues & Fire Safety In Educational Buildings
  • Can schools and universities learn lessons from other sectors?


Human Behavioural considerations during evacuations in education buildings
Speaker: Glenn Hamilton, Senior Fire Officer, Donegal County Council

The human behaviour of children and students during evacuation is an area found to lack statistical data. This study analysed the data from 12 no evacuation drills of four separate main stream schools. The following questions are covered:

  • What are the primary impediments to evacuation in a primary school?
  • What is the expected pre-evacuation time for class groups and what influence has the age of pupils on pre-evacuation?
  • How does the pedestrian dynamics of children vary to those expected of adults
  • What are the main influences on travel speed during evacuation
  • Are school staff adequately trained in fire safety?


Technical Guidance Documents – Part B
Speaker: Chris Barry, Building Standards Research at Department of Environment Community and Local Government

  • General guidance discussed and specific provisions for schools 


Conference Close


Safegard Systems

Safegard Systems, established in 1994, is an Irish Company specialising in Smoke/Fire Dampers and Damper Control & Monitoring Systems. With our experience and range of market leading products, we offer the complete solution to achieving smoke/fire containment/extraction in HVAC systems for offices, hospitals, hotels, schools, apartments, shopping centres etc. Safegard Systems offer our experience and knowledge in the form of design advice, product selection, product supply, commissioning and final system certification.

For more information, visit www.safegard.ie/safegard-systems/

There will be 6 structured CPD points awarded to all attendees at this conference from the CPD certification service

Brendan Kavanagh

Brendan Kavanagh

Chartered Fire Safety Practitioner & Fire Scientist, Practicing Professional Fire Prevention Officer, Fire Safety Inspector, Fire Surveyor and Independent Verifier

Practicing Professional Fire Prevention Officer, Fire Safety Inspector, Fire Surveyor and Independent Verifier.

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Best Practice Facilitator and Fire Safety Management Specialist Adviser. Preliminary  Examination of  the Institution of  Fire Engineers (12th March 1977) with MCR Graduate Membership  awarded (30th November 2009). Forty  One Years continuous Membership of the Institution of Fire Engineers (1976 – 2017). Membership of the Association of Irish Risk Management (1999) and Elected  Chairman (Term 2001- 2003). Membership of the National Standards Authority of  Ireland Fire  Safety Standards Consultative Committee (1987) and Chairman of Advisory Group 3. Professional Membership Number 106 (5th January 1993) of  The Confederation of Fire Protection Association Europe (CFPA – Europe). Professional  Membership of the Institution of Incorporated Executive Engineers Membership Number A29381(1994). Register of  Safety Practitioners Number 1934 (20th June 1995) and Chartered Membership of the Institution of  Occupational Safety and Health 17th November 2005. Appointed Lecturer Trinity College The University of Dublin Department  of  Civil,Structural and Environmental Engineering (2012 – 2017). January 2015 Appointed Visiting Specialist Lecturer Fire Service Training  College U.K. & N.I. Morton in the Marsh. Accredited Joiff Fire Safety Management (“Responsible Person”) and Fire Safety (“Competent Person”). Fire Safety Management and Hydraulic Fire Engineering Workshop Director and Tutor (2014-2017). Construction Site Fire Safety, Gas Safety activities incorporating Hot Works Permit approval in accordance with Irish & European Standards and World Class Best Practice Techniques (2016-2017).

Kieran Linehan

Kieran Linehan

Founder, Principal & Senior Consultant of Ayrton Group

Kieran established Ayrton Group (formerly Health & Safety Services) in 1993.

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Ayrton group now employ over 100 professionals, in all aspects of construction, as well as other safety roles. His qualifications include an MSc from Loughborough University & Diploma from UCC. Having first joined IOSH in 1995, Kieran is a Chartered Safety Practitioner & became a Chartered Fellow of IOSH (the Institution of Occupational Safety & Health) in 2009. Kieran has been a member of the National Executive of NISO, as well as founder member of the IOSH Committee. With a long established background in the manufacturing & construction sectors, Kieran has a wealth of knowledge regarding Project Management, Design & Safety Management Systems, along with what is required to in- still safe systems of work in all workplaces. He also deals with litigation issues, as well as H.S.A. criminal defences & expert witness. In accepting the roles of PSDP & PSCS as part of project management, it affords us the opportunity to consider the latest developments in ergonomics & the best preventative approaches.

Tom Wooley

Tom Wooley


Tom Woolley B.Arch, PhD is an architect and environmental researcher living in County Down, Northern Ireland.

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He is internationally known for his work on sustainable architecture and construction. He was Professor of Architecture at Queens University Belfast from 1991 to 2007.

Tom Woolley has published widely on construction, planning, housing, green architecture and healthy buildings, including the Green Building Handbook, Natural Building, Hemp and Lime Construction and Low Impact Building. His latest book, published by Routledge, is Building Materials, Health and Indoor Air Quality. Tom has spoken at numerous conferences and workshops around the world including Canada, South Africa, Malaysia, Holland, Austria, Denmark, Sweden and Poland.

Alan Oliver

Alan Oliver

Business Development & Compliance Manager, Tag Evac

Alan Oliver has been involved in fire protection for more than 35 years, having joined Pilkington Insulations in 1981 as a regional manager in their fire protection division.

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In 1991 Alan established a Southern UK operation for the then newly formed passive fire protection installer Checkmate Fire and worked for 26 years on numerous new build projects including The Channel Tunnel, The Millennium Dome and Eurostar St Pancras, whilst also actively involved in surveys and remedial work in hospitals, universities and other occupied buildings where life safety and business continuity is paramount. He was Managing Director of Checkmate between 2007 and 2013 and has recently left the company to join emergency evacuation systems company, TagEvac, as their Business Development and Compliance Manager. Alan has championed the cause of fire compliant buildings for many years to ensure that the evacuation strategy, when called upon, will actually work.

Paddy McDonnell

Paddy McDonnell

Technical Director, Phoenix Safety Training Services

Paddy has over 20 years experience in Fire Engineering and 13 in Occupational Safety and Health.

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From 2000 until his retirement from the Department of Defence in 2010 he was a senior lecturer at the School of Military Engineering in the Irish Defence Forces Training Centre, lecturing on fire safety both operational and prevention, breathing apparatus, and road accident rescue.

He is a fire safety consultant with Phoenix STS Ltd. where he specialises in fire safety and emergency management within healthcare. He is a specialist adviser on healthcare fire safety training programs, pre- fire planning, and evacuation strategies.

Paddy is a Corporate Member of the Institute of Industrial Engineers, a Graduate member of the Institution of Fire Engineers and of the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health. He is also a Member of the National Association of Healthcare Fire Officers, National Fire Protection Association, Irish Institute of Training & Development and holds a level 8 qualification under National Framework of Qualifications in Occupational Safety and Health.

Michael Woods

Michael Woods

Facilities Officer, DCU

Michael currently works at Dublin City University in the Estates Office as campus Facilities Officer.

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His career to date has spanned 40 years plus in commercial, corporate and private industries. Working at DCU from 2000 has furthered his career development in the management of Engineering, Fire and Health & Safety disciplines.

His core role is the day to day management of all facilities on campus in key areas such as overseeing the implementation of a Total FM contract on the DCU Glasnevin campus; Control of Permit to Work system; Life Safety systems, monitoring and maintenance; Building Inspections and the Health & Safety Consultation Group.

Michael has lectured on the Masters Programme at DCU and also on the H&S Programme at UCD. He sits on the DCU H&S Consultation Committee. He has provided Contractor Induction training courses since 2001 at the campus and completed a Teaching On-Line module with OVPL at DCU.

He is currently the Treasurer of the Fire Risk Management Section Ireland (FRMS) of IOSH have been a member of the committee since 2009. During his time as Treasurer, Michael has worked with the committee in developing links with other organisations such as the Emergency Planning Society and Nursing Homes Ireland. He currently represents the FRMS Ire on the FRMG UK committee and will continue with both to further of our mutual aims.

Glenn Hamilton

Glenn Hamilton

Senior Fire Officer, Donegal County Council

Glenn has been employed by Donegal Fire Service since 2003 and currently holds the position of Senior Assistant Chief Fire Officer.

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He is responsible for the strategic management of the Fire Prevention programme within the Authority administrative area.

He graduated with a BSc (Hon) in Fire Safety Engineering in 2002. Understanding that Fire Engineering is a continually developing field, Glenn commenced an MSc. by research in Fire Safety Engineering in 2015. As part of his research he analysed twelve evacuation drills from four separate primary schools.

His research focuses on the human behaviour of children during the evacuation process and was presented at the IAFSS symposium in Lund University, 2017. A portion of the research was published in Fire Safety Journal under the title “Human behaviour during evacuation of primary schools: Investigations on pre-evacuation times, movement on stairways and movement on the horizontal plane”.

His overall objective is to provide empirical data on the evacuation of children, increasing the understanding of the human behavioural aspects of this vulnerable occupancy group.

Chris Barry

Chris Barry, B.Sc. M.Sc. Pg. Dip.

Fire Safety Practice Housing Inspector, National Directorate for Fire and Emergency Management

Chris Barry (B.Sc.(Hons) Const. Management (1ST.), M.Sc. Project Management, P.Grad. Diploma Fire Safety Practice, H.N.C.  Const. Studies) is currently an Inspector in the National Directorate for Fire and Emergency Management within the Department of Environment Community and Local Government.

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Chris is also chair of the review steering group for the Review of Technical Guidance Document Part B, and the department representative on of various National/ E.U. technical committees. Chris also sits on numerous Fire Safety Committees within N.S.A.I. and the Fire Sub Group for the European Org. for Technical Assessment (E.O.T.A.).
Previous to this, Chris was a housing inspector from with the Department of Environment in the Architecture and Building Standards Division. Chris has also worked as a Facilities Manager for Limerick County Council and with the Dublin City Council Architects Department.

Talbot Hotel (Formerly Stillorgan Park Hotel)

Booking rate: €420.00 + VAT.

CMG Events Conference Discount

  • 10% discount for the third delegate booked or subsequent bookings thereafter from the same company.

The rate to attend includes morning tea/coffee and refreshments on arrival at registration, mid-morning tea/coffee and pastries and full buffet lunch. You will receive the speakers PowerPoint presentations within 24 hours after the event. 

Tel: 01 293 4764

Email: bookings@cmgevents.ie

   Telephone:+353 1 2933650

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