Jensen Hughes Middle East Newsletter Q4

Your Global Partner in Life Safety, Security + Risk Engineering Consulting and Technology.

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MEET OUR New Team Members

Steven Reilly Joins the Dubai team as a Principal Engineer.

Noor Abdulrazzaq Joins as Head of Business Controls for the Middle East.

Muhammad Abdullah Joins the Fire + Life Safety team in Qatar as a Graduate Engineer.

Shuja Ur Rahman Joins the Al Khobar team as a Fire Consultant.

Asif Ahmed Joins the Dubai team as a Senior Security Consultant

Younus Almasyabi Joins the Dubai team as a Fire Engineer.

Vengatesh Perumalsamy Joins the Dubai team as a Fire Engineer.

Jensen Hughes Jensen Hughes Jensen Hughes Jensen Hughes Achievements RECOGNITION

In celebration of our People Principle, it is a tradition at Jensen Hughes to recognize our colleagues for their exceptional performance and successes through the High Five Awards. Last year’s third quarter winners included:

Musthafa Valparambil Associate-Designer

Noly Quiambao Document Controller

Anuraj Sreedharan FLS Designer

Ali Al Musabih passed the NFPA Fire Inspector Test with flying colors.

Ahmed Badr obtained his SPFE Professional Membership.

Mohammed Fahad became an NFPA Certified Fire Protection Specialist.

Ali Al Musabih Lead Engineer

Ahmed Badr Senior Engineer

Mohamed Fahad Team Leader


In a compelling presentation that unfolded at our recent event in University of Doha science and technology located in Qatar, esteemed speakers Ormal Lishi and Amir Issazadeh, alongside the distinguished Dr. Konstantinos Belivanis, shared invaluable insights into the critical realm of fire safety. Their collaborative effort illuminated the intricacies of developing an effective emergency exit plan, offering a comprehensive guide to navigating such crucial scenarios. Students were treated to an engaging dialogue that delved into the interactions of academia and real- world challenges. The palpable energy in the room reflected the enthusiasm of both presenters and audience members, fostering an environment ripe for intellectual exchange and collaboration. From fire dynamics to strategic modeling of emergency exit routes, the speakers provided practical knowledge that resonated with the students. They specifically offered valuable insight into the sophisticated

world of evacuation modeling, delving into the intricacies of programs like Pathfinder as integral tools for simulating emergency scenarios. Their collective expertise not only shed light on the importance of preparedness but also underscored the role of collaboration between professionals and the community in ensuring a safer environment for all. Moreover, the session served as a gateway for students to discover more about the National Examination Board in Occupational Safety and Health (NEBOSH), a globally recognized organization offering qualifications designed to provide comprehensive knowledge and skills in health, safety, and environment management. NEBOSH courses are structured to enhance the competence of individuals across various industries, promoting a culture of safety and contributing to a safer working environment globally.

Qatar Team During the presentation


Jensen Hughes Team Participates in “Intersec Riyadh”

Main Entrance to the Event.

The fifth edition of Intersec Saudi Arabia marked another milestone for the Kingdom’s fire, safety and security industry. With a 70% increase in exhibitors and a robust turnout of 15,336 visitors, Intersec 2023 underscored the Kingdom’s unwavering commitment to safety and security. From key government leaders and industry titans to groundbreaking technology and inspiring talks, the event was a stage for transformation, and Jensen Hughes was proud to be part of the action. For Jensen Hughes, this prestigious event wasn’t just an opportunity to showcase our solutions. It was a platform to collaborate, exchange ideas, and ignite change alongside

industry leaders and future-facing visionaries. As a leading fire and security engineering company, Jensen Hughes brought its commitment to excellence to the expo floor. Our dedicated team welcomed visitors to our exhibition stand, sparking insightful conversations and forging valuable connections. We are inspired by the energy and innovation witnessed at Intersec 2023 and look forward to building upon the connections made and momentum gained. As we step into the future, Jensen Hughes remains dedicated to playing a pivotal role in safeguarding lives and securing a brighter tomorrow.

Jensen Hughes Business Development Manager Muhammed Musa with the Clients at the Company Booth

Team Bonding


In November, the Jensen Hughes family celebrated Diwali, embracing the festival of lights with open hearts and vibrant colors. We celebrated the triumph of good over evil and new beginnings and filled our day with a touch of vibrant culture and shared smiles. Beyond the festive fun, Diwali served as a gentle reminder of the power of understanding and appreciation. The warmth of shared experience and the richness of diverse traditions wove their way into our daily interactions, strengthening our sense of community and belonging. As the echoes of Diwali fade, the spirit of light carries forward. We carry the shared joy and renewed connection into the future, committed to fostering an inclusive and vibrant environment where every flame finds its spark.

Reception at our Dubai Office. Lorna Villaruel

Dubai Team Celebrating Diwali

Dubai Team Celebrating Diwali


Mass transit and railway safety is critical to the traveling public. Every day, millions of travelers rely on experts like Jensen Hughes to ensure transportation systems will keep them safe during an emergency. With specialized expertise in all aspects of safety for railway systems, as well as high-risk scenarios, our team understands the range of challenges presented in the transportation environment, from structural protection and smoke control to fire suppression and probabilistic risk assessment. Our proven ability to provide tested and reliable solutions that keep people safe in complex, high-stakes scenarios is one reason we are the global leader in safety, security, and risk-based science and engineering. Our services include:

• • • • • • • •


Design-Build Delivery Specialty Consultancy

Emergency Management Pedestrian Modeling Performance-Based Design Security Consulting + Design Specialized Fire Protection Design Tunnel Ventilation Modeling

• Structural And Civil Materials Analysis + Special Inspections • Research + Development • Risk Analysis • Threat + Vulnerability Assessments • Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design


Our Middle East Director of Project Delivery, Pedro Armijo, shared his thoughts

Railway projects follow a particular fire and life safety (FLS) engineering design process, which responds more to a performance-specific engineering analysis than a prescriptive design approach. Whether the project involves high-speed rail, heavy rail, freight or urban metro systems, integrating the FLS discipline and its requirements into the project structure requires applying specific fire engineering design methodologies. Engineering solutions will typically focus on the train fire, its effects on transit system users and its impact on infrastructure. Model building and fire code solutions have traditionally geared toward environments that align very little with transit. Hence, there is a need to adapt specific engineering design solutions to transit environment hazards and integrate these into the wider building and fire code requirements. Railway projects inherently carry a number of design challenges. Take the combination of different codes and standards for rolling stock, for example. Depending on the design and manufacturing governance of the rolling stock, designers will be presented with a number of technological and RAMS assurance assessments that require careful attention. Of paramount importance is an understanding of the fire engineering first principles of tunnel and station ventilation and evacuation. Regulatory codes and standards typically offer performance-based or objective-based requirements that need to be achieved using specific engineering calculations. The fire engineering team has to be well-

prepared and experienced to effectively resolve the strategy and integrate the design team. This includes having a fundamental understanding of the research and testing data available for selecting the design fire scenario, as well as the ability to use coupled-modeling tools for ventilation and evacuation assessments. transportation agencies are typically the leading AHJs for railways while fire safety AHJs such as Civil Defence will be an integral part of the stakeholders team for project design and construction approvals. Since these two AHJs usually overlap on various aspects of the FLS strategy, it is the role of the FLS engineer to manage the process and meet AHJ expectations. Local authorities having jurisdiction (AHJs) play a fundamental role in the process. Governmental Our Jensen Hughes Middle East team has been involved in most of the major rail projects in the Middle East region, from FLS engineering designer to design-build consultant to third-party peer reviewer on behalf of the AHJ. Our local experts are further supported by our global team of fire engineers located in North America, Europe, Asia and the South Pacific, regions with a long history of producing railway engineering solutions. This helps to bring well- informed, holistic, engineering design solutions as well as in-depth knowledge on applying engineering principles and data to support Middle East projects.

Fire experts from Europe, the Middle East, and North America were invited to share international fire engineering and system information and explore business cooperation opportunities.


Over 100 experts from more than 25 firms worldwide gathered in November to discuss fire engineering and systems at the Courtyard Marriott Seoul Namdaemun Hotel. Pedro Armijo, Director of the Middle East project team, presented on the Middle East construction process, the scope of High Commission for Industrial Security (HCIS) Fire Protection Consultant work in KSA, and industrial capabilities and project experience. He also spoke about firefighting engineering consulting in the Middle East, focusing on the developments in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as well as local regulations and requirements. The seminar offered additional discussions on fire risk assessments, NFPA 850, industrial fire protection and process safety, U.S. design and construction

processes, fire protection integration within design and construction processes, fire protection design in the U.S. versus South Korea, and safety services for cost- effective, timely builds. During the event, Jensen Hughes teams spent time meeting clients and running Q&A sessions to ensure that Jensen Hughes addressed all concerns about ongoing projects and potential opportunities. The Middle East and South Korean teams also had an opportunity to meet to discuss the differences between the two regions, the potential for collaboration and the specifics of the local context.

Pedro Armijo with the Colleagues before the Event

Pedro Armijo During his Presentation

Juha-Pekka Laaksonen, Pedro Armijo and Christopher Unangst

TEEING OFF ON SUCCESS: Jensen Hughes Drives Doha Golf Extravaganza!

Group Photo of the Event Participants

It was pleasure for Jensen Hughes to sponsor a fabulous golf event played in great spirits at Doha Golf Club in Qatar. “Rest of the World” beating the UK team 23 - 14 over 2 weekends in match-play golf (fourballs & singles). Each team member proudly displayed their national flags in a fantastic show of colors on the course. A special thanks to Doha Golf Club and LIGS Golf Society members for 2 spectacular weekends of golf and fun!

Niall Keogh and Pierre Angeline Serradilla - Qatar Office Team

Niall Keogh, Director, Qatar, KSA Eastern Province

Saying Goodbye to 2023

The Dubai, Qatar and KSA teams recently gathered to celebrate another year of successful growth for Jensen Hughes Middle East. Beyond the festivities, this gathering served as a powerful symbol of our unified goals and unwavering commitment. In 2023, we shared triumphs and challenges, offering support and encouragement across borders. We brainstormed future collaborations, ignited by the spark of collective creativity inspired by our diverse perspectives. This end-of-year celebration wasn’t just a farewell to the past but a vibrant blueprint for the future.

In other words, the height of the building is measured from the ground level where fire trucks can park and reach the building with their ladders and hoses to the floor of the topmost story where people live or work (habitable) . Factors Affecting Fire Hazards in High-Rise Buildings Fire risk in high-rise buildings is influenced by many factors, such as the building design, construc�on materials, occupancy, fire protec�on systems and human behavior.


Ali Al Musabih, MSc , CFPS, CFI-I Lead Consultant at Jensen Hughes

Fire is a dangerous hazard that can cause severe damage to both human life and property. Many fire incidents have occurred in high-rise buildings in different parts of the world, raising a lot of concern for authorities and the public. High-rise buildings have unique characteristics that make fire prevention and control more difficult than in other types of buildings, such as longer evacuation times, higher wind speeds, complex fire spread patterns and limited access for firefighters. Rescuing people trapped above ground level also carries

increased risk and requires special equipment and training. Fire safety measures and regulations for high- rise buildings should be carefully designed and implemented to reduce the risk of fire and its consequences. What is a High-Rise Building? High-rise buildings are structures of significant height requiring special considerations for fire safety and evacuation. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), one of the leading authorities on fire codes and standards, a high-rise

S takeholders involved in the design, construc�on, opera�on, and maintenance of high-rise buildings must give serious considera�on to these factors and their impact on fire hazards. Potential Sources of Fire in High-Rise Buildings

Potential Sources of Fire in High- Rise Buildings Fire sources are any materials or equipment that can ignite or fuel a fire if they are exposed to heat, sparks or flames. In high-rise buildings, some of the common sources of fire include: electrical components, such as wiring, outlets, appliances and lighting fixtures; heating and ventilation systems, such as furnaces, boilers, ducts and fans; cooking equipment, such as stoves, ovens, microwaves and toasters; flammable liquids and chemicals, such as gasoline, paint, solvents and cleaning products; and combustible materials, such as paper, wood, fabric and trash. These sources of fire can be found in different areas of the building, such as offices, kitchens, storage rooms, mechanical rooms and balconies.

building has an occupied height of 75 feet (23 meters) or more above the lowest level of fire department vehicle access. In other words, the height of the building is measured from the ground level where fire trucks can park and reach the building with their ladders and hoses to the floor of the topmost story where people live or work (habitable). Factors Affecting Fire Hazards in High-Rise Buildings Fire risk in high-rise buildings is influenced by many factors, such as the building design, construction materials, occupancy, fire protection systems and human behavior. Stakeholders involved in the design, construction, operation, and maintenance of high-rise buildings must give serious consideration to these factors and their impact on fire hazards.


Ali Al Musabih, MSc , CFPS, CFI-I Lead Consultant at Jensen Hughes

Impacts of Fire in High-Rise Buildings

can vary significantly depending on the combustible nature of the internal linings. + Vertical spread fire propagates from one floor to another through openings or gaps in the facade, such as windows, doors, balconies or cladding. This can be caused by unrated cladding materials that are combustible or have poor fire resistance. Vertical spread fire can pose a serious threat to occupants above the fire floor and firefighters who may have difficulty accessing the upper floors. Vertical spread fire can also increase heat exposure and structural damage to the building facade and columns.

Fires in high-rise buildings can cause devastating consequences not only for the structure and integrity of the building itself but also for the lives and safety of the occupants and the surrounding environment. Flames, smoke, heat and toxic gases can spread rapidly and affect multiple floors, making evacuation and rescue difficult. Fire safety challenges in high-rise buildings include: Types of Fires in High-Rise Buildings Fire configuration refers to the way a fire spreads and develops within a building, which depends on factors such as fuel load, ventilation, compartmentation and fire protection systems. Different types of fire configurations can have different impacts on the safety of occupants and firefighters, as well as the structural integrity of the building. + Horizontal spread fire spreads along a wall, floor or corridor through openings or gaps in the walls, such as doors, ducts or penetrations. Typically caused by poor compartmentation or lack of fire doors, horizontally spread fires can endanger the occupants on the same floor as the fire as well as those who are trying to evacuate through the corridors or stairs. Horizontally spread fires can also increase smoke production and toxicity within the building, which

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), it can take up to 90 minutes to evacuate a high-rise building during a fire. High-rise buildings have a limited number of stairways and exits – which can be blocked by smoke or flames – and a high volume of occupants, who may panic or be unfamiliar with the evacuation plan.

The facade plays an important role in a high-rise building’s appearance, energy efficiency and weather resistance. But it also can promote fire spread. Fire can spread from one floor to another through windows, doors or vents in the facade or combustible materials in the exterior wall assembly. High- rise buildings are also usually located in densely populated areas, where fire can spread to adjacent structures, causing traffic congestion and hindering emergency response.

Fire can weaken or destroy the structural elements of a high- rise building, such as columns, beams or floors, which can lead to partial or total collapse. Structural failure can also cause debris to fall on surrounding buildings and people, creating secondary hazards and injuries.


Ali Al Musabih, MSc , CFPS, CFI-I Lead Consultant at Jensen Hughes

Protecting Against Fires in High-Rise Buildings Fire safety is a critical characteristic of high-rise buildings. It is therefore essential to implement fire protection measures that can effectively prevent, detect, and control fires and ensure the safety of the occupants and the property. Fire risk assessments identify and evaluate potential fire hazards and risks in a building and the appropriate actions needed to eliminate or reduce them. Assessments should be conducted by a qualified person or team and cover all aspects of the building, including the structure, design, layout, materials, equipment, systems, activities and occupants. A fire risk assessment should also include recommendations for improving fire safety and preventing fire incidents. Fire management plans outline the policies, procedures, roles and responsibilities for ensuring fire safety in the building. This document should be developed based on the fire risk assessment findings and comply with the relevant codes and standards. Fire management plans should be reviewed and updated regularly to reflect any changes in the building or its use. Preventive maintenance programs involve inspecting, testing, servicing, and repairing the fire safety systems and equipment in the building on a

that can contribute to fires in high-rise buildings, such as flammable materials, faulty wiring, human error, inadequate maintenance and environmental conditions. 

History of Fires in High-Rise Buildings Tragic high-rise building fires throughout history have claimed many lives and caused extensive property damage. Along with exposing various flaws and weaknesses in the design, construction, maintenance and management of high-rise buildings, these fires have called into question the effectiveness of the defend-in- place tactic, which advises occupants to remain in their apartments during a fire scenario. The lessons learned from these fires have led to improvements and innovations in fire safety standards, regulations, technologies and practices for high- rise buildings. Past high-rise fires serve as a reminder that these events are not hypothetical or rare but a real and recurring threat to life, property and reputation. Table 1 demonstrates the diversity of causes and factors that can contribute to fires in high- rise buildings, such as flammable materials, faulty wiring, human error, inadequate maintenance and environmental conditions.

High-Rise Building 

Fire Cause 



Reason for Fire Spread 

Trump Tower, New York 

April 7, 2018 

Electrical fault 


Faulty wiring or appliances ignited nearby combustible materials 

Grenfell Tower, London 

June 14, 2017 

Electrical fault 

Cladding system acted as a chimney and allowed the fire to bypass the compartmentation of the building 


Plasco Building, Tehran 

Jan. 19, 2017 

Short circuit 

Combustible materials and lack of fire safety measures in the building, structural collapse 


The Address Downtown Dubai Hotel  Lacrosse Docklands, Melbourne 

Dec. 31, 2015 

Electrical short 


Flammable cladding on the exterior, strong winds. 

Nov. 25, 2014 

Discarded cigarette 

Flammable cladding on the facade, lack of fire alarms and sprinklers, inadequate evacuation plan 


Windsor Tower, Madrid 

Feb. 12, 2005 

Welding work 

Lack of sprinklers above the 17th floor, flammable materials on the facade and interior, strong winds 


Beijing Television

Feb. 9, 2009 

Flammable scaffolding materials and lack of fire protection systems in the unfinished building 



Cultural Center (TVCC) Tower 

Faulty television set 

Flammable cladding and insulation on the facade, lack of fire barriers and compartmentation, confusing layout and signage, stay-put policy 

Lakanal House, London 

March 7, 2009 


Table 1: High-rise building fires from 2009 to 2018   Protecting Against Fires in High-Rise Buildings


Ali Al Musabih, MSc , CFPS, CFI-I Lead Consultant at Jensen Hughes

regular basis. The program should be part of the fire management plan and ensure that all fire safety systems and equipment are functioning properly and effectively. A preventive maintenance program should also include records of all maintenance activities and results. Fire safety education involves informing and educating residents and staff about building fire hazards and risks and the fire protection measures in place. It should also include training on preventing fires, responding to fire alarms, using fire extinguishers, evacuating safely and cooperating with the fire department. Fire safety education should be conducted through awareness campaigns, posters, leaflets, meetings, drills and simulations. Automatic fire detection and suppression systems automatically detect and suppress fires in the building without human intervention. One of the most common and efficient automatic fire detection and suppression systems is the automatic sprinkler system, which consists of a network of pipes, valves, sprinkler heads, and a water supply. When a fire is detected by a heat-sensitive sprinkler head, water is sprayed on

the fire area to extinguish or control it. Automatic sprinkler systems can reduce the spread of fire, smoke and heat, helping to prevent property damage, injury and loss of life. Compartmentalization involves segmenting the building into different areas to ensure that a fire does not spread throughout the building easily. This can be achieved by installing fire doors and breaks utilizing fire-resistant materials at strategic locations throughout the building. These materials can slow down the spread of fire and smoke, thus providing more time for building occupants to evacuate the area. By adopting these measures, high- rise buildings can enhance their fire safety performance and protect their occupants and property from fire hazards.

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