Last August one of the tallest residential buildings caught fire in Dubai for the second time in two years.  Torch Tower stands tall at 84 stories high and holds over 250 apartments. Though no one was seriously hurt, Dubai’s government cracked down on paneling policies to include material of higher fire resistance.

With the recent North Bay fire tragedy, it can make one wonder about how San Francisco high rises deal with fire safety. Even in a concrete jungle, fires are surely a possibility. Fires in high rises also seem more difficult to control since fire truck ladders can only reach about 6-7 floors. Plus, there’s the evacuation process that can take longer because of all the traffic coming down the stairs. So, what now? How safe is the modern high-rise building in San Francisco?

These high rises come with beauty… and brains!

The good news is that as Bay Area high rises get bigger and “glassier” (Century slang to compare glass buildings), they also must integrate smart technology by installing a firefighting system within the building. For example, the Transamerica Building in San Francisco states on their website that they use Siemens Life Safety System. This intricate technology is meant to contain and prevent high-rise fires from happening. It’s dynamic and adapts to situations unraveling in real time.  Plus, Bay Area high-rise buildings need a system like the Transamerica Building uses.

Features include:

  • Detection of early fire and different fire types
  • Detection of any carbon monoxide, smoke, and heat.
  • Protection against CO poisoning
  • Containment of fire for up to two hours

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