Concrete Products

MAY 2018

Concrete Products covers the issues that attract producers of ready mixed and manufactured concrete focusing on equipment and material technology, market development and management topics.

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Page 5 of 71

If recent columns on encouraging White House, Depart- ments of Labor, Transportation and Treasury, and the Environmental Protection Agency actions haven't made the case, here's another reason for concrete interests to respect President Donald Trump: He is versed on one of the principal value propositions of cast-in-place, precast or masonry load-bearing assemblies. He demonstrated fire confinement or containment acumen in response to a four-alarm blaze of on the 50 th floor of Trump Tower in New York City. The early-April incident was confined to an 1,100-sq.-ft. condominium, owing to reinforced concrete construction. It took the life of the property's owner and engaged nearly 200 Fire Department of New York firefighters and EMS responders. In a social media dispatch during the fire service operation, President Trump characterized his Fifth Avenue namesake property as "Very confined (well built building)." Confinement or containment through the use of noncombustible structural and enclosure materials fosters what building code professionals view as passive fire protection—in contrast to active protection or suppression measures led by automatic sprinkler installation. Sprinklers are lacking in the upper levels of the 58-story Trump Tower, which rose in the early 1980s as one of the city's first high rises of all concrete design. Media covering the condominium fire seized on the absence of active protec- tion and President Trump's past opposition to fire sprinkler retrofit mandates for high-rise residential units pre-dating a New York City building code change requiring such devices. In a follow up fire report, the New York Daily News visited with former Trump Organization Vice President Barbara Res, who con- tended that fire sprinklers would not have saved the condominium owner's life. "Sprinklers protect buildings. Smoke detectors protect people," she told the paper, adding that by the time sprinklers activated in the 50 th floor unit, the owner "might already have succumbed to smoke inhalation." The Trump Tower fire occurred days into the third year of the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association's Build with Strength coalition. Assisted by outside public affairs counsel, it has grown to encompass community organizations, fire safety professionals, engineers, architects and industry experts committed to strengthening building codes and ensuring greater access to secure housing. Build with Strength responds to the perpetual fires plaguing three- to six-story wood frame, multi-family residential properties—occupied or under construction—and provides media with basic building safety perspective lack- ing in the Trump Tower coverage. While a well-contained fire at 600 feet in a reinforced concrete building differs sharply from the typical low- to mid-rise building incident on the Build with Strength radar, both are reminders of a mistaken assumption on life safety: Fire sprinklers rule the day. The Trump Tower incident elicited a kneejerk reaction surrounding active fire protection. Many of the wood-frame properties Build with Strength is tracking, on the other hand, secured permits with the pretense that automatic fire sprinklers are an acceptable substitute to a prevalence of noncombustible load-bearing materials. If the fire service is ever dispatched to one of the current generation of three- to six-story wood structures, will members of the media—many of them targets of Build with Strength communications and outreach—crow about demonstrably inadequate, combustible materials? Will their zeal match that of the inquiry into a tragic, but thoroughly contained fire in a Trump Tower condominium for which a sprinkler installation would fail basic cost-benefit analyses? EDITORIAL BY DON MARSH SEMCO PUBLISHING CORPORATE OFFICE 8751 East Hampden Avenue, Suite B-1 Denver, Colorado 80231 U.S.A. P: +1.303.283.0640 F: +1.303.283.0641 PRESIDENT/PUBLISHER Peter Johnson, EDITOR Don Marsh, ASSOCIATE EDITOR Josephine Patterson, PRODUCTION MANAGER Dan Fitts, GRAPHIC DESIGNER Michael Florman, PROJECT MANAGER Tanna Holzer, CIRCULATION Juanita Walters, SALES U.S., CANADA SALES Bill Green, Tel +1 414 212 8266 GERMANY SALES Gerd Strasmann, Tel +49 2191 93 1497 SCANDiNAVIA, UNITED KINGDOM AND WESTERN EUROPE SALES Jeff Draycott, Tel +44 (0) 786 6922148 Colm Barry, Tel +46 (0) 736 334670 JAPAN SALES Masao Ishiguro, Tel +81 (3) 3719 0775 AUSTRALIA/ASIA SALES Lanita Idrus, Tel +61 3 9006 1742 Concrete Products, Volume 71, Issue 5, (ISSN 0010-5368, USPS 128-180) is published monthly by Mining Media Inc., dba Semco Publishing, 10 Sedgwick Drive, Englewood, Colorado 80113. Periodicals postage paid at Englewood Colorado, and additional mailing offices. Canada Post Publications Mail Agreement No. 40845540. Canada return address: Station A, PO Box 54, Windsor ON N9A 6J5, Current and back issues and additional resources, including subscription request forms and an editorial calander, are available online at SUBSCRIPTION RATES: Free and controlled circulation to qualified subscribers. Non-qualified persons may subscribe at the following rates: USA and Canada, 1 year $72.00, 2 year $119.00, 3 year $161.00. For subscriber services or to order single copies, write to Concrete Products, 8751 East Hampden Avenue, Suite B1, Denver, Colorado 80231 USA; call +1.303.283.0640 ext. 207 (USA) or visit ARCHIVES AND MICROFORM: This magazine is available for research and retrieval of selected archived articles from leading electronic databases and online search services, including Factiva, LexisNexis, and ProQuest. For microform availability, contact ProQuest at 800-521-0600 or +1.734-761-4700, or search the Serials in Microform listings at POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Concrete Products, PO Box 828, Northbrook, IL 60065-0828. REPRINTS: Concrete Products, 8751 East Hampden Avenue, Suite B1, Denver, CO 80231 USA; P: +1.303.283.0640 ext. 207, F: 1+303.283.0641, PHOTOCOPIES: Authorization to photocopy articles for internal corporate, personal, or instructional use may be obtained from the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC) at +1.978.750.8400. To obtain further information, visit COPYRIGHT 2018: Concrete Products ALL RIGHTS RESERVED Circuation audited by Official Media Partner 4 • May 2018 Fire sprinkler safety assumptions dumb down life and death matters

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