Encyclopedia of Security and Emergency Management

Living Edition
| Editors: Lauren R. Shapiro, Marie-Helen Maras

Fire: Prevention, Protection, and Life Safety

  • Joshua ReichertEmail author
Living reference work entry

Latest version View entry history

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-69891-5_79-2


Fire protection is the methods and actions to reduce and mitigate the effects and damage caused by a fire event.

Fire prevention is the methods and actions taken to reduce the likelihood of a fire event.

Life safety is the primary goal in fire protection utilizing a method or system to protect the life of occupants.


The United States and mankind in general have always had a fire problem. What was and has always been one of the most important tools to the human race can quickly become one of the deadliest. Humans learned to harness fire for many uses such as to cook food and stay warm. But just as fire has good applications, it has its bad sides as it burns down buildings and cities, destroys forests, and takes lives when out of control.

Fire protection has been seen as early as 300 B.C. by the Romans as a slave fire department. By A.D. 26 a full-time fire department in Rome was flourishing and was charged with enforcing fire prevention safeguards and punishing...


Fire mitigation 
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  1. Cote, A. (2004). Fundamentals of fire protection. Quincy: National Fire Protection Association.Google Scholar
  2. NFPA. (n.d.). About fire prevention week. Retrieved from National Fire Protection Association: https://www.nfpa.org/Public-Education/Campaigns/Fire-Prevention-Week/About-Fire-Prevention-Week
  3. Occupational Safety & Health Administration. (n.d.). OSHA at 30: Three decades of progress in occupantional safety and health. Retrieved from United States Department of Labor: https://www.osha.gov/as/opa/osha-at-30.html
  4. Office of Communication. (2014, August 4). The story of Smokey Bear. Retrieved from U.S. Forest Service: https://www.fs.fed.us/blogs/story-smokey-bear
  5. Robertson, J. (2005). Introduction to fire prevention (6th ed.). Upper Saddle River: Pearson Education.Google Scholar
  6. United States Consumer Product Safety Commission. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.cpsc.gov
  7. XL Catlin. (n.d.). Fire walls, fire barriers and fire partitions. Retrieved from XL Catlin: https://xlcatlin.com/-/media/gaps/221____0.pdf.

Further Reading

  1. Cote, A. E. Fundamentals of fire protection. Quincy: National Fire Protection Association.Google Scholar
  2. Robertson, J. C., & Love M. T. Robertson’s introduction to fire prevention. Upper Saddle Ridge: Pearson Education.Google Scholar
  3. Klinoff, R. Introduction to fire protection. Clifton Park: Delmar Learning.Google Scholar
  4. Gagnon, R. M. Design of special hazard and fire alarm systems. Clifton Park: Delmar Learning.Google Scholar
  5. NFPA 101. Life safety code. Quincy: National Fire Protection Association.Google Scholar
  6. NFPA 221. Standard for high challenge fire walls, fire walls, and fire barrier walls. Quincy: National Fire Protection Association.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Fire Protection and Paramedicine SciencesEastern Kentucky UniversityRichmondUSA