CROSS Safety Alert
Fire in multi-storey car parks
The severe fire at the Liverpool Echo Arena MSCP on 31st December 2017 gutted the seven-storey building and up to 1,400 cars were destroyed. Fires in car parks are not uncommon; however, the Liverpool fire was unprecedented in scale because, unusually, the initial fire in one car rapidly spread to other cars.
This Alert is to draw attention to the fact that similar events could occur again, and all those in the car parking business must be aware of the risks.
Note: this Safety Alert was published by SCOSS (Standing Committee on Structural Safety). Since March 2021, SCOSS is integrated under the name Collaborative Reporting for Safer Structures (CROSS).
Who should read this?
Those who own, commission, design, construct, or maintain Multi-Storey Car Parks (MSCPs).
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You should focus on fire load in split level Multi-Storey Car Parks (MSCPs), with unprotected steel and no sprinklers. These MSCPs are doomed to collapse, and the designers are ignoring the fact that fire spread between cars will happen and the underlying fire tests from 1980s involves small cars in windy conditions. If the car park in Liverpool was a split level open car park, it would have collapsed.