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F I RE AND SMOKE UNDERSTANDING THE HAZARD S Committee on F ire Toxicology Boar d on Envi ronmental S tud ie s and Tox icolog y CoTruniss ion on L if e Sc fences National Research Counc i 1 NATIONAL ACADEMY PRESS Washington, D.C. 1986

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NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance. This report has been reviewed by a group other than the authors according to procedures approved by a Report Review Co~`u`~ittee consisting of members of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was established by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy's purposes of furthering knowledge and of advising the federal government. The Council operates in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy under the authority of its congressional charter of 1863, which establishes the Academy as a private, nonprofit, self-governing membership corporation. The Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in the conduct of their services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. It is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. The National Academy of Engineering and the Institute of Medicine were established in 1964 and 1970, respectively, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences. This study was supported by the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Federal Aviation Administration, and the Department of the Navy under Contract 68-02-4122 between the National Academy of Sciences and the Environmental Protection Agency. Available from: Committee on Fire Toxicology, National Academy of Sciences, 2101 Constitution Avenue, NW, Washington, D.C. 20418 Printed in the United States of America

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COMMITTEE ON FIRE TOXICOLOGY Arthur B. DuBois (Chairman), John B. Pierce Foundation Laboratory, New Haven, Connecticut Rosalind C. Anderson, Arthur D. Little, Inc., Cambridge, Massachusetts Frederick B. Clarke, III, Benjamin/Clarke Associates Inc., Kensington, Maryland J. Wesley Clayton, University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona Donald Dressier, Harvard Medical School, Cambridge, Massachusetts Raymond Friedman, Factory Mutual Research Corp., Norwood, Massachusetts William T. Lowry, William T. Lowry, Inc., Arlington, Texas Gordon Pryor, SRI International, Menlo Park, California Linda Rosenstock, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington James Dean Sun, Lovelace Inhalation Toxicology Research Institute, Albuquerque, New Mexico National Research Council Staff Karen L. Hulebak, Project Director Zoltan Annau, Consultant Vicky Phillips, Staff Assistant Norman Grossblatt, Editor . ~ 1 1 1

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BOARD ON ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES AND TOXICOLOGY Donald Hornig (Chairman), Harvard University, Boston, Massachusetts Alvin L. Alm, Thermal Analytical, Inc., Waltham, Massachusetts Richard N. L. Andrews, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina William E. Cooper, Michigan State University, East Lansing, Michigan John Doull, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, Kansas Emmanuel Farber, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada John W. Farrington, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Woods Hole, Massachusetts Benjamin G. Ferris, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts Philip Landrigan, Mt. Sinai Medical Center, New York, New York Raymond C. Loehr, University of Texas, Austin, Texas Roger Minear, University of Illinois, Urbana, Illinois Philip A. Palmer, E. I. DuPont de Nemours & Co., Wilmington, Delaware Emil Pfitzer, Hoffmann-La Roche Inc., Nutley, New Jersey Paul Portney, Resources for the Future, Washington, D.C. Paul Risser, Illinois Natural History Survey, Champaign, Illinois William H. Rodgers, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington F. Sherwood Rowland, University of California, Irvine, California Liane B. Russell, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Oak Ridge, Tennessee 1V

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Ellen Silbergeld, Environmental Defense Fund, Washington, D.C. Peter Spencer, Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York Gerald Wogan, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts Ex Officio Gary P. Carlson, Purdue University, Lafayette, Indiana Thomas Chalmers, Mount Sinai Medical Center, New York, New York Arthur B. DuBois, John B. Pierce Foundation Laboratory, New Haven, Connecticut Alan M. Goldberg, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland Bernard D. Goldstein, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, Piscataway, New Jersey David Jollow, Medical University of South Carolina Charleston, South Carolina Roger 0. McClellan, Lovelace Inhalation Toxicology Research Institute, Albuquerque, New Mexico Norton Nelson, New York University Medical Center, New York, New York Duncan T. Patten, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona National Research Council Staff Devra Lee Davis, Acting Director, BEST Jacqueline Prince, Staff Associate

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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Several persons provided the Committee and staff with helpful information, suggestions, and the benefits of their experience during the preparation of this report. We express our special gratitude for the many contribu- tions made by Zoltan Annau, Department of Environmental Health Sciences, The Johns Hopkins University, who was a consultant to the Committee. We thank the funding agency liaison personnel for their sincere interest, flexibility, and encouragement: Susan Womble and Colin Church of the Consumer Product Safety Commission; Frederick Williams of the Department of the Navy; Donald Schroeder of the Federal Aviation Administration; and Edward Massaro of the Environmental Protection Agency. We are grateful to Edna Paulson and Victor Miller of the Toxicology Information Center, without whose unfail- ingly well-informed information services no Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology (BEST) study would be as good as it is. Devra L. Davis, Acting Director of BEST, provided valuable assistance in review throughout this project, and Alvin G. Lazen, Executive Director of the Commission on Life Sciences, provided much helpful guidance and advice. Norman Grossblatt's excellent editorial work transformed the writings of many into the voice of one committee; his contributions were invaluable. Finally, we thank Victoria Phillips, secretary to the Committee, whose spirit and hard work made so many of our goals achievable, and Karen Hulebak, staff officer for the study, who gave unstintingly of her talents and energy. Dr. Hulebak's guidance and diplomacy in the production of this report are deeply appreciated. V1

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PREFACE In 1977, the Committee on Fire Toxicology in the National Research Council's Assembly on Life Sciences (now the Commission on Life Sciences) produced a report in which the state of toxicity testing of combustion products was surveyed. The report noted that current techniques of fire-product research were so deficient that there were "no acceptable screening tests to evaluate relative toxicities of pyrolysis and combustion products of polymeric materials." That committee made several recommendations regarding the direction of test method development, among them the following: . Toxicity tests should use both pyrolysis and flaming decomposition conditions. . Specific test animal species and exposure conditions should be used. . A measure of incapacitation should be developed. Atmospheres to which test animals are exposed should be monitored for gas composition and temperature. Data derived from tests should not be used as absolute values in any fashion, but rather should be used only in comparison with data on standard reference materials. The intervening years have seen continuing research in fire science. For example, the Research Council in 1984 established the Committee on the Toxicity Hazards of Materials Used in Rail Transit Vehicles, in the National Materials Advisory Board of the Commission on Engineering vii

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and Technical Systems. Its study is funded by the Department of Transportation; a final report is expected in January 1987. The present Committee on Fire Toxicology was formed in December 1984 in the Board on Toxicology and Environmental Health Hazards (now the Board on Environmental Studies and Toxicology) in the Commission on Life Sciences. It is supported by a consortium of federal agencies (the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Federal Aviation Administration, the Department of the Navy, and the Environmental Protection Agency) concerned with developing sound regulatory policy. The Committee's general task was to review the state of the art of combustion-product toxicity testing and fire hazard assessment, and its membership reflects the multiple disciplines required for such a task. Information generated by the fire science community was reviewed, especially data produced and analytic developments achieved since the previous Research Council committee report in 1977. In addition, the Committee considered the relationship between the physiologic and behavioral end points currently used in combustion-product toxicity test systems and the performance capabilities of humans exposed to pyrolysis and combustion products. The Committee was also to evaluate fire hazard models (both available and in development), focusing on the use of toxicity as an input, and provide guidelines for their application. The Committee expects its findings to be of interest not only to its sponsors, but to all public officials with a similar mission and to manufacturers concerned with understanding the performance of their products. Arthur B. DuBois, Chairman Committee on Fire Toxicology viii

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CONTENTS EXECUTIVE SUMMARY INTRODUCTION 1 FIRE DEATHS IN THE UNITED STATES Scope of the Problem, 15 Causes of Fire Death, 16 The Contemporary Fire Environment, 20 A PRIMER ON FIRE AND FIRE HAZARD ................. The Burning Process, 23 A Typical Compartment Fire, 25 Fire Hazard Assessment, 28 Time Needed for Escape, 34 Time Available for Escape, 36 STATUS OF FIRE HAZARD MODELS AND TEST METHODS Introduction, 45 Detection Models, 46 Models for Time Available for Escape, 48 Models for Time Needed for Escape, 54 Test Methods for Model Input Data, 55 Summary, 59 4 HAZARDS ASSOCIATED WITH FIRES Heat, 62 Oxygen Depletion, 63 Smoke, 63 Health Effects of Smoke Inhalation on Humans Exposed to Fires, 73 Summary, 77 1X 15 ... 45 62

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LABORATORY METHODS FOR EVALUATION OF TOXIC POTENCY OF SMOKE 78 Use of Combustion-Product Toxicity Tests: To Screen or Not to Screen, 78 Chemical Analysis vs. Biologic Assay, 79 Test Methods That Use Death as an End Point, 83 Test Methods That Use Nonlethal End Points, 97 Summary, 104 6 GUIDELINES FOR HAZARD ASSESSMENT Case Study 1: Burning of an Upholstered Chair, 106 Case Study 2: Concealed Combustible Material, 118 Summary, 129 REFERENCES CASE STUDIES .. 105 x