Monthly Archives: March 2018

VdS_Web-Quick-Check

Clarity for GDPR compliance in 20 minutes: With the free VdS-Quick-Check

On May 25th, every company and every authority in the EU must have implemented the extensive “General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)”. VdS now supports those institutions with a free Web-Quick-Check for the fast determination of their GDPR compliance level – including, where necessary, practical implementation assistance.

Despite its far-reaching requirements, the EU´s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) must be fully implemented until May 25th by every company processing personal data and every public authority in the EU member states (and, at current negotiation status, also the UK).
Therefore VdS has now supplemented its range of data protection services for the practical management of these EU requirements with a free Internet-Quick-Check. On the basis of 26 questions, specifically small and medium-sized businesses as well as smaller authorities can quickly determine their individual level of GDPR compliance. The convenient VdS-traffic-light-system immediately shows any need for action. Included in the evaluation is also precise assistance for any subsequent improvements that may be necessary.
Markus Edel, head of VdS Cyber-Security, explains: “In the new Web-Quick-Check, we have compressed our core support functions for the necessary GDPR implementation – allowing a fast self-analysis of the compliance level in all relevant fields of action.”
The new tool is provided free of charge on vds-quick-check.de/en.

Cause of multistorey carpark fire in Liverpool still unclear

phusbrand

Never before have 1,400 cars been engulfed by flames in a multistorey carpark. But this is what happened in Liverpool in December 2017. The question now is, what was the reason for the violent fire spread and what effect will the fire have on parking facilities in a number of European countries?

On 31 December, fire broke out in a car in a multistorey carpark in Liverpool. The carpark was a concrete building open on all sides – very much like the ones we know in Denmark. What is totally unfamiliar is the way in which the fire developed. Despite a prompt alarm call, a call-out time of eight minutes and 21 emergency response vehicles during the time of the action, the firefighting forces were unable to prevent the fire from spreading between cars and the storey deck, causing the write-off of all 1,400 cars plus the building. Questions are now being raised as to how this could happen.

– We know of similar fires in multistorey carparks in various locations abroad, but at the worst this has meant five or six destroyed cars and in a few cases more extensive fires, but nothing comparable to the fire in Liverpool. This is an unprecedented case and ought not to be possible, says Ib Bertelsen, Customer & Relations Director at DBI, the Danish Institute of Fire and Security Technology.

Explanations sought
In particular, the rapid fire spread is a matter of surprise.

– Naturally, sprinklers would have retarded fire development, but this was presumably a fully legal building of conventional construction. However, it is possible that difficulties in response tactics played a role, Bertelsen says, with the following explanation:

– When a car fire is reported, a reduced response team is sent out in the first instance, because it is ‘just’ a car fire. And it may be hard for the fire crew to access the scene of the fire.

Another possibility is that petrol and other flammable liquids leaked from the damaged cars and contributed to the rapid and violent fire spread. The local fire force estimates that the temperature was up to 1,000 degrees.

– That’s a lot, and we don’t yet know the specific circumstances, but even so, it is surprising that the situation could go so badly wrong in a properly constructed building. It will be very interesting to hear a likely explanation of why things developed as they did, Bertelsen says.

May change dimensioning
Once the explanation has been determined, the next question is whether this will have consequences in other countries.

– If there is no reasonable explanation, then, to the extent we have similar buildings in Denmark, we ought to be thinking about how we dimension our buildings and what scenarios we are dimensioning them for, Bertelsen says.

And maybe not just multistorey carparks will be subject to change – depending on the explanation from Britain.

– To a certain extent, you can compare them with large open-air carparks. Obviously, conditions are completely different in a building, but the cars are just as tightly spaced in an open carpark.

[NEW GUIDELINE] Photovoltaic systems: Recommendations on loss prevention

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PV modules mounted on buildings are on the one hand exposed to the weather, such as wind, snow, hail and temperature fluctuations, and on the other hand joined with adjacent building constructions, which may be thereby affected with regard to their protective functions, e. g rain or fire protection.

This guideline does a run-through the main system hazards and makes some recommendations on prevention measures to be considered during the phases of design, installation and operation.

This guideline is available for free download here

[NEW GUIDELINE] Demountable / Mobile flood protection systems

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According to loss experience losses caused by flooding can be significantly limited by preventive measures. In this context especially stationary protective measures have proved successful. Mobile protection systems can complement or replace stationary protection systems because of operational or areal constraints.

To establish appropriate protection measures the existing hazards must be identified and analyzed as well as the associated risks assessed. The relevant objectives, e. g. the height of protecting wall, are to be defined object-related and depending on the legal requirements and risk assessment.

The guideline “Demountable / Mobile flood protection systems” shows the available systems in the market and their features, and does a run-through the functional characteristics to be considered when choosing a system for mobile flood protection. Some advice for the selection of the type of system is given, based on previous operational experiences. Quality assurance measures required to the systems are also included in the guideline.

This guideline is available for free download here