VdS: New Guidelines for reliable sprinkler pipe connections

Compact Guidelines VdS 2100 for dependable pipe connection elements and fittings renewed; comprehensively supplemented with findings for reliable production with regard to leak tightness and stress crack resistance, as well as other aspects.

Cologne/Germany, June 2, 2021. The decisive instant protection in case of fire (more often than every 5 minutes in a company in Germany): automatic sprinkler systems. An important part of these systems are of course the pipes that bring the extinguishing water exactly into target. To ensure a stable water supply, VdS supports manufacturers all over the world with precise specifications for e.g. reliable connections.

The Guidelines “VdS 2100-06, Pipe Connections, Requirements and Test Methods” have now been renewed by Europe’s largest institute for fire protection with technical innovations as well as additional risk minimisation. “Design specifics, details on documentation, torsion and flame resistance, etc. – we have summarised all the important new findings in compact 19 pages, including informative graphics and tables”, emphasises Frank Bzdega, head of the VdS laboratories for water extinguishing systems. “All with the aim of making it easier for developers to produce safe quality and to offer installers, operators, insurers and authorities the highest level of reliability in use.”

VdS offers the revised Guidelines free of charge. You can find “VdS 2100-06, Pipe Connections, Requirements and Test Methods” at vds-shop.de/en. Also updated and available there are the Guidelines VdS 2100-30 for pipe fittings.


Accreditation of Technical Inspection Services of VdS in Poland

From 17th of December 2020, the Technical Inspection Services of VdS Schadenverhütung Sp.z o.o. in Poland was accredited according to EN ISO / IEC 17020 as inspection body type A. It took about 6 months from the application to the receipt of the certificate. We were able to convince the PCA (Polish Centre for Accreditation) of our know-how and thus the Technical Inspection Services of VdS Schadenverhütung Sp. Z o.o. is the first accredited inspection body in Poland for testing fixed fire protection systems in accordance with: PN-EN, VdS, NFPA, FM, ISO and CEA. The scope of accreditation includes: sprinkler systems, water spray extinguishing systems, water mist extinguishing systems, foam systems, gas extinguishing systems, oxygen reduction systems, spark extinguishing systems, hydrant systems, kitchen protection systems and fire alarm & detection systems. The full scope of the accreditation of the inspection body type A – No. AK 036 from December 17, 2020 is available at https://pl.vds.de/topics/akredytacja/ | to find www.pca.gov.pl.


VdS-FireSafety Cologne 2021 – no-risk booking for exhibitors

With expert conferences, a trade fair and free-of-charge themed forums again this year: VdS-FireSafety Cologne will provide an attractive setting for exhibitors at Koelnmesse on 8th and 9th December 2021. Exhibit spaces can now be booked.

Cologne/Germany, April 08th, 2021. The VdS Training Centre is looking to December with optimism and expects to be able to stage VdS-FireSafety Cologne 2021 once more complete with a trade fair, themed forums and high-calibre expert conferences. After the trade fair had to be cancelled last December, VdS-FireSafety Cologne is again providing exhibitors and visitors with a versatile setting for expert discussions.

Zero-risk option for exhibitors

VdS-FireSafety Cologne is one of the foremost annual events in the industry for fire prevention and protection; it is renowned for its high-calibre trade visitors. This trade fair thus offers providers from the field of fire prevention and protection the ideal setting for presenting their products and services to interested expert visitors. The venue is the familiar Koelnmesse fair site. Booths can now be booked with immediate effect for 8th and 9th December 2021.

Since the Corona situation is still rather unpredictable in 2021, the VdS Training Centre is providing a zero-risk option: exhibitors can cancel their participation in the trade fair free of charge up until 31st August 2021.


Tours of the trade fair arouse interest in the solutions from exhibitors in the fields of fire protection systems, and structural and organizational fire protection.

Much attention, favourable terms

An exhibition area with a complete trade fair booth can be booked for as little as €232.50/m² for the entire duration of the event.

In addition, all exhibitors are invited to stage live demonstrations, and particularly striking displays can be included as stations in the guided tours of the fair. The Exhibitor Forum in the exhibition hall also offers an attractive platform for presenting new products, technical features and services.

Further advantages are the free admission vouchers for customers, and the perfect opportunities for networking with domestic and international participants.

For further information: vds.de/fire-safety


New event 29 April 2021 for the first time: the VdS-BrandSchutzTalk (VdS-Fire Safety Talk)

During the evento the xperts share knowledge, experiences and perspectives on current industry topics. For interested spectators, participation is free of charge, registration at www.vds.de/talk  is sufficient.

These are the topics on April 29:

Talk 1 – 09:30 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
Verifications for fire alarm project planning in normative border areas
Moderator: Carsten Meißner, Siemens AG
Experts: Torsten Pfeiffer, VdS Schadenverhütung GmbH; Prof. Dr. Jörg Reintsema, Dr. Reintsema Ingenieur GmbH; Dr. Simon Trippler, GTE; Dieter Hennig, Siemens AG

Talk 2 – 11:15 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.
Protection concepts for flammable liquids
Moderator: Carsten Tormöhlen, Allianz Technical Experts
Experts: Frank Bieber, VdS Schadenverhütung GmbH; Stefan Falk, CALANBAU Brandschutzanlagen GmbH; Thorsten Gieseke, Minimax Europe/FSG; Torsten Wagner, Wagner Group GmbH

Talk 3 – 2:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Partitioning systems in practice
Moderator: Hardy Rusch, VdS Schadenverhütung GmbH
Experts: Thomas Krause-Czeranka, MPA NRW; Marc Zimmermann, Zapp-Zimmermann GmbH; Dipl.-Ing. Ingo Heinsch, Löschmann + Partner; Knut Czepuck, Supreme Building Inspectorate NRW

If you feel like it, register for free to follow the talks live on your own computer!


Agora of Security Directors


The co-construction of the concept of security and safety is essential, according to Christophe Ramy, Head of the Security Division, Health & Safety Division ITER Organization and President of the Agora club of Southeast Security Directors.

For Guillaume Savornin – Chief Executive Officer of CNPP, people are indeed at the heart of risk management and control.
Yannick Grivaud, for his part, underlines the need for education around regulations and the sharing of good practices.

What then are the challenges of training?
How do you adapt humans to solving complex problems?
How to educate the employee at the request of specific training?
How to develop training to increase interest and be as close as possible to the reality on the ground?
How to support in the continuity of anticipation and prevention?

Answers in the REPLAY


VdS updates Guidelines for safe control and indicating equipment

VdS 2540 for reliable CIE comprehensively revised – including precise performance characteristics for risk minimisation in the control and activation of alarm valve stations and in fault monitoring.

Cologne/Germany, April 6th, 2021. The “brain” of every fire alarm system: control and indicating equipment (CIE). This is where all information from the monitored areas comes together, where processes such as alarming, clearing an object and, above all, the triggering of connected extinguishing systems are coordinated. VdS has been testing these devices since they were first used in Europe – and is bundling the experience gained over all this time into the product Guidelines VdS 2540.

The compact publication (16 pages) has now been extensively revised. “New features include a separate test for degraded transmission paths”, explains Frank Schäfer, VdS product manager responsible for the update.” And as a direct customer request, we have now also specified requirements for the switchover valves for the triggering of alarm valve stations, and added performance characteristics for fire brigade indication panels. This makes it easier for manufacturers to produce high-quality CIE; while installers, operators, insurers as well as authorities can fully rely on its safe application.”

The new VdS 2540 are provided free of charge by Europe’s largest and oldest testing institute for fire protection technology. You can find the “Requirements and test methods for control and indicating equipment” at www.vds-shop.de/en.

Caption 2540: VdS compresses loss prevention experience from thousands of laboratory as well as on-site tests in the product Guidelines 2540, “Control and indicating equipment”. Aim: Reliable risk minimisation as well as safeguarding for manufacturers, installers, operators, insurers and authorities.

About VdS:

VdS is one of the world’s most renowned institutions for corporate safety and security. 500 experts offer a unique range of services for fire protection, security, cyber-security and natural hazard prevention.

Services include risk assessments, testing and certification, inspections, information systems for natural hazards and an extensive training program. In addition, the independent institute sets international safety and security standards with the publication of a comprehensive set of Guidelines.

The optimal protection of our partners is based on a worldwide unique protection concept whose reliability builds on more than 110 years of VdS-experience, combining all core aspects of loss prevention.
Decision-makers around the world rely on VdS-approved reliability and

More information at vds-global.com

Picture of blue and purple fireworks during the night - a nice photo for backgrounds

Fireworks for scientific purposes

For many people, beautiful fireworks are the highlight of the annual New Year’s Eve festival and thus the start of a successful new year.

Many people are unaware of the dangers and the correct handling of pyrotechnic articles. Even products that have no (or a fake) CE mark pose an enormous risk. The experts from the IBS – Institut für Brandschutztechnik und Sicherheitsforschung in Austria are constantly confronted with the negative effects of pyrotechnics in administrative proceedings, in the determination of the causes of fire and explosions as well as in court proceedings. A series of pyrotechnic tests was carried out to empirically obtain well-founded technical principles and to determine the legally accepted risks for body and life as well as for property.

In addition, it is currently being discussed across Europe to cancel fireworks for New Year’s Eve this year. The main reason is certainly to avoid crowds – but also that the hospitals are not burdened with injuries caused by firecrackers. That is exactly the subject of the series of experiments.

Pyrotechnic categories

Various products of classes F1, F2, F3 and F4 as well as non-approved and illegal products were tested as part of the test series. F1 and F2 are commercially available and may be used by consumers for entertainment purposes according to the Austrian Pyrotechnics Law (PyroTG 2010).

The F3 category contains professional fireworks, “which represent a medium risk, intended for use in wide, open areas outdoors and whose noise levels do not pose a risk to human health”.

In Austria, category F4 includes the larger fireworks.
These are “fireworks that pose high risk, are only intended for use by persons with the appropriate specialist knowledge and whose noise level does not endanger human health” (Pyrotechnics Law 2010).

A minimum age of 18 years and an official permit are required for categories F3 and F4. In addition, the user needs specialist knowledge in form of a pyrotechnic pass for the relevant category. Safety and usage regulations are prescribed in the approval notice.

Risk analysis and security measures

The improper use of pyrotechnics is prohibited according to the Pyrotechnics Law and poses an enormous risk. The setup of the measuring equipment and the test procedure can lead to unexpected reactions and explosions close to the ground. For this reason, a very extensive hazard and risk analysis was carried out for the tests. The resulting dangers were identified, and appropriate safety measures were taken. Over 100 ignitions were carried out during the tests.

Exit speed

Top speeds of up to 85m/s could be measured for sho-boxes, which is approx. 300 km/h. For bullet-bombs, the measured values were significantly higher at approx. 123 m/s, i.e. approx. 440 km/h.

Recoil and impact energy

For products that emit special effects, there is also a resulting recoil. This recoil can represent a major source of danger in certain cases, for example when burning down on boats, on poor ground or with defective launchers.

It was also crucial to determine the impact energy at head height. I.e. when a person bends over the product. The results of the individual products partly exceeded all expectations.

For comparison: If you hit the pressure cell with a mallet weighing 1 kg by hand with maximum force, this generates an impact energy of approx. 500 kg. Values (in this case pressure on the ground) of up to 6300 kg could be measured with firecrackers.

Additional information:

YouTube Channel
Austrian Pyrotechnics Law 2010 (national law)


VdS Expert Conferences in Livestream

“Digital is better” was already sung by the band Tocotronic. Well, that’s not always true, but for conferences in the middle of a pandemic, there’s a lot to it. Many participants, but also speakers, are not allowed or do not want to travel at the moment. In addition, there is uncertainty as to whether, when and how the government will tighten restrictions. For this reason, we have been offering almost all VdS-Expert Conferences as live streams for several months now.
For the expert conferences in December, which under normal circumstances are part of the VdS-FireSafety Cologne, we went one step further: They were held exclusively online, as the travel situation was extremely uncertain. The exception was the two-day advanced training seminar for fire prevention and protection officers, which could be booked as both a face-to-face and an online event.


Almost 1000 participants at the seven conferences! Of these, only 45 attended in person.

The feedback from our online participants is consistently positive. This is not least due to the above-average technical and organisational effort we put into the Training Centre: Whenever possible, all speakers and moderators are on site at the Training Centre in order to be able to present a uniform lecture format with the best technical possibilities. The speakers give their presentations standing in front of real cameras, and only a few of them are connected to a laptop. The interaction between moderator, speaker and participants takes place via the carefully supervised chat. This creates a real exchange online, and the participants confirm time and again that the conference atmosphere really comes across.



Today’s fire statistics are problematic and we all know it!

When fires statistics are available they can give us general trends and indications, however the direct comparison between counties is yet not possible. This is mostly due to different terminologies, undefined data, mixed fields (structure fires, vehicle fires, wildfires etc.), lack of common methodologies, non-existent uncertainties, etc.

For example, Canada counts a fire fatality as a result of injuries leading to death within one year and one day after the fire incident. While, the UK and the USA, do not fix any time limit for recording a fire death. In other countries, “death within 48 hours after fire” is regarded as a fire death. Then there are countries that do not include fire deaths resulting from arson and other countries like in France that only report fire fatalities at the location of the fire – either those discovered by rescuers, or those declared dead after unsuccessful resuscitation attempts, excluding fire fatalities that occurred at the hospital or during transport of casualties to the hospital.

Another example is when comparing France and Italy, we find that for a relatively similar population and fire fatality per 100.000 inh., the number of injuries are completely different, leading to a questionable difference in either definitions or data reported or both.

One would then ask, how can we properly use their outcome for decision making? Well, we can’t…

To provide relevant information regarding the national fire safety situation – at least for number of fires, fire fatalities and fire injuries – fire statistics will have to be internationally improved through common terminology, common methodology, and common training and qualification of the persons reporting data from fire scenes.

This is where our project plays an important role:

EUFireStat is a 17-month project financed by the European Parliament and commissioned by the European Commission’s Directorate General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs (DG GROW). This project is carried out by a consortium composed of nine international fire safety institutions:

  •  Efectis – Consortium leader in the project
  • Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und –prüfung (BAM)
  • Centre for Fire Statistics of CTIF (CFS-CTIF)
  • Danish Institute of Fire and Security Technology (DBI)
  • Lund University
  • National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)
  • School of Engineering, The University of Edinburgh
  • The European Fire Safety Alliance (EuroFSA)
  • Vereinigung zur Förderung des Deutschen Brandschutzes (VFDB)

Closing data gaps

The aim of this project is to collect and analyse existing fire data in buildings from the 27 EU countries and some international countries of interest (Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Switzerland, Russia, the USA and The UK) then to propose common definition and methodology to the European Commission.

The project started in August 2020 and since then we have been gathering information from countries of interest and in particular on fields collected, how they are defined and how they are used. We reached out to different stakeholders (authorities, fire services, statistic institutes, insurance, and academics). We also sent out a survey to the authorities on what type of data they believe would be helpful for decision making, for improving regulations and prevention campaigns.

Paving the way for pan-european fire safety efforts

As it was expected, the main challenges encountered at the beginning of the project was to find the appropriate persons of contact, but we were positively surprised by how well the different persons we contacted were helpful and eager to help us gather data from their country! Unfortunately, there were some countries where it was difficult to find data, such as Portugal, where most data seems to be focused on forest fires, which is outside the scope of the project. While other countries simply do not have definitions like in France. In other cases, it was difficult to find interlocutors, like in Spain.

While there are many challenges we need to face in this project, we believe that the ongoing work that we will help the fire safety community ask the right questions and hopefully to overcome some of its difficulties for the future.

Finally, on behalf of the consortium, I would like to thank all the interviewed persons and the stakeholders for their valuable input, support and commitment to the project.

You can read more about the project and download the latest reports on our website: https://eufirestat-efectis.com/

If you are interested in learning more and contributing to the project, please reach us at: EU.FireStat@efectis.com

Written by Mohamad El Houssami, PhD – Fire safety engineer at Efectis France and member of the EUFireStat consortium