Use of zero halogen cables can greatly reduce fire deaths and hazards for it is nearly non-flammable and produces negligible smoke, said a manufacturer yesterday.
PVC-coated electrical wires are the main propagators of fire, helping it to spread throughout a structure, while most deaths result from inhalation of the toxic smoke created when it burns, said Zakir Hossain, managing director of Poly Cables.
Most of the deaths in the recent FR Tower fire were caused for smoke inhalation, he said, adding that a child can survive amidst smoke for just 15 minutes and adults 40 minutes while it takes fire fighters in the country 20 minutes on an average to reach a fire.
Zero halogen cables cost 10 percent more than conventional cables but it is a better option since some 80 percent of the country’s fires are related to electricity, said Hossain.
He was addressing a demonstration of thermal imaging cameras titled “Fire Safety: Electrical Perspective” organised by the Brac University’s Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering on its premises.
Professor Shahidul Islam Khan, chairperson of the department, showed how these cameras could be used to pinpoint the highest source of heat or the fire source to effectively put those out.
He also explained the causes of electrical fires including improper wire size, bypassing of safety mechanisms, short circuit and excessive heat generation.