Benefits of Working With A Qualified Fire Protection Engineer (QFPE)
The Federal marketplace can be overwhelming to enter, but with the right tools, success can be found. Federal regulations can differ greatly than those imposed upon State work or private work. One such regulation is the requirement of a Qualified Fire Protection Engineer. First, one must know what the definition of a Qualified Fire Protection Engineer (QFPE) is.
What is a QFPE?
According to the Unified Facilities Criteria (UFC) 3-600-0, a QFPE is:
An individual who is a registered professional engineer (P.E.) who has passed the fire protection engineering examination administered by the National Council of Examiners for the Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) and has relevant fire protection engineering experience.
Additionally, it is important to not only have fire protection engineering experience, but to also have a degree from an accredited fire protection engineering program.
Why are QFPEs essential to Federal Contracting?
Under UFC 3-600-01, any Federal project that involves the construction or modification of a fire protection system requires a licensed fire protection engineer to assist and review all aspects of the design process. A fire protection engineer is imperative to the design team whenever building code analysis, life safety code analysis, automatic detection, suppression systems design, water supply analysis, and other fire-related services are needed. Essentially, if there is any modification to a building, a QFPE will be required.
What to look for in a QFPE?
Having the proper QFPE on your team is more than just checking the box. The fire protection engineering company you choose to work with could make or break your pursuit. First, the fire protection engineers on their staff need to meet or exceed the minimum requirements of a QFPE. Second, having experience that is both impactful and relevant to the opportunity at hand is crucial. For example, using a firm with little to no Federal experience would be a harder sell to the contracting officials than a firm with extensive Federal experience with specialized knowledge on the type of facility that is being built or modified.
We have FIVE Qualified Fire Protection Engineers on our staff that have many years of Federal experience. As a company, RAN has completed well over 100 projects for the Federal government for a variety of agencies and buildings. These agencies include the Army, Navy, and the General Services Administration to name a few. For more agencies RAN has served, click here.
Federal Project Example:
Fort Drum Army Base
RAN Fire Protection Engineering has completed over 20 projects for the Fort Drum U.S. Army Base. Projects extend from fire alarm system design and code consulting to fire sprinklers and clean agent systems.
RAN performed a code evaluation of the building completed along with the basic design drawings of the fire alarm and mass notification system. RAN's engineers designed a wireless fire alarm system that connected the buildings together through digital alarm communicator transmitters (DACT). The signals from the DACT system were then received by wireless radio transmitters. These transmitters would then wirelessly alert the fire department in case of an incident. Additionally, the transmitters could also send and receive signals to each other, creating a wireless radio mesh network.
RAN has designed sprinkler systems for medical facilities on base, multipurpose buildings, and even a building that was repurposed as a museum. Lastly, our engineers designed several fire suppression systems for a building that housed a server room. RAN designed modifications of a sprinkler system, clean agent system and detection system. The clean agent system used in the server room was FM-200.