News that’s too hot to handle. News about our industry. We just love sharing a good story about what’s going on in the fire protection engineering field and about what’s happening at Koffel Associates that may benefit or interest you.

December 2016 - AIA Maryland Celebrates Excellence in Design and Honors Green Street Academy as Public Building of the Year! We are proud to be a part of the Green Street Academy Rehabilitation Project Team which won the AIA Maryland 2016 Excellence in Design Public Building of the Year award. Koffel Associates, Inc. was an integral member of the Hord Coplan Macht design team by providing building and fire protection related consulting services. Those services included building code, fire code, and life safety analysis; and sprinkler and fire alarm/voice evacuation assessments during design, and on-call consulting during construction.

The $13.4 million, LEED Platinum project included the rehabilitation of 100,000 sq ft within the existing school building. Green Street Academy is a Baltimore City Charter school that consists of (375) middle and (500) high school students. We worked with Hord Coplan Macht, the Maryland Historical Society, as well as the design team consultants.

It is an honor to share the award for the Green Street Academy Rehabilitation project with the fellow members of the Hord Coplan Macht design team.

December 2016 - Koffel Associates, Inc., is Coming to Charlotte, North Carolina! We are proud to announce that Koffel Associates, will be opening a new office in Charlotte, North Carolina in January 2017! Sharon Gilyeat, P.E. brings 39 years of industry experience with her as she manages the new office. We look forward to expanding our relationships with current and new clients in the area. More details coming soon!

December 2016 - Koffel Associates Awarded SmartCEO's 2016 Corporate Culture Award We are pleased to have received the Smart CEO's Corporate Culture Award in 2015 and 2016. Nominated by an independent committee of local business leaders, we were recognized as a company for championing "a positive, productive culture in their organization, and will have worked with employees to develop successful cultural practices". We are proud that our values, the foundation of everything we do, were recognized for benefiting our employees, our clients, and the fire protection industry, as a whole.

November 2016 - Bill Koffel Receives the Glenn L. Martin Medal
William E. Koffel, P.E., FSFPE, President of Koffel Associates, Inc., was awarded the Glenn L. Martin Medal from the A. James Clark School of Engineering on Friday, November 18th, in recognition of his significant professional achievements and exceptional service to the Clark School. This award honors individuals who have made a contribution to the mission and ideals of the A. James Clark School of Engineering. Committed to the University of Maryland and specifically to the A. James Clark School of Engineering, Koffel continues to provide leadership, serve on various committees and panels, and encourage students by offering summer internship opportunities.

September 2016 - CMS New Emergency Preparedness Rule The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued a new emergency preparedness rule for health care facilities. The CMS Medical Learning Network is hosting a public call to discuss the requirement on October 5, 2016 at 1:30pm ET. Register for the call HERE.

The 650-page document can be downloaded on the ASHE website, with the regulations for hospitals beginning on page 584.

Click Here for additional details and implications of the emergency preparedness rule

Click Here to read the Health Care Alert

August 2016 - Welcome Danielle Brown
We are pleased to announce the hiring of Danielle Brown as Fire Protection Engineer.

Brown received her Bachelor of Science in Fire Protection Engineering from the University of Maryland, James A. Clark School of Engineering. Brown gained experience prior to joining Koffel Associates including: code consulting, life safety and fire alarm and sprinkler systems design for both the DoD and private sector, submittal reviews, site-survey, AFFF and high expansion foam system designs for aircraft hangers, and smoke and heat detector systems acceptance tests. As a Fire Protection Engineering Intern for BWI Airport, she worked with their Office of Maintenance and Utilities providing code consulting and was a Teaching Fellow at the University of Maryland for ENFP320 (Fire Assessment Methods and Laboratory). She is proficient in AutoCAD, Revit, and HASS Systems. Brown is a member of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers – Atlanta Chapter.

July 2016 - Changes to The Joint Commission Plan for Improvement
Effective August 1st, 2016, The Joint Commission will no longer review hospital Plans for Improvement (PFIs). Open PFIs on the electronic Statement of Conditions will not be reviewed or included in TJC survey reports. Instead, only those findings noted by TJC surveyors will be included in their survey report which will need to be corrected within 60 days of being identified.  If the condition cannot be corrected in that timeframe, there is the possibility that a Time Limited Waiver can be obtained if approved by TJC and the CMS regional office.
It should also be noted that TJC will no longer be evaluating and approving equivalencies except for those addressing conditions noted during a survey.  However, that does not prevent facilities from having the equivalency documentation prepared and ready to submit if the condition is noted during a survey.
With the changes taking place, TJC staff has indicated that facilities should strive to have all findings addressed at the time of the TJC survey.  This will minimize the impact of any findings that are noted during the survey and will demonstrate to TJC a continued commitment to ensuring compliance.

Link to The Joint Commission Atricle

Click here to read the Health Care Alert

July 2016 - Koffel Associates Hosts 2016 Koffel Conference
Please join us on Thursday, July 21st from 7:30am – 4:00pm at the JHU Applied Physics Lab - Parsons Auditorium in Laurel, Maryland.  *Continuing Education Credits will not be given. Certificate of Attendance will be emailed to Registered Participants within 30 days.

*If you are viewing the webinar(s) you must register individually to receive the Certificate of Attendance.

Get Direct Access to our Experts during sessions that include:
• NFPA 2012 Life Safety Code®: It's Impact on New and Existing Facilities
• 2012 Life Safety Code® Reference Standards: Their Impact on New and Existing Facilities
• Chapter 43, NFPA 101®: New Requirements For Work In Existing Facilities
• NFPA 45: Flammable Liquids and other hazardous substances in Laboratories
• Ask The Experts Panel

Click Here to view the Agenda

Click Here to register

July 2016 - Welcome Elizabeth Keller and Alexa Rucinski
We are pleased to announce the addition of Elizabeth “Liz” Keller and Alexa Rucinski as Fire Protection Engineers.

Keller, a graduate of the University of Maryland with a B.S. in Fire Protection Engineering, is enrolled in the Master of Science program with a concentration in Fire Protection Engineering at the University of Maryland College Park and is conducting research to evaluate combustion efficiency and water mist suppression characteristics utilizing a turbulent line burner. She is a member of the Salamander National Fire Protection Engineering Honorary Society, the National Fire Protection Association, and the Society of Fire Protection Engineers, and earned her E.I.T. in 2014.

Rucinski, a graduate of the University of Maryland with a B.S. in Fire Protection Engineering previously worked with Koffel Associates as an intern while attending the University of Maryland. She is a member of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers – Student Chapter and Chesapeake Chapter and earned an Honor College Citation, a Cooperative Education Citation, and a certificate in Quality Enhancement Systems and Teams (QUEST).

June 2016 - Hospitals Have Until November to Prepare for New CMS Rule
The Joint Commission (TJC) and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will begin surveying health care facilities on the new CMS Conditions of Participation (CoPs) on November 7, 2016. Beginning November 7, facilities will need to comply with the new CoPs, which adopt the 2012 editions of NFPA 101®: The Life Safety Code® (LSC) and NFPA 99.

Click here to read the Health Care Alert

June 2016 - How Will the Adoption of the 2012 Edition of NFPA 101® by CMS Affect You?
We have all long awaited the adoption of the 2012 Edition of NFPA 101: Life Safety Code® (LSC), as it includes many changes that will help improve the quality of life and the care of patients/residents in all types of health care facilities. With the changes, there are also some requirements that result in changes that existing facilities need to make to achieve compliance. Keep in mind that although there are other 2012 LSC requirements that are more stringent than the 2000 LSC, they are not included as they are not retroactive to an existing facility. The only ones included here are the ones with which an existing facility must comply. We have also included a few with which we believe existing facilities should comply.

Click here to read the ten requirements as a result of the NFPA 101® 2012 Edition CMS adoption.

May 2016 - CMS orders changes to the Findings for eSOCs
The TJC is in the process of updating the eSOC webiste to remove the 6 month grace period. This means all finding currently in the grace period will turn RED, which typically results in a call to senior leadership.

What do you need to do and how can we help? We are just a call and click away. Read more to find out.

May 2016 - CMS Adopts 2012 Edition of NFPA 101, The Life Safety Code®
The Center for Medicaid and Medicare Services (CMS) has formally adopted provisions of the 2012 Edition of NFPA 101, The Life Safety Code®. Are you Ready?

Click here to read more about the upcoming changes as a result of the adopt of the 2012 Edition of NFPA 101 by CMS.

For upcoming training by Koffel Associate employees on how the adoption of the 2012 Edition of NFPA 101 by CMS could affect you, click here.

March 2016 - Welcome Kenneth Custodio
We are pleased to announce the addition of a new employees: Ken Custodio CAD Technician.

Custodio received his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from University of Maryland Baltimore County. Since 1994, Custodio served as a Mechanical Designer, Mechanical Engineer, and Senior Mechanical Project Engineer with various firms in Maryland. Proficient in AutoCAD, Revit, Navisworks, and Microstation, his design experience includes National Gallery of Art, various buildings on the NIST Campus, General Motors, various VAMCs, numerous High Schools, Colleges and Universities, Fire and Rescue stations, and Hospitals.

November 2015 - Koffel Associates Awarded the SmartCEO 2015 Corporate Culture Award
Koffel Associates, Inc. was awarded the Smart CEO's 2015 Corporate Culture Award, by an independent committee of local business leaders, recognizing our company for “fostering a creative and collaborative workplace culture”.  For more information click here.  For the SmartCEO website and event information click here.

November 2015 - Koffel Associates Awarded the David A. Lucht Lamp Of Knowledge Award
Koffel Associates was awarded the David A. Lucht Lamp of Knowledge Award by the Society of Fire Protection Engineering (SFPE), honoring and recognizing the “organization, company, or individual that has contributed substantially to increasing the opportunities for higher education in fire protection engineering.” For more information click here. 

October 2015 - Protecting Our Schools
On page 28, in the October 2015 issue of Consulting-Specifying Engineer Magazine, Bill Koffel discuss the complexities an engineer faces when addressing fire and life safety in schools. For more information click here.

October 2015 - Koffel Associates Welcomes Engineers from the Korean Fire Institute
Koffel Associates met with representatives from the Korean Fire Institute (KFI) to exchange ideas regarding smoke control topics. Clay Aler, PE, Erik Anderson, PE, and Nicholas Sealover met with Dr. Nam Jun Seok and Dr. Seung Ho Joo for the day. For more information click here.

October 2015 - Documentation and Communication of ITM
In the October 2015 edition of FPC Magazine, Erik Anderson discusses the importance of communicating your ITM findings, both verbally and in writing, to the building owner to shield you from potential liability and to protect the owner from fire loss.

September 2015 - Bill Koffel Appointed to Board of Directors for NCGBCS
Congratulations to Bill Koffel for being appointed to the Board of Directors for the National Council of Governments on Building Codes and Standards (NCGBCS).

September 2015 - Updates, changes to NFPA 2013
Read how Mark Aaby discusses changes and updates to NFPA 13: Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems, in the current (2013)  edition and 2016.

July 2015 - Improving Fire Safety Performance
In the July 2015 edition of HFM Magazine, Bill Koffel discusses strategies for handling the most commonly sited problems in health care organizations.

June 2015 - Gayle James named April 2015 Spotlight Member for SMPS Maryland
Gayle James, Business Development and Human Resources Manager, was named April 2015 Featured Spotlight Member for SMPS Maryland! Gayle joined SMPS in 2005 and has been a valued member since, serving on committees and representing Koffel Associates at many events.

June 2015- NFPA Conference Presentation Handouts

Were you able to see Bill Koffel present at the 2015 NFPA Conference in Chicago? If not, we have links to the handouts of his presentations below.

T04. NFPA 25, Standard for the Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems, and the Reliability of Automatic Sprinkler Systems

T76. Emergency Planning For A New Hospital With A Multinational Staff

W30. Evaluating Occupant Load Factors for Ambulatory Care Facilities

Effective June 1, 2015, The Joint Commission (TJC) requires additional information when submitting a request for a traditional or Fire Safety Evaluation System (FSES) equivalency. Equivalences submitted to TJC after July 1, 2015 may be rejected if they fail to comply with the new process. Typically, facilities will need to provide a hardship assessment and a statement on patient safety in order to resubmit. Full instructions can be found on The Joint Commission website.

Click here to contact one of our engineers to assist you with submitting a new equivalence that complies with the updated requirements, OR if you need help after receiving a rejected equivalency.

April 2015 - Interpreting NFPA 72
In the April 2015 issue of Consulting-Specifying Engineer Magazine, Bill Koffel gives you an overview of NFPA 72-2013 for both wired and wireless fire alarm systems, including identifying some of the significant changes to the 2013 edition.

March 2015 - Evaluating Occupant Load Factors for Ambulatory Health Care Facilities
Read as Bill Koffel and Kristin Steranka discuss the research used to capture and compare data in the United States and Spain, on evaluating occupant load factors for ambulatory health care facilities.

March 2015 - Bill Koffel Blogs for Silent Knight
Read as Bill Koffel blogs for Silent Knight: What You Need to Know About NFPA 4.

February 2015 - Fire Protection Requirements for Health Care Facilities - An Overview of NFPA 99
In the February 2015 issue of Fire Protection Engineer Magazine, Bill Koffel, Jim Lathrop, Sharon Gilyeat, Samantha White, and Kristin Steranka discuss the fire safety related requirements in NFPA 99-2012 Edition.

January 2015- HEALTH CARE ALERT - Impact of Existing PFIs in Your TJC Report
Now that the TJC is providing an accounting of the open findings in their final report to health care officials at the end of the survey process, do you think you should continue to add findings to your eSOC? Click here to see what the Koffel Experts think of the impact of existing PFIs in your TJC Report!!!

December 2014 - HEALTH CARE ALERT - Life Safety Code® Surveyor to be added to TJC Surveys of Ambulatory Surgical Centers
Are you a Ambulatory Surgical Center seeking Medicare deemed status or accreditation with classification as an ambulatory health care occupancy? Are you aware of the changes that became effective December 15, 2014?

November 2014 - Maintaining Sprinkler Systems as they Age
William E. Koffel, PE, FSFPE, writes an article for the November 2014 FPE Emerging Trends enewsletter on Maintaining Your Sprinkler Systems as they Age. He discusses how there are some limited test requirements for system components based upon the age of the system, but the inspection, testing, and maintenance requirements do not vary as a function of the age of the system.

October 2014 - Interns Nominate Bill Koffel for Mentoring Award
Koffel Associates’ interns nominated William E. Koffel, PE, FSFPE for the SFPE 2014 John L. Bryan Mentoring Award. Bestowed to individuals who “exemplify commitment and dedication to educating, training, and advising fire protection engineers”, Bill received this award on October 13 and joins an impressive list of Professors and Doctors honored for unselfishly giving their expertise to advance the education and careers of fire protection engineering students.

October 2014 - HEALTH CARE ALERT - Relocatable Power Taps - UPDATE
Did you know Center for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) has issued a categorical waiver permitting the use of power strips in existing and new health care facility patient care areas/rooms, provided 2012 NFPA 99 power strip requirements and 1999 NFPA 99 and 2000 Life Safety Code electrical system and equipment provisions are met?

Link to additional information on the CMS waiver regarding power strips

September 2014 - Engineering considerations of NFPA 101
As seen in the recent issue of Consulting -Specifying Engineer Magazine, Bill Koffel discusses how NFPA 101: Life Safety Code defines a building’s egress, along with numerous fire and life safety systems.

September 2014 - Updates, Changes to NFPA 75 Affect Data Centers
As seen in the recent issue of Consulting -Specifying Engineer Magazine, Mark Aaby discusses how the 2016 Edition of NFPA 75: Standard for the Fire Protection Information Technology (IT) Equipment may include changes to risk assessment approach users of the document must take.

September 2014 - CMS-3277-P Fire Safety Requirements for Certain Health Care Facilities - Proposed Rule COMMENTS
Overall, Koffel Associates, Inc. supports the adoption of the 2012 Editions of NFPA 101® and NFPA 99. We do, however, offer the comments found when you click this link.

August 2014 - Health Care Alert
Effective July 2, 2014, The Joint Commission requires all facilities seeking deemed status to include ALL medical equipment and ALL utility system components in the facility inventory, per EC.02.04.01 and EC.02.05.01. Components that are performance related and deliver a measurable outcome are required on the inventory. Support components, such as belts and filters, may not need to be listed individually or may not be reflected on the inventory, depending on the facility maintenance strategy. All items on the inventory must be provided with maintenance activities and frequencies as outlined by manufacturers’ recommendations or by an alternative equipment maintenance (AEM) program. A qualified individual must use a written criteria to assess whether an item should be included in the AEM program. Components of the medical or utility system maintained under the AEM program are not exempt from inclusion in the facility inventory.

We are pleased to announce that Allison Ellis, P.E. is our Health Care Specialist serving as our central point for training, review and dissemination of all health care related procedures, standards and policy within the firm.

August 2014 - A Passive Smoke Control Design
Read how Tiffany Cates Chen discusses the design approach and criteria for the new Engineering, Aviation, Computer and Mathematical Sciences building at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore Campus in Princess Anne, MD. As seen in the 3rd Quarter 2014 Edition of Fire Protection Engineering Magazine – A Passive Smoke Control Design.

August 2014 - Health Care Expert Joins the Koffel Team
Koffel Associates is pleased to announce the full-time addition of Sarina L. Hart, P.E. to lead and manage one of our health care teams, providing services to our health care clients, architects, engineers, and contractors throughout the world.

July 2014 - Bill Koffel Discusses Lowell Fire Investigation
As seen on Fox 25 News Boston, watch as Bill Koffel give fire protection insight to the Lowell Fire Investigation: the investigators next steps and the impact sprinkler could have had.

July 2014 - Welcome Mohamed Mushantat, Chris Streckfus, Melanie Bailey, Sandra Anderson and Will Higgins
We are pleased to announce the addition of five new employees: Mohamed Mushantat, as Fire Protection Engineer, Christopher Streckfus as CAD Operator, Melanie Bailey, as Marketing Coordinator, Sandra Anderson as CAD Technician, and Will Higgins as Fire Protection Engineer.

Mohamed Mushantat received his Masters of Engineering in Fire Protection Engineering at the University of Maryland and joins us after working 14 years overseas in Qatar and United Arab Emirates. A member of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers, National Fire Protection Association, and International Association of Arson Investigators, he also earned his PMI Project Management Professional Certification in 2013.

Chris Streckfus, a graduate of University of Maryland, began his career in Computer Graphics and achieved his A.A.S. in CADD for Architecture and Engineering obtaining his AutoCAD Operators Certificate, CAD Management Certificate, CAD/Mechanical Modeling Certificate and CAD Architecture Certificate.

Melanie Bailey joins us after working eight years as an Assistant Marketing Specialist and Tradeshow Coordinator for Greenhorne & O’Mara, recently acquired by Stantec. She has 12 years of marketing experience in the engineering field, as well as marketing experience in retail and in healthcare arenas.

Sandra Anderson, a graduate of the University of Massachusetts, received her A.A.S. in Fire Protection Engineering Technology and is pursuing her NICET Level 1 certification. A member of the National Fire Protection Association, Society of Marketing Professional Services of Maryland, Baltimore’s chapter of the American Society of Certified Engineering Technicians, she most recently worked as the Assistant Project Manager for a fire protection firm on the Washington Metropolitan Transit Authority’s (WMATA) Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project (Silver Line).

Will Higgins, a graduate of the University of Maryland with a BS in Fire Protection Engineering, recently worked for a large Architectural /Engineering firm in Baltimore, and previously for a Fire Protection Engineering firm in New York. A member of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers, he was awarded his E.I.T.

July 2014 - Koffel Associates Announces Promotions
Koffel Associates, Inc. is pleased to announce the following promotions:

Sarina L. Hart, P.E., to Manager, Fire Protection
Joshua W. Talley, P.E., employed both part time and full time since 2004, to Senior Fire Protection Engineer
Mark H. Buschman, P.E., employed full-time since 2006 to Senior Fire Protection Engineer
Tiffney A. Cates, P.E., employed full-time since 2008, to Senior Fire Protection Engineer

June 2014 - Welcome Lauren Schrumpf
Koffel Associates, Inc. is pleased to announce the addition of Lauren Schrumpf as a Fire Protection Engineer. Ms. Schrumpf is a graduate from the University of Maryland with a BS in Fire Protection Engineering. She joins Koffel Associates full-time after working for the fire part-time for the past 12 months as an engineering intern assisting with research, surveys, fire suppression system design, and AutoCAD drawing support.

June 2014 - Welcome Kina Campbell
Koffel Associates, Inc. is pleased to announce the addition of Kina Campbell. Campbell, a graduate of University of Maryland with a BS in Fire Protection Engineering, who has work with the Prince George’s County Government, most recently as the Associate Director, for the past 16 years, with the exception of an 18 month period of time. During the 18 month period, Campbell was a Fire Protection Specialist with the EPA, where she provided plan reviews for new projects within the Agency, as well as, evaluated audit findings at all EPA locations nationwide.

June 2014 - Maintaining Your Fire Protection System?
Do you know who is responsible for maintaining the fire protection system in your facility? As seen in the International Fire Protection Magazine - Bill Koffel identifies the responsible party.

June 2014 - NFPA Standards Council presents 2014 Standard Medal to James Lathrop, Vice President of Koffel Associates
Each year the NFPA Standards Council presents the Standards Medal, the highest award given by the Standards Council, for outstanding contributions to fire safety in the development of codes and standards. Koffel Associates is very pleased to announce that our Vice President, James Lathrop, is the 2014 recipient of the Standards Medal.

Jim, also known as “Mr. Life Safety” in the NFPA Community, served as the Chief Life Safety Engineer at NFPA, received the Committee Service Award from NFPA in 2003, and received the Special Achievement Award from NFPA in 2011. Jim has worked for Koffel Associates for the past 23 years and continues to serve on various NFPA committees.

June 2014 - Big Changes to the Joint Commission Requirements and the Statement of Conditions
The Joint Commission (TJC) released information on June 3rd, 2014 stating that major changes will be made to the Plan for Improvement (PFI) process and Equivalency process currently enforced in an effort to bring TJC more in line with the Centers for Medicare/Medicaid Services (CMS) requirements.  The changes that will take effect JULY 1, 2014 can be found in the link - 2014 Changes to the Joint Commission Requirements and the Statement of Conditions.

March 2014 - TJC Means of Egress Maintenance
The top-cited standard in 2013 was LS.02.01.20 (54% of hospitals surveyed received a citation), which requires proper maintenance of the means of egress. Corridor clutter, exit signage, and locking arrangements are just a few of the means of egress concerns faced in hospitals around the country.

Koffel Associates can help you maintain compliance by conducting periodic surveys of means of egress and other life safety issues. Our extensive health care experience translates into providing innovative solutions for unique life safety situations.

A hospital is a living, breathing environment, which is why we treat your Statement of Conditions like a living, breathing document.

March 2014 - NFPA 92 defines design, testing of smoke control systems
As seen in the March 2014 Edition of the Consulting - Specifying Engineer Magazine, Bill Koffel and Nick Sealover discuss NFPA 92 and the upcoming changes to the Code.

February 2014 - Welcome Lee Draper
Koffel Associates, Inc. is pleased to announce the addition of Lee Draper as a Fire Protection Engineer. Mr. Draper is a graduate from the University of Maryland with a BS in Fire Protection Engineering and a BS in Mechanical Engineering.

February 2014 - Congratulations Allison Ellison
With National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying posting only a 52% pass rate for first-time takers, Koffel Associates, Inc. is pleased to announce that first-time taker Allison C. Ellis passed her Principles and Practice of Engineering Exam in Fire Protection, thereby earning her Professional Engineer (P.E.) designation.

February 2014 - Congratulations Shaun Wrightson
With National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying posting only a 52% pass rate for first-time takers, Koffel Associates, Inc. is pleased to announce that first-time taker Shaun Wrightson passed his Principles and Practice of Engineering Exam in Fire Protection, thereby earning his Professional Engineer (P.E.) designation.

February 2014 - UVA-HBE Project Named Best of the Best by Engineering News-Record
Koffel Associates is proud to be on the team that earned the 2013 Best of the Best from ENR for Health Care sector: University of Virginia Medical Center Patient Tower Expansion and Helipad

February 2014 - Barrier Smarts
As seen in the January/February 2014 Edition of the NFPA Journal, Bill Koffel and George Mills discuss using compartmentation to maintain fire and smoke barriers.

For more information regarding the Barrier Management Symposium mentioned in the article, go to

January 2014 - Tips for Compliance: Maintaining Fire Equipment and Building Features
As seen in January edition of ASHE Insider, the article provides tips for maintaining signal devices, water-flow devices and valve tamper switches, notification devices, and visual and audible fire alarm devices to fully protect patients, staff and visitors in health care facilities during a fire.

November 2013 - Bill Koffel appointed to Committee on CommissioningWilliam E. Koffel, PE, FSFPE was recently appointed by the International Code Council’s (ICC) Board of Directors to the newly created Standard Consensus Committee on Commissioning. This committee is charged with the development of a complete set of requirements addressing current best practices in the overall commissioning process

November 2013 - Why the sprinkler system inspection, testing and maintenance Provisions of NFPA 25 are getting a thorough once-over
The Performance of Sprinkler Systems - Recently, questions have arisen regarding the scope of NFPA 25 and whether the standard is adequate to ensure the successful operation of automatic sprinkler systems. As seen on the Cover Story of the Fall 2013 Edition of the NFPA Journal, Bill Koffel explains "Why the sprinkler system inspection, testing and maintenance provisions of NFPA 25 are getting a thorough once-over"

September 2013 - Are you aware of the recent changes to The Joint Commission electronic Statement of Conditions?

September 2013 - CMS offers more Life Safety Code waivers
Additional categorical waivers for several provisions of the 2000 Edition of the Life Safety Code are now being offered by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). For a detailed listing of the waivers, view the CMS survey and certification memo issued August 30, 2013.

Have questions?? Join Bill Koffel on October 4th for a free 90-minute webinar - How Can My Healthcare Facility Benefit from the CMS Survey and Certification Changes?

September 2013 - Just Ask ASHE
Bill Koffel, P.E., FSFPE and Lennon Peake, P.E. both serve as Subject Matter Experts (SME) on the new Just Ask ASHE panel.  ASHE members can submit Just Ask ASHE questions via the ASHE website.  These questions are routed to the appropriate SME.  So, you have a number of ways to contact our experts – through Just Ask ASHE, directly via e-mail, phone call, or as a member of our Linked In discussion groups.  Any way you connect with us, we are here to help.

September 2013 - Code Requirements for Interior Wall and Ceiling Finishes
Jim Lathrop from Koffel Associates, and NFPA's Kristin Bigda and Tracy Vecchiarelli provided a free NFPA webinar discussing Code Requirements for Interior Wall and Ceiling Finishes. The webinar offered an in-depth look at the current codes, the rationale behind the codes, and the test methods used to regulate interior finishes.

If you were unable to attend the 90 minute webinar, which was "sold out" at 1,000 participants, you can view the free recording through this link.

August 2013 - George Mills Outlines Top Joint Commission Citations and Tips on Compliance
At the recent ASHE Annual Conference, George Mills, MBA, FASHE, CEM, CHFM, director of the Department of Engineering at the Joint Commission, spoke of the top citations and tips on compliance.

August 2013 - April 2013 -Certified Healthcare Safety Professional  Walt Mayfield, CHSP had this to say about Jim Lathrop:
"I attended an NFPA Seminar recently and Jim was the instructor. I was very impressed with Jim's knowledge and professionalism. It was refreshing to attend a seminar where the instructor really knew what he was talking about. This was one of the most information packed course I have ever taken and Jim did a fantastic job delivering the content. I highly recommend attending any class Jim teaches."

August 2013 - Case Study - Water Mist Fire Suppression System.
As seen in Magazine Fall 2013 Edition, Mark Aaby describes the selection criterion that was used to arrive at a high pressure ware mist fire protection system for a waste water pumping station located in the center of a large city.

August 2013 - SFPE Engineering Guide Fire Safety for Very Tall Buildings Published
Bill Koffel served on the ICC and SFPE task group that prepared the “Engineering Guide: Fire Safety for Very Tall Buildings” document identifying critical fire safety challenges unique to these structures. Click here for more information about the recommended integrated approach to designing fire safety in tall buildings, purchase price and ordering details.

July 2013 - Kudos and a hearty congratulations to our friends who received well deserved recognition and awards on July 22 at the 50th Annual ASHE Conference and Technical Exhibition in Atlanta, GA:
Emerging Regional Leaders: “those individuals who make significant contributions to their health care facility management profession and have gone above and beyond the call of duty in an effort to optimize the health care physical environment”:
Michael Elks, Duke University Medical Center – Region 3
Laurie Anseth, Allina – Buffalo Hospital – Region 6
Steven Gulick, Stillwater Medical Center – Region 7

Senior SASHE Recipients: “those active members demonstrating a commitment to the healthcare facilities management profession and recognizes their contribution to the industry through leadership, education and publishing.” Senior status was bestowed to those who have been members in good standing for at least five years:
James Ostrom , OSF Health Care System
Dennis Smith, Catholic Health Initiatives
Steven Gulick, Stillwater Medical Center
Jona Roberts, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center

July 2013 - New Maryland Smoke Alarm Law.
This new law took effect July 1 mandating replacement of smoke alarms at least every 10 years in residential occupancies, as the sensing elements within these alarms deteriorate over time.

Click for more information on the importance of smoke detectors in home by DSFM Bruce D Bouch, Director of Public Education and Media Affairs with the Office of the State Fire Marshal.

Click for an explanation of the smoke alarm law from the Maryland State Fire Marshal's Office.

July 2013 - A Word of Caution - New facilities vs. Existing facilities.
As seen in Inside ASHE Summer 2013 Edition - Bill Koffel explains how the NFPA 101 requirements regarding reducing or eliminating fire protection features once a facility turns from a new building into an existing building are not being properly applied.

May 2013 - Key nonstructural changes to 2012 IBC. As seen in Consulting - Specifying Engineer magazine, Bill Koffel describes the significant nonstructural changes to the 2012 International Building Code that typically impact consulting and specifying engineers.

May 2013 - Smoke Control in Very Tall Buildings – Past, Present and Future
As seen in Fire Protection Engineering 2nd Quarter Edition, Erik Anderson, P.E. provides an overview of engineered smoke control systems in very tall buildings, which use mechanical means to produce pressure differentials across barriers to inhibit smoke spread. The author discusses code trends of the past and some of the relevant design considerations for smoke control in very tall buildings of the future.

April 2013 - NFPA's Instructors are the Difference
As seen in the Winter 2013 Edition of the NFPA Catalog, read how Sherrill Nardontonia, Regulatory Compliance Assistant at York Hospital, York, PA, describes how the NFPA instructor made a difference in her learning experience. "I was captivated by Jim's (Lathrop) teaching style and the way he integrated stories to back up his material. Bill (Koffel) was very professional and knowledgeable of every aspect of the codes he was teaching and impressed me with his ability to recite codes immediately when asked a question."

To see when Bill Koffel or Jim Lathrop will be teaching in a city near you, visit Where to Find Us.

April 2013 - UL 2196 & ULC_S139 Consensus Standards Update
A joint technical committee from the U.S. and Canada has been formed to determine what requirements are necessary to form a bi-national standard to address issues including installation variables, sampling requirements for testing, and the need for further research.

April, 2013 - Suite Talk - Is Your Facility Benefiting from Suites?
In the Spring 2013 issue of Inside ASHE, Bill Koffel and Diana Hugue provide tips to bring additional storage, greater operational efficiency, and increased design flexibility through the use of suites. Below are links to additional information.

Suite Talk - Is Your Facility Benefiting from Suites? as found in Inside ASHE.

NFPA interpretation of dead-end corridor in a health care occupancy.

Additional Specific Suite requirements

March 2013
On March 11th, Koffel Associates, Inc. will be offering a free webinar on the Overview of 2012 Edition of NFPA 1 with Maryland Amendments. On January 1, 2013, the 2012 Edition of NFPA 1became effective in Maryland.  Our 90-minute webinar will highlight the significant differences from the 2009 to 2012 Edition, as well as changes made by the State during the adoption process.  The webinar will not discuss the changes related to NFPA 101 which was the topic of the March 4, 2013 webinar. Click for additional information.

Click to register for the webinar.

March 2013
On March 4th, Koffel Associates, Inc. will be offering a free webinar on the Overview of 2012 Edition NFPA 101 with Maryland Amendments. Join Andy Schneider as he discusses significant differences from the 2009 to 2012 Edition, for all occupancies, as well as changes made by the State during the adoption process. Click for additional information.

February 2013
Risk Assessment in the NFPA codes and standards: a SUPDET presenter weighs in. Click to see Mike Hazell's Blog on Bill Koffel's comments.

January 2013
FCIA Technical Alert - Sealants in contact with Copper Piping. Click to see the Copper Development Association's recommendations about sealants coming in direct contact with copper piping and tubing.