Fire, Vol. 6, Pages 213: A Critical Review of Fire Tests and Safety Systems in Road Tunnels: Limitations and Open Points
Fire tests are used to determine whether fire protection products meet the minimum performance criteria set out in codes and legislation, as well as to certify these products. Experimental large-scale fires are used to test the performance of safety systems in tunnels, which are confined environments with a high probability of accidents and significant consequences due to the evolution of the event and whether there is the capability of counteracting it by safety measures. In this study, we conducted a systematic literature review following PRISMA guidelines. We searched the Scopus and Web of Science databases for publications from 2013 to 2022, resulting in a selection of 72 articles. An analysis was conducted on the following main topics: tunnel fires, fire characteristics (measured variables, spread, and smoke), model-scale tests, automatic shutdown systems, and ventilation solutions. One of the most important contributions of this study is the suggestion that fire tests represent an effective method not only to prevent fire events in tunnels but also to ensure the resilience of the infrastructure. Based on this state-of-the-art literature review, future tunnels could be designed by linking new smart technology and artificial intelligence to create interactive and high-performing safety systems.
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