Collaboration is key in spreading the word on fire safety

Following the news of our partnership with the Fire Science Show – a weekly podcast connecting fire researchers and practitioners with fire engineers – we’ve invited the podcast’s founder Wojciech Wegryznski to tell us more about his mission.

In June 2021 my dreams came true when my long-time ambition to create a podcast on fire science became a reality. I did not even know if the fire community wants or needs a podcast, but I was sure that there would be people who will enjoy being a part of discussions between industry leaders. I chose to record 20 episodes and see where that goes. Today, episode 84 marks a beginning of a new era for the show – with the new partnership with OFR this hobby project has matured to be a professional resource.

I’ve worked in the field of fire for some time starting out as a CFD engineer a decade ago in 2010 and completed a PhD analysing the impact of smoke in retail buildings. At some point, I had to develop as a wind engineer, which gave me a chance to combine the worlds of computational wind and fire. This got me to the ‘big league’ of fire science with the 2019 NFPA Bigglestone Award. I got to do hot-smoke tests in more than 150 real buildings and tunnels and burnt down countless structures (for science!) while having a real blast doing this. Fire safety is a passion of mine and something that I’m fortunate to have developed my career in.

I’m currently based in Poland as a professor with the Building Research Institute (ITB) in Warsaw. My ‘superpower’ is to keep learning and I am fascinated in what other people in our sector have to say. That’s what compelled me to launch this podcast 18 months ago; I want to hear from experts about the origins of our models, why we do things the way we do today – and how we plan to keep buildings safe and underpinned by science in the future.

The podcast has helped me tap into that, opening many doors and allowing me to meet some incredible people who have done outstanding work in fire science. I’ve learnt that there are no unrelated topics in fire, from smouldering peat fires to fires in ISS – you always learn something new and relatable with every talk. It’s humbling to hear their stories and their expertise, but as our podcast grows it ensures there’s a platform to help inspire other engineers. I’ve also been passionate in giving a platform to younger engineers, those studying or are up and coming in the sector as I want all voices to be heard. 

For 2023 we have big plans to take the podcast to the next level and I want to reach more audiences in more countries – our new partnership with OFR Consultants will really help that as we share our networks and expertise to expand the conversation.

I’m so grateful and honoured that OFR has chosen to be a part of my platform and I am very excited to work together in producing new content that will help all fire science professionals across the world this year. I’ve been told it has become ‘a critical CPD’ – I will make sure that this value is being delivered to the engineers across the world, who have a spare hour on Wednesday to hear an interesting talk about fire.

Listen to all episodes of the Fire Science Show podcast here.


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