We expect the buildings in which we spend so much of our time to reflect our desired quality of life. We want our schools to provide a safe environment for our children, and our hospitals to protect the vulnerable. We want our offices and apartments to be comfortable and safe. Increasingly, Europeans also want their building stock to be energy efficient and not to burden the world with unnecessary greenhouse gas emissions.
But whilst comfort, security and environmental awareness have all been given their rightful position high up the list of priorities for the EU, too often we give an alarming low level of attention to one of the oldest and most menacing threats to any building: FIRE.