An IoT-Based Smart Fire Evacuation System for Hospitals and Elderly Homes

Project: Research

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By mid-21st century, the elderly population in Hong Kong will exceed 35%. Aging population is the world’s emerging problem. Medical and elderly care services will be in great demand. Rapid urbanization leads to densely populated cities with limited space for constructing elderly homes and hospitals and complex high-rise hospitals appear in many Asia region. In view of the complexity of high-rise hospitals, fire safety will be a significant concern of building designers and facility management. It is unlikely that zero fire risk situation will exist and safe evacuation of users in the buildings will become a means of mitigation. Complex building structures, diversified combustibles, large variety of chemicals and drugs, complex equipment and medical treatment facilities, multiple usage and a large number of patients, clinic staff, visitors make fire protection and evacuation process complicated. It is well recognized that evacuation process and the associated fire protection strategy for hospitals should not be the same as general type buildings as it involves wheelchair and bed-lying patients. Moreover, in fire incidents, the dynamic and sometimes unpredictable process of fire and smoke development may cause evacuation process more complicated.In the past decades, there existed many hospitals or elderly homes fire disasters with large fatality. While expecting the construction of more large and complex hospitals and elderly homes, we should improve fire protection for hospitals and elderly homes, especially safe evacuation, by integrating latest technology. With the advancement of computer technology, the internet of things (IoT) system has nowadays been widely developed for equipment, objects and people that are provided with unique identifiers for collecting and sharing data to transfer over internet for control and management with built-in intelligence. Such system can effectively identify the location and needs of each patient that can support safe process. The aim of this project is to develop a smart safe evacuation system based on IoT for hospitals and elderly homes. Building Information Modeling (BIM) with building and facilities information will serve as a platform to integrate the information concerning objects, drugs, sensors, patients and medical staff. Data transmission over internet will be dynamically managed. The IoT-based safe evacuation system for hospitals and elderly homes will be established to control the evacuation process by guiding occupants to escape through safe routes, medical staff to assist limited mobility patients to escape by elevators or other mechanical means and rescue and firefighting personnel to take appropriate actions. 


Project number9042997
Grant typeGRF
StatusNot started
Effective start/end date1/01/21 → …