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Briefly summarized: The DIN 18009-2

The goal of fire protection is the safety of people in buildings. An evacuation concept must be optimally adapted to the individual conditions on site. For this purpose, engineering methods are used, e.g. evacuation simulations, which virtually test the emergency case and calculate evacuation courses.

Evacuation simulations are used in particular when previous laws and standards do not offer a solution, e.g. in the case of deviations from the state building code or special building regulations, or when facilities are to be optimized in terms of fire protection.

In order to standardize these calculations in the future and to elevate them to the status of a recognized rule of technology, the procedure for evacuation simulations is laid down in DIN 18009-2. It builds on DIN 18009-1, in which the various engineering methods have already been set out.


How does the German Institute for Standardization (DIN) proceed?

"Standards are developed by those who later apply them. To ensure that the market accepts the standards, broad participation, transparency and consensus are basic principles at DIN." (www.din.de/de/ueber-normen-und-standards/basiswissen)

Series of standards DIN 18009 Fire safety engineering

The specifications in fire protection in Germany are very strict, and the rules and specifications are correspondingly extensive. The need for this has been demonstrated time and again - from the fire at Düsseldorf Airport in the 1990s to the Grenfell Tower accident. In addition to the requirements of the state-specific building codes, more and more standards are being developed to provide proof of protection.

The aim of standardization within the framework of a DIN is to ensure that minimum technical requirements are met and comparable. For fire protection, DIN 18009 summarizes fire protection engineering methods as generally accepted rules of technology. Here, it is standardized how alternative proofs for the fire protection proof can be provided, e.g. the comparison between the necessary and the maximum available evacuation time (RSET vs. ASET) or the procedure for the proof of fire resistance duration of building components.


What is DIN 18009-2 on evacuation simulations all about?

The standard is now extended by a second part on evacuation calculations and defines the procedure for a performance-based verification: Based on the problem, relevant evacuation scenarios are defined and the relevant protection targets are specified. These are evaluated against agreed performance criteria. The most common criteria include clearance time and analysis of congestion, e.g., congestion time or congestion size.

Depending on which performance criteria need to be evaluated, different models of evacuation calculation are recommended. A distinction is made between pedestrian flow simulations, flow models or hand calculation methods. Microscopic, space-continuous models, such as our crowd:it software, are the most informative, as they fulfill all requirements for the evaluation and visualization of evacuation scenarios.


What is the purpose of evacuation simulations?

With an evacuation simulation the following questions can be answered:

  • Where are neuralgic points, bottlenecks and bottlenecks?
  • How long do traffic jams last? How do they expand?
  • Which organizational or constructional measures improve the evacuation process?

The advantage of simulations over other methods: The visual processing in the form of videos makes bottlenecks and congestion visible and thus comprehensible for all those involved.

Procedure for DIN 18009-2

The procedure is as follows: the protection goals and their specific criteria are determined; ideally, these are defined together with the examining authority. The evacuation calculations are analyzed and evaluated with regard to these criteria (see What for evacuation simulations). If the protection goals and their performance criteria are met, the planning can be released. If this is not the case, the planning must be revised and the analysis performed again. This can ensure that all persons can leave the building in a desired time.


Evacuation simulations according to RiMEA

"Computer-aided analysis of autonomous person movements towards the safe location, where each agent (person modeled in the computer) performs individual movements based on individual parameters, capabilities and/or behavioral settings based on computer-aided algorithms.

NOTE: In contrast to flow computations (e.g., Predtetschenski & Milinski), which treat person flows as fluid flows (= macroscopic), microscopic escape analysis represents the movement of each individual person. Thereby, each person has individual properties that characterize their behavior. Microscopic escape analysis provides information on total escape time as well as locations and times of jams."

Further information

Are standards mandatory?

The application of DIN standards is basically voluntary. Standards only become binding when they become the content of contracts or when legislators make their observance mandatory.

What is in store for me?

Not every building will have to be simulated in the future. In certain cases, however, an evacuation simulation may be required by the authorities and recognized as proof.

When will it come into effect?

Probably at the beginning of 2022. The objection procedure ended on 21.09.2021.

Literature and further links

Feuertrutz: Akzeptanz von Ingenieurmethoden Teil 1 und Teil 2 
Brandschutzkongress 2016: BFT Cognos GmbH: Akzeptanz von Brandschutzingenieurmethoden
BTF Cognos GmbH: Brandschutzingenieurmehtoden - praktische Anwendung der DIN 18009
vfdb: Leitfaden Ingenieurmethoden des Brandschutzes
RiMEA: Richtlinie für Mikroskopische Entfluchtungsanalysen
Seyfried, A.; Jäger, G.; Kitzlinger, M.; Schröder, B.: Normierung von Personenstromsimulationen in DIN 18009-2; Braunschweiger Brandschutz-Tage 2015. Tagungsband