The 7th International Symposium on Tunnel Safety and Security (ISTSS) was held March 16-18 in Montreal, Canada, and, organizers say, was a great success. There were over 200 delegates from 25 different nations from all over world. The symposium had nearly 60 oral presentations given by various internationally recognized experts in the field. All the papers, posters and presentations can be obtained or ordered from the ISTSS web page [www.istss.se].
The symposium was organized by SP in co-operation with MTQ Ministère des Transports du Québec, which arranged also technical visits to some of the most important infrastructures in Montreal.
Numerous examples of the latest performed research and large infrastructure projects were given at the symposium. The symposium clearly shows the variation in the engineering challenges that designers are facing today. The focus is much on technical aspects of the problem with fire and explosion risks in underground constructions, but social factors and management challenges were also presented and discussed.
The symposium was divided into different sessions from emergency management to ventilation and active or passive fire protection. The presenters were asked questions and at the end of the conference conclusions and summary of the symposium were given. It was clear that participants appreciated the location and the symposium facility, which was excellent, but there were some requests that the symposium should include more practical aspects in the future.
During the symposium some awards were presented. The ISTSS 2016 Achievement Award was given to Dr. Graham Atkinson for his pioneering work on critical velocity. The best paper and poster awards were also handed out. It was announced that 15 papers will be selected and sent to Fire Safety Journal for a peer-review process. These articles will constitute the material for a special issue on tunnel fires.
The next ISTSS symposium will be held in SPs home town Borås, on the west coast of Sweden, March 14-16, 2018.