Performance-Based (PB) Plan Approval Process

Alternative Fire Safety Solution with Life Safety Criteria, Cost-effectiveness & Flexibility

Prior to any performance-based solution approach, any non-compliance is usually submitted through the waiver application. In return, the fire authority may propose or recommend the non-compliance to be submitted through the performance-based plan submission.


The key stakeholders involved in the performance-based plan submission process include:

  • Building Owner / Developer
  • Qualified Persons (QP)
  • Fire Safety Engineer (FSE)
  • Peer Reviewer (PR)
  • Registered Inspector (RI)
  • Authority Having Jurisdiction / Singapore Civil Defence Force (SCDF)


Find out more >> SCDF Performance-Based Plan Approval Process



The outline of the plan submission process involving performance-based solutions is as follows:

1. Engagement of Fire Safety Engineer (FSE)

The building owner is required to engage a FSE for the preparation of performance-based solutions as part of the plan submission to the fire authority (SCDF).


2. Preparation of Fire Safety Engineering Design Brief (FEDB)

The FSE is responsible to prepare a preliminary report – Fire Safety Engineering Design Brief (FEDB) to be submitted to SCDF for in-principle agreement.

Note: The FSE should consult the Authority Having Jurisdiction (SCDF) on his FEDB proposal before formal submission.


3. Assessment of FEDB, FER and O&M by Authority Having Jurisdiction (SCDF)

The FEDB will be assessed by SCDF. Upon the in-principle agreement of the FEDB, the FSE can proceed to prepare the following documents:

  • Revised FEDB, if conditional agreement is given
  • Fire Safety Engineering Report (FER)
  • Building Operations & Maintenance Manual (O&M)

In the event that the FEDB is rejected, the FSE will have to amend his FEDB accordingly and re-submit for SCDF’s consideration and agreement.


4. Engagement of Peer Reviewer (PR)

After the preparation of the FEDB, FER and O&M by the FSE, the owner is required to engage a Peer Reviewer (who is also a FSE) to assess the above documents & ensure that the performance-based solution is incorporated in the Building and M&E plans. The Peer Reviewer shall produce a report of his assessment in a Peer Reviewer’s report.


5. Plans Submission by QP

The Project QP is responsible for collating all the above documents for plans submission to SCDF. Plans containing the performance-based solution shall be endorsed by both the QP and the FSE. QPs who are also qualified FSEs may endorse in the capacity of both the QP and the FSE.


6. Audit Checks by SCDF

The submitted plans and documents may be selected by SCDF for subsequent audit checks.


7. Engagement of Registered Inspector (RI)

Upon completion of the fire safety works, the owner is required to engage a Registered Inspector who is an FSE to inspect the performance-based aspects of the fire safety works.


8. Approval Processing Duration

As performance-based solutions are usually unique and complex in nature, the time required to attain full approval can be excessively longer in comparison with prescriptive solutions. It is highly recommended to apply performance-based solutions at the earliest stage of the building design development.

Documentation Requirements


(a) Fire Safety Engineering Design Brief (FEDB)

Fire Safety Engineering Design Brief is a document summarizing agreed performance criteria and methods that will be used to evaluate trial designs.

Generally, the FEDB would define:

  • Project scope
  • Stakeholders
  • Design Objectives
  • Performance Criteria
  • Design Fire Scenarios
  • Trial Designs

(b) Fire Safety Engineering Report (FER)

The fire Safety Engineering Report generally covers:

  • Expected hazards
  • Risks
  • System performance over the building life
  • Commissioning and maintenance requirements

(c) Building Operations and Maintenace Manual (O&M)

The O&M Manual should contain:

  • Procedure for building operator to ensure that the fire safety system of the PB solution are in good operating conditions at all times.
  • Detailed instructions to the building operator on the restrictions imposed on the building, arising from the FSE’s assumptions during design and analysis. Such as:
    • critical fire load
    • building use and occupancy
    • reliability & Maintenance programs.


Note: The O&M manual is to educate the tenants and occupants about the limitations and their responsibilites, to maintain the building as well as to serve as a guide for future additions and alterations of the building.

(d) Peer Reviewer’s Report

The Peer Reviewer’s Report should present his assessment of the FEDB, FER and O&M in terms of completeness and adequacy including:

  • An independent study of the proposed design solutions for the purpose of evaluating and determining its acceptability. Studies may include a separate fire or evacuation modelling using a different software.
  • Objective comments on the assumptions, fire safety engineering approaches, methodologies, design parameters and software tools proposed by the FSE.


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