An interview with Mr. Rod McBride : Stephen Grubits & Associates Sdn Bhd

Written by: Fleming. Team

Fire Safety Asia 2016 conference, happening between 24th & 35th of February, 2016 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

An interview have been conducted with Mr. Rod McBride: Stephen Grubits & Associates Sdn Bhd on different viewpoints of fire safety in Asia. Below is the full interview.

A brief background about Mr. Rod Mcbride:

Rod McBride is the Managing Director of Stephen Grubits & Associates Sdn Bhd (SGA Sdn Bhd) Malaysia. SGA Sdn Bhd commenced undertaking highprofile projects in Malaysia in 1996 and Rod has been permanently based in Kuala Lumpur for over 22 years. In addition to developing and undertaking Fire Engineering work in Malaysia, Rod has endeavored to expand SGA’s network into other Asia countries such as China, Philippines and Singapore. Developing the disciplines of Fire Engineering and Risk Assessment into Malaysia andother Asia countries has presented some enormous challenges. Dealing with local understanding and perceptions on fire safety took sustained perseverance particularly with Fire Authorities, Developers and local consultants. SGA Sdn Bhd has now taken its place as a leading and highly respected Fire Engineering consultancy in Malaysia capable of undertaking and solving the most difficult technical fire safety challenges presented.

What are the top 3 challenges that your industry professionals face when it comes to creating and maintaining a sound fire safety plan?

The top 3 challenges are :

  • Commitment by Building Owners, Design Consultants and Building Management to follow principles of fire safety design.
  • Professional, ethical, well trained and experienced fire safety technologists, fire engineers and fire consultants working and entering the field of fire safety as a life-long career.
  • Improving maintenance and auditing of fire safety, passive and active, systems, undertaken by experienced fire consultants.

Could you give us examples of how currently your company has implemented a fire safety program and its importance?

Fire incidents are usually documented and statistics produced by Fire Authorities and Insurance Companies. From experience the main causes of fire are electrical, negligence of installation of utility services, unattended cooking related fires, industrial accidents and arson.

Important Fire Safety Programmes are :-

(a) Management In Use Plans for Shopping Centres and other facilities. These comprise of emergency response planning, standard operating procedures, fire team formation and reporting, quality management.

(b) Industrial Fire Design for high hazard use and storage of chemicals, with production lines, heating reactions, boilers and related high hazard processes.

What role does the government play in helping organizations build an efficient and effective fire safety plan?

Government plays an important role through such Authorities as Bomba, DOSH and DOE. Regulatory compliance, auditing, certification and enforcement are of critical importance.

Which members of the organization are crucial to sustaining fire safety programs?

All members of the organization must be involved in fire safety, namely;

Board of Directors

+ MD / CEO

Senior Management

Main Staff Body

Maintenance / Cleaners

Auxiliary staff

Any other points you would like to highlight about fire safety in Asia?

As a fire safety technologist and consultant with 31 years experiences, (24 years in Asia) the following main observation are made;

  • Poor culture/education on fire safety
  • Little awareness of risk
  • Poor maintenance of systems
  • Attitude of money wasted + time wasted
  • Exemptions International exposure
  • Lack of understanding to accept new science Fire Engineering
  • Finger pointing when something goes wrong or fire incident
  • Conflict of interest with professional consultants

In-case you'd like to ask any questions related to fire safety in Asia, or for any details regarding our conference, please contact Aya Azeez: aya.azeez@fleming.events for further details. Or give us a call on +603 2027 4767.


Energy Team

Aya Azeez – Marketing/ Copywriter.