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Sarah Hooton

Principal Associate
Investigator Sarah Hooton

Sarah is a specialist in fire engineering and fire safety provisions in buildings – investigating design and construction defects and also where a fire has occurred, how the design or construction of fire safety provisions may have impacted upon fire spread.

Sarah graduated with a first class degree in Civil Engineering, specialising in Structural Engineering from the University of Adelaide in 2001. She has since developed a career in design and construction with over 15 years’ experience at Ove Arup & Partners in their London, Birmingham and Hong Kong offices.

Commencing as a Bridge Engineer in their Birmingham branch, Sarah worked on the design of a variety of civil engineering projects including the M42 widening scheme and the design of the East London Line Project (now known as part of the London Overground railway).  On the East London Line Project, she was seconded as Site Engineer for Transport for London, assisting in the management of health and safety, quality and programme.

Upon returning to design consultancy in London, Sarah joined the fire engineering team, following an interest in fire safety design, where she developed fire strategies for low and high-rise residential buildings, commercial, railway stations, bus garages, museums and sports stadia; including the development of the London 2012 Velodrome fire strategy. Sarah’s work as a fire safety consultant included advice across design, construction and operation, and she gained extensive experience in assisting architects to obtain approval for Part B (Fire Safety) of the Building Regulations.

From 2010-2011, Sarah worked in Ove Arup & Partners’ Hong Kong office, gaining valuable experience in the Hong Kong regulations and approach to fire safety; including design and management of retail, office, residential, railway and racecourse buildings.

In 2015, Sarah’s skills and experience as a Fire Engineer were accredited with the award of Chartered Engineer through the Institution of Fire Engineers.

Since joining Hawkins’ London office in 2018, Sarah has investigated the design, construction and management of fire safety provisions in a range of buildings including both low and high-rise residential, hotels, leisure and shopping centres.  This has included consideration of the adequacy of the design and construction of fire-resisting walls, fire doors, fire-stopping and cavity barriers and also compliance with the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 during occupation.  Where relevant, this included consideration of the adequacy of the fire engineering advice provided by specialist fire safety consultants.  In cases where a fire had occurred, Sarah has identified aspects of the design and/or construction that impacted upon fire spread.


BEng (Hons) Civil Engineering – University of Adelaide
CEng Chartered Engineer
MIFireE Member of the Institution of Fire Engineers
Level 3 Qualification in Passive Fire Protection

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