This book is part of a small but growing body of scientific literature that examines the human experience in fire. Some of the first investigations were conducted in the United Kingdom during the early 1970s. These and other studies were directed, by the most part, by psychologists. Consequently, they tended to address perceptions, attitudes, and the behavior of individuals. Also they focused primarily on responses to fires in public structures such as hospitals and nursing homes. The present work differs from those earlier efforts in two ways. First, the research and analysis has been performed by an interdisciplinary team of social scientists and engineers. In developing their analytic framework, team members concentrated heavily upon organizational factors. This research, then, complements the earlier work of psychologists by adding a group perspective. Second, the sites studied are large underground coal mines. Thus, an environmental consideration is introduced, because coal mine fires are qualitatively different from structural blazes.