UK fire safety legislation requires that 'adequate' means for
the detection and warning of fire must be provided in all workplaces and
other 'non-domestic' properties.
In small buildings where there are no sub-divisions and exits
can be easily seen, it may be appropriate to simply rely on people to
'detect' a fire and give a verbal warning to others. This would also depend
on ambient noise levels being low enough to ensure that everyone could hear
the verbal warning. Where the building is more complicated, such as where
rooms lead off a corridor, or there is more than one floor, then some form
of manual or electrical fire alarm would be more appropriate. Even so, it
may still be acceptable to rely on people themselves to 'detect' a fire, and
activate the fire alarm manually. Apart from a few specific scenarios, or
where legislation dictates, it is usually only where people are sleeping
that automatic fire detection is necessary.
There are many different types of fire alarms for different
scenarios, and it is wise to take professional advice on the type of system
required. There are many instances where automatic all singing and dancing
systems are installed where it is not necessary and quite often a waste of
money, not only on the installation, but on ongoing maintenance and testing.
DESIGN, INSTALLATION & COMMISSIONING
Designing a fire alarm system is a specialist job and should
be carried out by a competent person, with close attention to the
prevention of false alarms. Guidance on fire alarms can be found in
British Standard 5839-1:2008
Installation can (in theory) be carried by any competent electrical
contractor, who should stick strictly to the design specification, however
many electrical contractors simply do not understand fire alarms and may
well install a system incorrectly.
Following installation, the
system should be commissioned by a competent fire alarm engineer.
On completion, the purchaser should be provided with
certificates for each of the 3 stages above.
We can provide for design, installation and commissioning of
fire alarm systems, along with fire alarm components.
Fire alarm systems should be regularly
MAINTAINED & TESTED
A 'periodic inspection and test' should be carried out by a
competent fire alarm contractor at periods of no longer than six months; and
The user should carry out regular ongoing testing (download
FOR FIRE ALARM DESIGN, SUPPLY, MAINTENANCE OR SERVICING
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