Tall building fire safety
North-east-based fire systems manufacturer, Advanced reaches a milestone in the construction and refit of its new £2M headquarters. As a pioneer in the design, development and manufacture of commercial fire detection systems, Advanced employs over 180 staff and services over sixty countries from bases in the UK, US, India and Dubai. The firm’s relocation from its existing four sites in Cramlington to one 48,000 sq. ft base in Balliol Business Park, Longbenton will allow the business...
Patol will be returning to the Firex International exhibition to demonstrate its extensive capabilities in industrial fire protection. The focus on stand FX650 will be one of the more recent additions to Patol’s product range - the Fire Thermal Infrared (FireTIR) detection system. The system features fixed infrared cameras connected to a user-friendly software interface through which the surface temperatures of the area being protected are monitored in real time. Camera Lens Cleaning Hi...
Isover, a manufacturer and supplier of innovative insulation solutions, will be showcasing its U Protect passive fire protection range for HVAC applications at this year’s FIREX International 2019 on stand FX110. A critical risk to address when designing a building is the potential spread of fire within HVAC systems from one compartment to another. As such, at this year’s FIREX International, Isover will be focusing on its U Protect system, which offers passive fire protection for c...
This year from the 16th – 17th of April, the Landmark Centre in Lagos, Nigeria hosted the ninth edition of Securex West Africa. Over two bustling days of business, more than 2,300 professionals from across the Security, Fire and Safety industry crossed the threshold to witness key technology advancements, market trends and do business. Among the dignitaries to open the exhibition and conference this year was ACP Gbolahan Odugbemi, Assistant Commissioner of Police for Lagos State represent...
FIREX International, 18-20 June, 2019, at ExCel London will feature 25-plus hours of seminars and panel discussions along with an exhibition of 130-plus manufacturers showcasing products for fire safety. A Sprinkler and Suppression Presentation Area will highlight the important category. Also, for the fourth year, the International Tall Building Fire Safety Conference will take place alongside FIREX International. There will be 18,000 fire prevention and protection professionals from over 70 c...
From students to policymakers, safety professionals at all levels will gather at the NFPA Conference & Expo, June 17-20, at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center in San Antonio, Texas. The multi-faceted event will include a technical session addressing standards development, a product and services exhibition, and education sessions about a range of topics, some of them relating to the fire service. The NFPA Technical Meeting, also known as ‘Tech Session,’ is an important eleme...
The Fire Safety Event 2019 and its co-located shows have enjoyed the most successful event to date welcoming over 11,733 visitors across three days at the NEC, Birmingham. The Fire Safety Event has firmly cemented itself as the fastest growing exhibition in the UK for the industry, providing a platform that ensures its visitors are equipped to maintain the highest fire safety standards. High-profile incidents in recent years have put a spotlight on the industry and The Fire Safety Event recognizes it has a role to provide ongoing education on new standards and legislation, best practice advice and help support the industry by providing them access to companies and products that will better prepare them. Events Exceptional Growth The Fire Safety Event has seen phenomenal growth since its inception in 2017 The Fire Safety Event has seen phenomenal growth since its inception in 2017. The event, which began with 16 exhibitors this year boasted over 50 and remains a firm favorite with many exhibitors who have been with the show from day one. Liam Hunt of Safety Technology International enthused, “It was refreshing to meet so many installers and end users who use, trust, and recommend our products – the Fire Safety Event provides a platform to target new faces within the fire and security industry. A trio of crowded days highlights a marked increase in footfall on previous years, STI look forward to making it four shows out of four in 2020.” Over 75% of 2019 exhibitors have already secured their space for 2020, promising that the events exceptional growth will continue into 2020 - and beyond. Fire Industry Exhibition The high caliber, industry-leading exhibitor line up for this year included Advanced, asecos, c-Tec, Checkmate Fire Solutions Ltd, FFE Limited, Fike Safety Technology Ltd, FireClass, FirePro UK Ltd, Kingspan, Klaxon, Turner & Townsend, WAGNER UK Ltd, and Xtralis UK Ltd. Ian Rose, Director of Global Fire Equipment (UK) commented, “The Fire Safety Event is fast becoming the key fire industry exhibition to attend for both visitors and exhibitors alike. With its being held central to the UK at NEC it is accessible to all. Global Fire Equipment will be returning for the 2020 show”. The event received high praise from both exhibitors and visitors, with feedback attesting that, “For all things connected to fire safety the fire safety event is the place to be.” Higher Profile Speakers The Fire Safety Event is an interesting and enjoyable experience for all those involved with an interest in fire" The Fire Safety Event’s intent is to break the mold for such exhibitions, aiming to challenge and educate audiences by offering creative, varied and dynamic features alongside its world-class exhibitor line up. Features which they hope visitors will continue to remember off-site. The exhibition achieved a fine balance of features, seminars and exhibitors, with another visitor noting: “The Fire Safety Event is an interesting and enjoyable experience for all those involved with an interest in fire. It covers all aspects; I will definitely be back next year.” As it grows in stature, it’s not only new exhibitors that are attracted to The Fire Safety Event, but higher profile speakers. Two impressive keynote speakers for this year being Neil O’Connor CBE, Director of the Building Safety Programme at the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) and former NYC Fire Commissioner Sal Cassano. Hosting Contemporary Seminars With 67% of visitors also pre-registering for seminars, The Fire Safety Event is shown to fulfill the desire within the industry for the latest product innovations, best practice, and advice on legislative changes. Particularly noteworthy for this year were the numerous specialist demonstrations on offer - such as the live burn tests from Kingspan and asecos’ DSEAR with a Bang Demo Area. This content helps translate the importance of fire safety into real world scenarios and has made a memorable impact on this year’s visitors. Brand new for 2019 and another great success was the Tall Building Fire Protection Area hosted by the Association for Specialist Fire Protection (ASFP). This feature brought together expert speakers from across the industry, hosting highly contemporary seminars. Business Protection The event was really helpful in getting what I needed all under one roof at the same time - Fire, Security & Health and Safety" Throughout the full 3-day duration, this Protection Area was a hive of activity across all the ASFP’s varied sessions. Visitors recognize the value of the concurrent seminar programme, commenting: “I would highly recommend this event to anyone within the field of Health and Safety, Fire Safety or Compliance.” The Fire Safety Event truly recognizes the importance of providing guidance and insight through such event features and they will continue to be developed in the 2020 edition. WBE (Part of Nineteen Group), owner of The Fire Safety Event saw impressive growth across the entire series, covering the three co-located exhibitions - The Security Event, The Facilities Event and The Health & Safety Event. One visitor commented, “The event was really helpful in getting what I needed all under one roof at the same time - Fire, Security & Health and Safety.” With such a comprehensive offering, The Fire Safety Event and its co-located events are a must attend for anyone who has an interest in improving life safety, business continuity and business protection within their organization.
Orange Fire Protection, which provides fire sprinklers, extinguishers and alarms for commercial and residential properties, relocates to new, 6,500 sq ft offices at Queens Court in Wakefield. The business, which launched in 2016 with eight staff, has more than tripled in size over three years and now has a workforce of 26. A heightened awareness of fire safety in the wake of the Grenfell Tower disaster in 2017 has led to a number of new contracts for the business. High-End Residential Development Orange Fire Protection director Lewis Klimo said: “The fire protection industry is in much higher demand at present and we are receiving large numbers of enquiries about the services we offer, including high-tech sprinkler systems and water mist fire suppression systems, for various building types.” Only last month we were awarded contracts to install our systems in three further projects" “Only last month we were awarded contracts to install our systems in three further projects, including designing and installing a wet and dry riser system to protect a new 18-storey high-end residential development in London.” Making Buildings Safer Property agent Eddisons acted on behalf of Harrogate-based landlord Westcourt Group to secure the new Queens Court offices for Orange Fire protection. Eddisons head of agency Steven Jones said: “Orange Fire Protection works in the crucially important area of making our buildings safer and it was rewarding to be able to help them relocate to great new premises that will accommodate their growing team.” He added: “A shortage of quality office space is pushing up rents in Wakefield and there are certainly signs that demand for premium space is growing in the town.” Eddisons is a multi-disciplinary firm of chartered surveyors. Established in 1844, it operates across the UK and has a head office in Leeds. Harvey Burns & Co acted as joint agent on the deal.
Western Business Events (WBE), host of The Fire Safety Event, is in the final week of preparations before it opens the doors at the NEC on 9th-11th April for its largest edition yet. Now in its third year, The Fire Safety Event has seen phenomenal growth since its inception in 2016. The event, which began with 16 exhibitors now boasts over 50 exhibitors for its 2019 edition. High-profile incidents in recent years have put a spotlight on the industry and The Fire Safety Event recognises it has a role to provide ongoing education on new standards and legislation, best practice advice and help support the industry by providing them access to companies and products that will better prepare them. Tall Building Fire Protection The Fire Safety Event also features a Tall Building Fire Protection Area hosted by the Association for Specialist Fire Protection (ASFP) The Fire Safety Event will provide a platform, which ensures its visitors are equipped to maintain the highest fire safety standards and will welcome back many of its exhibitors from previous years, cementing its place as the must-visit exhibition in the fire safety calendar. As it grows in stature, The Fire Safety Event has been able to attract a higher profile speaker line up, with Dame Judith Hackitt and former NYC Fire Commissioner Sal Cassano as two of the keynote speakers this year. New for 2019, The Fire Safety Event also features a Tall Building Fire Protection Area hosted by the Association for Specialist Fire Protection (ASFP). Bringing together expert speakers from across the industry, the seminars will focus on the highly contemporary issue that has drawn media attention in recent years following high profile incidents such as the Grenfell Tower fire and a series of tall building fires in Dubai. Chemical Storage Cabinets Alongside its comprehensive seminar program and other event features, The Fire Safety Event 2019 will feature dynamic, specialist demonstrations from many of its exhibitors, aiming to challenge and educate audiences. Safety storage cabinet manufacturer asecos (stand FS220) will be helping demonstrate the robustness of their chemical storage cabinets – highlighting the importance of safe secure units, particularly around hazardous materials. FirePro UK, will be bringing along their mobile showroom facility (stand FS140) and Kingspan on stand FS180 will be hosting a live burn test on its insulated panel core, showcasing its performance in real world scenarios. The Fire Safety Event team believe that with a line-up of prominent, industry-leading companies and its dynamic, specialist content, the event is set to become the must-visit exhibition for the industry. Fire Safety Calendar We’ve added more elements which aim to challenge and educate audiences and hopefully ensure the event is so pivotal in the fire safety calendar" Event manager Rachel Godfrey comments: “We really value feedback and have taken on board what visitors say, as well as understanding exactly what our exhibitors have said worked for them in previous years. We’ve added more elements which aim to challenge and educate audiences and hopefully ensure the event is so pivotal in the fire safety calendar that visitors count down the days until our next show.” The exhibitor line-up includes – Advanced, AMBIENT SYSTEM, asecos Limited, Association For Specialist Fire Protection (ASFP), Asset Protection Group Ltd, BAFE, Bilco (UK) Limited, Checkmate Fire Solutions Ltd, C-TEC (Computionics) Ltd, Detector Testers, Draggon, The Electrical Contractors’ Association, EMS Radio Fire & Security Systems Limited, Envirograf, Eurotech Fire Systems Limited, EvacLite Ltd, FFE Limited, Fike Safety Technology Ltd. Business Protection Fire & Security Matters, Fire Protection Association, FireArrest, Fireclass, FIRECLOUD365, FirePro UK Ltd, Firetrace Ltd, Firetronics, Fire and Security Association, FSi Limited, Global Fire Equipment (UK), Global HSE Solutions, Honeywell - Advanced Detection, The Independent Fire Engineering & Distributors Association (IFEDA), Illumino Ignis Ltd, Jactone Products Ltd, Jelf, Kingspan Limited, Klaxon, Miller Knight, National Association of Healthcare Fire Officers (NAHFO), QDOS, Rack System S.r.l, Safety Technology International Ltd, Securiton, SSAIB, The Institute of Fire Safety Managers, The Institution of Fire Engineers, Topscan, Trail Services (uk) Ltd, Turner & Townsend, WAGNER UK Ltd and Xact Training. With such a comprehensive offering, The Fire Safety Event and its co-located events are a must attend for anyone who has an interest in improving life safety, business continuity and business protection within their organisation. The Fire Safety Event will take place on 9th-11th April at the NEC, Birmingham.
Global provider of intelligent fire systems, Advanced, has announced the release of their upgraded addressable carbon monoxide (CO) detector and low frequency sounder base. Designed to meet NFPA / UL low-frequency signalling standards for sleeping areas such as hospitals, hotels and multi-occupancy residential applications, the sounder base generates a 520 Hz tone to alert occupants of a fire or CO / life safety emergency. Advanced CO / 520 Hz Sounder Base Advanced’s high-performance CO / 520 Hz sounder base has been designed for easy replacement of the CO sensor module Advanced’s high-performance CO / 520 Hz sounder base has been designed for easy replacement of the CO sensor module, when end of service life is reached, without the need for replacing the entire sounder base or removing the base from the wall or ceiling. In addition to carbon monoxide monitoring, the device can accommodate any Advanced intelligent smoke, heat or multi-sensor detector. Complete with an on-board electrochemical sensor with three CO detection levels and offering both automatic and manual CO sensor testing, full system-wide sounder synchronization and a replaceable CO module with (approx) six-year lifespan, the sounder base offers superior performance, quality and ease-of-use. CO Sensor Module “We are delighted to add the CO / 520 Hz sounder base to our existing CO product offering. This creative device enables our customers to meet the increasing demands for CO and low frequency applications. For building owners, there is significant savings when the CO sensor module end of life event occurs. The CO sensor module is easily replaced without the need to replace the entire CO / 520 sounder base, or worse yet as with competitor’s products, the need to replace an entire, more expensive, CO/multi-sensor,” said Mike Troiano, CEO/President of Advanced. Advanced’s latest sounder base is fully compatible with its AX range of fire panels. The Axis AX fire panels are capable of activating single or multiple sounder bases in an area or throughout a facility when CO or fire is detected, providing the appropriate synchronised alert and evacuation tones, in compliance with local fire code requirements. Axis AX Fire Panels The CO / 520 sounder base is an updated component of Advanced’s Axis AX full range system In applications that require carbon monoxide life safety detection only, there is no need to install a fire detector, only a low-profile blank cover. The device connects to the fire panel’s two wire SLC circuit, and to power the sounder output, the device requires separate regulated 24VDC or can be powered from an Axis AX Notification Appliance Circuit (NAC). The CO / 520 sounder base is an updated component of Advanced’s Axis AX full range system. The Axis AX system includes easily networked panels, command centers and a range of peripherals, devices and interfaces that make it ideal to suit almost any fire and life safety application. Available across the Axis range of fire panels, PerfectSync automatically synchronizes audio, voice and strobe signals across Advanced’s Axis AX fire alarm networks dynamically, as conditions change. Synchronization of audio and visual signals across multiple notification zones, floors & areas, prevents confusion in an emergency situation and aids in meeting intelligibility standards. Intelligent Fire Systems Solutions Provider Advanced is a world leader in the development and manufacture of intelligent fire systems. The legendary performance, quality and ease of use of its products sees Advanced specified in locations all over the world, from single panel installations to large, multi-site networks. Advanced’s products include complete fire detection systems, multi-protocol fire panels, extinguishing control, fire paging and false alarm management systems.
Western Business Events (WBE), host of The Fire Safety Event, is pleased to release further developments on this year’s exciting seminar program. Now in it’s third year The Fire Safety Event features a powerful combination of education, networking and business support designed to help organisations maintain the very highest standards of fire safety management. Curated and delivered in partnership with Fire & Security Matters magazine, The Fire Safety Event free seminar program will cover and challenge critical topics in fire safety management today. Across two theatres, content will feature a mix of case study presentations, white paper presentations, thought-provoking debates and legal updates all presented by government officials, lawyers and industry professionals. Fire Safety Training Co-speaker Desmond Burke has acted as chair to the New York Building and Managers Association The Fire Safety Event are excited to welcome high profile speakers at this year’s event including former Chair of the UK Health and Safety Executive, Dame Judith Hackitt and Sal Cassano, a decorated firefighter who has gained worldwide recognition for his development of NYFD after the 9/11 attacks. In the wake of the Grenfell Tower Fire disaster, Dame Judith Hackitt will explore her independent review of Building Regulation and Fire Safety as well as provide an overview of key recommendations direct from the Government following this review. Alongside Desmond Burke of Firetronics, former Fire Commissioner Sal will discuss the enhanced fire protection, stringent fire safety training and building inspections which were implemented following the 9/11 disaster. Co-speaker Desmond Burke has acted as chair to the New York Building and Managers Association. Real-Life Prosecution Together the pair will review the effectiveness of good code enforcement programmes, how to develop the safest buildings, offer practical solutions to evacuate occupants during fire, bomb or chemical release attacks as well as exploring how New York rebuilt in the wake of 9/11. Many of the events exhibitors will also be hosting dynamic, specialist demonstrations and seminars. On 11th April 12.00-13.00 the audience will act as both judge and jury whilst Pinsent Mason conduct a live, engaging and dynamic mock trial based on a real-life prosecution under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005. Hosted by Advanced’s Neil Parker ‘Thinking compliance: Fire solutions for greater peace of mind’ will help visitors to understand their legal responsibilities, ensuring fire detection systems are not only reliable but compliant with the law. Tall Building Fire Protection As well as this and sponsoring the events Keynote Theatre, Advanced will be hosting regular live demonstrations on how to ensure your fire alarms are reliable. Following the spotlight placed on industry after the major Dubai skyscraper fires and the Grenfell Tower tragedy - Kingspan’s Tony Ryan aims to focus on reducing the risk of fires in cladding systems in the UK. Fire safety of insulated panels and facade systems’ will provide insight into how to ensure safe cladding systems are selected ‘Fire safety of insulated panels and facade systems’ will provide insight into how to ensure safe cladding systems are selected. Alongside this, Kingspan will also be demonstrating live burn tests on panels, helping show visitors first-hand the suitability and robustness of their cladding systems. Further addressing the challenges covered in Kingspan’s presentation, the Association for Specialist Fire Protection (ASFP) will be hosting a Tall building fire protection area at the Fire Safety Event, focusing on this highly contemporary issue that has drawn media attention in recent years. Improving Life Safety Bringing together expert speakers from across the industry, sessions will consider tall building fire safety, Common tall building fire safety concerns and Ensuring competency of installers. Speakers will discuss training and qualifications and best practice for compartmentation and the correct installation and maintenance of firestopping and fire doors. Co-located events at the NEC have on offer a range of seminars that are especially relevant to a fire safety audience, including ‘Digital Voice: the next step in the UK's digital transformation and how alarm signalling will be affected’, taking place on 10th April at The Security Event. Alongside a host of engaging speakers and demonstrations, visitors to The Fire Safety Event will be able to see the latest products and receive hands-on advice from 40+ major fire safety brands exhibiting. Co-located with The Security Event, The Health & Safety Event and The Facilities Event, this year’s exhibition is a must-attend for anyone who has a focus on improving life safety, business continuity and business protection for their organisation.
Fire departments from all over the world gathered at the Congress Centre Ulm (Germany) on Friday evening where for the sixth time in a row the Conrad Dietrich Magirus Award – also known as the ‘Oscar of the Firefighting Industry’ – was presented. The São Paulo Fire Department was delighted to take home the coveted award as ‘International Firefighting Team 2018’ for its firefighting operation in a high-rise. The top three international nominees also included the Prague FD, which entered its fire-fighting deployment at a historic hotel as well as the Mexico City FD, which was honoured for its work after an earthquake. Regularly Outstanding Performances The Volunteer Fire Department from Waltershausen received the award for its 100 km charity run The title ‘National Fire Department Team 2018’ was received by the Volunteer Fire Department from Treuenbrietzen (Germany) for its operation fighting the largest forest fire in Brandenburg’s history. The Special Prize for Social Engagement also went to a German team: the Volunteer Fire Department from Waltershausen received the award for its 100 km charity run. The winners’ courageous missions saw them fight off stiff competition from teams from all over the world and they were subsequently honoured at the awards ceremony in front of some 600 invited guests. “With the Conrad Dietrich Magirus Award, we not only show our respect for every single operation and thank every firefighter for their individual commitment, but also highlight the regularly outstanding performances of fire departments around the world bringing them to the attention of the public”, says Marc Diening, Magirus CEO, in his welcome speech. Providing Humanitarian Aid “This year’s competition has also seen outstanding performances – from firefighting to technical and social assistance to disaster relief – all of which are exemplary in demonstrating the daily importance of firefighters in our society.” The coveted Conrad Dietrich Magirus statues were presented this year by the German aid organization ‘humedica e.V.’ and ‘Team Hahn Racing’, five-time winner of the European Truck Racing Championships. Since 1979, humedica has provided humanitarian aid around the world, especially after major natural disasters such as earthquakes or tsunamis. Wolfgang Groß, who founded the organisation 40 years ago with his brother and who sponsored the awards together with medical emergency team member Daniel Warkentin, was impressed by the operations presented: “People were evacuated from burning houses; entire villages protected from fire. Teamwork can save lives – this evening, we’ve seen impressive cases of this. It is also something that we, too, see over and over again in our missions.” Perfectly Functioning Team Perfect teamwork is the distinguishing feature of the ‘International Firefighting Team of the Year 2018’ Teamwork is also the priority of the second sponsor of the evening. ‘Team Hahn Racing’ has won the European Truck Racing Championships five times. Since 2017, they have entered international truck racing competitions as the ‘Iveco Magirus Bulls’. “Navigating a 1,100-horsepower truck in extreme situations is only possible with a perfectly functioning team”, says driver Jochen Hahn. Together with his colleague Rijk Schuhmacher, he paid tribute during the evening to all of the fire department team members on stage. Perfect teamwork is the distinguishing feature of the ‘International Firefighting Team of the Year 2018’. On May 2018, a 25-storey high-rise in the middle of São Paulo went up in flames. Within seconds, the flames in the dilapidated building spread to two other buildings. Up to 150 squatters were living in the former building of the Federal Police. In a joint effort, 170 members of the São Paulo Fire Department fought to control the fire and bring all persons to safety. Fire Department Team As rescue operations in the building were underway, however, the building abruptly collapsed. With combined strength, the forces searched the debris and simultaneously fought the fire. The firefighters worked for nearly 300 hours; seven people lost their lives in the fire. With its submission, the São Paulo Fire Department prevailed against teams from all over world and was thus able to take home the coveted Conrad Dietrich Magirus Statue. In addition, a visit to the best-known fire brigade in the world, the Fire Department City of New York (FDNY), awaits the winners. This year, the Special Prize was also given at international level and was won by a fire department team from Germany. The athletic team of the Volunteer Fire Department from Waltershausen in Thuringia was awarded the ‘Special Prize for Social Engagement’ for its 100 km fire department charity run. Firefighting Training Course The Conrad Dietrich Magirus Award was again supported by renowned companies in the firefighting industry The athletes were able to donate € 14,500 to Paulinchen e.V. – an initiative for children with burn injuries. In addition to the coveted award, the athletic team won an individual firefighting training course with the Magirus Fire Fighter Academy. An expert jury comprising Paul Baxter, Commissioner Fire and Rescue New South Wales, Michel Bour, Secretary General of the World Firefighters Association CTIF, Danielle Cotton, London Fire Commissioner QFSM, Hermann Kollinger from the Austrian Fire Department magazine ‘Brennpunkt’ and Markus Görtler from Magirus chose the best applications which were then published online for the public to vote for. The entry that received the most votes from the jury and the online voters, was declared the winner. In 2018, the Conrad Dietrich Magirus Award was again supported by renowned companies in the firefighting industry. Emergency One (UK) Ltd., ENDRESS Elektrogerätebau, DÖNGES as well as LUKAS/VETTER/AWG who provided support during all phases of the competition – from the application announcement and submission process to the awards ceremony in Ulm.
Products for electrical systems that are installed into modern, complex buildings have to be fit-for-purpose for today’s challenging demands. With the background of numerous incidents still being felt by the fire performance industry, how is it to set the benchmarks for the future to make sure there is never another Lakanal House or another Grenfell? The long-term answer is for clearer guidance and legislation, if necessary, to enable the whole supply chain to make decisions which are compliant when choosing products. In the meantime, with the Grenfell inquiry projected to go on during 2019, what is the benchmark?The development of LSZH materials was accelerated following the King’s Cross Underground disaster in which 31 people died Cables With LSZH Materials We have standards through British Standards (BS) and testing regimes which cables should meet to validate that they meet these standards with approvals from various industry bodies including BASEC and LPCB. At AEI Cables, we have developed our Total Fire Solutions range of cables and accessories for all fire safety applications, incorporating Low Smoke Zero Halogen (LSZH) features. Traditional PVC cables which produce vast amounts of dense black smoke, toxic fumes and acid gas when exposed to fire, bring an added danger to people who may be caught in the fire. Cables which incorporate LSZH materials emit very little of these substances. In a real fire situation, the cables will enable the fire and rescue services to find and evacuate people and help to protect property Smoke And Noxious Gases Cause More Casualties The development of LSZH materials was accelerated following the King’s Cross Underground disaster in which 31 people died, many of them from toxic fumes. London Underground has banned the use of PVC cables as a result. The adoption of LSZH for cables and other materials is also endorsed by the Building Regulations themselves. According to Part B, referencing fire safety, it says clearly: “The primary danger associated with fire in its early stages is not flame but the smoke and noxious gases produced by the fire. They cause most of the casualties and may also obscure the way to escape routes and exits. Measures designed to provide safe means of escape must therefore provide appropriate arrangements to limit the rapid spread of smoke and fumes.” Helping Fire And Rescue Services The very latest in technology and science, including LSZH materials, offers enhanced fire performance cablingThe very latest in technology and science, including LSZH materials, offers enhanced fire performance cabling, accessories and technical support ensuring critical fire-safety circuits can continue to operate in the event of a real fire from 30 minutes up to 120 minutes. In a real fire situation, these cables will enable the fire and rescue services to find and evacuate people and help to protect property. At the same time, there is still evidence of non-approved cabling still coming onto the market, and we simply cannot compromise quality of these products being used in these applications. Applications include residential and commercial buildings, shopping malls, airports and protected buildings with a track-record ensuring that fire alarms, sprinkler systems, building monitoring and security systems can continue to operate in a fire.
The continuity of power in the event of a real fire has never been more important as modern buildings become more complex and the need for the highest quality of products comes under the spotlight. With power for lighting and fire alarms, the fire and rescue services can use the intelligence gathered to evacuate people quickly, confident that they have found all the people in the building. Without power, they are literally scrambling in the dark without good information upon which to make their rescue. The continuity of power will also ensure that sprinkler or water mist systems can continue to operate where they exist. In commercial buildings, there may also be smoke evacuation fans which help to enable safe evacuation. Fire alarms may be digital, with loop systems which will provide information for fire and rescue services Appropriate Cabling At the start of a project, the most appropriate cabling should be specified as part of the electrical system rather than at the end of a project. Fire alarms may be digital, with loop systems which will provide information for fire and rescue services across individual areas and floors. At the same time, there are new designs, materials and products continually coming on to the market for major projects, and with it an increasing need for the various parties involved to work closely together to make sure they get it right. There has been an increasing incidence of non-approved cables on the market and unfortunately it is not until cables have been installed, tested or used that issues become clear. For installers, or those procuring cables, there is a need to check the cable when it arrives to make sure it is exactly what was specified. Should there be a problem, have it checked and seek good advice. Keep records of purchase, including reel flanges with batch markings and a sample of the cable markings. Send lengths for testing and then decide on the most appropriate course of action. Choice of cabling is crucial at the start of major projects as issues may occur later Meeting Rigorous Third-Party Tests For some buildings, it is crucial to select the highest quality products to meet the most rigorous third-party tests and real-life fire scenarios. These include environments such as hospitals, schools and care homes where older people and children move about. Specifiers looking at new large public sector projects such as hospitals should refer to BS 8519 for the electrical supply, and the most relevant cabling system. It is crucial to select the highest quality products to meet the most rigorous third-party tests This Code of Practice specifies that the type of system selected during the design phase ‘should be derived from a detailed process of consultation with the relevant authorities’ and that ‘the design should be agreed at an early stage.’ The decision-making process for cable selection relevant for life safety and firefighting systems is clearly defined here. This covers three categories ranging from 30 minutes to 120 minutes fire survival time. Categories 1 and 2 cover means of escape for 30 minutes and then 60 minutes respectively, and these cables are tested in accordance with the relevant codes. Category 3 for firefighting to 120 minutes refers to power and control cables meeting the 120-minute test according to the relevant standards. It should be emphasised that only Mineral Insulated Cable (MIC) or a cable meeting the requirements of BS7846 F120 will meet this criteria. For clarity, BS 8519 does not take precedence over BS 5839 for alarm systems and BS 5266 for emergency lighting. In essence, choosing the most relevant cabling and electrical accessories which will continue to operate under fire conditions has become critical. Application Of Medium Voltage Cables As the incidence of non-approved cables continues then so the application of Medium Voltage (MV) cables into high-risk environments including hospitals, schools, care homes, industrial sites and sub-stations serving infrastructure sites also becomes critical. In the context off fire engineering, it is important to select the relevant MV Cables in these areas. Adhering to the latest regulations is no longer enough - there needs to be a risk assessment. In order to do this effectively, it is important to ask – are the fire safety procedures up to date? All AEI MV cables are third party tested and approved by BASEC. Educational establishments including schools, colleges and laboratories are some of the most prone structures to fire hazards The whole supply chain needs to take consideration of these areas where vulnerable people often move about such as children or elderly people in hospitals or care homes. The fire and rescue services may need a little more time than a conventional building including reading complex fire alarm information to ensure a safe rescue in the event of a real fire. Educational establishments including schools, colleges and laboratories are some of the most prone structures to fire hazards. This is due to ageing structures, high volume of combustible materials, and changing use in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths programmes where more combustible and flammable liquids are being used. Concerns have been raised by architects and and designers about fire protection regimes Sufficient Fire Risk Assessment Recent research by the Fire Brigades Union, for example, showed that a key focus for all educational institutions must be ensuring that there is an effective fire risk management process in place, delivered by suitable and sufficient fire risk assessment carried out by an expert in the field. The best practice under Business Information Modelling (BIM) and all best practice of fire safety engineering methods should be observed in conjunction with project partners. There have been concerns over a number of years around the fire protection regime for new buildings expressed by the architects and designers themselves. The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) points to the delays to Approved Document B with regard to the relationship of Building Regulations to changing design and construction. AEI Cables provides a full range of cabling products through its Total Fire Solutions service RIBA says the virtual disappearance of the role of the clerk of works or site architect and the loss of independent oversight of construction and workmanship on behalf of the client is a further issue for concern. In essence, RIBA believes that future proposals for the fire safety regulatory regime should be informed by the specialist fire safety expertise of relevant professional organisations and groups, and also take full account of this wider set of construction industry AEI Cables provides a full range of cabling products through its Total Fire Solutions service with the support of its parent company Ducab based in Dubai, with the design, manufacture and supply of MIC, Firetec Enhanced or Firetec Power depending on specific needs. The choice of cabling and accessories should not be underestimated at the earliest opportunity to ensure the fire and rescue services are given every chance of success in rescuing people and saving property.
The era of “smart buildings” is here, bringing new opportunities for significant gains in efficiency, safety and environmental protection. In an interview, Rodger Reiswig, director of industry relations at Johnson Controls Global Fire Protection Products, offers his insights into the impact of smart buildings on fire detection and what it means for organisations planning new facilities. Q: How do you define smart buildings? The term “smart buildings” means different things to different people. For some, it’s all about the Green Initiative. Is the building able to sustain itself or reduce its carbon footprint? Can they reuse some of their water or generate electricity from onsite solar cells or wind turbines? Another definition of “smart buildings” is based on sensors. Is the building smart enough to know that, if I’m the first person there in the morning and I swipe my card, it should switch the HVAC system into occupied mode? Can it start to turn the lights on? Can it adjust the window shades to allow the sun to come in? Can it call the elevator down for me because it knows that I’m in the lobby and I’m going to the tenth floor? It’s all about how the systems integrate with one another, not just providing information to each other, but also interacting with one another, causing things to happen from one system to another. Q: How close are we to the vision of an integrated intelligent building where all the systems work together? We’ve already been doing some integration for a few years now with things like HVAC and lighting. Now we’re seeing tighter integration where, for example, we can use the position of the sun to get the best impact of sunlight to start to heat the building in the winter. One of the biggest challenges that we see in the smart building environment is protocols or topologies for how one system talks to another. The fire alarm system uses a certain protocol or language. The HVAC system uses another protocol or language, and so on. Creating an environment where systems can talk to one another and not just send, but also receive information – that’s the difficult part. Everybody can send information out. It’s easy for me to tell you what is happening in a system. But for you to tell me what’s happening in your system and then expect me to do something with that information, that’s when it gets a little bit harder. Q: What makes system-to-system communication challenging? Because of the critical role they play in protecting lives and property, life safety systems require a level of reliability and resilience far beyond that of other building systems or networks. Therefore, we have to be extremely careful about how we allow information from other systems to come into the life safety system, in case that information should affect the performance of the system. In addition, the design and specification of life safety systems is guided via three different means: building codes, standards and listings. Each of those means is controlled by different organisations. Any proposed changes to life safety networks have to pass muster with those entities, and that takes time, effort and consensus-building. When we’re talking specifically about system-to-system communication, the listing entities, organisations like UL and FM Global, regulate how much information can come into any life safety system. The listing documents require that there be some type of a barrier or gateway to prevent unauthorised or corrupted information from coming into a fire alarm system, causing harm or causing it to lock up. Life safety systems require a level of reliability and resilience far beyond that of other building systems or networks We will see all building technologies become more integrated over time as we work through the different entities and people begin to realise the benefits of improved safety, lower environmental impact, and reduced costs. Q: How will fire detection systems benefit from other sensor information available in a building? One of the things being explored is occupancy sensors that tell where people are located in a building. Some type of telemetry could be used to understand where people are concentrated in a facility and, based on that, make the fire alarm system more or less sensitive to smoke. If a lot of people are congregating in one area, there might be more activity and more dust being stirred up. You could use that information to set different alarm parameters compared to, for example, an empty building with no significant air movement. We see that type of operation happening. Knowing how many people are in a building and where they are located is also a critically valuable piece of information for first responders. Here’s another example: let’s say we have a big parking garage next to a mall. Cars come in, and perhaps some people leave their cars running, or the cars aren’t operating as efficiently as they should be. You could have carbon monoxide detectors and occupancy sensors in the garage, and when the garage becomes crowded and carbon monoxide levels start to rise a bit, you could tell the fire alarm system not to go into alarm, but instead to turn fans on to get some fresh air moving throughout the building. It’s performing a life safety function, but at a non-emergency level. Q: Are you involved in any cross-industry standard-setting organisations to enable better communication among building systems? On an industry level, Johnson Controls is very active in the development of codes and standards. We have people who sit on committees for things like healthcare occupancy standards. We have engineers that contribute to product listing documents. We have people who participate in committees that determine how products should be installed and maintained.Fire alarm systems could be used to detect and solve non-emergencies before they become threats We’re even involved with groups, like the National Disabilities Rights Network, that advocate for laws that promote equal access and notification of life safety events. The list goes on. It’s a common protocol that allows all types of systems to get on the same communication platform and be able to send and possibly receive information, depending on the product and the type of system it is.Just to give you an example, there’s a standard called BACnet, Building Automation Control Network, which was developed by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers. BACnet is based on entities, so within their system, they need to define what each entity is. What is a thermostat? What is a variable air box? What is a lighting controller? What is a fire alarm smoke detector? We work closely with this organisation to create entities that can reside on their infrastructure so that, for example, the lightning system recognises what a smoke detector is when they send that entity out to the network. It’s one of the most important methods we are using to communicate among dissimilar systems. Integrated systems mean elevators could be used to evacuate people in an emergency We’re working on two fronts: internally and industry-wide. We’re developing third-party interfaces that enable an outside entity to sign a non-disclosure form and get the keys to the kingdom, if you will, on our protocols for how our systems operate – the data stream that we can send out and receive back – allowing that third-party developer to create some of these interfaces themselves. That has been one of our challenges, because we have always said that this is a fire alarm system, and if you want that type of an interface, we need to write it and get it listed. We had to step back and say, what if we developed a barrier gateway and allowed somebody else to develop the protocol and, done properly, became able to receive and send information to the fire alarm system? It’s like what Apple does with apps. We are going down that road with this third-party interface gateway. Q: Have these developments changed how you’re planning for the future development of fire detection systems? Yes, they have. We are looking at how we can use these systems strategically to make life safety systems better. And life safety is becoming more nuanced, proactive and comprehensive. Can I communicate and use this information to unlock the door so people have a clear egress? Can I start to use the elevators to evacuate people during an emergency? We’ve been told traditionally to use the stairwell and not the elevator in the event of a fire. But it takes a person about a minute a floor to get out. That’s a problem if you’re in an 80-story building. You have elevators sitting there. Is there something we could do to allow these elevators to be used to evacuate people? The American Society of Mechanical Engineers has been working hard on developing the language and requirements to do that. It’s just one example of how having systems integrated and talking to each other allows us to create smarter solutions that can help make facilities safer. Q: What advice would you give to building owners, architects, designers or contractors to help them start planning today for the future of smart buildings? The most important thing is to build awareness. The average building owner doesn’t know that a lot of this technology even exists. We need to inform them that there are options they can ask about. One of my recommendations would be to ask your design engineer. As you discuss the kind of windows you want, the kind of flooring and lighting and so on, ask how these systems could integrate together and what the benefits of integration would be. The bigger your facility, the greater the benefits of integrating these systems. Another resource that people don’t use often enough is the AHJs, the authorities having jurisdiction. That’s the local fire marshal, the fire chief, the local first responders. Don’t be afraid to sit down with a fire marshal, tell them what kind of building you’re putting in, and ask them what would help them respond in the event of an emergency in that building. They’ll be glad you asked, because these people see a lot of different buildings and respond to emergencies every day.
A fire system with integrated fire telephone and voice evacuation system from Advanced has been installed at an exclusive 30-storey residential high-rise in Dubai. Boasting state-of-the-art amenities, luxury interiors, a fully equipped gym and rooftop swimming pool, the Siraj Tower has become one of the most sought-after residential projects in the ambitious $64billion entertainment complex, Dubailand. As Advanced’s exclusive distributor in Dubai, Cignetix were responsible for integrating this crucial part of the building’s active fire protection. Four Advanced Axis EN panels, which were recently certified by FM Approvals to the EN54 standard, and 2000 devices have been installed alongside its high-performance fire telephone solution. Designed for clear, easy-to-use control, the system benefits from LED status indications showing its operational stateSunil Gopalkrishnan, Managing Director at Cignetix, said: “Thanks to their reputation for performance, quality and ease-of-use, Advanced are our preferred choice of fire alarm, fire telephone and voice evacuation systems – capable of handling large networks of up to 200 panels and complex cause and effect programming.” Fire Telephone Solution Advanced’s fire telephone solution is ideal for high and low-rise apartment buildings, hotels, universities, government and military sites where local fire departments and emergency personnel need access to fire/emergency communications. Designed for clear, easy-to-use control, the conventional system benefits from LED status indications showing its operational state – whether the system has a call-in, is connected or is in fault condition. The fire telephone system is compliant with EN54 parts 2 and 4 and can be configured as either a standalone, independent system or completely integrated into the Axis EN fire system. Steve Carroll, Advanced’s General Manager for the Middle East, said: “The Siraj Tower is another fantastic example of the successful partnership between Cignetix and Advanced. In order to take full advantage of what our products offer, it takes companies like Cignetix, who have the skills and experience required, to apply Advanced to sites such as this prestigious high-rise.” Axis EN Fire Panel Range Axis EN, which is part of Advanced’s Axis range of systems, holds global approvals, including EN54, UL864 and AS1670Available for European, Middle East and South East Asian markets, Axis EN is Advanced’s highest performance analogue panel range, combining 1-8 loop, fire panels configurable up to 200 panel networks with a complete range of wired and wireless loop devices and powerful peripherals. Axis EN, which is part of Advanced’s Axis range of systems, holds global approvals, including EN54, UL864 and AS1670. It is designed to go anywhere where high quality, reliable and easy to use fire detection and control is required. Advanced, owned by FTSE 100 company Halma PLC, have a long history of protecting some of the most prestigious high-rise residential developments in the world, including the Gold Coast’s Soul Building and Miami’s Sands Pointe. Advanced is a pioneer in the development and manufacture of intelligent fire systems. The legendary performance, quality and ease of use of its products sees Advanced specified in locations all over the world, from single panel installations to large, multi-site networks. Advanced’s products include complete fire detection systems, multi-protocol fire panels, extinguishing control, fire paging and false alarm management systems.
In a fire, a safe, reliable source of power is of paramount importance. Tasked with supplying emergency firefighting power for Victorian mill conversions, Newburn Power Rental’s expertise and commitment to health and safety made them the perfect partner for power safety - instilling confidence should the worst happen. The client, who are converting mills into luxury apartments – initially in and around Leeds, Halifax and Manchester, the centres of Victorian industry – gave Newburn a two-fold job. Providing emergency power to the lifts in the event of a mains failure was one element, with a critical requirement to ensure power for lifts and smoke extraction fans for the emergency services in the event of a fire. Emergency Communication Systems The vital importance of firefighter access and safety is recognised and legislated through numerous Standards and Regulations, and inadequacy or non-adherence can have devastating effects. As LEIA (the trade association and advisory body for the lift and escalator industry) note, the development of British and European Standards has been central to lowering accident rates – both to people using lifts, escalators and lifting platforms, and to those working on them. For firefighting lifts, the requirements are covered by Standard EN 81-72:2105 For firefighting lifts, the requirements are covered by Standard EN 81-72:2105, which replaced the 2003 version and includes changes to the physical structures of firefighter lift systems as well as amendments to requirements for emergency communication systems. The critical element of a firefighting lift is that, unlike a normal lift, it should be designed to operate for a long as is practicable in the event of a fire. Firefighting Equipment In the UK, it is a requirement that buildings with a floor more than 18 metres above or more than 10 metres below fire service vehicle access have a firefighting lift, helping firefighters to move more quickly and more easily through the building and allowing for the transportation of firefighting equipment across multiple floors. The lift installation includes the lift car itself, the lift well and machinery area, along with the control and communications systems. While the Standard EN 81-72:2015 covers all aspects of firefighting lift design, e.g. minimum load; minimum lift car dimensions; speed of travel and specific design, there are also a range of factors that Newburn needed to consider when specifying the power generators for emergency use: robust and reliable back-up (secondary) power supply and the potential for water ingress. Electrical Installations In terms of building structure and power safety, the issue of water ingress needs to be addressed at the design stage In terms of building structure and power safety, the issue of water ingress needs to be addressed at the design stage, including measures such as drainage channels at each landing entrance; ramping up of the floor at the lift’s entrance; as well as methods of prevention of water build-up such as drains or draining pumps permanently installed and fitted outside the lift shaft. There have been instances where water from hose lines has entered a lift well, causing malfunction to electrical installations such as door locks, lift car controls and communications systems, hence it is vital to both reduce the potential for water ingress in the first instance as well as to minimise the effects of water on lift operations to avoid hampering firefighting and evacuation procedures. Fire-Protected Areas Newburn Power Rental’s power supplies, following the Standard, were specified and installed to the appropriate IP rating, to protect the electrical equipment against water ingress. Their generators, which varied from 20kVA up to 60kVA (dependent upon the lift motor sizes) are all installed in fire-protected areas, with fire-protected power cabling. Reliability of power supply – both the mains and the secondary sources – is clearly critical to the safe use of firefighting lifts and this, too, is referenced in the Standard. Mark Henstock, managing director at Newburn Power Rental, comments on this project, “We were approached to undertake this contract based on Newburn’s reputation for reliability and for the weight we place on health and safety at all times.” Reliable Power Supply The importance of secure and reliable power supply in an emergency can’t be over-emphasised" “The importance of secure and reliable power supply in an emergency can’t be over-emphasised. We’ve worked on projects in the past where water ingress is an issue, so have a great deal of experience with managing pumping solutions and circuitry, as well as emergency backup supplies for a whole range of sectors.” “We have a committed workforce – in sales and specification for generators and ancilliaries, as well as in the service and maintenance team. Clearly, both aspects are vital to ensuring that the correct equipment is installed in the first instance, and to making sure that it works efficiently and reliably, should it ever be needed. Since the first installation for this client, we have gone on to work with them on buildings in cities and towns across the North and we look forward to continuing this relationship.”
In large factory halls used for metalworking operations, conventional fire alarm systems are often not enough to protect buildings, employees and equipment. In many cases, high ceilings, greater fire hazards and interference from reflected light characterize these halls. The company of MKM Mansfelder Kupfer und Messing GmbH (MKM) faced exactly this challenge. MKM is a manufacturer of copper and copper-alloy precursor and semi finished products. Achieve Better Protection The company wanted to achieve better protection from fire hazards in two of the halls at its Hettstedt site in Saxony-Anhalt, a state in the eastern part of Germany. Conditions in the halls are particularly challenging because the pace of production constantly varies While searching for the optimal solution, the plant fire brigade tested a number of candidates, including quite a few conventional fire alarm systems. Conditions in the halls are particularly challenging because the pace of production constantly varies. “Due to the large size of both halls, in the end we decided that only one solution was up to the job: the AVIOTEC visual early fire detection system from Bosch,” explains Christoph Dammann, administrator fire and alarm systems at MKM. Fire Detection System AVIOTEC is the first video-based fire detection system to be certified by VdS Schadenverhütung GmbH (VdS). Intelligent algorithms integrated in the camera ensure reliable early detection of smoke and flame. This innovative technology also excels in terms of costs and efficiency. Bosch experts planned and configured the solution for MKM and then took care of integrating it into the existing fire detection system and connecting it to the monitoring center of the plant fire brigade. If a fire is detected in either of the two halls, it sends signals to the central fire detection system as well as directly to the fire brigade. Then the firefighters can check the video monitor and take targeted appropriate action to extinguish the fire before it can spread.
FireVu multi-detectors facilitate quick fire detection and remedy at Worcestershire warehouse Budget Waste Management operates a waste removal, disposal and recycling service. It processes the waste it collects at its large waste processing facility in Worcestershire. The company deals with a great variety of material, much of which is flammable. So the risk of fire is significant and the potential impact of a fire outbreak is extremely serious. FireVu multi-detectors rapidly identify fire outbreaks The fire started as a result of an aerosol can contained within the waste being punctured during processing which then ignited. The purple and green boxes that can be seen on the video show FireVu rapidly identifying the outbreak of fire. Crucially, FireVu spots the fire quickly because the multi-detector can identify both the thermal output and visual flame. The system is visual based, so it can detect fire much more quickly at source than systems which rely on an overall increase in ambient temperature, or physical contact with smoke or flame. Other systems will only detect if there is a substantial fire present, by which time a total loss is likely. Early detection means remedial action can be taken quickly, before the fire has taken hold. In this case, an operator is able to stamp out the flames. Without early detection the entire warehouse could have gone up in flames within minutes. Multi-detectors installed by Alert Systems FireVu partner, Alert Systems, installed 7 multi-detectors with an FV1 Annunciator within the warehouse to provide comprehensive coverage of the waste processing areas with associated control room alert functionality. Each FireVu solution is customised to meet the individual client need, and in this case study the detectors were placed in specifically identified strategic locations following consultation between the client and the FireVu team. The result is a very early warning fire detection system that gives Budget (and their insurers) peace of mind of knowing that if a fire breaks out, FireVu will alert them quickly. High tech analytics software analyses video images from the FireVu detector to identify the presence of smoke, flame and heat at source, thus providing fast, accurate, very early warning. Furthermore, FireVu segments the field of view, significantly helping stakeholders to identify the origin point of the fire, aiding efforts to extinguish the threat. The system also provides sensitive calibration features which minimise the risk of false alarms. Why does FireVu stand out in the industry? FireVu offers a unique combination of features not available from other products on the market, including: Can ‘see’ flame colour, brightness and intensity (Planck’s Law) and signal the visually verified alarm in seconds * Works outside and in large voluminous spaces Unaffected by airflow or stratification Thermal detection** with two thresholds to detect heat build-up The visual of the smoke, flame and heat detection provides situational awareness to the owner/operator via FireVu annunciator and Enterprise ObserVer viewing software Can integrate to the alarm panel and automate the shutdown of systems within recommended field of view, **Multi-Detector version Application Scenarios As a visual-based system, FireVu can be applied in many, diverse scenarios. It can be effectively applied both indoors and outdoors; on the outside of buildings or in large atriums/warehouses. Application areas include: High-Rise Buildings Waste Management Facilities Hotel lobby areas Retail outlets Schools Warehousing Industrial Production Line Facilities
Most of the systems installed at Cobalt Business Park use Hochiki Europe's Enhanced Systems Protocol (ESP) With around 40 individual buildings housing over 160,000m 2 of prime office space, Cobalt Business Park is the largest complex of its kind in the UK. Located just a short drive from central Newcastle, it has played a vital part in the regeneration of the region, which is now one of the nation’s most vibrant and forward thinking business hubs. Building work began over 12 years ago and being awarded Enterprise Zone status meant that tenants could enjoy free business rates and 100 per cent capital allowances for corporation tax until August 2006. This led to a plethora of blue chip multinational organisations choosing to locate there and by doing so they have brought over 9,500 jobs to the area. Cobalt Business Park offers access to a wide range of facilities and boasts a surgery, a nursery, restaurants, a swimming pool, a fitness suite and a 500 capacity delegate conference centre. In order to give those working on-site the highest levels of protection its owner, Highbridge Properties, has insisted that each of the buildings has a state-of-the-art fire detection system as part of an overall building services infrastructure. Based in Blyth, Northumberland, ARC365 is one of the north-east of England’s leading life safety installation specialists and it has enjoyed a long-term relationship with Cobalt Business Park. Chris Harris, director of ARC365, explains, “We were originally invited to tender for the fire detection installation in the first building. Our proposal centred on the installation of a Hochiki Europe fire detection system, which we have used almost exclusively over the last 17 years. We won the contract and since then we have been asked to carry out similar work for all but three buildings on the site.” "We will continue to specify products from Hochiki Europe, as we know that we can rely on them to ensure the highest levels of protection” Although the buildings that comprise Cobalt Business Park are all different shapes and sizes, and house many different types of organisations, ARC365 tries to keep the fire detection systems as consistent as it can and introduce as many common features as possible. Harris and his team are involved when the main construction works are underway, usually through Castle Building Services Ltd, who have been involved in the electrical and mechanical disciplines of many of the buildings throughout the business park. Harris says, “When the developer has a client for the building, a complete fire detection system is designed and installed, based on the layout the client requires.” If a building is unused, we usually just install a limited fire detection system in shell and core areas such as stairwells until it is occupied. Working as a team with Castle Building Services Ltd gives them the confidence that the Hochiki products we offer are of the highest quality and reliability. "This innovative chamber design minimises the differences in sensitivity experienced in flaming and smouldering fires" All of the systems installed at Cobalt Business Park are analogue addressable and most of them use Hochiki Europe’s Enhanced Systems Protocol (ESP). Stuart Davies, the company’s marketing manager, explains, “ESP is a resilient total communications solution for intelligent fire detection and fully integrated systems. It has a multi-purpose structure that provides the flexibility and expansion to accommodate simple addressable systems through to integrated building management and safety systems.” The buildings’ fire detection systems are also compliant to the BS 5839 category L1 standard, which means that automatic detectors are deployed throughout all areas including roof spaces and voids. This gives the earliest possible warning of fire and makes sure that there is sufficient time for escape. Unwanted and false alarms are a problem in any type of building but in offices, where there is a high density of people, they are particularly disruptive. Where possible, ARC365 installs Hochiki Europe’s ALG-EN optical smoke sensors, which feature the company’s High Performance Chamber Technology. Harris states, “‘This innovative chamber design minimises the differences in sensitivity experienced in flaming and smouldering fires. The result is a high performance optical chamber that is equally responsive to all smoke types and helps to reduce the possibility of unwanted alarms, as the algorithms in the devices can be adjusted to account for the different environments that they are used in.” A fast and efficient installation is important for ARC365, and the ability to fit detectors onto a standard base unit offers significant time and cost savings, without any compromise in quality. Harris adds, “Our experience with other manufacturers’ products has highlighted just how well designed and thought out Hochiki Europe’s are, what can take minutes only takes seconds.” To enhance continuity across the estate, each building has a stainless steel plate installed in the reception area to house ARC365’s control equipment for the fire detection, disabled refuge and accessible toilet alarm systems. This means that if one of the site’s security operatives has to enter one of the empty buildings, they can easily locate the control panel and know how to operate it. Cobalt Business Park is very much a work in progress and new buildings are being designed and constructed all of the time – the most recent being a four floor office block and a two storey retail/office block - both handled electrically and mechanically by Castle Building Services Ltd. ARC365’s Chris Harris, concludes, “It’s been fascinating to see how it has developed over the decade or so and we are thrilled to be a part of it. We will continue to specify products from Hochiki Europe, as we know that we can rely on them to ensure the highest levels of protection.”
The University Hospital of Wales had been in use for some 20 years and several aspects of its design did not meet current hospital and fire safety standards. Project: The University Hospital of Wales is one of the largest teaching hospitals in Europe. The main ward block houses 800 beds and is a high-rise building. In addition, there is a three-story medical block and a three-story dental block. The three buildings are interconnected by subways and tunnels. The hospital had been in use for some 20 years and several aspects of its design did not meet current hospital and fire safety standards. The hospital had also experienced severe disruption due to smoke spread from some relatively small fires. A radical re-evaluation of all aspects of the fire safety provision was required. This included assessing: Compartmentalisation and separation aspects. Automatic fire detection requirements. Automatic fire suppression strategies. Requirements for storage and removal of waste/rubbish. Procedures for evacuation in a fire emergency. Contribution: BRE Global's Fire and Risk Sciences Division (FRS) was commissioned by WHCSA to assess the total fire safety provision. The hospital of Wales will get an enhanced security and safety cover after the FRS report FRS liaised with the local fire service, the hospital board, the hospital fire officer and NHS Estates in order to carry out a comprehensive evaluation of the problem. FRS then produced a fire safety report detailing cost-effective recommendations, which were based on fire safety engineering principles rather than just opting for compliance with prescriptive codes and requirements. The fire safety assessment report was then used to form the basis of a subsequent £multi-million refurbishment and upgrading scheme. Benefits: FRS is the UK's leading centre for research-based consultancy and testing covering all aspects of fire safety and security. The division can draw upon extensive research into experimental emergency evacuations and occupant behaviour during fires, all of which was important to the successful conclusion of this project. Established in 1947, FRS's clients extend beyond the construction industry, and include those concerned with design, development and manufacture of materials, products, systems, industrial processes, transport and offshore. BRE is retained as an advisor to the NHS Fire Code Committee and the NAPG.