Building Fire Safety
Fire & Safety, concurrently held with Secutech Taiwan April 2020, will have international and local manufacturers showcasing products and solutions for best practices in fire safety for various verticals as well as effective disaster prevention and mitigation technologies. Countries from the APAC region is expected to see an increase in fire safety demands as increase in infrastructure developments requires both in pass and active fire safety equipment. Government regulation also plays a ma...
Registration is now open for the National Volunteer Fire Council’s (NVFC) 2020 Training Summit, which will take place June 26-27 in Orlando, FL. The conference is open to all volunteer firefighters, EMS providers, department leadership, and other fire department personnel from across the United States. Travel stipends are available to help more people attend. 2020 NVFC Training Summit This two-day classroom-based training event is an opportunity to learn from leading subject matter exper...
Following increased reports of unwanted alarms caused by e-cigarette vaping and the lack of clear information in the market place, The Fire Industry Association has now published Fact File 85, covering their use and possible effects on Fire Alarm Systems. This is free to download from the FIA website. ‘dual optical’ detectors In the recent case of The Frog & Frigate, in Southampton, where vaping is allowed, smoke detectors false alarms, caused by vaping were becoming a consider...
Nittan welcomes Mark Durbridge as their new Technical and Sales Support Engineer. Mark has been in the Fire Protection Industry for over 30 years, having a proven track record managing and delivering a number of projects as a service engineer, technical manager and production manager. Mark has joined the Nittan team as a very important first point of contact, his extensive technical knowledge and industry experience will enable Nittan to continue delivering the very highest quality technical su...
Nittan Europe will be exhibiting at FIREX International 2019 at London ExCeL. They will be showcasing their range of premium fire detection products, along with a number of new additions. Nittan’s bright and spacious stand, located at FX830, has been designed for interactivity. On the stand, you can get hands on with Nittan’s evolution1 fire alarm control panel, and experience just how quick and easy it is to set up with the Evolution detection devices. New Products being launched...
Nittan is delighted to announce the availability of the EV-PYS Photoelectric smoke detector, complete with integral sounder. This is an improved detector combined sounder product similar to and intended as a fully backward compatible drop-in replacement for the outgoing EV-PS. The previous EV-PS product proved to be a successful launch of Nittans detector with integrated sounder range, however its new replacement the EV-PYS comes to the market with some exciting technological advances centred o...
Nittan has stated that it is delighted to announce UK-based fire safety experts, Eurotech Fire Systems as the Nittan Elite Distribution Partner. Nittan Elite Distribution Partner Nittan was the first system that Eurotech Fire Systems has put its name to when the Company was first established around 10 years ago, and throughout this time Eurotech has shown a superb commitment to the Nittan brand and products. Eurotech Managing Director Michelle Agius stated, “To be recognized for our sales and support after these years is very much appreciated by the Eurotech team."
Nittan has said that it is pleased to announce that FTI, Dublin have been recognized as Nittan Elite Partner of the year. What makes it even more remarkable is this is now the third time this award has been given to FTI. The award is open to all our Elite partners, and despite stiff competition FTI were chosen for the award in recognition of not only a strong sales performance but also a clear commitment to staff training and close cooperation that should be seen as a model for others to follow. Nittan Elite Partner of the year The “Elite” programs have been developed to acknowledge and reward a select group of installation partners and product distributors that have shown commitment to promoting the Nittan brand and have undertaken product training to a high level in order to ensure the uppermost standards of customer service. Nittan has built an enviable reputation for first class fire detection products" “Nittan has built an enviable reputation for first class fire detection products, but it’s essential to back that up with quality support,” states Lee James, General Manager – Product Marketing, Nittan Europe. Elite Partner and Distributor program Lee adds, “Our new Elite program identifies those installers and distributors that demonstrate loyalty to Nittan and have taken the time to invest in the brand by undertaking rigorous training on the full product range. As a manufacturer our end user contact is minimal, these customer facing companies are often the first experience people will have of Nittan so their product knowledge and commitment to Nittan is exceptionally important and deserves to be recognized. The key benefit for Elite members is that we can direct new customer enquiries to them as we know they are a safe pair of hands!” The Nittan Elite Partner and Elite Distributor program is part of the company’s ongoing commitment to providing the best support possible for customers. Nittan shall continue to monitor performance and promote others to Elite status once certain milestones have been achieved.
Nittan has announced the launch of its latest generation EV Firebeam Xtra Loop Powered beam detector equipment. The EV Firebeam Xtra beam detector incorporates a Mini Input Module to report Alarm on Nittan Evolution Addressable Fire Alarm Systems. It provides a reliable, cost effective solution for protecting large areas. EV Firebeam Xtra beam detector Building movement and accessibility have, in the past, made beam detection unreliable, difficult and time consuming to commission as well as hard to maintain, but Firebeam overcomes these issues through its advanced motorized technology. The beam aligns itself to the center of the reflector when commissioning and will automatically re-align itself when building movement occurs. Latest-gen Fire Beam Xtra detector incorporates newly Revised Optics using the latest advanced components The latest generation Fire Beam Xtra detector incorporates newly Revised Optics using the latest advanced components, significantly increasing the range from the previous model. Together with the existing class top features the device is VdS approved and fully compliant to EN 54-12:2015. Redesigned linear stepper motors As well as extending the range the Fire Beam Xtra alignment processes are Five Times Faster, thanks to the completely redesigned linear stepper motors, which have resulted in amazingly fast commissioning and routine maintenance. Under test conditions at 40 meters the auto-align time was 3m02s, using the Fire Beam straight out of the box. Once aligned a routine re-alignment was timed at just 1m07s. This is class-leading performance not only in terms of speed but also in terms of advanced robust design built for precise purpose. Standard Fire Beam Xtra package The standard Fire Beam Xtra package comes complete with the head unit, the low level controller, a single reflector, a user manual and a 3mm allen key. This will enable you to cover distances up to 70 meters. To cover distances over 70 meters, there is a Mid-range and Long-range kit available, covering 70-140m & 140-160m, respectively.
ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions UK & Ireland continues to lead the market by ensuring its range of door closers do not compromise fire safety regulations. At the end of 2017, several UKAS Accredited authorities withdrew certification for almost all door closers used on uninsulated metal fire doors. With around eight out of 10 metal fire doors specified and sold in the UK being non-insulated, this left many security fire doorsets deemed non-compliant. Uninsulated metal fire doors A number of certifications have now been reinstated, but with a caveat meaning they can only be installed on the fire risk side of a door. In many properties and locations it can be difficult to determine which side of the door is most at risk of fire so this caveat challenges the use of many door closers being routinely specified for installation on uninsulated metal fire doors. In response to the ongoing challenges and needs in the industry, ASSA ABLOY has continued with substantial testing and standardizing of its door closers. ASSA ABLOY door closer series This ASSA ABLOY door closer series can provide fully compliant control of fire doors As a result, its door closers have demonstrated that use on metal fire doors is not restricted by the side of the door to which it is required and remains fully compliant with EN1634 on any uninsulated metal fire door. With no caveats attached, this ASSA ABLOY door closer series can provide fully compliant control of fire doors regardless of the desired material specification. Specification of the correct door and hardware combination is therefore essential to ensure that not only the right architectural appeal and functionality is achieved, but most importantly that safety regulations are not compromized. ASSA ABLOY’s Openings Studio software To support the complex specification process ASSA ABLOY’s Openings Studio software offers a collaborative BIM tool for all project stakeholders. Using a real-time data sharing process, Openings Studio permits greater communication between all involved in a building’s lifecycle – from design and construction to refurbishment and maintenance. Openings Studio, along with the technical expertise available from ASSA ABLOY, supports the design and specification process to ensure access to fully compliant solutions, seamless integration with the building model and critical asset management throughout the construction and design life of the building – delivering all the benefits expected from BIM in construction. Openings Studio construction Through Openings Studio construction has access to the widest range of door opening solutions. Doors, hardware, ironmongery and access control solutions can be easily integrated into a building at the touch of a button with complete peace of mind. ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions is one of very few manufacturers to offer a complete solution of timber and metal doors, hardware and ironmongery through a ‘cradle to grave’ approach of technical specification, manufacture, installation, fire door inspections and service and maintenance packages in support of architects, contractors, facilities managers and end users.
Global fire systems provider, Advanced, has appointed Joe Leiserach to the role of Operations Director to support the business following a period of significant growth. Employing around 200 staff, Advanced designs, manufactures and supplies fire alarm control panels to over 80 countries across the globe from its headquarters in Newcastle. Active fire protection In his new role, Joe will work alongside the senior leadership team at Advanced to deliver on the business’ objectives, uniting teams across the production line, engineering, planning and facilities, enabling improvements to quality, productivity and efficiency in order to increase opportunities for growth in both UK and export markets. Joe joins the North East-based manufacturer from Soil Machine Dynamics Ltd where he was responsible for the management and delivery of cutting-edge, bespoke engineering projects.Joe will work alongside the senior leadership team at Advanced to deliver on the business’ objectives Advanced recently relocated its headquarters from four separate sites in Cramlington to one, 48,000 sq. ft base in Balliol Business Park, Longbenton in order to satisfy increasing UK and international demand from customers for its active fire protection products. State-of-the-art manufacturing facility Joe said, “On a personal level joining Advanced at this exciting time for the organization is a real privilege. With the support and expertise of the 90 strong, highly skilled team in Operations, our priority will be to maintain and enhance the control processes; delivering performance and quality of our life safety products.” “We’re tremendously fortunate to now have a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility from where we conduct our business operations and it’s really important that this investment is utilised effectively to achieve the best possible quality and productivity. I look forward to adding real value, building strategic partnerships and implementing bold strategies to take us to the next level.” Positive influence Advanced, owned by FTSE 100 company Halma PLC, protects some of the world’s most prestigious and high-profile sites across the globe, from Western Europe’s tallest building, the Shard to Abu Dhabi International Airport and operates from bases across the UK, US, India and Dubai. Pete Browitt, Managing Director at Advanced, added, “I am delighted to be able to welcome Joe Leiserach to Advanced. Joe brings to the senior leadership team a raft of experience and strengths in areas that are key to us as a growing manufacturer and I have already witnessed the positive influence he is exerting, not only on his team in Operations, but the entire business. Our new headquarters is a fantastic place to work and is somewhere that, with Joe on board, we should be able to grow for many years to come.”
ASSA ABLOY UK, a division of ASSA ABLOY Group, the globally renowned door opening solutions company, has unveiled its new name, with the business now being known as ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions UK & Ireland. The new business descriptor reflects ASSA ABLOY Group’s on-going commitment to strengthening the ASSA ABLOY brand, and helping its customers to better understand the organization’s solutions, services and capabilities. ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions Alongside the launch of ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions, the Group has also launched two other business descriptors – ASSA ABLOY Entrance Systems and ASSA ABLOY Global Solutions which will be gradually introduced in UK & Ireland, and globally. The change will enable the company to maintain a segmented and focused approach, easily guiding customers to the division that is best positioned to help meet their needs, while ensuring ASSA ABLOY continues to grow as a recognized brand. In line with the introduction of ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions UK & Ireland, the business units that form ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions in the UK, are also being re-named to better meet their customers’ requirements and provide clarity to their offerings. Creation of the Door Hardware & Access Control Group Security Solutions and Access Control will now combine to create the Door Hardware & Access Control Group Security Solutions and Access Control will now combine to create the Door Hardware & Access Control Group. Meanwhile, UK Specification will be renamed as the Project Specification Group, and Security Doors will now be simplified to the Door Group. The three Groups will also join the newly-formed High Security & Safety Group, which includes the renowned Chubb Locks Custodial Services and Pickersgill Kaye brands, which will also transition to ranges from ASSA ABLOY. The company’s well-known global brands, such as Yale, Abloy and Mul-T-Lock remain the same. Door access control expert Tina Hughan, Marketing Director for ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions in the UK & Ireland, explains “The launch of ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions will help us more clearly communicate our knowledge, experience and expertise to our customers. The new business descriptor encompasses what we offer in a simple, easy-to-understand way, while our new business unit names will help make it easier for customers to do business with us.” She adds, “We are always focused on what we can do to improve the customer’s experience. We believe this approach will help strengthen our existing offering and consolidate our position in the market as a world leader, so we can better support our customers.”
Over the last decade, fire protection has been transformed by the rise of addressable, IP-based devices embedded in networked fire alarm system infrastructure. The scalability and modular architecture of digital fire alarm systems has unlocked a new level of fire safety, for instance by pinpointing the exact location of a triggered smoke detector in an alarm, or by interfacing with public address systems for phased building evacuations. For system integrators, installation and maintenance of alarm systems have reached new levels of efficiency – including automated service alerts and far fewer false alarms – with unprecedented cost savings. Accordingly, the world market for fire alarm systems has seen significant growth, driven by the digitization of existing systems to meet higher safety standards and legislation. Experts at Grand View Research expect the market to increase from $52.2 billion in 2016 to $93.5 billion by 2022. Addressable systems – including IP-networked smoke detectors and fire panels – already account for more than two-thirds of the alarm technologies segment. And, as analog systems are being phased out, their share will soon be 100 percent. Networked fire alarm systems With that said, all elements are in place for the second, even more fundamental transformation in fire protection: In the near future, a growing amount of networked fire alarm systems will be connected to the Internet of Things (IoT). In the near future, a growing amount of networked fire alarm systems will be connected to the IoTThis is part of a larger trend across industries, including smart homes and smart buildings automated by a mixture of sensor data and artificial intelligence (AI). The number of IoT-connected devices worldwide is expected to exceed 14 billion by 2022, more than half of the world’s 28.5 billion connected devices. For technology providers like Bosch, the IoT’s level of networked intelligence calls for a strategic response. “Our strategic target for all of our electronic product categories is to be IoT-enabled by 2020,” said Volkmar Denner, CEO of Bosch. This vision is supported by “3S’s” in Bosch’s connectivity business: sensors, software, and services. In developing and implementing services and solutions for the connected world, Bosch benefits from its expertise in software and sensor technology as well as, in particular, its broad business portfolio. Remote Services lead the way When it comes to bringing the IoT into the fire safety segment, Bosch envisions a future in which connected devices – and their data – open up new kinds of services that offer significant benefits to end customers and system integrators. This digital transformation journey is already well underway, as IoT-based applications are already enhancing the fire safety service offering on several levels. As a prerequisite, networked system architecture such as fire panels and sensors need to connect to the internet via nodes, hubs, and gateways in a secure manner. With this connection in place, the system can communicate with a cloud application server via IP protocol to send real-time data such as device health, battery status, and event history. Networked system architecture such as fire panels and sensors need to connect to the internet via nodes, hubs, and gateways in a secure manner Because system integrators can access these data points from any location without physically visiting the installation on-site, the impact of the IoT so far has been most pronounced in the Remote Services segment with the following three focus areas: Remote Connect. Allows for the remote set-up of a system and programming to customer specifications. Offers cost savings, as set-up can be handled practically without leaving the office for each new installation. Requests for changes can also be implemented at faster turnaround. Remote Alert. In case of fire, the system sends an alert via the remote portal, which can be integrated with messaging systems. Integrators also receive alerts for device outages and malfunctions. Remote Maintenance. The system performs regular health checks and condition monitoring, sent at user-specified intervals. Smart fire detectors also ping administrators for electromagnetic pollution or contamination with dust. Major efficiency gains for system integrators While IoT-based Remote Services already provide major efficiency gains for system integrators, we’re only just scratching the surface of what is possible. At the same time, the foundation for next-generation IoT-connected services is already created today, as the integration between sensors, software, and services increases.It will not only be crucial for devices to work together within the same network In the process of building end-to-end fire safety systems that are ready to connect with the IoT, seamless interfaces with third-party apps and platforms via APIs (Application Programming Interfaces) will be a competitive advantage for system technology providers. It will not only be crucial for devices to work together within the same network. It will be even more important that systems can communicate with apps or building management software. On the same note, the ability to provide integrated, IoT-connected services on a secure backbone – safe from hackers and malicious attacks – will be indispensable, because system data is the most valuable resource moving forward. Analyzed correctly, this data holds the key to what comes next. Smart data instead of Big Data Needless to say, the rise of IoT-connected fire alarm systems will create massive amounts of data. This new ‘Big Data’ reality will call for improved data processing capabilities. Not just in terms of quantity: The most relevant services will be derived from smart data provided by IoT solutions in fire safety. The focus lies with data points that matter and making this data actionable by practice-oriented analysis. For a quick glimpse into the process, our IoT data scientists are currently running comparative analyses of several fire alarm systems to gain visibility on problematic incidents, for instance when devices trigger false alarms. New services will have the potential to transform the way in which fire alarm systems are maintainedIn the next step, categorizing all systems that report such incidents into clusters would allow to give system integrators a big picture overview pinpointing exactly those among their managed systems that are at risk and need inspection, repairs, or upgrades. On the technical level, Bosch is using Mongo DB, a universal, document-based database for apps, to perform these quantitative analyses, always with a focus on new services and benefits for customers. As our understanding of this data increases, new services will become possible that have the potential to transform the way in which fire alarm systems are maintained and managed. Whereas today, system integrators can view data points such as device status in their Remote Portal and offer basic maintenance support via cloud-connected apps, tomorrow their service approach will be much more proactive, again thanks to smart data. The next level of IoT-powered services In the future, data from IoT-connected systems can be leveraged to predict automatically at what exact point in time a system component is going to fail. Instead of replacing said component ahead of time, as is the case in today’s preventive maintenance approach, this new predictive service protocol allows to save cost by making maximum usage of the device’s lifespan.This new predictive service protocol allows to save cost by making maximum usage of the device’s lifespan In the bigger picture, the data log of a particular fire alarm installation’s data can provide the basis for targeted system optimization efforts. For instance, if long-term data indicates that sensors in a particular area tend to trigger false alarms because of signal interference, the integrators can perform a deep dive into whether nearby high-voltage cabling is the cause and make adjustments to system architecture accordingly. In the same vein, integrators gain transparency on whether detectors in a certain location tend to need replacement due to dust and contamination, or if electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) with other systems like voice broadcast is causing issues – and take preventative measures. Self-monitoring Fire alarm systems Overall, these data points, together with constant real-time information on system health, will provide system administrators with the tools for planning and maintaining fire alarm systems in a more efficient manner. They can design and install new systems based on the data-powered learnings from previous installations. And they can provide a more customer-centric response to information requests or inquiries for system updates. Most of all, the connection to IoT-based services will provide a new peace of mind: These upgraded fire alarm systems will quietly monitor and secure themselves, and only trigger alarms or notifications when service is needed, while system integrators can focus on more important tasks. Right now, we are building the foundation for making these new IoT-driven services a reality. But compared to what the IoT has is store for the future design of fire alarm systems in buildings, we have only seen the beginning. The biggest benefits are still to come.
Those responsible for the specification of products which go into new modern buildings have been asking for safe, approved cabling, which play a critical part in electrical supply systems. The number of fires in high-rise buildings in Europe and the Middle East have brought the issue of quality of products for fire performance circuits into sharp focus, not least the Grenfell disaster. Meanwhile, new buildings become increasingly complex, with the use of new materials and the designs of many requiring complex electrical systems to support security and fire safety. New and refurbished buildings such as hospitals, schools, shopping malls or airports, may have complex addressable loop fire alarm systems which provide information on individual detectors. Conventional systems only provide information about specific circuits or zones. Indicating exact location of fire, fault For critical alarm circuits in buildings where large numbers of people move about there can be no greater priority than safetyThe addressable systems feature a fire control panel which receives information and status reports from each device, indicating its exact location and if there may be a fire, a fault, heat or contamination. For critical alarm circuits in buildings where large numbers of people move about – many of whom can be vulnerable – there can be no greater priority than safety. The cabling chosen for these systems is therefore critical. If the power to these alarm systems fails because the cabling does not meet the required performance, then the information available for fire and rescue services is directly affected and with it, the chance of finding people who may be in the building. To meet these design challenges, and with the inquiry into the Grenfell disaster still ongoing, it is the use of the very latest technology and science that is taking enhanced fire performance cabling onto a new level. Safe and compliant cable products Decision-makers in the supply chain want reassurance that the products they are specifying are safe and compliant, meeting all recognized specifications. Calls have been made by the Approved Cables Initiative (ACI) for all cable being used in the UK to conform to relevant British, European or international standards amid increasing concerns about the volume of non-approved cables coming onto the market. Installers have welcomed the development of a new generation of fire performance cabling Installers have welcomed the development of a new generation of fire performance cabling which ensures critical fire-safety circuits can continue to operate in the event of a fire from 30 minutes up to 120 minutes. The standard and enhanced cables in the Total Fire Solutions range are tubed, making them a welcome product for contractors with ease of installation. They are all UV stable and they all come with a hard insulant to resist any fault generation over time. These cables meet all relevant industry standards including ISO 9001 and is approved by the leading industry organizations nationally and worldwide including BASEC and LPCB. Carrying out fire risk assessment For the fire and rescue services, the continuity of power means they can continue to read fire alarm system information which can direct them to the seat of the fire and help to locate people who may be in the building. Responsibility for choosing the right system lies with the ‘responsible person’ under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 in business or any other non-domestic premises. This will be the owner, employer, landlord, or may be the facilities manager or building manager. As the responsible person, he or she must carry out a fire risk assessment of the premises and review it regularly and put in place and maintain appropriate fire safety measures. Ultimately, the responsible person faces a fines or jail if they fail to follow these measures and there is a fire. 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 Any items or products which go into these fire safety systems must be covered by standards set by national, European and international bodies such as British Standards. These will certify that when needed these products will perform their function and operate as expected in real life fire conditions. Ensuring cables meet fire safety standards In support of these standards, cable industry bodies provide testing regimes to ensure that different types of cable are fit for purpose and meet these standards when tested in fire conditions. 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. Instances of unsafe non-approved cable continue to come to lightFor 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. Counterfeit Flexible Cords campaign Instances of unsafe non-approved cable continue to come to light. Unsafe flexible cord, intended for use in domestic and industrial applications, has been found on sale in the UK recently, prompting the ACI to issue a fresh alert to the electrical supply chain. The latest find of sub-standard flexible cords is marked ‘Made in Turkey’ and ‘Ermaks’. Samples came to light following the initiative’s recent ‘Counterfeit Flexible Cords’ campaign which alerted the electrical supply chain to dangerous industrial flexible cords. We in the supply chain should all be vigilant to watch out and report these instances of non-compliant cabling wherever we see or suspect they have been installed, while developing only the safest products and systems of our own. We shouldn’t forget that we all have a duty and a responsibility where lives and property are at stake. Importance of MV cables to infrastructure Medium Voltage (MV) cables coming onto the market should be independently approved and certified as compliantThe demand for power has never been greater, with the explosion of development in towns and cities across the UK and the growth of industrial development and technology reliant on consistent supplies. Medium Voltage (MV) cables coming onto the market should be independently approved and certified as compliant as the pressure mounts on the installation of quality products in modern building developments. MV cables are crucial to our infrastructure. Electricity leaves the generating site and is routed via a step-up transformer to take it up to the National Grid distribution voltages of 400Kv, 275Kv and 132Kv. Once in the local area, the supply goes through step-down transformers that reduce the voltage to 415V with domestic supplies tapped off at 230V. To provide power to the sub-stations – very often located on the premises of the establishment that they supply – Medium Voltage (MV) cables are used. MV cables were only developed as the level of voltages increased and the need arose for a greater classification range. design and specification of the cables The technical design and specification of the cables is of paramount importance within the power distribution networkThe size of the market has developed to the point where the global MV cables market was valued at 39.31billion US dollars in 2016 and projected to grow at a rate of more than six percent until 2022. The technical design and specification of the cables themselves is of paramount importance within the power distribution network. There are a number of technical considerations to be taken into account including the size of the installation, the position of the installation in relation to the network and the presence of primary and secondary sub-stations. Prior to installation, a detailed route survey should also be carried out to plan where cables will be jointed and to identify any possible obstructions which may require special civil engineering works such as directional drilling. Underlying the critical nature of supplies to these types of services, the incidence of non-approved cables for these applications also plagues the industry.
Did you know an estimated 30% of smoke alarms in the UK are inoperable due to missing, flat or disconnected batteries? For a property to comply with The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, it is vitally important that all fire safety equipment is kept in perfect working order at all times. This involves checking that the fire safety equipment is accessible, well maintained and hasn’t been tampered with. There are many ways you can take care of your fire safety equipment, to ensure your property is prepared, should there ever be a fire. Equipment Assessment Checks There are two types of equipment assessment checks that should be carried out, including monthly and annually If you’re the ‘responsible person’ for commercial property, you need to ensure your building meets fire safety standards. Here are 5 tips on how to properly maintain your fire safety equipment. Both passive and active fire safety equipment must be check regularly for any signs of wear or damage. There are two types of equipment assessment checks that should be carried out, including monthly and annually. There is a range of equipment checks you must carry out, including fire doors, fire alarm test, emergency lighting and fire extinguishers. Emergency lighting should be checked monthly, with all issues kept in a logbook. Fire doors should also be checked to ensure their seals and frames are in good condition. Fire Alarm Tests All fire protection has to be checked annually including alarms, detectors, lighting, sprinklers, extinguishers and fire doors. They should be carefully inspected. Fire alarms are a legal requirement for commercial premises. To check that your Fire alarms still function correctly, it is important to get them serviced. All fire alarms should be tested, maintained and inspected by a competent person who is able to carry out any remedial work. Fire alarms are a legal requirement for commercial premises Fire extinguishers must be ready to work straight away in the event of a fire, so it is vital they are regularly checked and serviced. You should ensure they are maintained and kept in a functional condition. Every month, the pressure gauge should be tested on all fire extinguishers. Fire Risk Assessments Every year, it is required that a qualified technician carries out a thorough check on all your extinguishers for them to be fully serviced and certified. In addition to regular maintenance checks on your fire safety equipment, it is vital your commercial property has a fire risk assessment carried out every 4 years, with a renewal every 2 years. Fully trained and qualified assessors should undertake this to make sure it is done professionally Fully trained and qualified assessors should undertake this to make sure it is done professionally. By having a fire risk assessment review, it determines whether any changes could impact the ability for your equipment to properly protect your building. Fire Safety Logbook During a risk assessment, all fire doors must be checked to ensure they are in good condition and close efficiently with secure hinges. The fire seals must be fixed in position, with signs on the door present and legible. To keep an overview of all findings and actions, there should be a fire safety logbook and maintenance record that remains at your premises at all times. The logbook is used to record and review any significant findings when carrying out the fire risk assessment. This helps to keep all fire safety equipment functioning effectively and available to respond to emergency fires.
Technologies to protect against fire are among the innovations being shown at CES 2020, the technology event, Jan. 7-10 in Las Vegas. The fire market is one of many served by the range of consumer and smart home technologies on display at CES 2020, from artificial intelligence (AI) to 5G, vehicle technology to AR/VR (augmented and virtual reality), robotics to home automation. For example, Longan Vision will display augmented reality systems for firefighters, helping them make good decisions during high-risk events while reducing the cognitive load of incident command personnel. Longan's "Fusion Vision System" provides firefighters with enhanced vision, communication and situational awareness. fire-related products Smart home could be about delivering home analytics through cloudless architectures and new door lock approaches" The smart home market is a major focus at CES. In the case of fire-related products, a smart home can also be a safer home. “For the smart home market at CES this year, we expect to see numerous announcements regarding home awareness,” says Blake Kozak, Senior Principal Analyst at IHS Markit. “This will include brands offering up additional analytics for consumer security cameras with a focus on edge-based solutions.” The show features more than 170,000 attendees, 4,500 exhibitors and 1,100 industry thought-leaders featured on the CES stage. “The impact of this [event] for the smart home could be about delivering home analytics and enhancing privacy through cloudless architectures and new electronic door lock approaches,” Kozak adds. integrated smart home experience An example of home analytics is the Resideo Home app, introduced in December, which will make whole-home monitoring possible for four critical networks of the home – water, air, energy and security. Resideo promises a “simplified and integrated smart home experience." Smart fire monitoring solution provider Rozetatech at CES 2020 offers an Internet of Things (IoT) fire detection solution that uses advanced digital sensors and their wireless capabilities and sends real-time information through mobile phones to 911 rescue centers and fire officers. First Alert has helped protect homes and families for 60 years. Their Onelink portfolio, on display at CES, expands to provide whole home safety and WiFi coverage solutions. Gentex Corp. provides commercial smoke detection and signaling devices for the fire protection industry (in addition to a portfolio of electro-optical products for the global automotive industry). smart home and IoT applications Their newly developed UART-interface alarms can be integrated with any client's wireless module for various smart home EVERDay Technology provides smoke/heat/CO/gas detectors for both commercial and residential applications. Their newly developed UART-interface alarms, such as smoke/heat combo alarms, smoke/CO combo alarms and gas alarms, can be integrated with any client's wireless module for various smart home and IoT applications. Siterwell Electronics includes sensor alarms such as smoke, carbon monoxide, gas, heat, and water level alarms among its range of security and protection products for residential and commercial applications. Siterwell exports to around 66 countries. Other products include a UL-listed commercial fire alarm system, IoT intelligent security and smart home networking products. smart water leak detectors AerNos nano gas sensors detect multiple gases simultaneously to parts-per-billion levels for indoor and outdoor air quality monitoring, hazardous gas detection and other "e-nose" applications. The tiny, accurate, affordable and low-power modules deliver results for plug-and-play integration with commercial product lines. Safera Oy is an international innovator in intelligent stove guard technology and preventive fire safety. The new Safera Sense product provides smart cooking notifications to help users reduce cooking fire risks, assist with cooking temperatures and times, and improve air quality while cooking. smart home devices WaryMe designs and develops a personal safety mobile application to improve a user’s security in public places, schools, transports and companies by addressing major risks such as terrorism attacks, intrusion, fire and even industrial accidents. An all-in-one mobile application integrates alerting, crisis management and mass notification features. “Market players are looking to expand beyond established smart home devices like smart thermostats and networked cameras to products like smart water leak detectors, smart pet feeders, and smart air purifiers,” says Elizabeth Parks, President, Parks Associates. “Familiarity with smart home devices lags behind familiarity with smart entertainment products; it even lags that of smart speakers, which are quite new in the market,” adds Parks. In 2020, we will see players working to advance the visibility and marketing around device integration and specifically focus on use case scenarios around safety, security, and convenience, which have always been the primary drivers of adoption of these types of products.”
A “Complaint of Non-Conforming Products” has been submitted to the U.S. Consumer Safety Product Commission on behalf of a forensic expert who says he has identified non-compliance dangers and vulnerabilities related to fire and burglar alarm control units. Millions of alarms conceivably could be recalled following an investigation in response to the complaint. The U.S. Consumer Safety Product Commission is tasked with promoting the safety of consumer products by addressing “unreasonable risks” of injury, such as risk of fire, chemical exposure, electrical malfunction or mechanical failure. Typically, the CSPC evaluates such complaints and determines what corrective action, if any, is appropriate, in this case possibly by the end of the year. Report from Jeffrey Zwirn Jeffrey Zwirn, an alarm and security forensic expert, says he has identified problems with the alarm devices and has posted online a series of videos confirming that they do not operate in conformance with Underwriters Laboratories (UL) 985 and 103 and NFPA 72 (National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code) Standards. The single data-bus circuits of the hardwired devices can be short-circuitedSpecifically, the single data-bus circuits of the hardwired devices can be short-circuited and become either fully or partially non-functional. IDS Research & Development Inc. (Zwirn’s company) and Connaughton Group LLC, a product integrity consulting firm, sent a request to the CSPC on Sept. 20 asking for an investigation of products across the North American household fire and burglar alarm control units and commercial burglar and fire alarm control panel category. Includes products from big brands The request estimates that “hundreds of millions” of the units were sold and installed across the United States. The request estimates that 'hundreds of millions' of the units were installed across the USAThey include products sold under brand names such as Honeywell, DSC, NAPCO, ELK Products, and Interlogix. If the recall were to happen, it would be the largest recall in the history of the alarm industry. The request states: “It is our expert opinion that these non-conforming control panels present a foreseeably dangerous and serious public safety hazard and risk to all of the unsuspecting consumers, their families and business owners who have these control panels installed in their homes and businesses.” Interceptor addresses the vulnerability Zwirn has also submitted the products for investigation by UL and Intertek Testing Services Inc., which respectively provide the UL and ETL certification marks and are Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratories (NRTL). Outcomes of those investigations are forthcoming. Jeffrey Zwirn also promotes and sells a product, The Interceptor, that would address the vulnerability. It is a microprocessor designed to protect the data-bus and auxiliary power output wiring installed throughout a protected premises.
The Phase 1 report of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry, released Oct. 30, examines events of 14 June, 2017, when 71 people were killed in a high-rise building fire at Grenfell Tower, a residential tower block in North Kensington, London. The report finds London Fire Brigade’s planning and preparation for such a fire was “gravely inadequate.” The report reflects the first phase of the inquiry. Investigators will consider problems related to design, maintenance and renovation of Grenfell Tower in the second phase, as well as whether building and fire regulations were adequate and adhered to. Report Suggests Lack Of Training The report found that otherwise experienced incident commanders and senior officers attending the fire had received no training in the particular dangers associated with the building’s combustible cladding, even though some senior officers were aware of similar fires that had occurred in other countries. Otherwise experienced incident commanders and senior officers attending the fire had received no training in the particular dangers Although the London Fire Brigade purports to maintain an operational risk database (ORD) for buildings in London and has a risk assessment policy accessible by all operational firefighters at an incident, the database entry for Grenfell Tower contained almost no information of any use to an incident commander called to a fire. The database information was many years out of date and did not reflect the changes made by a building refurbishment. “None of the firefighters or incident commanders on the ground seem to have been able to conceive of the possibility of a general failure of compartmentation or of a need for mass evacuation; they neither truly seized control of the situation nor were able to change strategy,” according to the report. Evacuation Plans The report continues: “National guidance requires fire and rescue services to draw up contingency evacuation plans for dealing with fires in high-rise buildings that spread beyond the compartment of origin causing a ‘stay put’ strategy to become untenable. They should understand, for any given high-rise building in their area, when a partial or full evacuation might become necessary and provide appropriate training to incident commanders.” Friends and families still await justice for their loved ones following the report The public inquiry by Rt Hon Sir Martin Moore-Bick is being conducted in parallel to investigations by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) and Her Majesty’s Coroner for Inner London (West), Professor Fiona The decision to evacuate the building was delayed by almost an hourWilcox. Once the Grenfell fire was out of control, the decision to evacuate the building was delayed by almost an hour, which resulted in additional fatalities. A decision should have been made to evacuate the tower between 1:30 and 1:50 a.m., according to the report. The “stay put” strategy was not questioned, even in response to early indications the building has suffered a “total failure of compartmentation.” The "Stay Put" Recommendation The ‘stay put’ recommendation was based on general wisdom that most fires are likely to be contained in small areas of a building and that anyone trying to escape is likely to run into dangerous flames, smoke-filled corridors, or to interfere with fire-fighting efforts. Obviously, it was bad advice in this case since the fast-moving fire rapidly spread and engulfed the entire building. Combustible panels on the exterior of the building accelerated the fire. The aluminium composite material (ACM) rainscreen panels with polyethylene cores acted as a source of fuel. The ACM rainscreen panels with polyethylene cores acted as a source of fuel There were serious deficiencies in command and control. Although additional resources arrived swiftly, some senior officers failed to give sufficient practical support or inform themselves quickly enough of conditions and operations within the building, according to the report. Communication Strategies Channels of communication between the control room and the incident ground were improvised, uncertain and prone to error. Control room operators did not therefore know enough about conditions in the tower or the progress of responses to individual fire survival guidance calls, so they lacked a sound basis for telling callers whether help was on its way. In a statement in response to the Phase 1 report, the London Fire Commissioner Dany Cotton said: “We are disappointed at some of the criticism of individual staff members who were placed in completely unprecedented circumstances and faced the most unimaginable conditions while trying to save the lives of others.” Furthermore, Matt Wrack, head of the Fire Brigades Union commented: “Nobody [has] explained how you would alert residents when there’s no common fire alarm system.” He also said the building was already a “death trap” when firefighters arrived.
Founded in France in June 2006, QIM specializes in the design, supply, installation and maintenance of quality automatic sprinkler systems. Created on the simple principle of providing quality products and service, QIM strives to ensure it offers the very best, most effective sprinkler protection systems for warehouses. Staying true to these principles, the company continues to see steady growth, with annual revenue reaching nearly £4 million in 2016. Tighter sprinkler regulations Focusing exclusively on warehouse projects, QIM works with some of the most respected construction companies in France. With French law requiring all warehouses larger than 6,000 m² in size requiring sprinkler protection, it is fair to say that QIM is used to large-scale projects. There is now a lot of choice, with many companies and products in the sprinkler world" Despite many changes in the industry, including tighter sprinkler regulations for warehouses, the company has continued to grow. When assessing what has changed in the industry in the last five years, Thomas Delahaye, engineer, at QIM, is clear while stating, “There is now a lot of choice, with many companies and products in the sprinkler world. Prices have also been steadily decreasing.” Tyco Factory Mutual (FM) pumps Despite continuing to grow, the company has never lost sight of its founding principle of providing quality products and service. Reflecting this, QIM’s CEO recently announced the company was seeking to maintain its current annual revenue rather than increase it. Whilst this may seem an odd aim for a company that has experienced such growth, Mr. Delahaye is in complete agreement with the policy, stating “This will allow us to choose our future projects and ensure we completely satisfy each customer.” Like most companies operating in the increasingly demanding construction industry, staying ahead of competition and keeping to tight schedules is vital - not just for their reputation but also their clients. Understanding this, QIM has, and continues to seek out, products and technologies that enable it to meet deadlines and stay ahead of the competition. This is why, Mr. Delahaye explains, the company continues to use Tyco products, “We have used Tyco products almost exclusively since our foundation. They continue to be our choice because of their prices and range of stock.” ESFR-25 sprinkler heads One recent project that the company is particularly proud of is a large warehouse recently completed in Amiens, northern France for an internationally-recognized global commerce company. Measuring 107,000 m2 in size, it is the company’s largest warehouse in the country. The scale and importance of the project meant installation was a huge undertaking; involving a staggering 10,000 Tyco model ESFR-25 sprinkler heads as well as 36 Tyco check valves and multiple Tyco Factory Mutual (FM) pumps. ESFR-25: Early Suppression Fast Response (ESFR) provides effective heavy sprinkler discharge at heights of up to 48ft (14.6m). Their benefits include Competitive prices Unique product range eliminates compromise The technical skills and know-how to ensure success Early Suppression Fast Response Benefits For this project, as with their others, there was no hesitation when it came to choosing which fire protection products to install, with Mr. Delahaye stating, “Tyco have the technical services and skills to answer our questions and solve problems, while their multiple locations mean getting Tyco products is quick and simple.”, stated Thomas Delahaye, Engineer, at QIM. In addition to the excellent reputation and uniqueness of Tyco products, Mr. Delahaye also highlighted another important aspect to the Tyco product range that is always a key consideration for businesses such as theirs own, which is the cost factor, “Tyco products are also very competitively priced compared to others,” added Mr. Delahaye.
Nittan Europe, UK manufacturer of conventional and addressable fire detection products, has had its Evolution analog addressable fire detection system installed into TOR School in Glastonbury, Somerset. The system was installed by Coomber Fire and Security Systems who are a Nittan Elite Partner and BAFE SP203-1 & SP101 accredited. The TOR School is an alternative to mainstream school for children and young people who may be struggling to cope in their existing educational environment in the Mendip area of Somerset. As a part of a recent expansion project, a new building has been added which required a comprehensive fire detection system. Addressable Fire Detection System They have been designed to reduce false alarms caused by non-combustion products The Nittan Evolution analog addressable fire detection system, installed by Coomber Fire & Security Systems, has provided the school with a system which is not only reliable, resilient to false alarm, and simple to use, but also saved the school time and money. At the heart of the system is Nittan’s evolution1 control panel, with Nittan EV-PS Photoelectric Smoke Detectors with in-built sounder and EV-DP Dual Wavelength Photoelectric Smoke Detectors. Nittan’s Evolution EV-DP smoke detectors have been installed by Coomber Fire & Security Systems in the science labs and DT workshops to prevent false alarms. They are ideally suited to this demanding environment as they have been designed to reduce false alarms caused by non-combustion products such as steam, dust and aerosols. Optical Smoke Sensor As steam and dust are much larger particles than smoke, the detector won’t false alarmUnlike other industry standard (single optical sensor) smoke detectors on the market that claim to distinguish between smoke and non-combustion products, the EV-DP effectively measures the actual particle size in the chamber via its combined IR and blue LED technology. As steam and dust are much larger particles than smoke, the detector won’t false alarm. Also highly reliable, the Evolution EV-PS Optical Smoke Sensor installed across other areas of the school building has the added benefit of the sounder fully integrated within the sensor itself. This makes for a cost effective, quick installation and is more aesthetically pleasing. The Nittan evolution 1 panel provides complete control and monitoring capabilities for all system devices and has especially been designed with the needs of both the installer and end user in mind. Most Addressable Systems Ease of use was paramount and the panel’s LCD touch screen display and intuitive, easy to use menu structure met this, making the handover from Coomber to the customer very straightforward. Staff at Mendip Partnership School are confident in how to operate the system. Evolution 1 panels have very comprehensive, but simple to use ‘Cause and Effect’ capabilities Evolution 1 panels have very comprehensive, but simple to use ‘Cause and Effect’ capabilities and, like most addressable systems, allow comprehensive programming of the sounder outputs. Furthermore, the Cause and Effect matrix can be set up via the onboard touch screen and menu structure or using the PC tools and downloaded to the panel. The panel also has two configurable rs485 ports for connection and supports up to eight separate password protected users, so that all nominated members from the school can easily access it. Ensuring Total Fire Security For Its Customers Lee James, General Manager – Product Marketing at Nittan said, “Nittan takes care to not only ensure total fire security for its customers, but also puts special attention in fostering relationships with its partners. Coomber Fire & Security Systems, the largest independent fire and security installer in Somerset, is one of our Elite Partners.” “This program was developed by us to acknowledge and reward a select group of installation partners that have shown commitment to promoting the Nittan brand and have undertaken product training to a high level in order to ensure the uppermost standards of customer service. Their work on this project is testament to that.”
An Advanced MxPro, multiprotocol fire system and Apollo detection has been installed to protect people and premises at the Magistrate's Court in Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire. Representing a total upgrade of the previous fire protection to meet L1 requirements, the new intelligent fire system was installed by Network Security & Fire, based in Basingstoke. The original, single loop addressable fire system had been renewed at various points previously, but was no longer fit for purpose. The Estates team specified a new analogue addressable system with high sensitivity smoke detection in the custody suite, together with an automated Voice Alarm (VA) system. Out-of-hours installation The roof void in each court has a central dome that rises two storeys at its highest point" There was no possibility of closing the building while the upgrade was made, so installation of the new fire equipment had to take place out of hours. This was not the only challenge on the project, as John Angell, Contract Manager, Network Fire & Security, explains, "In addition to limited access, we had to take into consideration the need to rewire the vast majority of the system. This was compounded by the design of the building, which features plasterboard ceilings, rather than suspended ceilings, and made access to voids for cable-laying quite difficult." "Within the courtrooms themselves, we also had to take into account the high ceiling heights. The roof void in each court has a central dome that rises two storeys at its highest point. This was not only an issue during installation but could have restricted access for essential maintenance. We were able to overcome this aspect by positioning the fire detectors around the coffer that surrounds the central roof dome." Advanced MxPro control panels Network Security & Fire recommended a fire system, configured around three networked Advanced MxPro control panels carries 260 Apollo Discovery devices, including optical smoke and heat detectors, loop-powered beacons, manual call points and interfaces. It is pre-programmed with a series of automated messages that are activated in the event of an alert A modular voice alarm system is included, which comprises three master and five slave units. It is pre-programmed with a series of automated messages that are activated in the event of an alert, but there is also an option for manual intervention to broadcast bespoke messages using a microphone. Incident detection If an alarm is raised by devices within the courtroom areas, evacuation procedures are initiated in these zones and an alert is transmitted to the custody suite. Equally, should an incident be detected in the custody suite this area will be evacuated immediately and the court areas are put on stand-by. John Angell concludes, "Considering all the challenges regarding the 'live' site and other installation restrictions, this project went incredibly smoothly. We have been able to equip the Magistrate's Court with a modern fire detection system that is reliable, easy to use and flexible enough to meet current and future requirements."
Founded in 2012, UK Sprinklers Ltd (UKSL) provides design, fabrication, installation and maintenance expertise in the active fire suppression market for both new and existing buildings. Based in Manchester, UKSL operates throughout the UK, working with end-user clients, developers, architects and consultants in the residential and domestic sectors. The growth of UKSL has perhaps been as spectacular as some of the high-rise buildings it fits out. From revenues of £100,000 in its first year, the company saw sales grow to £2.6m by year three. “We’ve continued to grow and grow,” said Steve Griffiths, Managing Director, UK Sprinklers, “Once we delivered our first successful project, more work followed. Plus, we have been lucky with the timing: we’ve certainly benefitted from a change in building regulations and an upturn in the construction business.” handful of competitors We have to offer customers something others cannot match, whether that’s in terms of service, technology or quality" The change in regulation is the one stating all residential buildings over 30m in height must now have sprinklers fitted in every apartment. The regulation dates back to 2005, yet because of a slow-down in new builds through 2008-09, many new projects didn’t materialize until 2012 – the year UKSL opened its doors. “At the time, most work was in London,” said Griffiths. “We’re now seeing projects across the UK.” With more work comes increasing competition. Griffiths says that while there may have been a handful of competitors for tenders in 2012, today there are hundreds: “Competition is healthy. It means we have to offer customers something others cannot match, whether that’s in terms of service, technology or quality.” Residential Fire Sprinkler System UKSL has been a Tyco Rapid Response Partner in the UK since day one. This means it provides technical information and support to UKSL for all Rapid Response Products, as well as arranging fire protection product training. Tyco’s Rapid Response Residential Fire Sprinkler System is a state-of-the-art fire protection technology designed specifically for the home. It is the most complete fire protection system on the market, offering a diverse selection of sprinkler designs and finishes, Chlorinated Polyvinyl Chloride (CPVC pipe) and fittings and a full line of system components. “Fire protection products have to meet industry standards,” said Griffiths. “There is not always a lot to choose from between different brands. But unlike some other manufacturers, Tyco has never had an incident in which a large number of sprinklers have operated inadvertently. Tyco has an excellent reputation for reliability.” warranty against defective parts One recent UKSL project was at Nine Elms in London; a large-scale development project that includes seven residential blocks; the highest of which measures 37-storeys. Tyco solutions were an integral part of the installation for this comprehensive project, and included: The installation of Tyco BlazeMaster pipework and fittings The Installation of approximately 5,500 Tyco LFII concealed sprinkler heads in a total of 645 apartments “Tyco wasn’t specified,” said Griffiths. “We told them they needed to use Tyco. The conversations with Tyco started before we even opened for business,” said Griffiths. “Being a Tyco Rapid Response Partner gave us instant credibility. Tyco is a recognized, global brand. It certainly helped open doors that might not have been so easy. As a start-up, we were able to offer a ten-year Tyco-backed warranty against defective parts and installation. This reassures customers that, even if we’re not around, the manufacturer will pick up the tab.” support provided by Tyco On an operational level, Griffiths says the size, scale and support provided by Tyco ensures jobs run smoothly: “Tyco stock levels are good, which means we can order products to be on site when they’re needed. We’re working on some very large projects, where site space is at a premium. As a supplier, you can’t afford to have stock piling up on site. Stock needs to arrive when it’s needed.” Steve Griffiths, MD, UK Sprinkler Ltd. He added that the company’s relationship with Tyco also extends to product development: “We discuss feature upgrades. I know for certain some of the feedback is being tested in Tyco R&D. We feel valued.”
Established in 1984 in South Africa to contract in the Fire Detection and Automatic Extinguishing Systems market, Specifire prides itself on providing a professional approach to each individual customer. Building on this success, the company expanded in 1995, opening a sprinkler division that is now the biggest installer of fire protection and detection systems in KwaZulu-Natal region, in South Africa. Thanks to its excellent reputation, Specifire has steadily built up a large client base that includes some of South Africa’s biggest companies, including Sappi Fine Papers, Illovo Sugar, Hulamin, Toyota S.A., Unilever and numerous shopping centers. Fire protection and detection systems installed Specifire focuses almost exclusively on the KwaZulu-Natal region, including the city of Durban Specifire focuses almost exclusively on the KwaZulu-Natal region, including the city of Durban – which accounts for approximately 95% of its business. Featuring 150 employees, the company sees annual revenue of up to £6 million – thanks largely in part to the installation of fire control technology in industrial sites such as sugar mills and warehouses. “For our customers, price is always a consideration, so we aim to be competitive, but at the same time we don’t want to compromise our high quality,” explained Martin Holmes, Managing Director, Specifire. “We do everything in-house, from design to fabrication to installation, and finish every project on time.” AutoCAD and Tyco sprinkler systems In over thirty years of business, Specifire has seen exponential growth in the marketplace and constantly evolves its own operations to meet changing demands. The implementation of a new management structure is just one of its latest innovations, along with a renewed focus on services rather than simple installation. “Our mission is to provide the very best in design, installation and service; leveraging advanced technologies such as AutoCAD and Tyco sprinkler systems. By putting detailed planning at the heart of every project, we can ensure success,” added Holmes. “Furthermore, by focusing more on services, we can generate annuity income on a regular basis.” Tycoin-rack and roof sprinklers One recent project that showcases Specifire’s attention to design and detail is the deployment of circa 20, 000 Tycoin-rack and roof sprinklers in a large clothing warehouse. Founded in 1965, PEP Stores is a large multinational discount clothing company based in Cape Town. Operating in 11 countries, including Australia and Poland, the company employs approximately 44,000 people. Operating more than 4,600 retail outlets, the company wanted to build a new 90,000 m2 central hub warehouse that would house and protect its precious inventory from fire damage. Tyco high velocity sprayers and guards Specifire has installed 75% of the Tyco sprinklers and is on target to complete the project within the agreed schedule"“Pepkor has consolidated all its warehousing facilities into one single distribution depot and needed a robust fire-protection solution. We put together a design concept with guaranteed compliance with regulations and won the business,” continued Holmes. “In the past five months, we have installed 75% of the Tyco sprinklers and we are on target to complete the project within the agreed tight schedule.” The Tyco in-rack and roof sprinklers, along with Tyco high velocity sprayers and guards and pre-trimmed wet Alarm Valve (AV-1) assemblies will ensure that millions of dollars’ worth of stock will be protected from fire. The Tyco TY-B Conventional Sprinkler automatically distributes water in a spherical pattern below the deflector. The benefits of this conventional sprinkler include – Quality products that give peace of mind Competitive prices that don’t compromise on quality Effective fire protection of valuable stock “We are the current holder of the ASIB “Best Installation Award” for our nearly £1 million installation at the new premises of Unilever in Durban and we wanted this ambitious project to be similarly well regarded,” said Holmes. “It is certainly a flagship example of how to properly integrate fire protection into a Greenfield development.” Enhanced fire safety and protection For Pepkor, the clear benefits are having peace of mind when it comes to fire protection as well as security in terms of full regulatory compliance. For Specifire, its relationship with Tyco products delivers multiple advantages; from the quality of the sprinklers and valves to the support it receives. “Tyco not only supplies premium quality products at affordable prices, but also has a strong local presence so I know that if I have a question, it will get answered quickly,” commented Holmes. “There are support boffins in the region who will happily come talk about the equipment and respond to any technical enquiries.” Meticulous fire protection specialist Tyco not only supplies premium quality produce at affordable prices but also has a strong local presence" “Tyco not only supplies premium quality produce at affordable prices but also has a strong local presence so I know that if I have a question, it will get answered quickly.” Martin Holmes, MD, Specifire With the Pepkor project nearing completion, Specifire is looking to the future and hoping to build on its reputation as the region’s most professional and meticulous fire protection specialist. It fully expects Tyco products to continue to play a vital role in the company’s ongoing development. Tyco fire safety equipment and solutions Holmes concludes, “The supply, delivery and service we receive from Tyco is excellent; any concerns regarding pricing, availability and technical detail are answered within a day by the local Tyco team,” concluded Holmes. “I simply don’t get that level of support from anyone else.” TYCO Products are part of Johnson Controls, a global diversified technology and multi industrial solutions provider serving a wide range of customers in more than 150 countries globally.
Founded more than 20 years ago, CLF-SATREM now employs over 200 people. The company covers seven French regions and saw more than £32 million in turnover in 2015. CLF-SATREM provides the comprehensive installation and maintenance of fixed systems for automatic fire protection using sprinklers and RIA, as well as specialized systems such as water mist and special hazards. Installation of fixed systems CLF-SATREM has enjoyed strong and steady growth since its inception, during which time the company has been involved in flagship projects such as the renovation of the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris, France. However, the introduction of new regulations, combined with a more competitive global economy, is presenting challenges. When it comes to suppliers and partners, CLF-SATREM takes various criteria into account, such as cost and quality. “Certification is a necessity. At the same time, we can feel the contraction of the global market and that puts pressure on us,” explained Pierre Breillout, General Manager, CLF-SATREM. He adds, “However, we have remained at the forefront of the market with increasing revenues because we plan every project in detail, limit potential risk, respond to customer needs and work with the best suppliers.” CLF-SATREM specialized systems When it comes to suppliers and partners, CLF-SATREM takes various criteria into account, most importantly cost and quality. Having used Tyco products in numerous projects, CLF-SATREM is well aware of their unique qualities and how they help overcome the special demands of each and every project. “We rely on a small group of handpicked partners to supply us with the best technology for the job in hand, enabling us to mix and match according to the job specifications,” added Mr. Breillout. “This enables us to be very flexible when responding to RFPs and maximizes our chances of winning new business. It also means we can capitalize on the fast-growing residential market”.