DMP releases its new line of alarm communication radios that are FirstNet Ready™ and approved for use on FirstNet®. FirstNet is built with AT&T in a public-private partnership with the First Responder Network Authority and is the only nationwide, high-speed broadband communications platform dedicated to and purpose-built specifically for America’s first responders and the extended public safety community. It’s the solution to decades-long interoperability and communica...
Following its General Assembly, Euralarm will organize an industry webinar that will run from 16:00 - 16:50 (CET) on October 29, 2020. The webinar is intended to look at the key regulations and standards that affect gaseous extinguishing systems in Europe and to distinguish between approved gaseous fire extinguishing systems and approved components, which is the subject of the recent Euralarm document titled, Guidance on Gaseous Systems: approved systems versus approved components. Free registr...
Valuation and home survey processes were previously insufficient to establish whether or not external cladding on high-rise buildings [over 18 m height] contains combustible material and therefore would facilitate the spread of fire. Following the Grenfell tragedy and subsequent MHCLG [Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government] guidance, RICS [Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors] along with UKF [UK Finance] and BSA [Building Societies Association] developed so-called EWS-1 form...
Integrated Fire Safety Systems Ltd, a provider in the design, installation, commissioning, and service of fire safety systems has announces it has attained Loss Prevention Standard (LPS) 1014 certified status. This is part of its ongoing strategy to expand its list of accreditations and certifications and provide customers with the reassurance that they comply with, and correctly manage system design, installation, commissioning and servicing of fire detection and alarm systems. Fire and secur...
The Extinguishing Section of Euralarm has published a guidance document explaining the differences between approved gaseous extinguishing systems and components. The aim of the guideline is to make any person involved in the choice of a gaseous extinguishing system aware of the major differences between quality marks and to help them make a decision based on clear and balanced information. gaseous fire extinguishing systems Gaseous fire extinguishing systems are a very effective way to protect...
Drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), are expanding their usefulness in the arenas of firefighting and fire prevention, whether in a downtown business district or in fire-prone wildlands. Among other benefits, drones can provide situational awareness, guide emergency response, and perform dangerous duties while keeping fire personnel safe. Drones provide a new solution for extinguishing fires in high-rise buildings, which can occur beyond the reach of fire nozzles and rescue ladders. Chin...
Vimpex Ltd, Europe’s independent manufacturer of fire alarm ancillaries, has added a Fire Door Coordinator - which ensures that a pair of self-closing fire doors will always close in the correct sequence, enabling each door leaf to shut fully, and help to maintain the fire integrity of the doors - to its door holder product range. If double fire doors don’t close in the correct sequence they will not close in the middle and leave a gap for dangerous smoke and gases to pass through. Self-closing double doors controller This is particularly important for fire-rated doors and self-latching security doors as it maintains the doors seal thus eliminating the need for human intervention. COVID-19 has presented many challenges for businesses, one of these being able to reduce the risk of infection in the workplace which sometimes leaves businesses no choice but to leave fire doors open, increasing the risk of self-closing double doors to fall out of sequence. The fire door coordinator can be used on both fire rated and non-fire rated door sets and has a wide range of finishes. It is a smart and discrete product which is easy for the installer to fit and for the end-user to maintain.
Life safety manufacturer, Hochiki Europe, launches a new range of hybrid wireless fire detection and alarm equipment. The Ekho product range is EN54-25 approved, RED compliant and takes hybrid wireless fire detection to new levels of reliability, flexibility and performance. Using the latest in radio networking technology, the Ekho hybrid wireless system provides a robust ‘always on’ network of devices which can automatically adapt to changing environmental conditions – offering installers an unparalleled level of reliability. Enhanced safety benefits Unlike other systems, Ekho’s wireless devices are not tied to specific expanders, instead, each device instinctively chooses its parent expander based on the strength of the signal pathway back to the translator, with expanders automatically forming a bi-directional mesh network for delivering information to the main control panel. The wireless field device will automatically find and connect to an alternative expander In the event where an expander’s signal is compromised, the wireless field device will automatically find and connect to an alternative expander with the next strongest signal pathway – providing end-users with enhanced safety benefits. The range is extremely versatile, offering a selection of wireless sensor types, as well as I/O units, a sounder, a sensor/voice-sounder/VAD and a manual call point. Its simplified design ensures that products in the series are easy to install. While the faster commissioning process, which can be carried out off-site, saves installers time on projects. Hybrid wireless systems Utilizing hybrid wireless systems negates the need to install cables therefore guaranteeing minimum disturbance to surroundings during installation – making the range an ideal choice for historic buildings, remote or temporary sites and any project where the installation of fire cabling is too difficult, overly expensive or prohibited. Mark Jones, export manager at Hochiki Europe commented: “The digital age has affected every part of our lives, and life safety is no exception. Our Ekho product range offers wireless solutions to a range of what can be complex project challenges. As with all Hochiki Europe products, the range is intelligent and ultra-dependable, offering users a future-proofed life safety system.”
Infographics announce that Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service (FRS) will become the first FRS to adopt an integrated solution that seamlessly joins up their work and data flows across Resource Management departments, Emergency Response, and Prevention and Protection. This ground-breaking project will include the implementation of Infographics’ latest ‘off-the-shelf’ integrated solutions and interfaces in order to achieve, Infographics believes, a UK (and most likely global) ‘first’ within the Fire and Rescue sector. Major transformation program The project at Staffordshire involves a major transformation program to create a closed, continuous information loop that connects the flow of data and tasks across, and between, the three key pillars of FRS duties – Resource Management, Emergency Response/Dispatch and Preventative Work. The latter will include all activities that fall within FRS Prevention, Protection and Hydrant Management responsibilities. We are very pleased to be working with Infographics and implementing these systems into our service" Howard Watts, Director of Community Safety at Staffordshire Fire and Rescue, said: “We are very pleased to be working with Infographics and implementing these systems into our service. This forms part of our commitment to continual improvement and investing in firefighter safety. Our transformation journey will see truly joined up systems creating efficient and effective use of data across the organization”. Target preventative resources Infographics’ specialist FRS Resource Management platform (FireWatch) connects data and departmental tasks, and manages their impacts across core functions, including HR, Skills and Assets. It also includes live bi-directional interfaces with third party Dispatch/Command and Control Systems to provide intelligent availability data to Control Room operators, and to process and calculate the impact of ongoing incidents back into the core departmental systems. Incident data additionally flows automatically to Infographics’ Prevention and Protection system (Prevent + Protect) and premise records. This, along with additional data such as risk level, building categories, vulnerable person data and other information, can then be utilized to target preventative resources in the most effective way and where the greatest impact on safety can be achieved. Fire fighter risk analysis The Prevent + Protect system provides one integrated location and database for safety audits The Prevent + Protect system provides one integrated location and database for safety audits, enforcement, operational risk, ‘safe & well’ and hydrant information. This integrated data set – combined with elements such as fire fighter risk analysis, typical occupancy, number of storeys, and so on – could also be utilized to help inform Emergency Response decision making. Russell Wood, Commercial Manager at Infographics, said: “The ultimate goal for any FRS is to be able to effectively plan and manage their resources across all areas in a unified way, and to remove procedural gaps, manual processes and highly-disjointed data sets. If an FRS is to be able to understand the impact of their activities on risk and response, and to continually retrospect and improve, having that integrated set of data and tasks is essential.” Human Resource Planning The new project will include, as one seamlessly-integrated solution suite, deployment of the: FireWatch Cloud, with the implementation of the complete FireWatch suite of integrated Human Resource Planning and Management Solutions – including HR, Availability, Self-service, Payments, Fleet, Assets, Training & Development, and Health & Safety (all delivered via the Microsoft Azure Cloud-based solution) FireWatch App, for iPhone and Android devices, allowing users to directly access data and tasks for Leave, Skills, Training, Availability and Assets, and to monitor and act on personalized Key Performance Indicators in one modern and easy-to-use place. (Rather than multiple disjointed systems and Apps) Prevent + Protect solution, our specialist Case Management Suite for Prevention, Protection and Hydrant Management, also delivered via the Microsoft Azure Cloud FireWatch Mobilization Interface for the Capita Vision Command and Control Solution, allowing the FRS to automatically share live vehicle availability and incident data between the systems More accurate information The key business benefits of the new fully-integrated solution will include: A continually updated, live information loop providing a complete picture of operations and resource at any given moment Reduction in risk due to having more accurate information across skills, availability, assets and premise information A connected organization and network of teams across multiple areas of FRS responsibility Shared live data and intelligence feeding through to emergency dispatch systems Significant direct saving opportunities through efficient working and optimum resourcing Reduced number of suppliers, and direct IT maintenance and support costs Reduced internal IT infrastructure, support and training costs Reduced manual workarounds, and related IT interface development effort, issues and cost Greater IT resilience and faster upgrades through Microsoft Azure Cloud delivery
CU First Responders Finance (CUFR) is excited to welcome Albany Firemen’s Federal Credit Union (AFFCU) to their Referral Credit Union program. AFFCU is looking forward to offering business loan services to their membership. CUFR’s business lending program CUFR’s business lending program provides the avenue for first responder credit unions to refer commercial real estate, apparatus, equipment, and other business loans for potential funding. The referring credit union gets business loans on their books and the lead lender earns points and a portion of quality loans. Additionally, there is an opportunity to sell a portion of the loan back to the referring credit union. CUFR’s business lending program Albany Firemen's FCU looks forward to offering business lending through CUFR" “Albany Firemen's FCU looks forward to offering business lending through CUFR. This is a service we would not be able to provide by ourselves. Our members have often looked to us to assist them with this type of lending and we were unable to do so. We look forward to working with our new partners,” said Mike Tobler, Chairman of the Board. Albany Firemen’s Federal Credit Union was the 609th federal credit union, founded in 1935. AFFCU offers banking services to the Albany Fire Department and Police Officers, the Rensselaer Fire Department, the Albany Airport Fire Department, Albany Long Shoreman/Port of Albany, BASF, Albany City and County Employees, the City of Troy Employees, Troy Housing Authority, RPI, the Sage Colleges, Troy Public Library, University Heights Association, Ferguson Waterworks, Central Business Improvement District. Supporting first responder credit unions In addition to the members themselves, services are extended to their spouses and immediate family. CU First Responder Finance is a partnership between the National Council of Firefighter Credit Unions and Biz Lending & Insurance Center, Inc. Their mission is to develop commercial real estate marketing and business lending programs that are specifically designed for first responder credit unions.
Dräger has launched a range of solutions for cleaning breathing apparatus, respiratory masks and PPE equipment that reduce the risk of carcinogen contamination within emergency teams as part of its Health for the Firefighter campaign. Dräger have worked in partnership with Harstra instruments, a Dutch manufacturer of cleaning and drying equipment. The launch follows a study undertaken by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) which demonstrated a self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) worn and evaluated as fully operational will be contaminated within 25 minutes of use in firefighting situations. Potential hazards for personnel Currently, most masks and SCBA are cleaned by hand, which is a lengthy and inconsistent process. It can also pose potential hazards for personnel. Dräger has therefore developed a package of solutions comprising of cleaning products, logistical support and consultancy services that enable fire services to mitigate firefighters’ exposure to carcinogens through every step of attending an incident. They include: simple-to-use washing machines that clean using high pressure water; drying cabinets in various shapes and sizes to accommodate each fire service’s space and equipment; and testing facilities to ensure products are decontaminated before going back into operation. Providing additional protection The final part of the new solution is an improved logistic and workshop capability to quarantine contaminated kit The final part of the new solution is an improved logistic and workshop capability to quarantine contaminated kit, clean it, and then replenish with sanitized PPE to maintain operational capability. Dräger can design and engineer new infrastructure or work within an existing facility to provide optimum protection and cleaning of equipment. UK marketing manager for Engineered Solutions at Dräger, Andy Taylor said it is now well known that job-related exposures to carcinogens increases the risk of illnesses such as cancer: “Employers owe their employees a duty of care and are therefore looking to provide additional protection during training, post incident and in day-to-day equipment handling operations.” Minimizing the risk of contamination “A new standard operating procedure, which incorporates comprehensive training, must be established by the Fire and Rescue Service including comprehensive training for emergency teams on how to decontaminate themselves following an incident in which exposure was likely.” “Standardizing processes not only minimize the risk of contamination for workshop personnel, but also reduce the exposure of carcinogenic substances for the wearer. The consistency of cleaning also extends the lifetime of PPE.” Within Harstra’s product portfolio are a range of washing and drying solutions. These include The Wash4 and Wash6DR models which can accommodate between four and six SCBA respectively, including cylinders and up to 18 breathing masks. Best possible protection Air Cylinders refilled and the SCBA is ready for operations all using Dräger workshop equipment The Wash4 model provides the user with a choice of cleaning time‘s from 5 minutes wash, 10 minutes or the recommended 22 minutes under pressure. The Wash6DR washes at the same intervals, but without the need for Compressed Air cylinders, instead taking pressure from a high powered air external source. Essential to the process is the requirement that cleaned equipment is dried correctly in a drying cabinet or drying room to remove moisture. The Dräger portfolio is configurable and allows easy transfer of equipment using compatible baskets in the cleaning and drying cycle, for example the Wash9 facemask washer and the M18/45 cabinets. Once these have been clean and dried they can then be checked and tested, Air Cylinders refilled and the SCBA is ready for operations all using Dräger workshop equipment. Whatever the risk, Dräger has ‘Technology for Life’ solutions to ensure employers provide the best possible protection and employees return home at the end of each shift as safely as possible.
Apollo Fire Detectors, has launched a new market insight program to help them continue to deliver innovative fire safety products and high standards of customer service. The Apollo Advisor Network encourages customers, installers and partners to share their experiences within the industry and the challenges they face. Registration is online and captures background on their company and individual responsibilities. Exclusive training access After signing up, Advisors have access to exclusive training and prize draws, direct input to the products and services that they need and early news of product launches. Jenni Broad, Insights Manager at Apollo says “Our success is built on expert installers and partners who help to keep people safe using our best-in-class products. Our Apollo Advisor Network is designed to bring us even closer to our customers and partners, enabling us to deliver the products and tools they need to make life simpler and safer. If you share our vision for a safer tomorrow and have a passion for providing solutions to our industry, we would love to hear from you.”
With commercial fires up 46% during lockdown, it’s crucial to understand and become more aware of the damage fire risks can have on a business when left undetected and unresolved. Fires can be a devastating experience for all, resulting in irreversible physical damage and, arguably more importantly, the unseen destruction of jobs, livelihoods, families and homes. While the risk of fire can never be completely eradicated, there are things you can do to help minimize the problem. More than simply guarding against a worst-case scenario, this is about making sure your business is as robust as possible. In other words, ensuring that you have in place effective protection long before a 911 call is required. Returning to work Evaluate how things may have changed since COVID-19 As businesses return to their premises, it’s a good idea to evaluate how things may have changed since COVID-19. Many premises remain either closed entirely, open for reduced hours or are operating with reduced staff. Even if you completed a fire risk assessment just before the pandemic began, it may need revisiting in light of these recent changes. For example, the amount of stock put into storage or the number of people using the building may have changed, and new risk factors may have emerged. Have employees trained as fire marshals been furloughed since the pandemic or unable to return to work? Any one of these factors being changed will require you to fill out a new fire risk assessment. If on the other hand, if your building remains unused – due to COVID-19 or other factors – it’s important to realize your responsibilities. Empty, unmanned buildings are at increased risk of break-ins and arson, failure to comply with best practice can put you at risk of insurance invalidation: Ensure that all keys to the building are accounted for and recovered. If any are missing, it is highly recommended that the locks are changed as soon as possible Apart from essential services such as lighting or fire and security systems, disconnect all services and utilities at the perimeter of the building In winter, maintain temperatures at or above 4ºC to avoid frost damage to any sprinkler system or other essential water services. Drain down all tanks except those which specifically need to be used Remove as much combustible material as you can, especially litter and scattered paperwork Secure letter flaps, install an anti-arson metal box inside and redirect mail Given the variety of business premises it’s difficult to say what’s likely to be a cause of fire in any one situation – which is why it’s essential to have an up-to-date fire risk assessment carried out by someone who can provide a more in-depth assessment aligned with your ways of working. Getting this done will give you a good understanding of the potential causes of fire in your workplace and is a good place to start for any business owner. protection methods If your premises are largely empty due to COVID-19 restrictions, you must ensure you have a protection method in place that isn’t primarily dependent upon people, such as fire extinguishers or fire hoses. It is crucial to install and test a monitored smoke detection system or automatic fire sprinklers which can help protect the premises whilst it remains vacant. While you can never have too many systems in place to protect your business from fire, there are a few key ones to consider: Fire ExtinguishersThere are different fire extinguishers for different types of fire, your fire risk assessment will contain information on the ignition and fuel risks that are in your building and you should ensure that the correct type of device is selected, either mounted on the wall or a special stand with a label that shows the types of fire the extinguisher is suitable for and basic operating instructions. Sprinkler SystemsModern Automatic Fire Suppression Systems, commonly called sprinklers, can save lives and livelihoods. They provide protection from fire damage and, most importantly, give people a greater chance of getting out if there is a blaze. If you’re unlucky enough to have a fire they can significantly reduce the cost of the damage it causes by reducing its spread and severity. Monitored Smoke and Fire AlarmsWhether your building is currently unoccupied or you’re starting to return to work, having a monitored smoke detector and fire alarm allow you to rest easy knowing that even if the battery is low or there’s a technical fault, they’re still effective. Fire alarm systems such as those from ADT are monitored 24/7/365 which help you rest assured knowing you can depend on your system and our team to take care of things even when you’re not close by. Fire Hose ReelsA level up from extinguishers, fire hose reels offer a quick and inexhaustible flow of water. They can be installed by a single technician, minimising disruption to your business, and in an emergency they’re easy to identify and use. Emergency LightingAll fire-fighting equipment and alarms, emergency routes and exits must be well lit. That includes lighting at every door, corridor, floor level, staircase. Your emergency lighting should, of course, be tested regularly. In the event of a fire, you’ll want to get out quickly and safely.
As fire safety continues to make the headlines, Karen Trigg of Allegion UK outlines the importance of hardware selection and reminds decision makers of how routine checks can save lives. Door hardware plays a role in the operational integrity of a building, and more crucially, is a key element of a facility’s fire safety and security. Putting fire safety measures at risk Fire doors, and their accompanying hardware in particular, require special attention from facility managers and installers. Installing inefficient equipment could suddenly put a whole building’s network of fire safety measures at risk. And in light of this year’s debate on the government’s planned fire safety reforms, the importance of fire door hardware is now more valued than ever. The importance of fire door hardware is now more valued than ever The expanding role of hardware is also giving decision makers extra considerations to make when selecting hardware. From ease of integration to the flow of movement – various factors can dictate a decision, potentially overwhelming some. Yet, decision makers must recognize the responsibility they carry in ensuring both a door and its hardware operate effectively – even after installation. A cultural change Fire doors are designed to protect occupants from the spread of fire, smoke and toxic fumes. Because of this, hardware (including handles, closers and hinges) must meet certain standards and Continuing Professional Development (CPD) requirements. Yet, as phase one of the Grenfell Inquiry has once again reminded us, not all buildings are meeting these requirements. Detailed Grenfell reports have raised questions over the integrity of the building’s fire doors, focusing on the failure of compartmentalization and broken self-closing mechanisms on flat entrance doors. With incorrect hardware selection or failed maintenance to blame, this case, like many others, should become the catalyst for change – before the safety of others is jeopardized. Industry experts are calling for a change in fire safety culture Today, hardware adaptable and designed to tackle almost all fire safety, security and operational challenges that a building can present. From access and emergency egress elements to the more unique and defined details such as flow of movement, its importance simply can’t be understated. But too often, purchase decisions can be led by cost, as opposed to quality. With this in mind, industry experts are calling for a change in fire safety culture. Although there are various elements and touchpoints to consider, one area that must change quickly is how we choose our door hardware. Manufacturers, architectural ironmongers and installers must all recognize that a ‘one size fits all’ solution doesn’t exist and, instead, make adequate, proactive choices – moving away from reactive decisions because fire safety requires extra consideration, even after a hardware decision has been made. Inspections and checks Even with the correct door hardware in place, its operational life can be significantly reduced if basic maintenance is neglected. Previously, best practice guidelines have suggested that the performance of self-closers should be checked once every six months. However, the ‘Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government’ has in 2020 proposed quarterly fire door checks as part of their updated fire safety reforms. Building owners must ensure all doors are well kept and operational to meet health and safety requirements, including all door furniture and panic and emergency exit hardware. With most building entrances enduring repeated use, durability can sometimes become an issue – especially in areas of high footfall. However, as part of regular maintenance periods, both occupants and qualified teams can undertake a number of hardware checks. Visual inspections can determine whether a door and its hardware has attained any damage. Both the physical door and its surrounding frame and hardware can become damaged over time. However, if its functionality is being effected, the damaged area should be replaced immediately. The physical door and its surrounding frame and hardware can become damaged Taking the right steps Aside from visual inspections, functional checks can also be made and are key to maintaining a door’s fire safety and operational elements. Functional checks will reveal whether hardware is still operating effectively, without requiring any undue force. Seals or weatherstripping can sometimes become loose and inhibit the correct operation of a fire door and may need to be replaced. Similarly, some fixings may need to be tightened to ensure that the door can swing freely. By completing these checks, not only will facility managers expand the lifespan of their hardware, but they’ll also protect the lives of occupants. The choice of hardware will always be integral in the success of a facility’s fire safety. With various high profile failings being publicized it’s clear that a change in approach to fire safety is long overdue. And with the development of new fire safety reforms, we now should be guiding those responsible to better standards within their own buildings. After all, it only takes the failure of one designated fire door to spell disaster.
The majority of fires within the UK take place within the home; with that in mind, it is highly advisable to regularly update and practice exit strategies in the event of an emergency. In order to raise awareness of fire safety in our communities, it’s important to be clear on what the most common causes of household fires are. Electrical appliances Electrical items are a major culprit of home fires. This can easily be avoided by ensuring a PAT test is carried out each year. It’s crucial to replace damaged or frayed wiring around outlets and to dispose old or faulty appliances. Never overcrowd electrical outlets and only use extension cords when necessary. Overwhelming units by ‘daisy chaining’ extensions to fit more appliances leads to higher chances of an electrical fire. All electrical appliances should additionally be repaired or installed According to the London Fire Brigade, around 60 percent of fires in the home begin in the kitchenby a certified professional. It’s also worth keeping an eye on sockets and fuses that blow for no reason. Flickering lights and scorch marks on sockets or plugs are easy signs which can alert you to unsafe environments. A common habit is to leave electrical items unattended overnight on ‘standby’ mode, this should always be switched off when not in continual use to avoid overheating. Whilst personal home assistant devices are meant to be in constant operation, be sure to look out for hot plugs and turn off outlets when you will be out of the house for extended periods of time such as holidays or weekends away. Smoking materials, lighters and matches The festive season sees a 12% surge in call-outs compared to the monthly average and over the last three years, fire crews dealt with 2,300 fires on Christmas Day alone. When celebrating the festivities try safer alternatives such as battery-operated or LED candles. Faux candles are a great substitute, particularly if you are living with young children. Always let hot matches cool in a metal or ceramic dish or run them under water for extra precaution. Keeping matches nearby lit candles or leaving lit candles unattended overnight are palpable dangers within the home. When celebrating festivities, try safer alternatives such as battery-operated or LED candles Space heaters Portable heaters are the cause of many UK home fires, according to the National Fire Protection Association. Half of those fires occur because objects are kept within three feet of the heater getting far too hot and catching alight. Keeping flammable items at the recommended distance is essential warding off potential fires. Refrain from covering heaters or air vents with dry or damp washing, even if you have installed a fireguard. While some space heaters utilize a self-timer or sleep feature, be sure to manually switch off the heater when it’s not in use. By assuming the heater will automatically turn itself off, you leave yourself at risk as the heater may malfunction. Additionally, as self-timers only control the product itself and not the outlet, the plug still may be at risk of overheating. Cooking According to the London Fire Brigade, around 60 percent of fires in the home begin in the kitchen. It is crucial to be aware of your safety whilst cooking, with some points to always consider: Try not to leave cooking unattended on the hob or grill – if you leave the kitchen turn off the heat Do not cook whilst under the influence of alcohol or medication that can cause drowsiness Be aware of loose clothing that can easily catch fire, take care not to lean over a hob and always keep tea towels and clothes away from the cooker In the event of loose clothing or a cloth catching fire; practice the stop, drop and roll rule – don’t run, lie down on the ground and roll in heavy fabric or a fire blanket to smother the flames Keep the oven, hob, extractor fan and grill as clean as possible – built up fat and grease can ignite and cause fires Use spark devices to light gas cookers, they are far safer than matches or lighters as they don’t have a naked flame. Ensure toasters are kept clean and not placed under kitchen cabinets Never place anything made of metal in a microwave When cooking on the stove-top, use the fan or open a window to disperse any smoke and avoid accidentally triggering any fire alarm If water or food spillages occur whilst the hobs are on and in use, turn off the heat, remove any pans, and let it cool before using any cleaning equipment Preventing spreading To prevent fires from spreading, it’s important to check hidden electrical outlets, particularly those behind large pieces of furniture such as television stands or couches – be sure to keep enough distance between the object and the outlet to prevent crowding. Check these out of sight outlets once a month to ensure there are no obvious signs of scorch marks. It is also a good idea to ensure you add an outlet inspection to any checklist before leaving on holiday. Good fire safety precautions can be practiced as part of your daily routine. Ensure you keep a torch and phone by your bed in case of a fire during the night. Install a dual alarm that uses long-life lithium batteries on every level of your home (including the basement). Test smoke alarms monthly to make sure they’re working properly and ensure you take the time to replace batteries every year for complete peace of mind. Test smoke alarms monthly to make sure they’re working properly and ensure you take the time to replace batteries An exit strategy If you find yourself trapped with no feasible exit to safety, get everyone into one room, ideally with a window and a phone and place bedding around the bottom of To prevent fires from spreading, it’s important to check hidden electrical outlets, particularly those behind large pieces of furniture the door to stifle smoke. Call 999 when possible and open the window to let your presence be known. If you’re on the ground or first floor, you may be able to escape through a window. Use bedding to cushion your fall and lower yourself down carefully – don’t jump. If you can’t open the window break the glass in the bottom corner and make jagged edges safer by cushioning glass with a towel or thick blanket. Don’t make the mistake of investigating what’s happened in the event of a fire or rescuing valuables. If there’s smoke, keep low where the air is clearer. In the event of having to open a door, check if it’s warm. If it is, don’t open it – it is likely the fire is on the other side.
During the Grenfell Tower fire incident in 2017, ineffective fire doors allowed smoke and toxic gases to spread through the building more quickly than should have been possible. Sir Martin Moore-Bick made this finding in the conclusion to Phase 1 of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry. It serves to highlight the importance that fire doors play in protecting life and property. Grenfell Inquiry findings The Grenfell Inquiry findings have impacted subsequent United Kingdom government guidance and proposed legislation. For example, the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) insists that non-fire resisting doors should be replaced immediately with door sets that are third party certified as providing at least 30 minutes of fire resistance. The BWF works to increase ‘mass market’ awareness of the vital role that fire doors play in protecting life and property The British Woodworking Federation (BWF) works to increase ‘mass market’ awareness of the vital role that fire doors play in protecting life and property. The BWF sponsored Fire Door Safety Week (21-27 Sept. 2020) in partnership with the UK Home Office’s National Fire Safety Campaign, the National Fire Chiefs Council and London Fire Brigade. The observance is the brainchild of the British Woodworking Federation, supported by the BWF Fire Door Alliance. Importance of fire doors in protecting life and property While there are multiple types of fire doors available, certified timber fire doors were subjected to government fire tests in 2019 and were shown effective at meeting and exceeding the minimum burn time requirement of 30 minutes. Factors to ensure a fire door performs as intended include product manufacture, quality, installation and maintenance. Correctly specifying, maintaining and managing a fire door can mean the difference between life and death for building occupants in an emergency. Appointing ‘Responsible Person’ to inspect fire doors Everyone plays a role to ensure a fire door performs as intended, from the manufacturer to a building’s users. Building owners should appoint a ‘Responsible Person’ to check the performance of fire doors. Propping open a fire door keeps it from performing as intended in the event of a fire. Fire doors and other passive fire protection industries have common interests with other fire-related organizations. More education can help the whole building industry and every property owner to understand the importance of fire doors. Regular inspection of fire doors Owners should carry out checks at three-month intervals to ensure all fire doors are fitted with effective self-closing devices Sir Martin Moore-Bick also recommended that those who have responsibility for entrance doors to individual flats in high-rise building should be required by law to ensure such doors comply with current standards. Owners and managers of any residential building that contains separate dwellings should carry out an urgent inspection of all fire doors to ensure they comply with applicable standards. Owners and managers should also be required to carry out checks at three-month intervals to ensure all fire doors are fitted with effective self-closing devices that are in working order. Raising standard of fire doors via Third party certification Third party certification is the best way to raise the standard of fire doors and fire door sets across the board to ensure all fire doors in any building type meet safety standards. Also, inspections should be carried out by trained and registered professionals who identify any faults and highlight where doors do not meet standards. Doors in high-traffic areas should be checked more frequently as they are more susceptible to damage.
The COVID-19 pandemic has presented new health challenges for firefighters, but it is far from the first major health concern in the fire service. For example, the risk of various cancers is up to twice as high among firefighters, and cancer causes 61 percent of line-of-duty deaths for firefighters. There are other health and safety concerns, too, from nutrition and fitness to vehicle safety and seat belt usage, from wellness to stress and trauma (and consequent issues of addiction). Supporting fire services Cultural issues are a driving force in managing the gamut of health and safety concerns for firefighters. Changing the mindset of firefighters about safety issues is critical to meaningful progress. It starts with awareness. COVID-19 may be the newest and most recent health concern, and addressing it has been a high priority. However, even long-term and well-known health threats in the fire service are not being adequately addressed. Dräger found that some 84% of respondents admitted they were concerned about the risk of cancer Medical and safety technology provider Dräger, based in Lübeck, Germany, has launched a ‘Health for the Firefighter’ campaign to raise awareness and to support fire services in driving the necessary cultural changes to protect firefighter health. In a survey of United Kingdom firefighters, Dräger found that some 84% of respondents admitted they were concerned about the risk of cancer, which can be caused by embedded carcinogens in any equipment that can be absorbed by men and women using it. Robust hygiene processes “The COVID-19 pandemic, and ongoing fears over cancer, have highlighted the critical importance of hygiene, and a significant cultural change is required,” says Brian Hesler, a consultant and specialist advisor at Dräger Safety UK and a former chief fire officer. “We need to move away from firefighters wearing dirty kit like a badge of honor that proves their hard work and value, to understand that clean and well-maintained kit supported by detailed and robust hygiene processes are essential to mitigate every contact with contaminants.” Dräger’s Health for the Firefighter campaign will support the fire services in communicating and providing training on the importance of detailed hygiene processes, from handling and storage of masks and breathing apparatus (BA) equipment through to the subsequent cleaning of the kit after an incident has occurred. Enabling fire services Manual cleaning of equipment is still generally the norm within UK fire services. In the Dräger survey, 80% agreed that a result of the COVID-19 pandemic is more emphasis on cleaning equipment and hygiene control, although only 23% said the pandemic significantly changes their approach to cleaning equipment. Dräger has launched solutions for cleaning breathing apparatus, respiratory masks and PPE equipment Consistency is often a problem with manual cleaning, and Dräger has launched solutions for cleaning breathing apparatus, respiratory masks and PPE equipment that reduce the risk of carcinogen contamination within emergency teams. The equipment is provided in partnership with Harstra Instruments, a Dutch manufacturer of cleaning and drying equipment. The Dräger package of solutions comprises cleaning products, logistical support and consultancy services to enable fire services to mitigate firefighters’ exposure to carcinogens. Equipment handling operations Washing machines clean using high-pressure water, drying cabinets are available in various shapes and sizes, and testing facilities ensure products are decontaminated. “Employers owe their employees a duty of care and are therefore looking to provide additional protection during training, post-incident and in day-to-day equipment handling operations,” says Andy Taylor, UK Marketing Manager for Engineered Solutions at Dräger. Cleaning equipment is just one of many ways fire departments can address the health challenges for firefighters. Departments depend on regulations and policies designed to ensure the highest degrees of personal health and safety. For departments, prevention and reduction of accidents, injuries and occupational illnesses should be a way of life. The ‘Health for the Firefighter’ campaign can serve as a reminder of the importance of creating a culture of good health for firefighters.
Andrew and Nicola Forrest have committed 50 million Australian dollars (US$35 million) to the Fire and Flood Resilience initiative through Minderoo Foundation, with a goal of raising an additional 450 million (US$320 million) in direct or in-kind support over the life of the program. The goal of the ambitious investment is to make Australia the global leader in fire and flood resistance by the year 2025. It is an audacious vision that requires an innovative approach, and the organization takes inspiration from the U.S. Apollo mission of the 1960s. In effect, it will be a “moonshot” to advance the cause of preventing and controlling wildfires. Specifically, the first mission, Fire Shield, seeks to ensure no dangerous bushfire in Australia will burn longer than an hour by 2025. respond to wildfires The Flood and Resilience Blueprint further seeks to provide every community in Australia the skills and resources to cope with fire and flood disasters. Finally, it seeks to provide “healthy landscapes” by improving ecosystems to be “immune” to fire and flood disasters. Founded in 2001, Minderoo Foundation exists to arrest unfairness and create opportunities to better the world “We are not daunted by or afraid of taking on the toughest challenges,” says Karen O’Connor, Missions Lead for Minderoo Foundation’s Fire & Flood Resilience initiative. "Fire has a devastating and unfair impact on communities all around the world - and if we can help drive better approaches to prevent and respond to wildfires, we can have a profound influence.” Founded in 2001, Minderoo Foundation exists to arrest unfairness and create opportunities to better the world. black summer bushfires Minderoo Foundation stepped up after Australia’s black summer bushfires in 2019-2020 to help communities respond to and recover from the devastation. The organization also seeks to do whatever it can to mitigate the risk of large-scale damage due to bushfires and build resilience to future disasters. “We understand that fire and flood are critical ecological processes that enable many of Australia’s ecosystems to function, supporting regeneration and new growth,” says O’Connor. “Therefore, Fire Shield does not aim to prevent wildfires entirely but rather to prevent wildfires from becoming disasters.” ground truth data Fire Shield will progress using the “Mission” methodology that involves breaking down major problems into smaller elements that can be addressed in turn. Missions are outcome-focused and time bound. They rely on accurate baseline and ground truth data and an ability to measure impact to know when the mission has succeeded in its goal. Fundamental to the Mission approach is bringing the best people and expertise to the challenges at hand Fundamental to the Mission approach is bringing the best people and expertise to the challenges at hand - whether they are working in scientific research, in government, corporations or philanthropy. Having accurate data and measures are also essential. To that end, Fire Shield is working with partners to develop an ecosystem for data standardization and sharing in order to collectively leverage insights to address future hazards. emergency services “It is also about making sure that people working in fire and emergency services are provided with the right information, in a timely manner, to make the best decisions when responding to fire,” says O’Connor. An example is Fire Shield’s partnership with the Australasian Fire and Emergency Service Authorities Council to support all Australian emergency services to develop new capabilities for fire detection, information sharing, fire simulation and response as well as utilizing data for improved decision-making wherever they are. fundamental principles “No matter what we do, Minderoo Foundation is always guided by the evidence,” says O’Connor. Minderoo Foundation’s Fire & Flood Resilience Blueprint has brought the best available evidence and expertise together to lay out a resilience blueprint for Australia and to inform the design and selection of missions, including Fire Shield. It challenges us to go right back to scientific principles and look for the best possible solutions” Importantly, the Blueprint is a “living document” that can evolve as the evidence base grows. First order problem solving is about going to the fundamental principles that apply to a problem, rather than thinking through analogies or accepted wisdom. “It challenges us to go right back to scientific principles and look for the best possible solutions,” says O’Connor. important resilience problems The initiative is committed to working collaboratively. To date they have secured more than 50 partners across corporations, governments and civil society - and they are always open to more. They are also actively looking to collaborate with international programs with similar goals, to ensure they can multiply rather than duplicate efforts. “We intend to share and publish our work widely, and of course continue to build collaboration, which is central to our approach,” says O’Connor. “We see ourselves as an enabler encouraging, facilitating and convening dialogue among different organizations and sectors of society to identify the most important resilience problems - and get to solutions faster.”
Ajax Systems in cooperation with Elotec, a Norwegian distributor of security systems and manufacturer of wired fire alarms, won a tender from the municipality of Bergen in Norway for the supply of a wireless fire security system. The project aims to protect the wooden architecture of the city, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Wireless Ajax detectors will provide an opportunity to protect the city center without disturbing the interior of the buildings. Wireless fire solutions “We are lucky that our distributor in Norway, Elotec, has an in-depth expertise in fire security. Being also a manufacturer of wired fire alarm systems with almost 30 years of experience, they chose Ajax as their wireless partner to protect the important historical site. This further proves that wireless fire solutions are becoming a trend in the industry,” said Valentine Hrytsenko, Ajax Systems CMO. This project is a big win, and securing UNESCO World Heritage buildings is our responsibility" “This project is a big win, and securing UNESCO World Heritage buildings is our responsibility. The development we have done with Ajax to make this solution was crucial, and making the system perfect for these kinds of projects,” said Kristian Kleven, product and quality manager in Elotec. Bergen has been affected by multiple fires over centuries, but the city is still one of Europe’s largest historical centers with wooden architecture. Fire detection cameras The city has 12 districts with old wooden buildings located close to each other, and about 11,000 residents. The project is funded by the Norwegian Directorate for Cultural Heritage. The implementation is supervised by Elotec in cooperation with the Bergen Fire Department. Every resident or business owner in the protected area of Bergen had an opportunity to apply for the installation of a fire alarm system and to connect to the fire monitoring station free of charge. In total, 13 street fire detection cameras and 640 Ajax security kits (consisting of Hub control panels, FireProtect fire detectors, and Button panic buttons) will be used to protect the areas. Fire monitoring station Ajax fire detectors have a synchronous alarm function (interconnect) — when one detector is triggered, all fire detectors within the system are activated. Following Elotec’s initiative, for the Bergen project, the Ajax R&D team needed to implement a delay in interconnect distribution and transmitting alarms to the fire monitoring station in order to minimize false calls of fire brigades. The Ajax R&D team needed to implement a delay in interconnect distribution and transmitting alarms Hub control panels, FireProtect fire detectors, and Button panic buttons (with the new alarm interconnect delay function) for every house. If the owner of the premises simply overcooks a meal on the stove, they can press the Button within 2 minutes from the moment when smoke was detected, thus postponing alarm transmission. Preventing false calls In this way, they will have another 10 minutes to air the premises out and prevent the alarm from spreading to other detectors, and also to prevent false calls to the fire brigade. However, if the button is not pressed within 2 minutes, the alarm will be directly transmitted to the fire department. The FireProtect and FireProtect Plus fire detectors with firmware version 3.42 or later are technically ready to support the interconnect propagation delay. The feature will be fully available to all users with the new OS Malevich 2.10 update to be released in Q4 2020.
A network of fire panels from UK manufacturer, Advanced, has been installed as part of a campus-wide system replacement at the Imperial College London (ICL), Hammersmith, United Kingdom. Six industry-renowned 8-loop MxPro 5 fire panels and a TouchControl remote control terminal and repeater panel have been installed across the Wolfson Education Center, the Institute of Reproductive Development Biology and the Commonwealth Building at Imperial College London’s Hammersmith campus. 8-loop MxPro 5 fire panels The installation, part of a system-wide upgrade, was conducted by Surrey-based Lloret Fire & Security Ltd who were tasked with replacing the existing fire alarm control panels, installing new cabling and devices and commissioning the system across occupied buildings, where live coverage needed to be maintained at all times. Imperial specifically requested a move away from the closed protocol fire system approach, and its associated service charges, which had been in operation for 15 years. Lloret Fire & Security’s experience installing Advanced control indicating equipment in other large-scale educational facilities meant they were confident that the open protocol MxPro 5 could easily provide the levels of flexibility and stability required by the site. Multi-sensor detection system installed Paul White, Design Director at Lloret Fire & Security Ltd, said “The project at Imperial’s Hammersmith campus involved the replacement of the fire system across a range of building environments, from offices, workshops and research labs, through to lecture theaters and conference halls, each with its own specific fire protection requirements.” Multi-sensor detection system was installed to manage and reduce the risk of false alarms In consideration of the site’s false alarm management strategy, multi-sensor detection system was installed to manage and reduce the risk of false alarms. For example, detectors have been configured for day/night use or can be altered as area usage changes. TouchControl repeater panel installed To replace the existing flush-fitted panel positioned front-of-house in the reception area of the Institute of Reproductive Development Biology, and for aesthetic purposes, Lloret Fire & Security Ltd suggested installing Advanced’s touch technology remote control terminal and repeater panel, TouchControl. Combining aesthetics with practicality, the low-profile, high-resolution touchscreen makes it easy to check fire system status via interactive maps and zone plans, while complementing even the most stylish interiors. When in standby mode, administrators can use TouchControl to display branding, advertisements and information, while it will instantly revert to fire operation when a fire condition occurs. Advanced fire safety solutions Amanda Hope, UK Business Development Manager, said “It’s fantastic to see that our partners Lloret Fire & Security Ltd are so confident in the Advanced solutions installed at Imperial. When installing or upgrading a building’s fire system, it’s important to consider which protocol is right for you." Amanda adds, “The nature of our MxPro 5’s open protocol gives end users greater freedom and flexibility over key factors such as detector partners, suppliers, installers and service companies. This in turn helps the end user to more easily achieve best value for money and access top-quality expertise.”
C-TEC’s new Hush ActiV BS 5839-6 Grade C domestic fire alarm systems are providing top-grade fire protection at several Ministry of Defense-managed residential properties in North Wales. Located on the banks of the Menai Strait, the stretch of shallow tidal water that separates Angelsey from the mainland, the spacious homes are part of The Joint Service Mountain Training Centre Indefatigable, a facility designed to provide affordable holiday accommodation for members of the Armed Forces and their families. Each of the three-bedroomed properties is equipped with Hush ActiV smoke detectors in the entrance hall and stairs, a heat detector in the kitchen and sounder beacons in the bedrooms, all connected to a Hush ActiV controller. With its easy-to-operate low level controller, the system offers simple detection, alarm, silencing and test facilities at light-switch level - occupants simply press ‘HUSH’ on the controller to silence an unwanted alarm. Fire protection and minimal false fire alarms Said Darren Morrell, Director of Olympian Fire, the specialist installation company that completed the project: “Our client required a system that would provide the families staying in the properties with the highest levels of fire protection and minimal false fire alarms. We specified Hush ActiV, a high-quality cost-effective fully-monitored BS 5839-6 Grade C solution, as it offers greater levels of protection than the unmonitored battery alarm Grade D systems typically used in these properties and virtually eliminates false alarms." “Hush ActiV is a fantastic option for domestic dwellings that don’t require all-out conventional fire alarm systems. Our client is delighted and the success of the project has led to C-TEC’s more sophisticated Hush Pro domestic fire solution being specified at some other MoD facilities where connection to a communal/landlord system is required.”
Infographics has announced that Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service (HFRS) is the first UK FRS to adopt the new FireWatch Bi-directional Mobilization Interface, with other services expected to deploy this functionality in the near future. FireWatch Mobilization Interface The FireWatch Bi-directional Mobilization Interface with Capita Vision is designed to enable greater real-time data sharing between the FireWatch Fire Service Management Platform, Capita Vision Mobilization System and on-appliance Mobile Data Terminals. HFRS already utilizes the FireWatch platform for integrated human resource management The Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service (HFRS) already utilizes the FireWatch platform for integrated human resource management, training and development, health and safety, self-service, availability management, and automated electronic payment calculations and processing for on-call staff. Data integration Workflows to integrate absenteeism, payments and other data seamlessly with their shared business center systems are also in place. This latest deployment provides a new bi-directional interface between FireWatch and Capita Vision that seamlessly couples the systems together and provides a live closed loop of data flows as changes in either occur. Colin Sutherland, Systems Manager at Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service (HFRS), said “This new interface is the culmination of many months’ work for Hampshire Fire and our technological partners, Infographics and Capita. The interface provides individual and appliance crewing data directly into our mobilization system, allowing our Control rooms throughout the partnership to view Hampshire’s status in real-time.” Reducing the risk of human error Colin adds, “This not only improves our resilience with the interface and reduces the risk of human error, but also reduces the burden of crews on station having to complete events after the incident, as the interface now does this for them. A further benefit is that it provides us with crewing accountability on the way to, during and returning from fire calls, which is something we have not been able to achieve before.” He further stated, “This interface is also the first step in our move towards Attribute Based Response (ABR), which we are now working towards with our partners, and the interface is a solid foundation to build upon. It has been an incredibly exciting time with the release of the interface for Hampshire, and it highlights Infographics’ hard work and dedication to continually improve and enhance their offering.” Fully integrated FRS resource management platform Russell Wood, Commercial Manager at Infographics, said “What we have delivered jointly with Hampshire and Capita is a UK first. FireWatch already provides a fully integrated FRS resource management platform with all the benefits this brings. Coupling this with a live bi-directional flow of data and impacts with Capita Vision and the MDTs essentially enables the systems to act seamlessly as one – and deliver clear operational, risk and efficiency benefits.” From FireWatch to Capita Vision, the FireWatch interface calculates vehicle availability to-the-minute, derived from live HR, contract/role, employee availability, qualifications, physical vehicle availability, and other fully-connected and integrated data and modules. So when anything changes, FireWatch pushes updated vehicle availability status in real-time to the Capita Vision Mobilization system. Up-to-the-minute data availability The up-to-the-minute data ensures that when an ‘on call’ crew turns out to an incident The system takes into account shared resources across vehicles, priority levels and skill-derived attributes and incident types, rather than a simple on/off ‘the run’, and provides that live status to Capita Vision and control room staff. The up-to-the-minute data ensures that when an ‘on call’ crew turns out to an incident, the information on the MDT is already filtered to show those who should have been available, providing quick and easy selection of the actual employees on the vehicle and the impact of their skills and resource not being available for any other vehicles at that location. In the other direction, from Capita Vision to FireWatch, this provides: Live incident creation and stage updates as they happen. Data flows from the on-appliance Mobile Data Terminals to Vision, then to FireWatch, so that FireWatch understands the specific resources involved and can send the impact back to Vision. Updates to, and impacts of, event stages, attending vehicles and personnel changes. Automatic confirmation of personnel who have turned out in FireWatch event records. Further automation of event recording steps for pay and maintenance of competency purposes.
The Heathrow Airport Fire & Rescue Service is now able to tackle a broad range of incidents more quickly and efficiently after commissioning a pair of highly specialized domestic response units based on Mercedes-Benz chassis. The Sprinter 519 CDI chassis cabs were supplied by Dealer Rossetts Commercials to Rosenbauer UK, a subsidiary of the Austrian group that is one of the manufacturers of firefighting equipment. Replacements for a single 18-tonne domestic appliance, the new vehicles offer a major increase in operational flexibility. Being smaller and more agile, they are better able to get through traffic on the roads in and around the UK’s busiest airport. Strict performance standards And although each has seating for four, they will typically be manned by a crew of two. This means Chief Fire Officer Gary Barthram and his commanders can respond to two emergency calls simultaneously. The Heathrow Airport Fire & Rescue Service works to strict performance standards laid down by the Civil Aviation Authority and its fleet includes a number of larger appliances which would be used in the event of a fire or other major incident involving an aircraft. It also provides cover for the area within and around the airport boundary, which means its firefighters are regularly called upon to deal with anything from a domestic blaze, to a car crash, or a serious medical call. It is for these, more general incidents that the new Sprinters were commissioned, and Rosenbauer’s Compact Line Superstructure is purpose-designed to carry as much as possible of the specialist equipment that crews are likely to need to get the job done. High-Pressure hose The air-conditioned Sprinters have 5.5-tonne gross weights, uprated from the standard 5.0 tonnes The air-conditioned Sprinters have 5.5-tonne gross weights, uprated from the standard 5.0 tonnes. Range-topping V6 engines – limited to 56 mph unless the vehicle is responding to a 999 call – transmit their 190 hp outputs via six-speed manual gearboxes. These were chosen instead of the seven-speed 7G-TRONIC PLUS automatic which is fitted as standard on the rear-wheel drive 519 CDI model, as it meant Rosenbauer could also specify the engine-driven 40 kW PTOs (power-take-offs) used to drive the 20 BAR pumps on each appliance. Other features of the body include a 600-liter water tank, 60 meters of electrically-rewound 22 mm bore hose and a further 60 meters of ‘lay flat’ high-pressure hose, an additional battery and air compressor to operate the body and firefighting systems, and a full complement of blue roof beacons and LED warning lights, plus a siren/wailer. Thermal image camera Among the equipment stowed on-board, meanwhile, are four sets of breathing apparatus, a multi-purpose ladder, RTC (road traffic collision) cutting equipment and a reciprocating saw, a thermal image camera and a portable pump. An established Rosenbauer customer, Heathrow Airport Fire & Rescue Service confirmed its order for the two new vehicles after members of its team visited Cornwall Fire & Rescue Service to see three Compact Line appliances also based on Sprinter chassis supplied by Rossetts Commercials, which entered service last year. Providing emergency care Deputy Chief Fire Officer Mark Summerhill, who led the project, said: “Unlike most firefighters we are employed by a business, not a public body, so while saving lives and serving the public will always be our number one priority, we’re also particularly conscious of the need to prove value for money, and keep the airport moving, particularly in these challenging times.” The bulk of our work entails responding to alarms and dealing with small fires" “The bulk of our work entails responding to alarms and dealing with small fires in domestic and commercial properties, road accidents and medical incidents such as cardiac arrests – we’ve all been trained to provide emergency care and can often do so before an ambulance reaches the scene. These fantastic vehicles allow us to be more agile and dynamic in the way we do so. We can cover two incidents at the same time, and if it’s more serious and we need to increase our resilience we can send a crew of four rather than just the usual two, or, indeed, direct both vehicles to attend.” Local authority fire teams Mr Summerhill continued: “Weight is always an issue with firefighting appliances but given their compact size our new domestic response units are exceptionally well equipped. This means that when we’re dealing with fires, for example, they give us a really good ‘first strike’ attack capability – if we don’t put it out completely, we can at least hold it back until the local authority fire teams arrive.” He added: “We took a lot of advice before confirming our order. We need absolute reliability from our kit, and Rosenbauer’s recommendation of the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter as a base chassis was borne out by the other fire services and fleet managers we spoke to.” Enthusiastic and highly responsive “These vehicles are easy to drive and exceptionally maneuverable, which is a huge advantage on such a busy airport. They’re also really well thought out in terms of their design. We began working on this project four years ago but the time and effort we’ve committed has been well worthwhile, because we couldn’t be happier with our new vehicles.” Rosenbauer UK Managing Director Nick Uwins said his company had also recently built vehicles for Surrey Fire & Rescue Service, based on chassis supplied by Rossetts Commercials. Commenting on the service provided by the Dealer’s Off-Road & Blue Light Sales Specialist Martin Gearing, he said: “Martin’s a great guy to work with. He’s very enthusiastic and highly responsive, so that if ever I need a quote, or some information, I know I can rely on him to get back to me very quickly.”
Set on the iconic shores of Italy’s Lake Garda, Campeggio del Garda is a popular campsite that attracts tourists from around the globe to its picturesque location. Hochiki Italia’s Totem solution was specified to protect the idyllic campsite and provide occupants with an ideal level of outdoor protection. Campeggio del Garda is located on the water’s edge of Lake Garda, one of Italy’s most picturesque lakes and holiday hotspots. The scenic location offers a range of bungalows and mobile homes, as well as camping and mobile home pitching areas, for visitors. Looking at the spot, it’s clear why this campsite has become a must-visit attraction for tourists. With on-site facilities such as a swimming pool, restaurant and sports courts, the 3,000 guests the site can accommodate are able to enjoy complete luxury during their stay. Updated emergency evacuation system Italian-based designers, Studio Albertini, were brought on board to specify a suitable range of life safety devices In need of an updated emergency evacuation system, Italian-based designers, Studio Albertini, were brought on board to specify a suitable range of life safety devices to protect the site’s guests and employees. Owner and lead contact for the project, Paolo Albertini said, “It was essential for Campeggio del Garda that the solution would be complex enough to deal with the scale of their facilities, but also waterproof to accommodate for outdoor protection. Understanding the high-level of expertise that would be required for such a project, we worked alongside life safety manufacturer, Hochiki Italia, to supply the best and safest solution possible. In this case, their unique Totem system was specified.” Studio Albertini and Hochiki Italia collaboration Studio Albertini and Hochiki Italia collaborated closely on the project to specify a life safety system that could be installed across the expansive accommodation facility. Mirko Corsini, Project Manager at Hochiki Italia, said “Due to the sheer size of the camping area, we decided to manage the system through two networked panels by using the master/slave function of the device.” Mirko Corsini adds, “Combining this intelligent system with the 31 Totem call points that were installed throughout the campsite, we were able to provide a fully integrated and accessible network that covered the entirety of the park. Each Totem is fully waterproof to allow for operation all year around and contains a CHQ -WSB2 sounder beacon, warning signs, multilingual fire safety instructions as well as a UNI ISO 7010 signal call point, as requested by the Ministerial Decree.” Hochiki’s Totem system installed Hochiki Italia’s Totem system is ideal for large scale projects, as was the case and requirement at Campeggio del Garda. Being able to work from multiple networked panels, the system can be divided into zones, in order to make the connection and detection more secure and reliable. This basically means that the system can be operated and monitored from a singular control panel that includes a digital display screen for complete visibility of the status of the various call points. From this panel, duty holders can test, activate and identify any incidents for around the clock safety while reducing operational costs for large premises. The Totem’s call points are placed evenly across the facility to make sure they are accessible for all guests and are within a reachable distance at all times. The call points can be activated by guests or members of staff and can act as a beacon to communicate with guests. Fully compliant solution Totem is fully compliant with Italy’s Ministerial Decree 28.02 2014 and Circ. Prot.n. 0011002 - 12/9/2014 Totem is fully compliant with Italy’s Ministerial Decree 28.02 2014 and Circ. Prot.n. 0011002 - 12/9/2014, in relation to the safety of guests in open air, tourist accommodation. The decree states that all existing accommodation facilities must adopt the appropriate method of fire detection and fighting in spaces of more than 400 people. A clear part of the guidance is that call points should be distributed within 80 meters of each other and well-lit, with multi-lingual fire instructions. At the same time, the alarm signal coming from any of the detectors or call points must determine the optical and acoustic fire alarm signal at a manned place during the hours of activity. Signal and call point functionalities The signal and call point functionalities of Hochiki Italia’s Totem system work perfectly in line these requirements, making them suitable for a range of outdoor environments. Commenting on the end result, Paolo Albertini said “We are elated with the installation and the level of life safety that we can now offer to the campsite’s guests. It was a seamless process and we were able to adapt the system to our exact needs and ensure that fire detection was not only present, but accessible to staff across the whole site. We wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Hochiki Italia products to customers.”
Round table discussion
When a fire or other emergency occurs in a building or facility, first responders depend on every available resource to ensure a safe and orderly evacuation and response. One element in any response plan is the facility’s physical security systems, including access control, video surveillance and intrusion detection. How can these systems contribute to an orderly response to a chaotic situation? We asked this week’s Expert Panel Roundtable: What is the role of security systems in the event of a fire or other emergency evacuation?