The Security Systems and Alarms Inspection Board (SSAIB) is a certification body for organizations providing security systems and services, fire detection and alarm systems, telecare systems and services, manned security services and monitoring services. In this challenging time, with the closure of many business and the Prime Minister’s statement to further restrict movement, it is important to ensure the vital national work that the private security industry firms carry out is recognize...
Following the prime ministers recent address to the nation, Envirograf has taken the decision to temporarily close business from 5pm on the 25th March 2020. They have temporarily closed as the health of the customers and colleagues is the top priority and they are committed to playing a part in preventing the spread of COVID-19. current guidelines All enquiries and online orders that Envirograf will receive during this time will be processed as soon as th...
Coronavirus COVID-19 is developing rapidly across the UK and the impact on customers and workforces is likely to be significant, and in some cases unavoidable, but as of currently, Coopers Fire is continuing to operate as business as usual. Coopers Fire are continuing to manufacture at full capacity and their main telephone number is working as usual with the majority of the Coopers Fire team still available to receive emails, talk on the phone or via Microsoft Teams and/or Skype for Busi...
DuPont announced close monitoring of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic as it continues to spread across the world, and taking key steps to ensure the safety of their employees, customers and communities in which they operate to keep them informed as the health crisis unfolds. Effective COVID-19 response The company said that the health and safety of their employees is of the highest priority. They have corporate, regional and local crisis management teams in place that are actively monitorin...
Bodies within the Security and Fire sector, namely the British Security Industry Association (BSIA), Fire and Security Association (FSA), National Security Inspectorate (NSI), and the Security Systems and Alarms Inspection Board (SSAIB) are re-iterating calls for employees of all security and fire safety companies approved by UKAS-accredited specialist certification bodies to be designated as ‘Key Workers’, to ensure environments not currently designated as ‘critical’ con...
The Fire Industry Association (FIA) is continuously seeking further clarification from the Government's position on this issue after Boris Johnson's speech on Monday 23rd at 20:30. FIA CEO Ian Moore has been in discussions with the Home Office on this subject over the last few days. FIA CEO Ian Moore says, “We have received hundreds of calls requesting clarification on what is meant by the Home Office statements. My first response is to be pragmatic about what you deem to be important und...
With its new generation of wireless detectors, Bosch Building Technologies offers a flexible fire protection solution that works almost entirely without cabling. It is therefore ideally suited for historical buildings, for retrofitting and expansion of existing buildings, and for temporary installations. Thanks to the combination of two frequency bands and highly reliable mesh technology, the new wireless fire alarm system offers high system availability and maximum protection. The solution consists of a gateway, which is connected to the fire alarm system by cable, as well as up to 30 detectors and 10 manual call points, which communicate with the gateway by radio and can therefore be installed anywhere without cabling. radio-based fire detection The new wireless solution from Bosch is highly scalable, as up to 10 gateways can be networked. They are compatible with every Bosch fire panel and can thus easily integrate into existing solutions. The gateways are battery-powered and can therefore be configured prior to installation, making commissioning much easier. Installation and configuration are intuitive and fast, and an intuitive diagnostic tool allows easy verification of the entire installation. Each detector acts as a repeater and can forward alarms from other detectors The detectors are arranged in a mesh topology instead of a conventional star topology. This ensures that redundant connection paths are always available to all devices, so that reliable alarming is ensured even if one radio link fails. Each detector acts as a repeater and can forward alarms from other detectors, so that radio-based fire detection can now be used even in very large buildings. No direct connection to the gateway is required for this. multi sensor detectors The redundancy created through the mesh topology is complemented by the use of two radio bands to ensure reliable operation even in the event of interference on one frequency. In this case, switching takes place automatically. Both radio bands can be used without restrictions throughout Europe. The new wireless solution from Bosch uses EN54-certified multi sensor detectors with optical and thermal sensors. Main areas of application are hotels, town halls, shopping centers and temporary installations, for example in exhibition halls. Thanks to its redundant configuration, the radio-based solution is also suitable for challenging applications in which radio has often caused problems in the past, for example environments where many walls could interfere or block the radio signal.
Given the unprecedented situation of COVID-19 and uncertainty faced by everyone around the world, FFE Ltd. Managing Director, Oliver Burstall said, “I would like to take this opportunity to reach out and update you on the steps we are taking to ensure operations continue in the safest way possible.” Availability of product He said, “Our primary concern as a business is the health and safety of our colleagues, customers, suppliers and their families. At FFE Ltd., we have been carefully evaluating the situation daily and following the official advice from the government and health organisations.” Oliver adds, “To ensure that there are no risks to our supply chain we are working closely with all our suppliers. We currently have 4- 6 weeks material guaranteed and further material in the pipeline. Our manufacturing facility is working at near full capacity and is successfully meeting the current demand. As this is a very dynamic situation, we will keep you apprised of any impacts as they unfold.” Shipment of orders He further said that FFE Ltd. was committed towards ensuring that all shipments continue to be delivered to customers within the standard lead times. However, there may be some disruptions that are out of the company’s control and therefore advise customers to place orders with sufficient time in hand. Customers with any questions or requiring a substantial order are requested to get in touch with the account manager to discuss the implications. Mitigating Risk FFE Ltd. strives to maintain business operations with minimal impact to the service provided over the years. To mitigate risk and the spread of infection, the company is taking necessary steps to protect employees by facilitating work from home for them. This implies, to handle customers’ queries efficiently, they will be required to contact the appropriate individuals via the alloted email addresses Oliver Burstall concluded, “We will ensure our policies and procedures continue to reflect any further guidance from the authorities and will keep you updated on any changes to our services. Thank you for taking the time to read this message and on behalf of all of us at FFE, we send you our best wishes for your safety and health.”
Snido is pleased to announce that João Palhinha joined its team of engineers. Graduating from the University of Algarve in 2010 with a degree in computer engineering, João joined an Algarvian digital company in 2009 and became director of their R&D department in 2015. During his time there he worked on developing websites and web applications, along with Android, iOS and desktop applications. “I am delighted to bring my knowledge and experience of working with the most varied web, mobile and desktop technologies to Snido and trust that my skillset will assist in developing future pathways for the company. It will also be interesting working in a team of engineers with various skill types as we all share our individual learnings” said João. He is currently working with Snido’s system programming software development team as that project nears completion.
The fireboats used by the Marine Division of the New York City Fire Department (FDNY) use Rotork’s IQ range of part-turn intelligent electric actuators to keep the city safe. The IQ part-turn actuators provided are used on two fireboats, ‘Firefighter 2’ and ‘Firefighter 343’. The actuators have the important duty of controlling the flow of water to the fire nozzles on deck, meaning that they are vital in the event of an emergency. Combating Fire-Related Incidents New York City is one of the busiest ports in the world and has 560 miles of waterfront. The FDNY has long employed the use of fireboats in order to combat fire-related incidents both on land and on the water. These 2 ships are the largest ones in their fleet. Water is extracted from the river upon which the fireboats operate and the actuators then control the flow from the river to the fire nozzle. This ensures that the fireboats have access to an endless supply of water in the event of an emergency. It is critical that the flow of water to the fire nozzles is maintained at all times. Fire-Fighting Application Additionally, the fire nozzles are sometimes used to spray water at festival displays such as Memorial Day, the 4th of July, and Fleet Week. The IQ actuators were installed as a retrofit, after the existing electric actuators installed previously failed due to water ingress. The Rotork actuators were chosen for their longevity and reliability. With water ingress protection, they are double sealed to IP66/68 (20 m for 10 days). The IQT actuators are capable of up to 1,200 starts per hour, making them ideal for a fire-fighting application where duty cycles can be very demanding in emergencies.
The FIA Export Council and all of ‘FIA Exporters’ are aware that they work closely with the Department for International Trade [DIT] and its Defence and Security Organisation [DSO], in respect of promoting the fire sector’s export interests overseas. The FIA is writing to highlight the opportunities for industry sector specialists to work within DIT DSO on time-limited projects to support UK exports. As part of the new 2019 Security Export Strategy, DIT DSO are seeking support from industry sector specialists to provide expert advice and conduct a study of UK market capabilities focused on infrastructure protection. The current opportunity would particularly suit someone from the Active Fire Protection industry as they look to develop global opportunities for UK providers of FD&A and extinguishing products as well as wider integrated safety and security systems. Fire Protection Industry This represents a huge opportunity for someone from the fire protection industry to engage directly with DIT DSO to shape the way in which it supports UK exporters and to create a legacy by which it will work effectively with the fire protection industry into the future. While applicants will be providing direct support to UK prosperity and international trade objectives, in doing so they will gain valuable access to DIT DSO’s network; improve their understanding of Government-to-Government dynamics and priorities; strengthen the personal career development of the participating employee; gain unique skills at the interface between Government and industry; and understand UK policy making on trade and exports. Knowledge Of Active Fire Protection This is an unpaid position which is expected to run for a six month period during which the appointed person would work with DIT DSO for about 1 day a week on specific projects. This will be a mix of remote working and attendance at the DIT offices in central London (for which travel expenses will be paid). The person to be appointed to this position should have extensive knowledge of Active Fire Protection and be experienced in the mechanisms and challenges in exporting these products to overseas markets. This opportunity would therefore ideally be suitable for individuals possessing a level of prior relevant expertise and knowledge, say with 5-10 years of experience, although individuals possessing less experience or seniority will, of course, be considered.
INTERSCHUTZ, which was scheduled for June 2020, will be postponed by one year. This is the mutual decision of the organizers and partners of the trade fair for fire and rescue services, civil protection, safety and security. The reason is the coronavirus, which directly affects both exhibitors and visitors of INTERSCHUTZ and requires them to be available for duty at other locations. INTERSCHUTZ will now take place from 14 to 19 June 2021 in Hannover. About three months before the actual start of the event, it is now certain that the next INTERSCHUTZ will take place in summer 2021. Exhibiting Emergency Aid Organizations More than 150,000 visitors from all over the world attend INTERSCHUTZ "The people who under ordinary conditions would have come to INTERSCHUTZ in June this year are precisely those who are most needed due to the coronavirus crisis," says Dr. Andreas Gruchow, Member of the Managing Board, Deutsche Messe AG. "As INTERSCHUTZ, we are part of the industry. With our decision, we therefore take responsibility and provide security in planning". More than 150,000 visitors from all over the world attend INTERSCHUTZ. However, in times of pandemic, helpers and rescuers are needed to maintain supplies and security. The same applies to exhibiting emergency aid organizations or authorities with security tasks whose capacities are needed elsewhere. Digital Deployment Technology But also exhibitors from the industry are directly or indirectly involved in the crisis situation, such as manufacturers of protective equipment, suppliers of digital deployment technology or even vehicle manufacturers whose customers cannot or are not allowed to visit a trade fair in this situation. We therefore would like to wish all the players and the entire INTERSCHUTZ community" "We were on an excellent path – and we are aiming for a strong INTERSCHUTZ," says Gruchow. "Under the current conditions, however, this is not possible. We therefore would like to wish all the players and the entire INTERSCHUTZ community all the best and every strength for the tasks ahead. We will see each other in Hannover in June 2021, where we will have the opportunity to take a detailed and analytical look at the pandemic – and what we can learn from it". Enormous Number Of Organizational Consequences Postponing a trade fair on the scale of INTERSCHUTZ has an enormous number of organizational consequences. The 29th German Firefighters' Day will also be postponed until next year: "The synergy between the trade fair and the top firefighters' meeting is important to us - the postponement is a joint decision," explains Hermann Schreck, permanent representative of the President of the German Firefighters' Association (DFV). The most important questions arising from such a postponement for exhibitors and visitors of INTERSCHUTZ will be published in an FAQ on the INTERSCHUTZ homepage. Further questions will be clarified via the usual communication channels. INTERSCHUTZ has a network of strong partners who have also voted for a postponement and who will now work with Deutsche Messe to set the course for a successful event in June 2021. Facing Special Challenges Dirk Aschenbrenner, President of the German Fire Protection Association (vfdb): "vfdb as a strong supporter of INTERSCHUTZ welcomes the decision. As a network of experts for protection, rescue and security, we spoke out without hesitation in favor of postponing INTERSCHUTZ after the latest developments.” The postponement of INTERSCHUTZ is both responsible and appropriate" “Especially as organizers of the non-commercial segment of INTERSCHUTZ, we know that thousands and thousands of members of the fire brigades, rescue services and disaster control have been waiting for the world's leading trade fair with enthusiasm. But we also know that they in particular are sympathetic. After all, they will be facing special challenges in their daily work over the coming weeks and months. Our greatest concern is the safety of the population. The postponement of INTERSCHUTZ is both responsible and appropriate in view of the current situation.” Operational Readiness Of The Fire Brigades “We are also aware that even if the situation eases, the numerous exhibitors from Germany and abroad will still need sufficient time for their INTERSCHUTZ preparations. As vfdb, we will use the remaining months to process and communicate this event, which is highly relevant for civil protection. As regrettable as the current, unprecedented situation is, we will learn from it. And INTERSCHUTZ 2021 will undoubtedly be supplemented by a further topic." Hermann Schreck, permanent representative of the president of the German Fire Brigade Association (DFV): "We were very much looking forward to the 29th German Firefighters' Day and INTERSCHUTZ. However, in view of the development of the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, maintaining the operational readiness of the fire brigades and rescue services has top priority for us in all considerations. The planning for the DFV's large joint exhibition stand and the accompanying events will of course continue at national and international level." Manufacturers Of Firefighting Technology INTERSCHUTZ is the future forum for the firefighting technology industry" Dr. Bernd Scherer, Member of the VDMA Executive Board, and Managing Director, VDMA Fire Fighting Equipment: "INTERSCHUTZ is the future forum for the firefighting technology industry, an industry that produces safety for people. In the current situation, this applies even more – to emergency and rescue services, but also to industry.” “After all, manufacturing companies also face ambitious challenges in economic terms, for example when proven supply chains are interrupted or production sites are affected by quarantine measures. Fortunately, none of this has yet been the case for manufacturers of firefighting technology. On the contrary: We are still in a unique economic boom phase.” Innovative Technology And Committed People “Nevertheless, or perhaps precisely because of this, we would like to hold an INTERSCHUTZ trade fair in which all forces are concentrated on what makes this unique exhibition of our industry so special: innovative technology and committed people who are completely dedicated to fire protection and rescue services. We look forward to it – together with you in June 2021!" For Rosenbauer, the health of all our visitors and partners, has absolute priority" Michael Friedmann, Head of Group Strategy, Innovation and Marketing, Rosenbauer International AG: "As a system provider in fire and disaster control, we have been committed to the safety of people and the protection of society for 150 years. For Rosenbauer, the health of all our visitors and partners, as well as that of our employees, has absolute priority. This is why Rosenbauer stands fully behind the postponement of the fair. We are certain that the industry's leading fair will be a great success in 2021 as well!" Economic Interests And Actions Werner Heitmann, Head of Marketing Fire Brigades and Authorities, Drägerwerk AG & Co. KGaA: "Our INTERSCHUTZ motto 'We protect you. At all times.' also means that we are now acting prudently and protecting all those involved in INTERSCHUTZ considering the current situation. We therefore support the postponement of the fair. The majority of visitors at our exhibit have always been fire brigades and aid organizations.” “As part of the critical infrastructure in Germany, it is essential to protect the emergency services to the best of our ability and not to expose them to unnecessary risks. The rescue forces must be prepared for action. Furthermore, we had planned a very large trade fair team in Hannover – we also have to protect them. Health and life always take precedence over all economic interests and actions of Dräger. In other words, 'Technology for Life'."
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.
The effective provision and management of on-site fire safety, prevention, response and protection is a core responsibility of operators of hazardous high-risk critical infrastructure and industrial manufacturing facilities around the world. Such services are typically found at airports, refineries and petrochemical plants, power stations and nuclear facilities, mines, manufacturing sites and port facilities. Driven by legislative requirements and international fire safety standards, many organizations are required to maintain and operate an on-site Rescue and Fire Fighting Service (RFFS) or for airports, an Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) Service in order to meet their compliance requirements. Legislative Compliance Failure to fully comply can expose these organizations to the risk of serious financial liability in the event of an incident, Failure to fully comply can expose these organizations to the risk of serious financial liabilityas insurers demand that risk is minimised and mitigated before they will provide cover for the site and its operations. Notwithstanding the availability of local or municipal resources to respond in the event of an emergency or serious incident, the RFFS and ARFF provision available to commercial organizations generally falls into two main options; an employed service or an outsourced service. The Decision To outsource While many organizations choose to invest in their own Fire and Rescue Service, which includes the provision of a Fire Station(s), personnel, vehicles and equipment, others have turned to outsourced service providers to enable them to meet their operational and compliance needs. So what are the factors that influence a decision to outsource and how do organizations choose between the two options? Managing risk and improving resilience The requirement and resources for an on-site fire and rescue service will be determined chiefly by the type of activity that the organization is involved in at each site or facility, the assessment of the risks associated with the processes or activities that occur on-site and the impact that any emergency incident may have on the business, its employees and on the surrounding communities. Ultimately, the motivation for investment in an on-site fire and rescue resource is rooted in the avoidance of loss, which can be both organizational, reputational and/or personal in nature and in a need to ensure the on-going stability, security and resilience of the facility and processes in question. But rather like when an insurance policy is purchased, one sincerely hopes that the Fire and Rescue Service will never need to be called upon to be utilized in a real-life emergency. A decision to outsource may be driven by purely financial motives as organizations seek to reduce costs and enhance shareholder value or by strategic and tactical factors as the business seeks to re-engineer or re-focus itself. Outsourcing enables companies to focus on their core business processes while delegating essential but non-core processes to external specialist providers Recruiting, training, resourcing, and supporting an employed on-site fire and rescue service is an expensive indirect operational cost for the business, consuming cash resources that could possibly be better invested elsewhere. The day to day management of an employed Fire, Rescue and Safety service can also sap the organization of time and energy that, while imperative to the safe, legal and ultimately the profitable operation of the facility, is not actually a core function of the business itself. Outsourcing enables companies to focus on their core business processes while delegating essential but non-core processes to external specialist providers. This releases internal resources that can be put to more effective use for other purposes, leading to greater efficiency and competitiveness. Outsourcing enables companies to focus on their core business processes while delegating essential but non-core processes to external specialist providers The question to be asked is, could an outsourced service provider deliver the required functions, tasks and compliance, maintain and improve site safety, respond effectively to any emergency incidents and add value to the organization at a more cost-effective rate than directly employing the on-site team? When properly executed, outsourcing the on-site Fire and Rescue Service can have a defining impact on the company’s revenue recognition and can deliver significant savings through lower operational and labour costs. Specialist knowledge, skills and expertise Organizations cannot realistically be experts in every business function, process and discipline, it is simply far too expensive. By utilizing outsourced service providers, companies can leverage a global knowledge base and resource centre, accessing world class capabilities, skills and expertise that they may have been precluded from previously. Managed FRS service providers often have access to a wider, more highly skilled and diverse talent pool than the client themselves and will already have in place the requisite interview and selection processes designed to select only the strongest, most appropriately qualified and experienced staff. Shared experiences coupled with specialist skills, learning and best working practices also enable the outsourced service provider to add value and resilience to and further reduce risk within the client’s operation. Shared responsibilities and liabilities Although all organizations must maintain a duty of care to operate in a safe and environmentally responsible manner, delegating fire and rescue service responsibilities to external providers can release companies of the day to day functions that are difficult to manage and control, while still realizing their benefits and upholding compliance. Outsourced FRS service providers generally are much better at deciding how to avoid risk in their areas of expertise As specialists in their field, outsourced FRS service providers generally are much better at deciding how to avoid risk in their areas of expertise than perhaps a fully employed on-site team might be. This is because the incentive to deliver a high level of service and to maintain their professional reputation while remaining profitable is potentially stronger for the outsourced provider. A further consideration if, unfortunately something does go wrong, may be that the responsibility and possible consequential contractual liability might well rest in whole or in part with the service provider, rather than the contracting client themselves. what are the potential negatives? Violations of confidentiality and intellectual property are of increasing concern to companies. This is particularly true for clients that outsource to providers from countries that may not have the same type or standards of confidentiality laws that prevail in their home jurisdiction. One way to mitigate this issue is to have strong confidentiality clauses contained within all commercial contractual documentation and employee contracts, and to make security of data and information a key performance indicator within any outsource contract. Outsourcing may in some cases result in job eliminations or employees leaving for other personal reasons, which in turn can have a negative effect on morale, loyalty and productivity among the personnel who remain. Human Resources In FRS In most cases for Fire and Rescue Service outsourcing, human resource levels are already stipulated based on the site or facility risk profile and therefore it is more likely that existing employees will simply be transferred to a new contract of employment with the new service provider, albeit perhaps on slightly different terms. There are also often hidden costs that, if not managed correctly, can quickly negate many of the anticipated savings Although most companies see an immediate benefit to the bottom line when outsourcing, there are also often hidden costs that, if not managed correctly, can quickly negate many of the anticipated savings. It should not be underestimated that, as in any period of change, increased ancillary costs such as travel and related expenses can accrue as employees travel back and forth for training and other meetings, particularly during the mobilization phase of the new contract. Making your mind up The decision to outsource the Fire and Rescue Service for a high-risk site or facility should never be made lightly. A thorough and detailed examination of the associated costs and benefits must be investigated before a go/no go decision is reached. However, if a decision to outsource is positive, then careful selection of your partner organization, taking account of both the hard and soft delivery factors for each facility, is of critical importance.
Across the world, fire and rescue services vary greatly, and each will have their own unique circumstances and challenges to deal with. Firefighters in the USA and Australia are more likely to face wildland fires, whilst in the Middle East, firefighters deal more regularly with transport related fires involving hazardous materials. In many European countries, less than 10% of call-outs are fire related at all, with firefighters much more likely to attend traffic accidents, medical emergencies or flooding. A range of different climates also provide firefighters with specific challenges. Providing Optimum Protection These fabrics can offer resistance to fire, increased breathability, control of moisture, and a lighter weight Firefighters in hot and tropical Indonesia for example, will have different requirements to those in hot and arid South Africa, whilst those in Scandinavia operate in more temperate and cooler conditions. It’s important, therefore, that PPE manufacturers can provide a wide variety of options to suit particular environments and operations. PPE must be highly effective, comfortable, and suitable for the job in hand, wherever in the world the firefighters are operating. Selecting the right fabric for your PPE is the first step in providing optimum protection for the environment you are operating in. International fibre and fabric manufacturers have developed a number of highly specialized materials offering a range of benefits. Used in combination, these fabrics can offer resistance to fire, increased breathability, control of moisture, and a lighter weight. Best Quality Firefighting Garments Highly specialized and lightweight fibers for the outer-shell of a garment, for example, can provide outstanding air permeability and breathability, allowing metabolic heat to escape, whilst of course providing vital protection against the intense external heat and flames of a fire. The best quality firefighting garments combine this type of outer shell with an inner moisture barrier and liner system which draws moisture away from the skin, helping to keep the body cool and dry. Strenuous work in a hot environment causes profuse sweating, and if this sweat is not able to evaporate, the body is not able to cool itself effectively. Once the most appropriate fabric is chosen, the design and style of a garment also plays a crucial role in contributing to a firefighters’ safety. Maintaining A Comfortable Body Temperature Search and Rescue operations often take place once the immediate danger of flame is removed Whether operating in bushland, floods, on the roadside or even in extremely cold conditions, firefighters need to maintain a comfortable body temperature and stay dry. They are also likely to need to crawl, run, and climb to carry out the job in hand. Any protective clothing must be ergonomic and has to be able to work with them rather than hinder them. As a result, over and above the full structural firefighting garments available to FRSs, manufacturers have also developed innovative designs for more specific applications. For example, Search and Rescue operations often take place once the immediate danger of flame is removed, with USAR or technical rescue teams entering enclosed and confined spaces where high temperatures and often toxic smoke are hazards. Particular Protection Against Radiant Heat USAR firefighting garments therefore should be tear and puncture resistant, provide protection against blood-borne pathogens, offer physical protection at high risk points such as the knees and elbows, provide a high level of flexibility to afford maneuvrability in confined spaces, and crucially be lightweight and breathable to minimize heat stress. Alternatively, for firefighters engaged specifically in combatting forest and wildland fires, garments need to provide particular protection against radiant heat, and ideally feature a double layer of fabric to protect against sharp thorns and undergrowth. Today, many FRSs across the world use a combination of structural and technical rescue garments which can be particularly useful when faced with a range of operations requiring different levels of protection. Rescue jackets are worn with standard structural trousers when responding to a road traffic accident International Standards Of Performance For PPE Frequently, rescue jackets are worn with standard structural trousers when responding to a road traffic accident, for example. So long as these garments are tested and approved as compatible before they are used in combination, this can serve to improve ergonomics and comfort, and crucially can contribute to the lowering of heat stress in firefighters. There are currently three major standard-setting bodies on the world stage To ensure the best level of protection, most countries demand conformity with both national and international standards of performance for PPE. There are currently three major standard-setting bodies on the world stage, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) which covers the USA, Latin America and the Asia/Pacific region, the European Committee for Standardisation (CEN) which covers Europe, and the International Standards Organisation (ISO) which sets standards worldwide. Lighting And Communications Equipment In addition, each country will have its own National Standards Body (NSB), setting standards for its own specific interests. Ultimately, it is down to the customer to decide which standards they would like their PPE to follow. The best manufacturers can create PPE to meet a number of these standards simultaneously. These include alternative types of trouser front, leg openings and knee-pads, as well as cuff styles on fire coats Different countries, and even individual FRSs, often have particular additional requirements for their PPE, which can simply be down to style or color preference, or to accommodate particular tools or equipment they use. These include alternative types of trouser front, leg openings and knee-pads, as well as cuff styles on fire coats. Operational safety features such as integrated safety harnesses and drag rescue devices can also be specified. In addition, firefighter accessories including tools, lighting and communications equipment all have to be carried safely requiring a selection of loops, straps, D-rings, glove hooks, and pockets and flaps. Developing Innovative Solutions Finally, most FRSs aim to present a professional and clearly recognizable identity to their communities, so particular colors and badging can be an important feature of PPE. This has led to the introduction of a wide range of fabric colors and the increased use of Velcro fixings for identification badges with logos, names and roles being individually catered for. Called upon to handle an ever-increasing variety of challenges, in contrasting climates and situations, firefighters across the world are certainly faced with complex environments in which to operate. By carefully studying these conditions and listening closely to customers, PPE designers and fabric manufacturers will continue to work together to develop innovative solutions to meet these specific needs and create optimum garments for maximum protection and comfort.
Refrigerants used in cooling systems for homes and businesses are being replaced with alternatives that have less potential for global warming. But the transition comes at a risk: Some of the new refrigerants are flammable. Although less flammable than gases such as propane, for example, new refrigerants can still ignite and burn with a high intensity under ideal circumstances. The new materials have low-flame velocity and are less easily ignited; however, one byproduct of combustion is toxic hydrogen fluoride. Flammability risks of non-toxic refrigerants Non-toxic refrigerants are categorized by flammability risks. A1 designates no flame propagation; A2 indicates lower flammability; and A3 indicates higher flammability. Hydrocarbons such as propane have higher flammability (A3) and are restricted to a lower charge limit that does not address refrigeration needs of large systems. Hydrofluoroolefins (HFOs) are mildly flammable, have a low flammability limit (LFL) and have been categorized as an A2L refrigerant. They tend to burn slowly and give off little heat. Hydrocarbons such as propane have higher flammability NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) offers online and instructor-led training to educate firefighters about flammability and toxicity risks associated with new refrigerants. The training also covers asphyxiation challenges, jet stream fires, transportation issues and other life-safety considerations associated with flammable refrigerants. The training covers how to adapt response tactics to mitigate consequences from refrigerants in various types of emergencies. Strict adherence to standard operating procedures (SOPs), personal protective equipment (PPE) and self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) protocols and decontamination practices are also covered. Categorising refrigerant flammability The Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) provides funding to NFPA to develop training on the emerging technology. According to an ASHRAE report, refrigerant flammability can be characterized by three factors: Likelihood that a refrigerant leak would result in a concentration range that reaches the lower flammability limit; Presence of a sufficient energy ignition source; and Likely severity of a combustion event, and probability of a secondary fire. ASHRAE is the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers. The Air-Conditioning, Heating and Refrigeration Technology Institute (AHRTI) and the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) are researching the flammability of refrigerants, including factors such as refrigerant charge size, release height, leak rate, humidity, and room size and temperature. When choosing the best refrigerants, it is likely a tradeoff will be required among global warming potential, flammability and efficiency. Codes and standards Codes and standards are being modified to address the use of new materials Currently, codes and standards are being modified to address the use of new materials, although risk mitigation concerns of the fire service have historically not been considered. One issue is the risk of using large amounts of flammable gas in a refrigeration system to cool a larger room. Additional safety measures are needed to make the risk acceptable. Detection of leaks is another issue, especially the need for repeated calibration of leak detectors to ensure accuracy. More than 200 countries will be ushering in the new class of refrigerants.
First responders are on the front lines of the latest health crisis that involves spread of the novel coronavirus COVID-19. Around the country – and around the world – EMS departments are facing the uncertainties of a rapidly-spreading virus. One problem is a shortage of face masks. As cases surge, it will also be harder for ambulance companies to get other needed supplies. In King County, Wash., an epicenter of COVID-19 cases in the United States, Kirkland, Wash., firefighters and Kirkland police officers were placed under quarantine after an outbreak at a senior care facility. Firefighters were either quarantined at home or at a local fire station. These first responders came in contact with the coronavirus at Life Care Center of Kirkland, where dozens of residents and staff were infected. Quarantine for IAFF members Some members of the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF) in Washington state were under quarantine for possible exposure to COVID-19.It is not the first time EMS has acted as the canary in the coal mine to protect the public" The heightened role of fire and EMS professionals is playing out everywhere. “It is not the first time EMS has acted as the canary in the coal mine to protect the public,” Oren Barzilay of the New York EMT union told the New York Daily News. “And it won’t be the last.” FDNY Not Sending Firefighters to COVID-19 Calls The Fire Department of New York (FDNY) has stopped sending firefighters to answer medical calls that describe symptoms associated with the coronavirus. Instead, calls for asthma attacks, fever, coughs and difficult breathing are being handled by the Emergency Medical Service. Fire companies with certified first responder (CFR) training, which would ordinarily accompany ambulances on such calls, are being asked to “stand down.” The order refers to “Segment 2” calls, although firefighters will continue to respond to higher priority “Segment 1” calls. Union complaint in Boston When coronavirus testing began taking place at Faulkner Hospital in Boston, Mass., the EMS union complained because paramedics working at the facility were not notified of the possible workplace contamination. The EMT substation at the hospital includes a bunk room and contains equipment and supplies. The union complained to the Boston Public Health Commission, which provided assurances they were doing “everything in [their] power to protect EMTs and paramedics.” East Pierce, Wash., Fire and Rescue Assistant Chief Russ McCallion created a checklist for medics and fire crews to consider when responding to a potential coronavirus patient. He reminds crews to perform “doorway triage” of patients to decide when to wear protective equipment and when to use special entryways at the hospital reserved for people in isolation.Complicating the decision-making processes is the fact that flu symptoms and COVID-19 symptoms are similar Complicating the decision-making processes is the fact that flu symptoms and COVID-19 symptoms are similar. “We have to maintain the high index of suspicion on every call [if] the patient presents with fever, coughing and other flu-type symptoms,” McCallion told National Public Radio. Fire crews are now instructed to wait outside when responding to such calls. They wait while a few medics enter, suited up with personal protection equipment such as gowns, gloves and masks. Dedicated ambulance in San Antonio In San Antonio, a dedicated ambulance is used to transport patients suspected of COVID-19 infection. The interior walls of the dedicated ambulance are covered completely with plastic sheets. The vehicle will be dedicated to the COVID-19 mission “throughout” and will not be used on the streets of San Antonio. Congress has approved emergency funding for states. The money will be used for testing, to track those who are sick, and for awareness campaigns to slow the spread of the virus. Public health emergency A public health emergency has been declared by the U.S. Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) as of Jan. 31. The declaration enables state, tribal and local health departments to request funding, supplies and resources from DHHS to respond to COVID-19.The declaration enables state, tribal and local health departments to request funding, supplies and resources China alerted the World Health Organization in December to several cases of an unusual pneumonia in Wuhan, a port city of 11 million people in the central Hubei province. In January, officials identified the new virus as belonging to the coronavirus family, which includes SARS and the common cold. It was named COVID-19 and has since spread to all of mainland China and later throughout the world.
The mission of the U.S. Fire Administration is to support and strengthen fire and emergency medical services (EMS) and to help stakeholders prepare for, prevent, mitigate and respond to all hazards. It is an entity of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). G. Keith Bryant was sworn in as the U.S. Fire Administrator in 2017. Prior to his presidential appointment, he was the chief of the Oklahoma City Fire Department (OCFD). Experience as a firefighter Bryant says his former experience as a firefighter and fire chief informs and directs his performance as U.S. Fire Administrator. Coming from Oklahoma City, a major metropolitan area, Bryant has faced issues and challenges – staffing, resources etc. – that are common among departments on the national level. His involvement with the International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) also provided a broad view of issues across the country. The scope of duties that fire departments are asked to respond to has expanded Bryant has been in the fire service since the 1970s. During that time, he has watched the industry evolve from a “trade” to a “profession.” The scope of duties that fire departments are asked to respond to has expanded, also, and continues to grow, now including medical emergencies, Hazmat, weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) and natural disasters. “We have become ‘all-hazards,’ and it takes a higher level of training and education to handle all these issues,” Bryant says. The U.S. Fire Administration is focused on helping the fire service at the local and state levels. One element of that work is the National Fire Academy (NFA), which provides training, education and professional development for firefighters through live, online, off-site and/or self-study programs. They also provide funding for state training agencies, which conduct NFA courses at the state level. NFA Courses “We make sure our courses are geared to those who will be managing issues at the local level, to ensure they have the training and skillset,” Bryant says. Leadership in the fire service today needs both business and political acumen to manage their agencies effectively, and training must address leadership and management concepts as well as emergency training, he says. The need for higher education is also changing The need for higher education is also changing. At one time, a high school diploma or general equivalency diploma (GED) would suffice as an entry-level requirement for the fire service. In this day and age, a higher level of education may be required, especially for those seeking to manage a fire department. The National Fire Academy offers the Executive Office Fire program and the Managing Officer Fire program to help develop managerial and executive skillsets. Many National Fire Academy programs are aimed at helping smaller departments, including public education programs. Some programs are geared toward volunteer agencies that might not be able to attend a program on campus. In addition to online options, there are also programs on weekends and condensed courses. “We see the needs of different agencies reflected in our course offerings, from smaller, rural agencies to major metropolitan departments,” says Bryant. Issues of concern Another issue of concern is a shortage of firefighters, especially among volunteer fire departments. “We know the volunteer service has a big challenge with recruitment and retention, and we have seen it for a long time,” says Bryant. The gravity of the problem varies by locale. Some volunteer agencies have folded because they could not serve the needs of the community. The U.S. Fire Administration is seeking answers: What are the issues and what programs can make sure volunteer agencies have adequate staffing? What are the issues and what programs can make sure volunteer agencies have adequate staffing? Sometimes the problem is money, contingent on the financial fitness of a community and what they are willing to invest. Traditional commitment to providing fire services and responding to emergencies may be taken for granted by some communities, which may not be adequately funding, staffing and training their departments. “There are communities that invest very well in public safety, and they see the need for that, but it runs the range from bad to adequate to good,” says Bryant. The U.S. Fire Administration also spreads the word about the availability of federal fire service grants using social media, fire service publications and other channels, emphasizing application periods and eligibility. The grants are managed and administered by the FEMA grants directorate, and the U.S. Fire Administration has an oversight role in addition to publicizing the various grants to local departments.
Infographics has announced that Humberside Fire and Rescue Service is the latest fire service to move to the company’s FireWatch Cloud, a fully-managed service based on the Microsoft Azure platform. FireWatch Cloud solution The new FireWatch Cloud solution will provide a resilient architecture, flexible access to the FireWatch integrated fire service management platform from remote locations, and includes software upgrade services and other benefits. Richard Jacques, ICT Data & Applications Manager at Humberside Fire and Rescue Service, said “We are delighted to be working with Infographics on our move to the FireWatch cloud platform. Although this decision is not as a direct result of the current COVID-19 situation, it clearly reinforces the validity of our strategy and benefits of having resilient systems available from anywhere, at any time, with the ability to quickly adapt and scale as needed without reliance on corporate networks and systems.” FireWatch integrated fire service management Richard adds, “That, along with the breadth of features, integrated user experience, teams and workflows available with the FireWatch Cloud platform, will ensure we are in an even stronger position to support the operations of our Fire Services during these challenging times and thereafter.” Russell Wood, Commercial Manager at Infographics, said “We are delighted to announce Humberside Fire & Rescue as another new client of our FireWatch Cloud offering. This follows multiple other recent new FRS contracts, with more to follow in the coming weeks and months. The benefits of the specialist, connected FireWatch Fire Service Management platform in the Cloud are clear and compelling – providing our clients with the ‘big picture’ of their operations and helping them keep working as an integrated service – whatever their location or circumstances.”
Comelit’s specialist fire detection systems have been specified by Avalon Technology Group at newly introduced smaller gym facilities of a leading low-cost leisure group. Standing as the pioneer of low-cost, no contract 24 / 7 gyms, the new leisure facilities in Newark, Beverly and Lowestoft, mark the introduction of ‘slimmed down’ gym concepts, to make them more accessible opportunities in smaller towns. For each facility, the electrical contractor appointed Avalon Technology Group to ensure the fire safety of the building, staff and guests, specifying Comelit’s Atena Easy single loop system. in-built IP connections Guy Stephens, Director Avalon Technology Group added: “In any gym facility, large or small, it is essential to ensure measures and systems are in place that will provide customers, employees and the premises itself, with sufficient prevention against fire at all times. Comelit’s Atena Easy solution proved to be user-friendly and comes with excellent training “To keep up with demand, we needed to select a system that was simple to install and operational as quickly as possible for the benefit of members and staff. Comelit’s Atena Easy solution proved to be user-friendly and comes with excellent training and support capability, alongside in-built IP connections to make it a straightforward system for us to maintain, even on a remote basis.” addressable control panel system Comelit’s Atena Easy single loop solution is a compact, entry level fully addressable control panel system. Finished in line with Comelit’s focus on aesthetics, it’s stylish design can accommodate up to 500 devices making it ideal for small applications, with a fully functional networked opportunity to expand with a facility or building requirement. Mandy Bowden, Comelit Fire Business Development Manager concluded: “The ambition to bring affordable access to leisure facilities to everyone is a growing trend across the UK. And the new smaller concepts provide an opportunity to go into towns that wouldn’t previously have been able to accommodate a full-scale gym. We are delighted to have been chosen to have been chosen by Avalon to supply fire detection systems to each new location as a simple to install, cost effective solution.”
Over the coming months, Schiphol’s fire service will be phasing in 13 new Rosenbauer fire engines, also known as crash tenders. The airport’s fire service will be using them to deal with aviation incidents. The crash tenders belong to the largest and fastest category of fire engines. They will replace the current vehicles, which have reached the end of their service life after a period of 15 years. The new fire engines are equipped with the very latest fire-extinguishing technology. The fire service personnel can already fight a fire while approaching it in the vehicle, therefore extinguishing it even more quickly and safely. Simultaneously Extinguishing A Fire Navigation systems and infrared cameras will enable the fire service to drive safely through the airfield The vehicles can be driven while simultaneously extinguishing a fire, using large quantities of extinguishing agent in a short space of time: 13,300 liters of water, 1,600 liters of foam and over 250 kilos of powder. This extinguishing capacity will enable Schiphol to satisfy the strictest requirements in the future as well and allows the largest aircraft. Schiphol has an unusual site, with a lot of grass and fields. The new vehicles have special wide tyres and are equipped with technical features to enhance their all-terrain capacity. Navigation systems and infrared cameras will enable the fire service to drive safely through the airfield in adverse weather conditions such as fog, rain or snow. State-Of-The-Art Features “Schiphol’s fire service is permanently on call, day and night, ready to reach a runway within three minutes if necessary. We prioritize the safety of passengers and staff in our operations. I am proud of the fact that we will be using these advanced crash tenders,” says Dick Benschop, CEO of Royal Schiphol Group. "A complex environment such as Schiphol requires its own approach to safety. With a fire brigade that has been specially trained for the airport and with its own equipment for the specific environment of Schiphol. I am proud and happy with such innovative equipment that we can also deploy outside Schiphol if necessary,” says mayor of Haarlemmermeer Marianne Schuurmans. We are very proud that Royal Schiphol Group has placed their trust in us" “The vehicles represent the very latest in firefighting technology. They offer exceptional performance, are safe to operate and are equipped with state-of-the-art features, including the Rosenbauer tracking and navigation system. We are very proud that Royal Schiphol Group has placed their trust in us,” says Dieter Siegel, CEO Rosenbauer International AG. Fire-Fighting Techniques The fire team’s emergency response service consists of approximately 150 employees who can operate the new vehicles. Over the past 18 months, all the firefighters have undergone intensive training to ensure that they have the right skills. This year, Rotterdam The Hague and Lelystad Airport will also deploy new Rosenbauer crash tenders, three and two respectively. These vehicles are somewhat smaller, however, as smaller aircraft land at these airports. They are six-wheel drive (6x6) vehicles that can hold up to 10,000 liters of water, 1,300 liters of foam and 250 kilos of powder. Otherwise, the vehicles are virtually the same as those used at Schiphol. This standardization offers advantages for the maintenance and management of the vehicles, the fire-fighting techniques and of course the education and training of the fire service personnel.
North Shields based Kingfisher Care Home, part of the Amicura Limited portfolio, is a new dementia specialist care home presenting a traditional purpose-built design, a selection of open plan living areas and a stimulating lifestyle program. As part of the refurbishment program, and to achieve latest fire regulations, KJ Fire Safety installed Comelit’s stylish addressable Atena touch screen control panel on a four-loop solution to control fire detection systems across the complete site. User-Friendly Capability Having an effective fire alarm system is absolutely vital at a residential home, and dementia care specialist home" Says Ruth Field, Estates Director of Minster Care Group: “Having an effective fire alarm system is absolutely vital at a residential home, and dementia care specialist home, where evacuation can be extremely complex and literally every second matters.” “As the responsible agent, we had to ensure we worked with the right partner to ensure all aspects of fire safety was accommodated. The recommendation from KJ Fire Safety of Comelit’s new Atena control panel was its user-friendly capability and touch screen panel. In training, staff have commented on its ease of use, providing peace of mind that we can act fast in an emergency situation.” Addressable Fire Alarm Panel Comelit’s Atena is an addressable fire alarm panel with 1 to 4 loops and maximum coverage of 96 zones. Up to 250 devices can be connected to every loop. The information for the system status is visualized on a touch sensitive graphic display and LED indication for zones and troubles. By utilizing a two-staged alarm procedure in regards to evacuation and implementing an effective day / night mode function, Comelit’s addressable panel is able to manage potential nuisance alarms effectively, whilst safely evacuating residents and staff in the event of a genuine fire scenario. Excellent Training And Support Capability Comelit’s fire panel range is an innovative, stylish example of solutions available that are simple to install" Nigel Thomas, Managing Director KJ Fire Safety Ltd added: “Care homes have some pretty unique requirements when it comes to fire safety. By their very nature they’re places where dependent and often very frail individuals live and keeping them safe and secure is paramount.” “As we demonstrated at Kingfisher Care Home, the starting point for keeping new residents safety was to carry out a fire risk assessment, in line with latest legislation, checking all aspects of fire safety were fit for purpose. We made recommendations on a new fire system, choosing to install Comelit as a user-friendly system that has excellent training and support capability.” Mandy Bowden, Comelit Fire BDM concluded: “Kingfisher Care Home is a showcase residential center where fire and security arrangements must be balanced with the need to create a welcoming and caring environment. Comelit’s fire panel range is an innovative, stylish example of solutions available that are simple to install, cost effective and enhance fire safety on site, without imposing on the care home facilities.”
48 million UK commuters and 80 new businesses who travel and operate within London Bridge Station each year are now protected by MxPro 5 fire panels from fire systems provider Advanced. London Bridge Station, the fourth busiest station in the UK, has undergone a high-profile £1billion redevelopment that has seen passenger capacity almost double. The five-year redevelopment, the biggest rail infrastructure transformation in over a century, was directed by operators Network Rail and has seen the construction of a 15-platform street-level concourse longer than the Shard - another London landmark protected by Advanced fire panels. Analog Addressable Panel MxPro 5 is the company’s highest performance analog addressable panel, approved to EN54 parts 2, 4 and 13 offering four detector protocols and a completely open installer network that enjoys free training and support. MxPro panels can be used in single loop, single panel format or easily configured into multi-loop, high speed, 200 panel networks covering huge areas and thousands of field devices. We are proud to have our British made products installed in such an established London landmark" Amanda Hope, UK Business Development Manager for Advanced, commented: “London Bridge Station is one of the capital’s most important transport hubs and a high-quality and reliable fire system capable of meeting the complexities of the site and protecting occupants is essential. We are proud to have our British made products installed in such an established London landmark.” Delivering Future Proof Solution “Advanced is renowned for providing some of the most intuitive fire panels on the market. We have extensive experience working within the rail sector and a project such as London Bridge Station is an excellent opportunity to showcase what we can offer, delivering a future proof solution that provides Network Rail with the option to expand and enhance the system in the future.” Advanced are members of the Rail Industry Fire Association (RIFA) and have panels installed in a number of other rail-related buildings, including the Tottenham Court Road Crossrail station, almost 100 London Underground stations, the Hitachi Rail Europe factory in Newton Aycliffe and the Tyne & Wear Metro. False Alarm Management Systems Advanced is a pioneer in the development and manufacture of intelligent fire systems Lewis Atherton, Programme Manager, from Network Rail, said: “As a vital transport hub for commuters and visitors traveling into London, safety has been a key consideration throughout the development process of London Bridge Station in order for passengers to make their connections as smoothly, efficiently and enjoyably as possible.” “As well as the major track upgrade, a new rail underpass and platform widenings and extensions, the station now also includes almost 100 new shops, cafes and restaurants. With their proven track record of managing fire safety within the railway industry we felt entirely confident in the solutions Advanced offered.” Advanced is a pioneer in the development and manufacture of intelligent fire systems. Advanced’s reputation for performance, quality and ease-of-use of its products see Advanced specified in locations around the world, from single-panel installations to large multi-site networks. Advanced’s products include complete fire detection systems, multiprotocol fire panels, extinguishing control, fire paging and false alarm management systems.
During its scheduled 20-year renovation project, a major fast-food restaurant in Pennsylvania learned that the flow rate supplied from its main hydrant/riser supply line (about 350 gpm) was too low to support its sprinkler systems within local fire codes (about 500 gpm). Growth in the area had placed additional demand on the local water main over the intervening years, making a once-suitable water supply, no longer adequate. Fire Sprinkler Pump Fire protection distributor BFPE International proposed a water mist system to solve the problem To remain within code and in operation, the restaurant had two options: install a water tank with a fire sprinkler pump, or trench to the other side of a major thoroughfare to upgrade the water supply line serving the building. Both options would require a significant financial investment, delay the restaurant’s re-opening and postpone remaining renovation work. In lieu of these undesirable options, fire protection distributor BFPE International proposed a water mist system to solve the problem. Specifically, they suggested Fike’s DuraQuench system, said BFPE International’s York PA general manager Lee Schmelyun. Conventional Sprinkler Systems “Once we explained to the restaurant owner and fire marshal that the DuraQuench system offered them a more efficient fire protection system than a normal sprinkler system, and that it is more cost effective than a fire sprinkler pump and tank, both were excited about the application,” Schmelyun said. The local authority having jurisdiction (AHJ), Steve Dunkle, agreed that DuraQuench was a viable option to keep the restaurant within code. “We were very excited to learn about something new, and to see that every question asked was met swiftly with supporting documentation,” Dunkle said. DuraQuench was ultimately chosen for the project because of its ability to use 50 percent less water than conventional sprinkler systems and to connect to the domestic potable water supply at the site. “The DuraQuench system saved the day at this site,” said Tony Smith, the project’s construction manager. “When we became aware of the additional benefits, it was not just a choice—it was the only choice.”
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?