ASSA ABLOY Opening Solutions UK & Ireland continues to lead the market by ensuring its range of door closers do not compromise fire safety regulations. At the end of 2017, several UKAS Accredited authorities withdrew certification for almost all door closers used on uninsulated metal fire doors. With around eight out of 10 metal fire doors specified and sold in the UK being non-insulated, this left many security fire doorsets deemed non-compliant. Uninsulated metal fire doors A number of...
Organized by the Guild of Architectural Ironmongers (GAI) and the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA), the AI Specification Awards identify and reward excellence in the specification of architectural ironmongery in the construction industry. DC700G-FT security door closer The DC700G-FT has been shortlisted in the category of ‘Product design and innovation’, which is a new award for 2019. Featuring a distinctive and stylish appearance that was launched earlier this year, th...
A North East-based fire system manufacturer appoints its first Head of Digital, as it looks to realize the full potential of connectivity. Global systems provider, Advanced, designs, manufactures and supplies fire alarm control panels to over 80 countries across the globe from its headquarters in Newcastle. Christina Brugger joins Advanced as Head of Digital from the manufacturer’s FTSE 100 parent company, Halma PLC, where she helped various teams with developing digital business models,...
Global fire and life safety company, Advanced, has appointed a new business manager to support the growth of its emergency lighting business. Matt Jones joins Advanced from his role as product manager at Apollo Fire Detectors. In his new role, Matt will leverage Advanced’s strong reputation in the fire industry to tap into new emergency lighting markets and grow the LuxIntelligent and EasySafe brands. LuxIntelligent control panels LuxIntelligent is an addressable automatic test system t...
Kentec Electronics Ltd, a manufacturer of life-critical control systems, has completed EN54-13 approvals for the Taktis product line, Kentec’s most powerful and sophisticated analog addressable fire panel. The approvals were completed the LPCB (Loss Prevention Certification Board). Kevin Swann, Managing Director of Kentec says: “To those working within the fire sector, all will be familiar with the requirement for fire protection products and the need for them to be EN54 certified to...
The program of the second international VdS-conference on fire protection systems, April 29th, 2020 in Bucharest (Romania), can now be downloaded as PDF-file from their official website. At the conference, international experts from industry and fire protection organizations will present an overview on current technology and developments as well as numerous solutions based on practical experience. Automatic fire protection systems The participants can look forward to the following topics: A...
IWCE the annual event for critical communications technology professionals, unveils its full program for its 44th annual conference to be held at the Las Vegas Conference Center, March 30th to April, 3rd 2020. Organizers expect more than 7,000 attendees for this year’s five-day day event which offers a two-day expo, educational workshops, short courses, power sessions, keynote addresses, town hall meetings, and networking events. The event will also host over 400 exhibitors from April 1-2 showcasing the latest products and services in hardware, networks, applications, interoperability and integration that drive communications systems. Push-To-Talk communications We expect the biggest buzz to be around 5G, FirstNet, and push-to-talk communications" IWCE Conference Director Stacey Orlick commented “We are delighted to officially announce the program for IWCE 2020. Since its inception IWCE has provided an opportunity for all those who work within the sector to stay ahead of all the latest developments. There are so many new technologies changing the critical communication industry right now we expect 2020 to be one of the most interesting events yet! We expect the biggest buzz to be around 5G, FirstNet, drones, Artificial Intelligence, augmented reality, wearables and push-to-talk communications.” “In addition, attendees can learn about the latest developments in safe cities, new infrastructure that affects utilities and transportation, in-building wireless systems, technology advancements and the latest regulatory insights that they should be aware of. It’s also always a great opportunity for professionals to network with their peers or gain a new certification in our partner ETA’s Educational Forum. We hope to see you in Las Vegas in March!” Advances in critical communications For the first time this year, attendees can experience Informa’s new outdoor Drone Demonstration where they can see the drones in-action! There will also be an expanded Safe Cities technology section on the main expo floor where there will be a theater showing content rich sessions that have a particular focus on advances in critical communications. All exhibit hall pass holders will be able to enjoy these new attractions. The innovations that are actually changing street performance for responders" The Keynote this year will be given on April 1st by Chief Jeffrey D. Johnson, CEO of The Western Fire Chiefs Association who will discuss “The innovations that are actually changing street performance for responders.” A second Keynote Address will be presented by Bryan Wiens, Senior Product Manager, Cloud Services, InterTalk Critical Information Systems. Wireless communications initiative Other speakers include: Michelle Geddes, Public Safety Communications Director, City and County of San Francisco, Department of Emergency Management Robert Zanger, Wireless Engineering and Operations Unit (WEOU), Department of Justice Bill Schrier, Senior Advisor, FirstNet Authority Shelley Westall, Broadband Program Manager, Washington State Public Works Board David Witkowski, Executive Director, Wireless Communications Initiative, Joint Venture Silicon Valley Vincent Sritapan, Portfolio Manager, Physical & Cyber Security, US Department of Homeland Security Science & Technology Directorate Interference management and cybersecurity The main tracks at this year’s conference will be NEW! 5G Track NEW! Safe Cities Track NEW! In-Building Wireless Track NEW! Smart X Track Connectivity Track Push-to-Talk & The Future of Voice Track Interoperability & Networking Track Disaster Comms Track Public Safety Broadband Track FirstNet Track 911 and Emergency Communications Track Network Infrastructure Track Planning & Preparation Track Critical Infrastructure Track Cybersecurity Track Transformative Tech Track ETA Technical Track In addition, co-located with IWCE 2020 is ETA International's Education Forum with 11 training classes providing certification in various technologies such as DAS, interference management and cybersecurity.
At the Intersec 2020, FOGTEC will present its innovative water mist systems for fire fighting in buildings, industrial facilities, tunnels and trains. tailor-Made solutions FOGTEC's range of products and services includes fixed and mobile applications, tailor-made solutions for rolling stock applications and integrated fire fighting systems for tunnels and underground facilities. The primary focus of the company's exhibit is fire fighting systems that use high-pressure water mist, which represents an intelligent alternative to sprinklers and gas extinguishing systems. Visitors are cordially invited to meet FOGTEC experts personally at their booth.
Professional security installers are the essential lifeblood of IFSEC and FIREX International, so they are delighted to announce their long-standing partners SSAIB as the official Installer Partner for the 2020 shows, taking place once again at London’s ExCeL from May 19-21. As the certification body for security and fire alarm installation professionals, manned guarding services and monitoring, SSAIB-approved companies are exclusively invited to IFSEC International and FIREX International 2020 to meet with trained SSAIB personnel and engage with over 500 leading manufacturers and suppliers of security and fire safety technologies and services. IFSEC and FIREX are the perfect learning environments for SSAIB companies where they can spend three days totally immersed in state-of-the-art technologies, solutions and discussions all focused around the driving issues in security and fire. Life safety risk assessment SSAIB’s presence at FIREX will contribute to the show’s stated aims of promoting expertise and guidance in life safety It’s where the entire security and fire communities always come together to collaborate, ask the big questions and find the practical answers to their current challenges. SSAIB will also use its time at IFSEC and FIREX to host the regional South East meeting at the show, which makes it convenient for approved companies to make full use of their time at IFSEC; mixing SSAIB business with their own fact-finding and discovery. The 2020 events also mark the return of SSAIB to FIREX International, where they’ll be on hand to discuss various BAFE-approved certification opportunities in fire system design and installation, life safety risk assessment and the correct use and maintenance of portable extinguisher equipment. With the national agenda now firmly fixed on promoting certified life safety schemes and awareness, SSAIB’s presence at FIREX International will rigorously contribute to the show’s stated aims of promoting expertise and guidance in life safety. Fire and security industries In line with the new decade, SSAIB will once again host the official Installer Bar in IFSEC that will have a dedicated ‘Roaring 20s’ theme to herald 2020. Look out for the Prohibition ‘speakeasy’ themes although, rest assured, none of the refreshments will be bootlegged! SSAIB chief executive Alex Carmichael commented: “We are delighted to be named as the official installer partner for IFSEC and FIREX International 2020 – as they are the premier events for both the fire and security industries and we would very much encourage our registered firms to visit us there next May." “We’ve also incorporated our South East regional meeting into IFSEC 2020, because it gives the many firms that attend our events the opportunity to immerse themselves in all the latest developments and technologies on show at IFSEC and FIREX.” Ever-strengthening partnership “Not only can they do this and hear all the latest updates we’ll be sharing, but they’ll also be invited to join us at our Installer Bar for an informal catch-up and refreshments too. SSAIB has enjoyed a lot of success lending our name to an IFSEC bar over the last two years, so we’ve decided to try and build on that further by making a welcome return to FIREX as well." I am excited to announce SSAIB as the official Installer Partner of IFSEC and FIREX International in 2020" "Due to the sheer size of the two shows, it’s not always possible to take in everything in one visit and – this way – you’ll get two chances of asking any questions you might have about the many schemes that SSAIB provide certification for.” IFSEC and FIREX warmly welcome our ever-strengthening partnership with SSAIB and look forward to welcoming their approved companies to next year’s shows. Security and fire challenges With such comprehensive coverage across the whole of the UK, IFSEC International and FIREX International look forward to meeting SSAIB’s professional installers at IFSEC and FIREX and helping them overcome the everyday security and fire challenges they encounter. Rachel Eaton, Event Manager, IFSEC International & FIREX International commented: “I am very excited to announce the SSAIB as the official Installer Partner of IFSEC International and FIREX International in 2020." "The SSAIB has been a champion of IFSEC for over two decades, so I’m delighted to see the SSAIB return to support FIREX as well. Due to the strong relationship we have with the SSAIB, we have managed to bring Scottish installers back to both events, hugely improving the diversity of visitors and exhibitors we have on site.” Cyber and converged security IFSEC International and FIREX International take place 19th-21st May at ExCeL, London. Co-located with Counter Terror Expo, Intelligent Building Show, Facilities Show, Safety & Health Expo and Workplace Wellbeing Show, the three-day free-to-attend exhibitions and conferences bring together the latest physical, cyber and converged security and fire safety technology, solutions and insights from hundreds of suppliers.
According to Protective Clothing Market Global Forecast to 2024 by MarketsandMarkets, the protective clothing market size is projected to reach USD 3.6 billion by 2024 from USD 2.6 billion in 2019, at a CAGR of 6.5%. The key market players profiled in the report include 3M (US), DuPont (US), Kimberly Clark (US), International Enviroguard (US), ULTITEC (Taiwan), and Lakeland (US). ULTITEC is proud to be mentioned as a major influencer as this proven ULTITEC moved beyond Asia into international standard. Introducing Appropriate Protective Clothing With over 10 years of experience in occupational safety, we do more than provide protective clothing" ULTITEC will be participating in INTERSEC 2020 again to introduce appropriate protective clothing to more potential users in the Middle East regions. Currently, ULTITEC has various renown users namely Shell Qatar, Qatargas, Dolphin Energy Limited, Kuwait National Petroleum Company (KNPC), Qatar Chemical Company (Q-Chem) and others. From the report, stringent regulations pertaining to the safety of personnel in developed economies are expected to drive the protective clothing market. “You know the job. We know the protection. Our first goal is your safety. We help you not only to comply with regulations, but your life is also what we care the most. In the ULTITEC world, all frontline operators come home safe. With over 10 years of experience in occupational safety, we do more than provide protective clothing. We build comprehensive safety training services to ensure frontline operators not only wear their protective gear, but also understand how to work safely.” said Jason Lin, General Manager of ULTITEC. Appropriate Selection Of Protective Clothing ULTITEC has witnessed winds of change blew through the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) sector This year, ULTITEC is proud to announce few advanced services namely ULTITEC Selection App, Donning and Doffing Animated Video, Data Center and Online Product Training Videos. “ULTITEC encouraged appropriate selection of protective clothing, but there will be different varieties of uncertainty in Human Decision-Making. This App will minimize this uncertainty and assist you to select based on Occupational Risk, CE Certification, Additional Standard and ULTITEC Product Line. Our professional team will specially demonstrate the App during INTERSEC 2020.” said Jason. INTERSEC is the trade fair for security, safety & fire protection. Due to stricter legislative and safety requirements, ULTITEC has witnessed winds of change blew through the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) sector. Technical Safety Training Services The trend is for protective clothing to be professional and yet be fully functional, which equipped with technical safety training services to make frontline operators not just feel safe but also as a valued team member in the workplace. Use the proper tool, then use the proper tool properly. Besides ISO 9001:2015 and CE Module D double certification, ULTITEC offers Type 3 to Type 6 protective clothing which abided to latest PPE Regulation (EU) 2016/425. The best way to protect the workplace is to quickly familiarize with the dangers of the workplace before beginning work. Safety, is after all, in one’s hands. Remember, injuries are never planned; they happen when one least expects them so paying attention to the big picture of the work environment is essential.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is accepting nominations for the 2020 James M. Shannon Advocacy Medal, which recognises outstanding advocacy efforts aimed at reducing losses associated with fire, electrical, or other hazards. The advocacy medal honours an individual or group that shares the values of former NFPA President James Shannon. During his 12-year tenure as president, Shannon had an exceptional record of advocacy efforts tied to life safety issues. Under his leadership, NFPA considerably advanced its mission of fire safety, most notably by spearheading the Coalition for Fire-Safe Cigarettes and advocating for fire sprinklers in all new homes. Search for unsung heroes Nominees should also be involved in advocacy efforts that advance NFPA’s mission, take into account cost-effectiveness, and involve collaboration with NFPA and other organisations. Previous medal recipients include Jon Nisja who played a key role in changing model codes and strengthening Minnesota’s fire code. NFPA recognized Jim Dalton in 2018 for his efforts supporting a career-long commitment to fire safety which led to the passage of the Fire Sprinkler Incentive Act. Legislator Ann Jones received the medal in 2017 following her efforts leading to a nationwide requirement for home fire sprinklers in Wales. NFPA’s Conference & Expo “We are looking for those unsung heroes who are diligently working on creating safer communities,” says Lorraine Carli, NFPA vice president of Outreach and Advocacy. “Their strong voices backed by action are having a profound impact on life safety either on the local or national level. The Shannon Advocacy Medal is our way of expressing our gratitude for their efforts.” Nominations are open to members of the fire service or any other person or group whose advocacy efforts meet the award’s criteria. The medal recipient will be honoured at NFPA’s Conference & Expo in Orlando, Florida, in June 2020. NFPA will cover the recipient’s travel and lodging.
Marioff is pleased to announce that its HI-FOG Electric Pump Unit (EPU) is now VdS approved. The EPU represents revolutionary pumping technology for the high-pressure water mist fire suppression segment with an advanced control system, simplified mechanical design and optimised footprint. As an independent testing institution for fire protection and security, VdS approval provides a prestigious distinction for high-quality products and services. Marioff, a developer of water mist fire protection technology, is a part of Carrier, a global provider of innovative heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC), refrigeration, fire, security and building automation technologies. Globally respected quality seal VdS Quality Seal “We are very pleased to add this globally respected quality seal to our Electric Pump Unit, which has demonstrated exceptional reliability,” said Joachim Gabrán, marketing director, Marioff. “We are excited to bring VdS approval to our customers, and appreciate all of our employees whose skills have made this possible.” The EPU approval fulfils the extensive portfolio of close to 130 type approval certificates for a wide range of applications including building protection, power generation and distribution facilities, as well as the process and manufacturing industries.
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.
Technologies to protect against fire are among the innovations being shown at CES 2020, the technology event, Jan. 7-10 in Las Vegas. The fire market is one of many served by the range of consumer and smart home technologies on display at CES 2020, from artificial intelligence (AI) to 5G, vehicle technology to AR/VR (augmented and virtual reality), robotics to home automation. For example, Longan Vision will display augmented reality systems for firefighters, helping them make good decisions during high-risk events while reducing the cognitive load of incident command personnel. Longan's "Fusion Vision System" provides firefighters with enhanced vision, communication and situational awareness. fire-related products Smart home could be about delivering home analytics through cloudless architectures and new door lock approaches" The smart home market is a major focus at CES. In the case of fire-related products, a smart home can also be a safer home. “For the smart home market at CES this year, we expect to see numerous announcements regarding home awareness,” says Blake Kozak, Senior Principal Analyst at IHS Markit. “This will include brands offering up additional analytics for consumer security cameras with a focus on edge-based solutions.” The show features more than 170,000 attendees, 4,500 exhibitors and 1,100 industry thought-leaders featured on the CES stage. “The impact of this [event] for the smart home could be about delivering home analytics and enhancing privacy through cloudless architectures and new electronic door lock approaches,” Kozak adds. integrated smart home experience An example of home analytics is the Resideo Home app, introduced in December, which will make whole-home monitoring possible for four critical networks of the home – water, air, energy and security. Resideo promises a “simplified and integrated smart home experience." Smart fire monitoring solution provider Rozetatech at CES 2020 offers an Internet of Things (IoT) fire detection solution that uses advanced digital sensors and their wireless capabilities and sends real-time information through mobile phones to 911 rescue centers and fire officers. First Alert has helped protect homes and families for 60 years. Their Onelink portfolio, on display at CES, expands to provide whole home safety and WiFi coverage solutions. Gentex Corp. provides commercial smoke detection and signaling devices for the fire protection industry (in addition to a portfolio of electro-optical products for the global automotive industry). smart home and IoT applications Their newly developed UART-interface alarms can be integrated with any client's wireless module for various smart home EVERDay Technology provides smoke/heat/CO/gas detectors for both commercial and residential applications. Their newly developed UART-interface alarms, such as smoke/heat combo alarms, smoke/CO combo alarms and gas alarms, can be integrated with any client's wireless module for various smart home and IoT applications. Siterwell Electronics includes sensor alarms such as smoke, carbon monoxide, gas, heat, and water level alarms among its range of security and protection products for residential and commercial applications. Siterwell exports to around 66 countries. Other products include a UL-listed commercial fire alarm system, IoT intelligent security and smart home networking products. smart water leak detectors AerNos nano gas sensors detect multiple gases simultaneously to parts-per-billion levels for indoor and outdoor air quality monitoring, hazardous gas detection and other "e-nose" applications. The tiny, accurate, affordable and low-power modules deliver results for plug-and-play integration with commercial product lines. Safera Oy is an international innovator in intelligent stove guard technology and preventive fire safety. The new Safera Sense product provides smart cooking notifications to help users reduce cooking fire risks, assist with cooking temperatures and times, and improve air quality while cooking. smart home devices WaryMe designs and develops a personal safety mobile application to improve a user’s security in public places, schools, transports and companies by addressing major risks such as terrorism attacks, intrusion, fire and even industrial accidents. An all-in-one mobile application integrates alerting, crisis management and mass notification features. “Market players are looking to expand beyond established smart home devices like smart thermostats and networked cameras to products like smart water leak detectors, smart pet feeders, and smart air purifiers,” says Elizabeth Parks, President, Parks Associates. “Familiarity with smart home devices lags behind familiarity with smart entertainment products; it even lags that of smart speakers, which are quite new in the market,” adds Parks. In 2020, we will see players working to advance the visibility and marketing around device integration and specifically focus on use case scenarios around safety, security, and convenience, which have always been the primary drivers of adoption of these types of products.”
The holiday season is fraught with possible dangers from fire. Ranging from dried-out Christmas trees to overloaded electrical circuits, the dangers are high in a season when awareness may be at a low point. Fire departments are well positioned to communicate these dangers to citizens. Social media makes it easier than ever to spread “messages of good habits” when it comes to fire prevention in homes and businesses. A Look At The Statistics The dangers are high in a season when awareness may be at a low point According to the latest statistics, covering 2013-2017, fire departments respond to an average of 160 home fires each year that start with Christmas trees, according to NFPA Applied Research. Electrical distribution of lighting equipment was involved in 44% of home Christmas tree fires, and another 25% were caused by some type of heat source, such as a candle too close to the tree. Excluding Christmas trees, U.S. fire departments responded to an average of 780 home structure fires per year that began with Christmas decorations (between 2013 and 2017, according to NFPA Applied Research). On average, 22 home candle fires are reported each day, with the two peak days for candle fires being Christmas Day and Christmas Eve. About 10 percent of fireworks fires occur between Dec. 30 and Jan. 3, with the peak on New Year’s Day. Help From The U.S. Fire Administration U.S. Fire Administration provides a series of holiday, candle and Christmas tree outreach materials to enable fire departments to increase awareness of holiday fires in their communities. A social media toolkit contains content that a department can easily share on Twitter, Facebook or other social media channels. Content may be copied or customized to reach any audience. Messages from the U.S. Fire Administration that departments can share on social media platforms include: The top three days of the year for home candle fires are Christmas, New Year’s Day, and New Year’s Eve. Residents should only use decorations that are flame-retardant or not flammable. Holiday lights should be checked each year for frayed wires or excessive wear. A limit of three strands of holiday lights should be linked. Burning candles should not be left unattended. Battery-operated flameless candles are a safer alternative. Christmas trees should be kept away from heat sources and room exits. Watering a Christmas tree daily keeps it from becoming dry and flammable. Care is required to ensure that the festivities of the season do not come at a cost of lost property and/or lives Care is required to ensure that the festivities of the season do not come at a cost of lost property and/or lives. Fire prevention can lessen the burden on firefighters during a season when spending time with family is at a premium. The sadness of a fire tragedy, especially during the holiday season, can be unbearable. The holiday season is also an appropriate time to acknowledge the hard work that departments and other fire professionals dedicate to preventing and fighting fires. We at TheBigRedGuide.com salute the work of the fire service and the fire industry to keep residents and businesses safe from fire and other emergencies, both during the holiday season and throughout the year. Happy holidays to all our readers, and we look forward to providing even more useful information on our site in 2020.
Colossus, a fire-fighting robot, was deployed in the nave of the Notre Dame cathedral during the destructive fire on April 15 in Paris. Pumping water high into the air and onto the flames, the robot was instrumental in turning the tide for firefighters, extinguishing the fire and lowering temperatures inside the nave. Colossus was developed by the French Company Shark Robotics and deployed with the Paris Fire Brigade. The caterpillar-tracked robot stands just two and a half feet tall, weighs 1,000 pounds and can carry another 1,100 pounds of equipment. At Notre Dame it helped firefighters extinguish the blaze and mostly save 850 years of history. It helped firefighters extinguish the blaze and mostly save 850 years of history Robots in firefighting The historic use of Colossus illustrates the growing role of robotics in firefighting, including mobile systems with advanced features to assist an operator in navigation and to perform a wider range of tasks. According to Brian Lattimer, Ph.D., Associate Professor at Virginia Tech, a robotic system is a mechanical device that performs a task using sensors to perceive its environment, computer programs to control the robot based on its environment, and a human operator to assist with robot operation. A variety of robotic systems support a range of fire events, whether involving structures, vehicles, aircrafts, shops or wildlands, he says. In addition, the functionality of robot systems varies to support firefighters in tasks such as sizing up the fire, identifying trapped people, locating the fire, monitoring conditions, controlling fire spread and suppression, says Lattimer. Sizing up the fire, identifying trapped people, locating the fire, monitoring conditions, controlling fire spread and suppression automated robotics Also, aerial robotics such as drones provide added situational awareness, and indoor robots can eliminate fires at close range. There are also fixed systems, such as automated fire monitors, that can be used to extinguish significant fire hazards rapidly. Several robots have found utility in the fire service in recent years. Fire-fighting robots were essential for suppressing the blaze at Notre Dame Other life-saving robots The Tactical Hazardous Operations Robot (THOR), developed for the U.S. Navy’s Shipboard Autonomous Firefighting Robot (SAFIR) program, is a human-like robot that can travel across unstable floors on ships, utilize hoses, and open doors. Because Navy ships have hazardous materials on board, extinguishing fires is critical. The robot uses stereoscopic thermal imaging and LiDAR (light detection and ranging) sensors to navigate. It walks and works semi-autonomously with the help of a remote operator. The Thermite Robot is a small tank created by Howe and Howe Technologies for the U.S. Army. The Thermite RS1-T4 is remotely operated with a belly-pack controller that provides high-definition and infrared video in real-time. It has the power to push vehicles from its path, the agility to climb stars and can output 1,250 gpm of water at 200 psi. Thermite is designed as an advanced tool to help operators combat fires safely and efficiently. It has the power to push vehicles from its path, the agility to climb stars and can output 1,250 gpm of water at 200 psi Turbine Aided Firefighting Machine (TAF 20) is a robot created by Emicontrols, a subsidiary of the TechnoAlpin Group. Designed for small spaces such as tunnels, it uses a turbine to clear smoke, move obstacles with a bulldozer blade and focus its water spray from a mist to a jet. an emerging technology component The Fire Ox, a robotic firefighting vehicle that carries its own water tank, is designed as a first response unit. It suppresses fires, assists in search and rescue, and can handle dangerous materials. It is semi-autonomous and can be controlled from up to 200 miles away. Research at Purdue University has yielded firefighting robots with an automatic T-valve system, a “discharge valve,” that can remove water from the fire hose whenever a robot moves to a new location. The technology takes less energy and enables a firefighting robot to maneuver more quickly and efficiently around a burning structure. Robots can withstand hazardous environments and help to avoid injury to firefighters. They are an emerging technology component that will impact the art and science of firefighting for years to come.
AAR MRO Services supports airline operators with everything from maintenance inspections and equipment upgrades to airframe painting and heavy maintenance for all major aircraft in service. The largest MRO operator of its type in the Americas, AAR recently opened the company’s largest facility, located at the Chicago Rockford International Airport. Here, each of two 10-story hangar bays can accommodate hundreds of ‘small’ aircraft, two Boeing 787s or even an Airbus A380, the largest commercial aircraft in production today. Also in each of the two bays are 10 Det-Tronics optical flame detectors that function as the critical sensors for the AAR hangar’s fire protection system. Heavy Maintenance Inspections Aircraft spend anywhere from three days to two months in AAR’s hangars Russel Daubert, AAR Rockford’s Facility Manager, and Chris Wolf, Director of Maintenance, have overseen the 24-hour operations at the MRO hangar since it opened in late 2016. AAR serves multiple airline customers, and like any MRO facility, Wolf says their goal is to “get lines that are current, which means an airline operator will continually bring in one plane after another to keep their fleet operating safely.” Daubert adds, “The biggest portion of our work is airframe overhauls and heavy maintenance inspections, and depending on the aircraft, we can have up to 225 aircraft in each hangar at one time plus 50 to 60 crew.” Aircraft spend anywhere from three days to two months in AAR’s hangars. Fire protection in MRO hangars must be able to handle the challenges associated with servicing aircraft. Conventionally Constructed Fire Hangars According to Wolf, aircraft bring inherent fire hazards to MRO facilities. “These aircraft come in with 70,000 to 80,000 pounds of fuel,” Wolf says. “Add the oxygen tanks on board for passenger and crew safety, plus the possible sparks from electrical equipment or other sources, and you have all the ingredients needed for fire.” Maintenance also involves painting aircraft in the hangars, which can result in the circulation of highly flammable paint plumes under and around wings and fuselage. Hangars in these groups usually require both sprinklers and foam for fire protection Fire protection standards specific to aircraft hangars are spelled out in the National Fire Protection Association’s NFPA® 409 Standard on Aircraft Hangars. This document classifies hangars by size and construction type; conventionally constructed fire hangars with fire areas of 40,000 sq. ft. or less are classified in Groups I, II and III. Hangars in these groups usually require both sprinklers and foam for fire protection. High Expansion Foam Suppression System AAR’s Rockford facility is unique both for its immense size and for its construction method, a fabric tension membrane over steel trusses. The 2-inch thick insulated material meets NFPA 701 and ASTM E-84 standards for flame retardancy, fire safety advantages that led the NFPA to decide hangars covered in this fabric would fall in a Group IV classification. Group IV hangars can have an unlimited fire area and need only a low- or high expansion foam suppression system. One of the goals of MRO service providers is to provide fast turns of the planes entrusted to them by airline operators. To support this objective, a hangar fire detection system must have two very important capabilities: quickly detect the presence of flames, and reject false alarms (generated by welding, engine start-ups, etc.) that could unnecessarily initiate suppression systems, interrupt operations and potentially lead to significant aircraft damage. Fire Protection System The project manager for the Chicago Rockford hangar expansion looked to local fire protection contractor The solution for hundreds of hangars in the past 10 years – from military bases to commercial hangars and MRO facilities – has been to deploy optical flame detectors from Det-Tronics. When it was time to specify the fire protection system for the mammoth hangar bays, the project manager for the Chicago Rockford hangar expansion looked to local fire protection contractor, Absolute Fire Protection, Inc., to handle the fire protection system. In turn, John Danis of Absolute called in 3S Incorporated, a Harrison, Ohio firm that specializes in industrial and special hazard systems, to design the detection and foam suppression part of the fire protection system. Because of the size and scope of the Rockford hangar, 3S and Absolute, along with other design and building partners, worked for nearly three years to take the project from initial planning to construction. Multispectrum Infrared Flame Detectors During that time, a construction engineer had calculated it would take no less than 84 detectors per hangar bay to monitor the facilities for fire. Aaron Hinkle, sales engineer at 3S, disagreed. “I realized that was far more than necessary, if we just picked the right product for the job,” he says. All the alarms contractor had to do was install four detectors on each side wall" Hinkle had worked with the Det-Tronics X3301 Multispectrum Infrared (IR) flame detectors on previous hangar projects, and he knew the units possessed the optical power, field-of-view capacity and speed to do what was required. In consultation with Det-Tronics applications engineers, Hinkle came to the conclusion that, “Because of the X3301’s performance attributes, each 119,000-square-foot hangar could be covered with just 10 detectors from Det-Tronics. Using just ten detectors per bay greatly simplified the work,” Hinkle explains. “All the alarms contractor had to do was install four detectors on each side wall and two on the back wall. The front wall is the giant door that opens up to allow the craft to enter and exit.” False Alarm Rejection There were considerable cost savings in equipment and related hardware, as well as labor savings due both to the small number of units to be installed and the fact that the X3301 detectors could be placed at a much easier-to-reach height of just 8 to 10 feet off the floor rather than near the top of the 10-story hangar bays. To maximize false alarm rejection, X3301 flame detectors are programmed to run in Det-Tronics® Hangar Mode™, an option that incorporates a delay mechanism. The mechanism extends the processing time to react to fires, letting the detector distinguish between an actual fire and an event like a short duration auxiliary power unit startup. The operation mode has no effect on detection ranges or field of view, but can prevent an innocent action (such as a crew firing up gas heaters to stay warm) from resulting in an unwanted foam dump. Foam Suppression System AAR’s foam suppression system has gone off only once, and that was intentional An impressive demonstration to date, AAR’s foam suppression system has gone off only once, and that was intentional. To certify that the new system was working properly, Absolute, 3S and other suppliers commissioned the overall protection system by simulating an actual fire suppression event. They recorded it on video, and it’s a stunning sight. Daubert, facility manager for the AAR hangars, was delighted when he saw the video. “Within seconds of being triggered, foam erupts from dispensers in the ceiling. In no time, it has put a layer on every inch of the hangar’s floor. Within 3-and-a-half minutes, the foam has stacked up to a 10-foot depth, smothering any possible fire.” “I had never seen a system of that magnitude before,” Daubert continues. “Seeing just how fast we could stop a fire from spreading and put it out was pretty impressive. Thanks to the Det-Tronics detectors and the system’s other components, it’s obvious our hangar is well protected from the dangers of fire.”
Sunrise Software, a supplier of IT Service Management (ITSM) solutions, announces that North Wales Fire and Rescue Service has upgraded its ITSM platform and refreshed and extended its services to support its nearly 1,000 staff as they safeguard lives and property across an area of 2,400 square miles. Operating from 44 fire stations, North Wales Fire and Rescue Service helps to protect an estimated population of 678,461 people as well as hundreds of thousands of tourists and visitors. Annually it attends around 3,200 fires, 500 road traffic collisions and 500 other emergency incidents. Providing Access To Specific Folders As part of its journey it was keen to maximise its use of the platform to increase efficiency Technology is mission-critical to the service’s role, from the alerters (pagers) used to call retained firefighters to incidents, through control room systems to the mobile data terminals on appliances. The six strong IT support team handles thousands of technical calls per year. A long-term user of the Sunrise service management platform, North Wales Fire and Rescue first introduced self-service in 2018. As part of its journey it was keen to maximise its use of the platform to increase efficiency, better support users and extend Sunrise’s capabilities and functionality into other departments. This has led to a full upgrade to Sunrise ITSM 4, going live in early 2020. This provides for a user-friendly interface for self-service, management dashboards and a new automated approach to requests around new starters/leavers and providing access to specific folders. Protecting The Lives And Property Previously this was all paper-based, adding considerably to the time taken to authorise requests as forms had to signed, authorised and manually sent back to IT. “We rely on a lot of bespoke systems and configurations, which means service management has to be efficient and effective to ensure we are delivering on the frontline,” says Steve Morris, ICT Technical Manager, North Wales Fire and Rescue Service. Thanks to the flexibility of Sunrise and the introduction of ITSM 4 we can now make big improvements" “Thanks to the flexibility of Sunrise and the introduction of ITSM 4 we can now make big improvements in the way we deliver ICT service to users and ensure our teams continue to be best equipped to protect the lives and property of the people of North Wales.” The new Sunrise implementation also provides a platform for other departments to reach employees through the self-service portal. Corporate Communications Team As well as IT-specific content, this includes training videos from the corporate communications team to make it easier to share knowledge, and to reduce the need for trainers to travel large distances to deliver courses. Future plans could see further expansion. As well as potentially adding HR forms, the data protection team is evaluating switching to Sunrise to record and monitor incoming Freedom of Information requests. This would enable previously manual steps to be automated, with in-built SLAs ensuring response times are met, as well as providing a full audit trail. Geoff Rees, Director of Operations and Sales of Sunrise, comments: “The emergency services rely on technology, making its effective support a vital part of their operations. As North Wales Fire and Rescue’s experience shows, introducing automation and self-service can increase efficiency and deliver real value in a fast-paced, resource-constrained environment.”
Global FM service provider Atalian Servest has won a contract with the University of Edinburgh to maintain its fire alarm and associated life safety systems. The three-year contract is worth a base cost of £250,000 per annum. Atalian Servest will service over 250 buildings within the historic City of Edinburgh, some of which are Grade-A listed. Premises include prestigious lecture theatres, libraries, seminar buildings and student and family accommodation. The contract will include maintenance of disabled person refuge communication systems and remote monitoring telephone line systems, supporting the safety of staff, students and visitors at the university. Enhancing student experience The University of Edinburgh offers undergraduate degree programmes, and postgraduate taught and research programmes to more than 14,000 students; it is globally recognised for its research, development and high-quality teaching. Daniel Dickson, CEO of Atalian Servest UK & Ireland, said, “Our fire and security team are excited to support such a prestigious university and a global leader in education, and look forward to strengthening our partnership throughout the contract and beyond.” Heather Fleming, Building Services Engineer at the University of Edinburgh, said, “Atalian Servest has been a key partner, delivering other contracts and projects for several years. We welcome the fire and security team to enhance the experience of our stakeholders, students and visitors alike. The company provides the highest level of customer service, innovation and quality.”
Swansea University installs a network of Advanced fire alarm control panels to protect its 65-acre, £450million Bay campus from the threat of fire. The University installs 25 one, two and four-loop MxPro 5 fire alarm control panels throughout its 11 academic Bay campus buildings, specified thanks to their superior networking abilities. Installed alongside over 5000 Hochiki and Apollo protocol devices, each fire panel has been programmed as a standalone, with all information reporting back to the main security command center repeater panel. Protecting Large-Scale Sites Advanced panels are very easy to install and configure and provide powerful, resilient networking" Over the years to come and as the campus continues to grow, further panels can be added to the site-wide network wise ease, creating time and cost efficiencies, while minimizing disruption to the university’s staff and students. Advanced partner Securus Group was responsible for networking the Bay campus fire system & commissioning a number of buildings including Swansea University’s IMPACT building, Energy Safety Research Institute (ESRI) and Active building. James Watts, commissioning engineer at Securus Group, said: “Advanced is the ideal solution when protecting large-scale sites with multiple buildings that each have individual cause and effect programming. Advanced panels are very easy to install and configure and provide powerful, resilient networking.” Multiprotocol Fire System Solution MxPro 5 is the fire industry’s multiprotocol fire system solution and was recently certified by FM Approvals to the EN 54 standard. It offers customers a choice of two panel ranges, four detector protocols and a completely open installer network, backed up by free training and support. MxPro panels can be used in single-loop, single-panel format or easily configured into high-speed networks of up to 200 panels covering huge areas. Our MxPro 5 product range is ideal for any large-scale site, including hospitals, prisons and university campuses" MxPro’s ease of installation and configuration as well as its wide peripheral range make it customizable to almost any application. Phil Calvey, Regional Sales Manager for the South West, said: “Our MxPro 5 product range is ideal for any large-scale site, including hospitals, prisons, airport terminals and university campuses, where networking is specified or desirable. Thanks to the work of Securus Group I’m confident that, as new buildings emerge on campus and further control panels are installed, the fire system will stand the test of time.” Life-Saving Technology Companies Advanced, owned by FTSE 100 company Halma PLC, has an enviable history of protecting some of the educational institutions, including the Australian National University, Cambridge University and Sofia University. Halma is a global group of life-saving technology companies with a clear purpose to grow a safer, cleaner, healthier future for everyone, every day. Advanced is a pioneer in the development and manufacture of intelligent fire systems. The legendary performance, quality and ease of use of its products see Advanced specified in locations all over the world, from single-panel installations to large, multi-site networks. Advanced’s products include complete fire detection systems, multiprotocol fire panels, extinguishing control, fire paging and false alarm management systems.
Gent by Honeywell installs its new S-Quad Visual Alarm Devices (VADs) in Leamington Spa’s renowned entertainment venue, the Royal Spa Centre. The popular purpose built theatre and cinema, owned by Warwick District Council, recently upgraded its entire fire detection and alarm (FD&A) system to a fully integrated Gent Vigilon Compact solution, that incorporates more than 50 S-Quad VADs throughout the multi-use building. Visual Alarm Technology Warwick Council had expressed interest in the use of Gent’s new technology during the initial meetings with Gent approved System Integrator, Fire Safe Services Ltd. Steven Dowell, Fire Safe Services Ltd said: “The existing FD&A system had a three minute delay utilizing beacon only devices. As the Royal Spa Centre is a public building that is in continuous use, Warwick Council felt it was important to use the latest visual alarm technology to protect the hundreds of visitors, its employees and the historic building.” Triggering Key Individual “The innovative solution we installed incorporated Gent’s brand new S-Quad VADs with voice sounders and we programmed the system to keep the three minute delay. During the first alert, the specific solution was set to trigger key individual beacons throughout the building to act as a staff alert.” The new S-Quad VADs meet all of the requirements of the latest EN54-23 standards “After the three minute delay, or in the event of a second device being activated, the system was then programmed to give a full evacuation signal, so all of the VADs will activate and the sounders would be used to advise occupants to leave the building.” The new S-Quad VADs meet all of the requirements of the latest EN54-23 standards and have been designed to help alert occupants in noisy environments and the hard of hearing. Reducing Valuable Installation Time The devices combine Gent’s renowned sensor, sounder and speech technology with high efficiency EN54-23 certified visual alarms. As these functions are incorporated into one single device, S-Quad continues to provide the most cost-effective option and helps to reduce valuable installation time. Neil Towers, Business Manager, Gent by Honeywell said: “We are delighted that there has been another successful installation of our unique S-Quad visual alarms. We’re confident that the outstanding performance of the new S-Quad range will match the quality of performance taking center stage at the Royal Spa Centre. Our solution will ensure that every visitor can be safe and protected and enjoy the diverse range of entertainment the venue has to offer.”
C-TEC’s revolutionary touchscreen-controlled ZFP addressable fire panels are protecting Gates Power Transmission in Dumfries. A subsidiary of the giant US Corporation whose motto is ‘If it moves you, there’s a good chance Gates has a part in it’, the company manufactures power transmission belts for the automotive and industrial markets. Certified Visual Alarm Devices A network of eight ZFP one and two loop addressable fire panels connected to over 300 devices Supplied and commissioned by fire specialist company, CMD Electrical Engineers Ltd and installed by Gates’ own engineering team, a network of eight ZFP one and two loop addressable fire panels connected to over 300 devices including 90 of C-TEC’s new EN54-23 certified visual alarm devices were used to upgrade the old fire alarm system. To accommodate the plant’s 24/7 operation, a phased installation was required to ensure at least 90% of the old fire system remained active during the changeover. As the existing system was a mixture of old conventional and addressable panels in multiple buildings, the first step was to install, network and commission the new ZFPs to allow for the phased changeover of each area. The engineers then began the laborious task of working through the old fire system. Configuring And Commissioning New Devices Said CMD’s Craig Dolier: “Gates’ engineers created loops between two radial circuits on the conventional systems and tested the wiring ready for connection. We then upgraded each addressable system to ZFP, working through the radial circuits to make loops and configuring and commissioning the new devices. The facility also had two zone 1 areas which needed to be integrated into the new system.” The identity and location of the triggered device is clearly visible on any one of the eight ZFPs" “The new system is a massive improvement on the old multiple one as, if a device previously activated, the area had to be physically visited to find out which one it was. With the new one, however, the identity and location of the triggered device is clearly visible on any one of the eight ZFPs.” Minimizing False Alarms A phased evacuation is in operation to minimize false alarms. The first alarm is a pulsing warning signal which will be investigated and silenced if it proves to be a false alarm. If a true fire is discovered, however, a key-switch is turned to trigger the full-scale evacuation of the site. Said Craig: “The ZFP is extremely well-engineered, reliable and ticks all the boxes for EN54 compliance. We were especially impressed its capacity to be networked over multiple sites and the ease by which devices can be added to the system.”