Passive Fire Protection (PFP)
A Cambridgeshire firefighter becomes the first female at March Fire Station to be the officer in charge of emergency incidents and qualified to drive a fire engine. Firefighter Vicky Vata was successful at the crew’s drill night on late November 2019 where she was assessed by officers from Cambridgeshire Fire and Rescue Service’s training center. The qualification, known as ‘safe to ride’ means Vicky will ride a fire engine as the officer in charge of an incident, taking...
Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service is looking for new whole-time firefighters as it opens its doors to all members of the community from early December 2019. The opportunity to become a whole-time firefighter only comes around every few years and candidates are encouraged to submit their applications sooner rather than later. The six-week window may close early if the Service receives a high volume of applications. Responding To Emergency Calls We want men and women from many backgrounds and wit...
The Association for Specialist Fire Protection broadly welcomes the Government’s response to the Hackitt review, which accepts the majority of Dame Judith Hackitt’s recommendations. The Association also welcomes the announcement of a review of Approved Document B. The ASFP is encouraged that the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) implementation plan states that the Government intends to implement all the recommendations. However, the Association has some...
Bristol Uniforms, a pioneer in the design, manufacture and supply of protective clothing for the emergency services, launches its first ever selection of stock styles for structural firefighting. Immediately available, the stock styles offer a more cost-effective solution than bespoke alternatives. Although ready-made, the PPE can be personalized by adding a heat-sealed patch to the back of each coat, a name to the front, and a name to each trouser. Pleated Back Panel For Imp...
Kentec, a manufacturer of life-critical control systems, launches VR Nimbus, an advanced management tool for fire detection, which enables integrators and service companies to remotely access and manage their fire safety system. VR Nimbus allows end-users to gain access to data from all fire-safety systems to assess performance and make fact-based decisions using the latest analytical technologies. It also runs fire detection tests and documents events in real time to the Nimbus cloud to achiev...
Multi-award-winning Fire Curtains Group completes the purchase of fellow East Midlands based company Intumescent Chemicals. Intumescent Chemicals based on the Nottinghamshire / Derbyshire border specialises in indicative fire-resistant testing and research and the development of intumescent liquid flame retardants (LFRs). Life Safety Products Their 25 years’ worth of experience was one of the things that really shone through and caught my eye" Arthur Calow, Chairman of the Fire Curtain...
Apprenticeship schemes make an invaluable contribution to the fire industry and will no doubt ensure that the next generation of fire safety engineers will excel in their field. Not only do apprenticeships allow people to pick up the skills that employers actually need, they help businesses recruit the very best people and are a great retention tool. Outside of the fire industry, the benefits that apprenticeships bring to UK businesses, in general, has been well documented during recent months. The government’s announcement in April, declaring that the coalition would provide funding for the “biggest apprenticeships program in this country’s history”, underlined the important role these schemes provide to many industry sectors. The government wants to create thousands more on-the-job training schemes, but in the fire industry we’re already one step ahead of the game. Gent System Integrators When Gent launched its ‘Get Fired Up’ apprenticeship program in 2007, it was the only one of its kind Gent System Integrators (SIs) are fully aware that successful employees in the fire industry need a combination of practical skills and technical knowledge, and the current apprenticeship schemes are designed to produce exactly that. The students will complete the course with recognized qualifications and the ability to maintain fire detection and alarm systems to the highest standards. When Gent launched its ‘Get Fired Up’ apprenticeship program in 2007, it was the only one of its kind that was specific to the fire industry. The scheme provides students, between the ages of 16 and 24, with a structured program designed to build a thorough knowledge base of fire alarm systems, rules and regulations, legislation and systems engineering. It gives apprentices the opportunity to learn each stage of the fire system life cycle from the design and installation, to the commissioning, maintenance and servicing. Gent ‘Get Fired Up’ apprenticeship program As well as gaining ‘on the job’ experience during the two to three year course, the trainees work towards the 1853 City and Guilds Certificate in the Knowledge of Electronic Security and Emergency Systems, (working specifically towards a Level 2 Fire Technical Certificate) along with a 2882 City & Guilds NVQ Level 2 Certificate in Providing Security, Emergency and Alarm Systems qualification. The ‘Get Fired Up’ course is run in conjunction with Skills for Security, so whilst Gent is fully involved in the marketing and recruitment processes, the independent education body manages the apprentices while they are at college. System Integrators apprenticeship When Gent first introduced the apprenticeship scheme to their extensive network of SIs four years ago, the response was very positive. The SIs appreciate that the main aim of the scheme is to provide them with a selection of ideal, competent, recruits. After all, the apprentices are employed directly by the SI and therefore, with the support and expertise from Gent, the SIs are then encouraged to lead the way in each step of the recruitment process. If the SI is looking to take on an apprentice they can approach Gent with their specific candidate requirements. Whether it is for a school leaver with a strong academic background in sciences, or a college student with a technical flair, the SI sets out their exact specifications and Gent then explores its database to pinpoint the best potential candidates. Gent database study The SI is in total control of the type of person they recruit with much of the leg work taken away by GentThe SI almost has the best of both worlds, being in total control of the type of person they recruit, but much of the leg work is taken away by Gent to guarantee the right caliber of entrants. It saves the SI both time and money, with Gent taking care of the administration and, if required, even hosting the interviews and induction days to ensure that candidates have the required attributes. Furthermore, there is no obligation on the part of the SI, so if the process doesn’t result in the perfect apprentice being found we can always go back to the drawing board. Gent’s SIs say that one of the main benefits of the apprenticeship scheme is that companies can take advantage of the new employee’s limited experience and willingness to learn and can mold and shape the apprentices to suit their specific business needs. Level 3 Fire Technical Certificate In today’s tough economic climate many SIs understandably have concerns involving the cost. However, the price of taking on an apprentice is a worthwhile investment for any business. Government funding is available for the full cost of tuition and college fees for 16 to 18 year olds, or for the older apprentices up to the age of 24 the fees are met in part. The System Integrators pay the apprentice’s salary but it is still a far more cost-effective option than hiring skilled staff. Gent currently has 40 students on the “Get Fired Up” scheme who are at various stages of the program, some are in their first year and some are progressing onto the more complex Level 3 Fire Technical Certificate. We also have a database of more than 30 keen applicants waiting to be placed in employment. Recruiting high caliber fire personal The scheme has a great success rate, attracting young people keen to play a part in keeping the UK’s fire industry at the forefront of fire protection. The country’s SIs need to take a leaf out of Alan Sugar’s book and search to find their perfect apprentice. And with Gent’s expertise, they can confidently say “You’re Hired”.
Shipping an American cooker to the UK and finding the closest comparison to a US burger, are just some of the lengths Apollo Fire Detectors has gone to in the development of its new range of Soteria UL268 7th edition detectors, which will be launched at Intersec in January 2020. Exhibiting in Hall 4 on stand F10, Apollo Fire Detectors will showcase the new range of Soteria UL heat, smoke and multi-criteria detectors. The new products have been designed for markets that require UL listed systems including the US, Middle East and Asia. Apollo has invested heavily in research and development ahead of the new UL standard that comes into force on 29th May 2020. The new UL standard represents a major step change for the fire industry. Photoelectric smoke detector Cooking nuisance test has been introduced to tackle the issue of false alarms caused by cooking appliances The UL268 7th edition is the new Underwriters Laboratories (UL) smoke detector standard for photoelectric and multi-criteria smoke detectors, updating the 6th Edition of UL268, which has been in effect for the last decade. There are more than 250 updates to UL268 as part of the 7th edition, culminating in the addition of two new test fires. The new test fires are UL268 Clause 41.1.5: Cooking Nuisance Smoke Test and UL268 41.1.5: Smoldering Polyurethane Foam Test and Flaming Polyurethane Foam Test. The new cooking nuisance test has been introduced to tackle the issue of false alarms caused by cooking appliances. The new flaming and smoldering polyurethane tests were added to ensure that newly manufactured smoke detectors perform quickly and adequately when installed in environments where modern, synthetic materials, such as polyurethane foam are used. Fire detection systems Smoke detectors achieving the 7th edition of UL268 will be required to demonstrate greater sensitivity to the smoke produced by polyurethane fires. The standard for heat detectors (UL521) remains unchanged. However, Apollo has released a newly styled heat detector as part of the new range as well as new UL compliant bases. The new Soteria UL range replaces the Apollo Discovery UL range and is compatible with Discovery and CoreProtocol. It comes with a built-in isolator to assist with the detection and correction of faults in fire detection systems. Tests have included sensitivity, directionality, stability, air velocity, temperature, humidity, and corrosionApollo also has variants that are compatible with XP95A protocol. Using its state-of the-art laboratories at its head offices in the UK as well as visiting the UL testing facilities in Chicago, Apollo Fire Detectors is creating a new generation of detectors to achieve UL compliance. Tests have included sensitivity, directionality, stability, air velocity, temperature, humidity, and corrosion, to name a few. fire alarm control panel As a result of the comprehensive testing, substantial changes have been made to the new product range including air flow, smoke chamber size and shape, and sensing technology. Mohammed Al Zaben, Head of Sales - Middle East & North Africa at Apollo Fire Detectors, said: “Focused R&D has culminated in a UL268 7th edition offering that is compatible with our existing installation base, which minimizes the impact of the new standard on our customers." "The Apollo solution has placed our customers front and centre in the process, as the new detectors are able to be installed onto an existing system without the need to update the fire alarm control panel. We are committed to developing these new products ahead of the May 2020 deadline and to supporting our customers throughout the transition process. Intersec will provide the perfect opportunity to discuss the new standard with us and discuss the implications for the industry.”
Perimeter Solutions, a global pioneer in the production of fire retardants, foams, and water enhancing gels, along with a wide range of services for managing wildland, industrial, municipal, and military fires, announced the commercialization of PHOS-CHEK® Class A/B foam concentrate, a new fluorine free firefighting foam capable of extinguishing Class A and B fuel fires with a single product. Structural and industrial fires demand swift action and suppression. Too much is at stake with uncontrolled fires involving Class A and B fuels. Only the best, most innovative foam technology can be trusted to prevail in such fire situations. PHOS-CHEK Class A/B foam concentrate is the first UL 162/ULCS564 listed fluorine-free synthetic foam concentrate specifically designed to rapidly control and effectively extinguish fires involving either Class A or B fuels. PHOS-CHEK A/B firefighting The foam concentrate is a superior wetting agent for use on Class A fires in accordance with ANSI/NFPA 18 This firefighting foam is both flexible and environmentally responsible, capable of delivering high quality foam performance without any PFAS ingredients commonly found in Class B fluorinated products. PHOS-CHEK A/B firefighting foam is user friendly and effective for use in a variety of applications including structural and residential fires, general facilities protection, Class A hazards (ordinary combustible materials such as wood, cloth, paper, rubber, and many plastics), Class B hazards (non-fuel-in-depth, e.g. vehicle fires), and foam training exercises. Designed for use on Class B hydrocarbon fuel fires at 1% proportioning, PHOS-CHEK A/B foam concentrate is not intended for use on Class B polar solvents or water miscible fuels. The foam concentrate is a superior wetting agent for use on Class A fires in accordance with ANSI/NFPA 18. When used as a wetting agent, PHOS-CHEK A/B foam concentrate is UL/ULC Classified 0.1% proportioning for Class A fires and 0.25% proportioning for Class B Non-Water Miscible Fires. Conventional firefighting equipment PHOS-CHEK A/B fluorine free foam concentrate is a highly flexible product, compatible with conventional firefighting equipment such as low expansion non-air aspirating and air aspirating nozzles, monitors, medium expansion foam devices and Compressed Air Foam Systems (CAFS). With ever-increasing global environmental awareness on PFAS containing Class B foam discharge solutions, PHOS-CHEK A/B fluorine free foam is an environmentally responsible next generation product and fire service solution to the growing review by regulators who look to restrict PFAS containing foam from being used for firefighting and training or prohibit its sale or distribution.
Avon Fire & Rescue Service (AF&RS) joined with charity Catch22 to inspire young males by providing them with positive role models and a Fire Safety Course. As part of the partnership, seven teenagers aged from 14 - 16 spent six weeks with firefighters from Temple fire station developing their skills and experience. Throughout their weekly two hour courses at the station, they covered everything from breathing apparatus, hose use, road traffic collision management and first aid, providing them with a new perspective on uniformed jobs and positive role models to aspire to. Role Model Development The Service hopes that the course will inspire the teenagers to lead change in themselves Following the course, all of the students from Catch22's Bedminster site passed out – graduated – today (23/10) and received certificates that they can take away to future employers. Working with Catch22, which aims to help people find a good place to live, a purpose and good people around them, the Service hopes that the course will inspire the teenagers to lead change in themselves and their peer group. This wellbeing, skills and role model development is something that AF&RS is keen to embrace as part of its values of transparency, inclusivity, ambition, honesty, respect and courage. The Service works with community groups from across the region and is always looking for people to be role models within their own community, whether as a firefighter or advocate for fire safety and other campaigns. Making A Positive Difference All those we have worked with have such great potential and this is just about giving them the confidence" James Grady, a firefighter at Temple fire station who led on the project, said: “Providing positive role models to those in the community who need it is a positive step and something we have always aspired to do.” “Working with Catch22, we have been able to help those who need it and help to point them in a direction that will make a real positive difference to their lives, helping to give them a purpose and put good people around them. All those we have worked with have such great potential and this is just about giving them the confidence, drive and support to achieve their goals.” “Throughout the six weeks, we have seen real change in those on the course and hope they have all taken something positive away from the course. We hope to continue to build on these relationships with the students and Catch 22 over the coming years.” Building Stronger Communities Some of our students are now actively thinking of a career with the Fire Service" Catch22’s vision is a strong society where everyone has good people around them, a purpose, and a good place to live. Having been a charity for 200 years, they now work across children’s social care, deliver alternative education, get people into work through apprenticeships and employability programmes, build stronger communities through social action. Last year alone, they supported over 60,000 people across the country with 70 per cent having an increase in confidence and self-esteem. Jamie England, LP of Vocational Studies at Catch22, said: “The work experience provided by the team at Avon Fire and Rescue Service has been outstanding, our students have been taught a variety of skills across this academic term.” “We have noticed a difference in the motivation and aspiration of our students from attending this work experience. Some of our students are now actively thinking of a career with the Fire Service. We believe this ongoing partnership will continue to give our learners from disadvantaged backgrounds new aspirations and opportunities that will, in turn, create a brighter future for them.”
LION, a manufacturer of CBRN Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) suits, has achieved National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 1994 Standard’s Class 1 certification for its MT94 (Multi-Threat) ensemble, offering first responders advanced protection against some of the world's worst chemical and biological threats. The LION MT94 suit series is now certified to NFPA 1994 Class 1 and Class 2 and NFPA 1992 Standards. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is the advocate for fire prevention and an authoritative source on public safety. Emergency First Responder Personnel NFPA 1994, Standard on Protective Ensembles for First Responders to Hazardous Materials Emergencies and CBRN Terrorism Incidents establishes the minimum requirements for the design, performance, testing, documentation, and certification of protective ensembles and ensemble elements for protection of emergency first responder personnel from chemicals, biological agents, and radiological particulate (CBRN) terrorism agents. LION’s Director of CBRN PPE & StationWear Diane Redden notes “Meeting the specific performance and testing requirements established by the NFPA means LION is doing all it can to safeguard first responders with proper gear, which is our #1 priority. We strive to provide fire and emergency service personnel with vital PPE for CBRN incidents- this certification lets the industry know our gear has met the consensus standard of the ‘most protective’.”
Bristol Bears and Bath Rugby have put their local rivalry aside to support Avon Fire & Rescue Service’s (AF&RS) new water safety campaign - #MatesMatter. The move comes as AF&RS hopes to half the number of water fatalities in the Service area by 2026. More than 260 people died in British waterways last year, more than those who died in fires, and the Service has been called to 66 water-related incidents in the last two years, with six fatalities. To tackle this, AF&RS are calling for mates to look after each other and celebrate friendships on a night out. Targeting Predominately Men The Service is hoping that those enjoying Bristol on a night out will stay safe near the water Friends, colleagues and families will often look after each other on a day to day basis, so the Service is asking this to continue into a night out. Targeting predominately men aged between 18 and 29 years old, the Service is hoping that those enjoying Bristol on a night out will stay safe near the water with the help of friends. And nothing epitomizes teamwork better than Bristol Bears and Bath Rugby – both are teams close on and off the pitch with players looking after each other in all aspects of life. Kirstie Webb, Risk Reduction Department Manager for AF&RS, said: “Mates Matter – that’s the message we are trying to get across. In all aspects of life, we work as a team on a daily basis - whether in work, as a family or simply in our friendship groups - and we want people to keep that mentality on nights out.” Individuals Getting Separated From Groups “We all want the best for our mates and will do what we can to protect them. But for some reason, that seems to end on a night out with individuals getting separated from groups or leaving alone at the end of the night.” Mates matter, so we are asking people to make sure they ensure their friends are safe around water" “Mates matter, so we are asking people to make sure they ensure their friends are safe around water. Simple things like walking them home a different route avoiding the water’s edge or making sure you stay as a group can make a huge difference. It’s also been great to work with Bristol Bears and Bath Rugby; we are hoping that their support will really help to highlight this message and we thank them for their support on this. Every time we lose a life in the water it hurts us a Service and we want to see these unnecessary fatalities come to an end.” Delivering Water Safety Training Along with the #MatesMatter campaign, AF&RS has also been working with pubs and clubs along the Bristol waterfront to deliver water safety training for staff who may be able to act as first responders. The course, which consists of a presentation and a practical session, is aimed at door supervisors, managers and staff at clubs, bars and pubs around the dock area. The course focuses on raising awareness, the hazards around the docks and the effects of cold water on a casualty. Delivered by firefighters, the practical session involves throwline training from the bank to secure a casualty in the water. The Service is also working with the Bristol Water Safety Partnership to minimize risk by producing a risk assessment of the harbor, working with the council on standardized signage and life rings, and raising awareness where possible. Working On Education With The Universities We are ambitious and always striving to improve how we approach and tackle water-related incidents" In Bath, firefighters are taking part in regular patrols with the street pastors and SARAID, and are delivering water safety training to pubs, clubs and the police. Alongside Risk Reduction, they are also working on education with the universities, Bath BID and the Bath River Safety Forum. Kirstie added: “Along with raising awareness on the issue with Mates Matter and our work with the two rugby clubs, we are also approaching this from a prevention, protection and resilience approach. As a Service, we are ambitious and always striving to improve how we approach and tackle water-related incidents. While we would like to see no one enter the water at all, the more resources and support we have in place allows us to better respond when it does happen.” Bringing Clubs Together “If people enter the water, we have a golden window in which to respond, so having pub or club staff immediately on the scene, our resources better placed and the support of other local organizations only improves the chance of survival. Again though, Mates Matter. If people are able to look after their friends on a night out – putting them in a taxi, not leaving them outside a club, walking home together – we know we can make a real difference.” The water rescue campaign is creating awareness of a very real issue" Shula Smith, Head of Communications at Bath Rugby, said: "We would like to thank Avon Fire and Rescue for bringing our Clubs together to help share this important message. The water rescue campaign is creating awareness of a very real issue and we hope that someone, somewhere hears our message that mates matter." Making A Real Difference In The Community Nick Fenton-Wells, from Bristol Bears Team Manager, added: “We are delighted to be part of this new campaign by Avon Fire and hope it can help make a real difference in the community. We know that our players are role models in the community and they are all passionate about helping to improve it.” “On and off the pitch, we know that Mates Matter. Whether you have the weight of 14 other players on your shoulders on the pitch, or its bonding on a day to day basis, everyone looks after each other. We hope that by showing how much Mates Matter, people will take that into their daily lives and continue to look after each other on a night out. We’ve seen in the news when people have tragically lost their lives in the water so anything we can do to help is a positive. Mates Matter, so let’s stamp out unnecessary fatalities in the water.”
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.
Did you know an estimated 30% of smoke alarms in the UK are inoperable due to missing, flat or disconnected batteries? For a property to comply with The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, it is vitally important that all fire safety equipment is kept in perfect working order at all times. This involves checking that the fire safety equipment is accessible, well maintained and hasn’t been tampered with. There are many ways you can take care of your fire safety equipment, to ensure your property is prepared, should there ever be a fire. Equipment Assessment Checks There are two types of equipment assessment checks that should be carried out, including monthly and annually If you’re the ‘responsible person’ for commercial property, you need to ensure your building meets fire safety standards. Here are 5 tips on how to properly maintain your fire safety equipment. Both passive and active fire safety equipment must be check regularly for any signs of wear or damage. There are two types of equipment assessment checks that should be carried out, including monthly and annually. There is a range of equipment checks you must carry out, including fire doors, fire alarm test, emergency lighting and fire extinguishers. Emergency lighting should be checked monthly, with all issues kept in a logbook. Fire doors should also be checked to ensure their seals and frames are in good condition. Fire Alarm Tests All fire protection has to be checked annually including alarms, detectors, lighting, sprinklers, extinguishers and fire doors. They should be carefully inspected. Fire alarms are a legal requirement for commercial premises. To check that your Fire alarms still function correctly, it is important to get them serviced. All fire alarms should be tested, maintained and inspected by a competent person who is able to carry out any remedial work. Fire alarms are a legal requirement for commercial premises Fire extinguishers must be ready to work straight away in the event of a fire, so it is vital they are regularly checked and serviced. You should ensure they are maintained and kept in a functional condition. Every month, the pressure gauge should be tested on all fire extinguishers. Fire Risk Assessments Every year, it is required that a qualified technician carries out a thorough check on all your extinguishers for them to be fully serviced and certified. In addition to regular maintenance checks on your fire safety equipment, it is vital your commercial property has a fire risk assessment carried out every 4 years, with a renewal every 2 years. Fully trained and qualified assessors should undertake this to make sure it is done professionally Fully trained and qualified assessors should undertake this to make sure it is done professionally. By having a fire risk assessment review, it determines whether any changes could impact the ability for your equipment to properly protect your building. Fire Safety Logbook During a risk assessment, all fire doors must be checked to ensure they are in good condition and close efficiently with secure hinges. The fire seals must be fixed in position, with signs on the door present and legible. To keep an overview of all findings and actions, there should be a fire safety logbook and maintenance record that remains at your premises at all times. The logbook is used to record and review any significant findings when carrying out the fire risk assessment. This helps to keep all fire safety equipment functioning effectively and available to respond to emergency fires.
Within traditional commercial and industrial firefighting systems, engineers have primarily focused on permanent installation designs rather than entertaining alternative or supplemental mobile firefighting systems. Permanent installation design is typically better understood, supported, and supplied throughout the fire protection engineering and manufacturing community. However, mobile firefighting systems provide unique solutions and advantages compared to their permanent installation cousins such as flexible deployment, simpler servicing, improved economy, and much higher performance availability. The combination of both systems is frequently the most strategic solution for the facility operator. Limitations of fixed installation systems Permanent installation (fixed) systems include everything from sprinklers, foam systems, primary watermain pumps, and the plethora of piping in between. A large refinery complex will need to address various hazard mitigation and control problems that span both hardware and personnel needs. In the event standard hazard mitigation safety procedures and equipment have failed, the facility immediately initiates a hazard control operation. Passive fixed systems automatically engage the hazard through an array of sensors, mechanical triggers, and control algorithms. A properly designed system with adequate hazard coverage, preplanning, preventative maintenance, and testing will successfully terminate the hazard, while firefighting personnel respond and ensure no further hazards develop. This conceptual approach relies on hardware and personnel all operating as planned…. Combining permanent and mobile apparatus “According to plan” would never have any failures or fires, but history has a different script. In the worst-case petrochemical scenario, fixed systems fail to extinguish a hazard putting the entire response on human and mobile hardware resources. This would include but is not limited to firetrucks, mobile high-flow pumping systems, large mobile monitors, foam proportioning units, and large diameter layflat hose. This type of response escalates into a larger scale operation, sometimes involving agencies beyond the facility operator itself. Although a low probability event, the risk to life and property is significantly substantial. Fixed systems may be rendered inoperable due to the loss of electrical power or actual physical damage Reducing fire-related expenditureMore typical than the worst-case scenario, facilities experience both maintenance-related system downtimes and natural phenomena damage such as extreme weather and seismic events. In this case, fixed systems may be rendered inoperable due to the loss of electrical power or actual physical damage. In any of these situations, mobile fire apparatus may fill the gap requirements of the facility as their flexible storage and deployment would protect them from everything but the worst natural disasters. Their further benefit is that a smaller set of mobile apparatus resources may be used to protect a larger amount of infrastructure, especially while in use in a mutual-aid program between facilities and communities. According to the NFPA’s report “Total Cost of Fire in the United States”, fire-related damages and expenditures from 1980 to 2014 have risen from roughly $200B (adjusted for inflation to 2014) to nearly $330B. The greatest expenditure is in fire safety costs in building construction, amounting to $57.4B. Although the overall losses per year as a ratio to protection expenditures has dropped by roughly 70% over the past 30 years, petrochemical facility losses have continued to rise over the same time. In the worst-case petrochemical scenario, fixed systems fail to extinguish a hazard Petrochemical facility challenges According to the NFPA, refineries or natural gas plants had reported an average of 228 fires or explosions per year through the 1990s. Furthering this data with Marsh’s “100 Largest Losses, 25th edition”, refinery losses have continually expanded throughout the last two decades with 11 of the top 20 largest losses of the past 40 years happening during or after the year 2000. Two primary drivers of this trend are the advanced age of petrochemical facilities and their staggering complexity. As oil margins fall, upstream operational businesses are detrimentally affected by reduced investment in everything to new equipment, maintenance and passive safety systems. There is an observable correlation between a major oil price drop followed by upstream facility fire losses. Even with reduced investment and oil throughput growth rates, US refinery utilisation at the end 2017 was at 96.7%, the highest since 2005 (Marsh, The Impact of the Price of Oil). The short story is that systems and personnel are being asked to do more with less with each passing year. Cost-effective mobile apparatus systems Mobile fire apparatus is generally more cost-effective to procure when using standardised designs and application methodology. They can access open water sources by either drafting (when in close proximity to the water) or using floating source pumps (for variable level or difficult access water sources). Mobile fire apparatus is generally more cost-effective to procure when using standardized designs and application methodology With this open water access, they can provide significantly more water (upwards of 10,000 GPM or more per system if necessary) than any typical fixed fire pumping solution. Moreover, as their primary benefit, they are easy to move and deploy. This benefit allows them to be utilised at the point of hazard as needed while being easily accessible for service. While fixed systems are installed at “every known” hazard and must be continually maintained to operate effectively, mobile systems may be used sitewide or across facilities. This flexibility reduces overall capital expenditure requirements and establishes a valuable primary and secondary firefighting system depending on the hazard and facility resources. Combining fixed and mobile systems Permanent installation fire suppression systems are a mainstay of modern day firefighting. They provide immediate passive response with little human intervention. However, as facility utilisation is pushed to maximum capacity while fixed systems continually age out without adequate replacement or maintenance, mobile systems will need to both fill the response gap and provide a final wall to total loss incidents. The reality is that both fixed and mobile systems need to work together to provide the safest possible operation. Service and training requirements need to also be maintained to manage an adequate, or even better, exemplary response to hazard control incidents. Managing major facility uptime requires continuous oversight and to drive hazard mitigation standards throughout the organisation, including executive management. A safe, reliable and fully-functional plant is also a profitable and cost-effective plant much like a healthy worker is a better worker. Protect your people and property and you will protecting your company’s future.
Ethics should be considered in almost any decision in the fire industry. Here is an example: A customer asks a technician to forge a certificate saying the customer had previously passed a fire audit in order to validate his previous year’s insurance. What do you do? If a company has laid a strong ethical foundation, it’s much easier for the technician to refuse the customer’s request and cite the corporate Code of Ethics as a solid basis for the refusal. Chubb Fire and Security is among the companies providing an example of how an emphasis on ethics can benefit a company, their employees, their customers and the world. Corporate Code of Ethics At Chubb, we have a code of ethics, our ‘bible,’ that is issued to employees when they start" In the fire market, the result of unethical actions could make the difference in life and death. For example, if an employee acts unethically when servicing a fire extinguisher, the result could be to burn down the building. “At Chubb, we have a code of ethics, our ‘bible,’ that is issued to employees when they start,” says Harv Dulay, Director of Ethics and Compliance at Chubb Fire and Security. “Within the bible are core fundamental rules about what’s acceptable and not acceptable. We lay it out for employees very specifically. They understand and embrace the code of ethics, which is based on trust, integrity, respect, innovation and excellence. If you get them right, the business moves in the right direction”. She adds, “A key piece of our ethics policy is based on trust. We relate to others with openness, transparency, and empathy. It makes Chubb a better place to work and enables us to provide better service to customers.” Importance of conforming to fire safety regulations For Chubb, ethics is not just theoretical, but ethical concepts play out every day in practical ways. An example might be an engineer who goes to a customer’s site and is asked to do a task that is outside his or her duties and/or not allowed under the ethics policy. The pressure might be even greater if the employee is struggling to meet a sales figure. The code of ethics addresses specific situations and outlines the behavior that is expected. “Ethics is embedded in our values and has been since the beginning,” says Dulay. “Ethics is making sure people do the right things. Ethics is integrated into the Chubb business model, and everyone knows what is expected of them. It’s a message heard from the top down, from everyone in the company.” Fire safety and security risks “The fire and security industry is different than others because lives and people’s safety are on the line,” Dulay says. “Our purpose is to protect clients from fire safety and security risks. This is a business where no one should take short cuts. It is important to do the right thing all the time, every time, and it’s about protecting lives and property.” Ethics discussions begin for employees at Chubb when they join the company; clear instructions about ethics are included as part of employee induction. There are nine modules of ethics training during employee orientation, and a discussion with an Ethics and Compliance Officer is part of the onboarding process. Online ethics training modules A series of supervisor-led trainings encourage managers to deliver face-to-face ethics training to their team The training program includes information about ethics, company expectations around ethics, where to go for questions about ethical issues, and details of the anonymous ombudsman program. Additionally, field staff is trained by their supervisors via regular face-to-face ethics toolbox talks. Office staff completes a series of on-line ethics training modules regularly. A series of supervisor-led trainings encourage managers to deliver face-to-face ethics training to their team, citing real-life examples. Healthy discussions are encouraged to deal with any ‘gray areas’. Dulay estimates that ethics and compliance officers spend about half their time answering questions and clarifying for employees what’s expected in the code of ethics. Data security Some 14,000 employees globally have multiple options when it comes to reporting an issue, and there are full-time Ethics and Compliances Officers in every country where Chubb does business. A reflection of Chubb’s global approach to compliance is their worldwide implementation of data security requirements of Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR); the company saw the benefits of the program for any jurisdiction. Training and education are part of Chubb’s investment in ethics. For example, a recent module on ‘respect in the workplace’ covered the need to create a company culture in which everyone feels respected. Training and education are part of Chubb’s investment in ethics Training and communication “Training and continuous communication are embedded in the organization. We invest in the process,” says Dulay. She adds, “We have had employees who left the company and then come back. They realized the importance of ethics and rejoined us.” “We start with the foundation that we would rather lose business than give up our ethical standards,” says Dulay. “We won’t abandon our policies even if there is money at stake. Some business is not worth getting if you don’t adhere to your values.” Effective conflict resolution “We manage potential conflicts proactively by creating and instituting methods in which employees have access to tools they can use to be successful and adaptable in times of change,” says Dulay. “Also, we will not tolerate retaliation against any employee who reports wrongdoing – regardless of the outcome of the investigation.” We measure it by people’s conduct, the number of cases we have, and awareness" And while there is no specific monetary value assigned to good ethical practices, success can be measured. “We measure it by people’s conduct, the number of cases we have, and awareness,” says Dulay. Good ethics behavior “It’s good for employee morale, and it’s good for customers and our business. It’s not measurable, but it is fundamental for business and customers. The work we do as a company can impact people’s lives so it is important that everyone has an understanding of the importance of their role,” says Dulay. A common misconception about ethics is that if no one is watching, it must be ok. However, Dulay says it is the things employees do when no one is watching or checking in on them that form good ethics behavior. During training, Chubb emphasizes that ethics is about doing the right thing, all the time even if no one is watching.
How can a building’s fire systems be integrated with access control and other security systems to ensure effective function of both? It can be a challenging and delicate endeavor. Integration of fire and security systems provides multiple benefits and some challenges to be addressed. It is useful to consider fire and security systems as part of the same overall mission to keep a building and its occupants safe, while also being attentive to the differing roles of the systems and how they can complement each other. integrating security and fire systems Integrating security and fire systems is becoming paramount to create improved efficiency “There’s a conflict between life safety and security systems,” says Karen Trigg, Business Development Manager, South East, for lock company Allegion (UK) Ltd. “We must secure buildings without impeding the flow of movement and hindering immediate escape should a fire incident occur. To do this, we must have a greater understanding of building requirements.” In today’s world, integrating security and fire systems is becoming paramount to create improved efficiency and effectiveness of a building’s safety technology — and this integration can provide monumental benefits, says Eric Widlitz, Vice President of Sales for North America for access control company Vanderbilt Industries. video management systems For example, in the event of a fire, an alarm from a fire system can trigger an access control system to release locks on fire escape doors, as well as generate muster reports to provide information on who is inside the building, says Widlitz. “Additionally, video management systems have the ability to provide access to real-time, remote video footage of the fire’s actual location, helping firefighters and other emergency personnel to assess the situation and respond with greater accuracy.” Many challenges and opportunities that facilities face when integrating systems relate to whether a building’s infrastructure is designed well enough to connect security and fire systems, says Julie Brown, Institutional Market Leader for Johnson Controls. By conducting a site assessment first, owners and managers can better determine where physical building updates may be needed. Integration Of Video Surveillance And Fire Alarms Adjusting design in this case can eventually help make the integration of video surveillance and fire alarms easier" For example, if video surveillance is obstructed in certain areas, owners need to identify if the cameras can be moved to a better location or if physical alterations to the building are needed. “Adjusting design in this case can eventually help make the integration of video surveillance and fire alarms easier,” says Brown. “In the event that a fire alarm sounds, owners can have peace of mind that their cameras have an unobstructed view and that they can be automatically alerted to provide visibility into the area affected and potential cause of the alarm. It is critical to occupant safety that building owners address any design hurdles. Budget is often an issue,” says Trigg. “Although a challenge, understanding budgets – not only for the system in place but also ongoing maintenance and upgrades – helps uncover the correct solution, showing that the ‘cheaper option’ may cost more in the long run for some.” thermal imaging cameras Joe Byron, Vice President for the Americas for MOBOTIX Corp, says integrating fire and security opens the door to a world of possibilities. “When specifically looking at industrial applications, these systems require an added layer of reliability in order to guarantee workplace safety and operational efficiency,” he says. This technology is tied into the fire-suppression system and can monitor the temperature of specified machines" Byron points to a specific deployment as an example: MOBOTIX’s work with KUHN RIKON, a world-renowned cookware manufacturer. In 2015, during mechanical pot polishing, an abrasive component spontaneously combusted causing a large-scale fire, leading to a dust explosion, says Byron. “While an unfortunate tragedy, this led to an opportunity to outfit the plant with thermal imaging cameras,” he adds. “This technology is tied into the fire-suppression system and can monitor the temperature of specified machines. With built-in logic, the cameras can alert technicians to heat warnings and, if not acted upon, can automatically shut-down the machinery and queue fire systems if required.” Fire And Security Systems A well-designed and integrated control room can help to organize, automate and streamline critical sensors by implementing workstations that transmit only the most critical information at any given time. “Additionally, operators are better equipped to make more educated and timely decision by leveraging audible alarms, visual LED indicators and video displays with built-in intelligence to change content based on triggers from third-party systems such as fire, building automation and access control,” says Dan Gundry, Director of National Control Room Sales for Vistacom. At the end of the day, fire and security systems are two elements of the same mission: To keep buildings and their occupants safe. However, the two systems often operate independently and may not be integrated. More integration offers benefits, but there are pitfalls to be avoided.
Among the tools of the fire service, some of the most powerful are hand-held devices. These technologies provide information to firefighters than can direct their approaches to emergency situations and safe lives. Today, more powerful devices are available in smaller, hand-held form, sometimes taking the place of much larger and more expensive devices. For example, previously the Los Angeles Fire Department carried just one large thermal imaging camera (TIC) that cost upwards of $10,000 on each fire engine. Structure Damage Evaluation Los Angeles is one of the municipal fire departments in the country to equip every on-duty firefighter with a hand-held TIC A new, smartphone-sized TIC from Seek Thermal, Santa Barbara, Calif., costs just $750 and now offers each firefighter the ability to perform faster search and rescues, execute a self-rescue if needed and locate smoldering hot spots. Los Angeles is one of the largest municipal fire departments in the country to equip every on-duty firefighter with a hand-held TIC. The purchase of a thousand TICs for the LAFD was made possible by the Los Angeles Fire Department Foundation through the support of individual donors and organizations such as the Wasserman Foundation and California Community Foundation. Hand-held TICs are becoming more and more popular. FLIR has unveiled the K1 handheld TIC that is more affordable for first responder officers and fire investigators. At $599, the K1 detects heat and provides visibility through smoke and in total darkness to enhance situational awareness for use in wildland fire control, search and rescue missions, structure damage evaluation and investigative work. FLIR has unveiled the K1 handheld TIC that is affordable for first responder officers and fire investigators Gas Leak Detector The K1 is powered by the FLIR Lepton thermal microcamera and uses MSX technology, which extracts high-contrast details from the images taken by an onboard visible light camera and superimposes them onto the thermal images. It simultaneously captures thermal and visible images of a scene and stores up to 10,000 image sets to create post-scene reports, analysis and evidence. A pistol grip design allows firefighters to view a scene from their line-of-sight for improved safety and situational awareness. A spot thermometer easily identifies unseen hot and cold spots for instant troubleshooting. New handheld devices in the fire service also include a gas leak detector and a combination device that is cloud-ready. The Ultra-Trac LZ-30 compact methane-specific leak detector from Sensit Technologies provides fast and accurate readings up to 100 feet away. The device uses TDLAS (tunable diode laser absorption spectroscopy) to provide instantaneous alerts to the presence of methane. Potentially Dangerous Situations Firefighters can conduct leak detection investigations themselves without the need for PPM detectors Operating at a distance, the LZ-30 eliminates the need for firefighters to access the gas plume directly and keeps them safe from potentially dangerous situations. They don’t have to climb to elevated areas or access fenced-in property or climb to elevated areas. Firefighters can conduct leak detection investigations themselves without the need for specialized PPM detectors – no need to wait for gas engineers. A simple interface provides user-friendly operation of the ergonomically designed instrument. Another wireless, handheld device includes thermal imaging, firefighter ranging, motion alarm and cloud technology with GPS. MSA Fire’s LUNAR is a small, wireless, cloud-ready device designed to provide higher levels of protection for firefighters through enhanced vision, improved situational awareness, and team connectivity. It is part of a suite of SMA products that, when used together provides a new platform for firefighter safety. MSA Fire’s LUNAR is a small, wireless, cloud-ready device designed to provide higher levels of protection for firefighters Better Situational Awareness It can be used as a stand-alone device or as part of an MSA self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA) system. Thermal imaging increases visibility and improves situational awareness. Firefighter ranging combines direction and distance information to find separated teammates and decrease response time. A motion alarm sounds an alert if it does not detect a firefighter’s motion. Production of the device will begin in summer 2020. The ability to provide better situational awareness to firefighters in the palm of their hands can go a long way toward keeping firefighters safer. For example, LAFD says the thousand new TICs are a significant technology purchase and a critical component to their ‘Everyone Goes Home’ initiative. We often marvel at the powers of modern technology, and clearly those powers include saving lives.
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.”
E-ONE, a subsidiary of REV Group and a manufacturer of fire apparatus, announces the delivery of multiple new TITAN® 6X6 Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting (ARFF) vehicles to the Civil Aviation Authority of Taiwan R.O.C. The trucks will be deployed at multiple airports around the island country. Structural Fire Fighting System Top features of the new 6X6 TITAN ARFF vehicles include: E-ONE unique cab design manufactured from welded aluminum extrusion with 3/16-inch (4.76 mm) plate, exceeding ECE R-29 safety standards Scania 566 Kw (770 HP) Engine delivering 2483 Nm of Gross Torque at 2100 rpm. Hale 11,355 lpm (3,000 gpm) Single Stage Centrifugal Pump 12,000 liter (3170 gallon) water / 1680 liter (445 gallon) Class B foam tank Structural Fire Fighting System driver side pump panel (8) Large Side Compartments w/ 9.0 Cubic Meters (320 Cubic Feet) of useable storage Akron StreamMaster II Dual Flow 6000 lpm (1500 gpm) / 3000 lpm (750 gpm) Roof Turret Akron StreamMaster II Single Flow 1,135 lpm (300 gpm) Bumper Turret Outstanding After Sales Service Support “E-ONE is excited to deliver the new TITAN 6X6 ARFF vehicles to the Civil Aviation Authority. These units are part of an ongoing effort by the Civil Aviation Authority to upgrade and replace the aging fleet of (27) TITAN vehicles delivered over 20 years ago,” said Matt Reda, ARFF Product Manager for E-ONE. “We are honored that the Civil Aviation Authority has continued to trust E-ONE and the outstanding after sales service support provided by our local representative for the critical mission of protecting lives and property.”
It is the tallest building in Europe – the northernmost skyscraper in the world. It has nine-story tall media screens on its unique, ventilated facades, a planetarium hovering over the atrium of the courtyard, a theater hall with 494 seats that can be converted from an amphitheater to a ballroom and panoramic viewing decks under the tower spire. This is The Lakhta Center, a new, multifunctional complex in Saint Petersburg, offering many public spaces and where the Gazprom Group is headquartered. Traditional Sprinkler Systems These systems suppression efficiency are as reliable as traditional sprinkler systems based on Marioff fire tests A public office building of this scale must be built as secure as possible. Fire safety is the Achilles heel of high-rise buildings, and fire protection is one of the first priorities at all stages of design, construction and operation of the building. Fire protection for such a complex had to be planned with technologies that are modern, effective, reliable and convenient to install and operate. HI-FOG® high-pressure water mist fire suppression systems were chosen by the designers at the early stage of the Lakhta Center project. These systems suppression efficiency are as reliable as traditional sprinkler systems based on Marioff fire tests, but consume less water, which is an important advantage for the design of complex engineering systems, especially for buildings of such an impressive scale as The Lakhta Center. Water Mist Fire Protection Technology Both the fire suppression system and manual handgun water mist system in The Lakhta Center are HI-FOG systems, manufactured by the Finnish company Marioff, a pioneer in high-pressure water mist fire protection technology. A dedicated full-scale fire test, the joint work of testing laboratories, designers, customer specialists, fire experts and engineers of the manufacturing company, confirmed the technical solution meets parameters set for the project. Fire protection of facades using HI-FOG nozzles was tested at a special stand, using full-scale fragments of the facades and a large number of wooden stacks as a combustible load. Test results have proven the effectiveness of facade fire protection and helped to increase fire resistance of the facade elements. Hence, the customer has optimized costs and reduced the weight of the building which is important for a unique high-rise building. Fire Suppression Projects It included four pump stations, 355 kilometers of high-pressure pipelines and 57,000 sprinklers The Lakhta Center project was extraordinary, and there are few fire suppression projects of this scale in the world. It included four pump stations, 355 kilometers of high-pressure pipelines and 57,000 sprinklers. Work on the Lakhta Center’s fire suppression system was a challenging task, not only in terms of developing unique technical solutions, but also in production and logistics. Water mist fire protection suppresses a fire by spraying mist from sprinklers, saturating the fire with water vapor, cooling the rooms, precipitating smoke and providing localization and suppression of the fire, as well as protecting building structures from heat. Effectively Reducing The Temperature Such systems quickly localize a fire at an early stage, prevent it from spreading, and effectively reduce the temperature and smoke in protected rooms, making it easier for firefighters to take control of the situation after the system’s discharge. High-pressure pumps supply water regardless of pipe resistance and elevation differences. Due to that, high-pressure water mist suppression systems are an optimal solution for high-rise multifunctional complexes. Stainless steel pipes and fittings guarantee no leaks while also ensuring uninterrupted operation of the system.
Panels from global fire systems provider, Advanced, have been selected to protect the US$ 18.8 billion Hong Kong–Zhuhai–Macau Bridge, regarded to be the longest open-sea fixed link on earth. A network of 31 ExGo gas extinguishant control panels has been installed as part of the active fire protection for one of South East Asia’s most ambitious infrastructure projects to date. The Advanced network protects the artificial island gateway in Hong Kong that serves as an entry and exit point to the new 34-mile bridge-tunnel system, used by over a 10 million passengers in its first eight months. ExGo gas extinguishant control panels ExGo panels were selected to protect critical server rooms in more than 10 different buildings on the purpose-built island The ExGo panels were selected to protect critical server rooms in more than 10 different buildings on the purpose-built island, including police and fire stations as well as customs and different administrative buildings. Each gas extinguishant control panel is connected to at least one remote status indicator unit located at the protected area entryway. Each extinguishing system was designed, configured and commissioned by Peak Trade International Limited. Alan Wong, Sales Director at Peak Trade International Limited, said, “To protect such critical infrastructure, we knew we required a gas and suppression control system that was both cutting-edge in its capabilities and also highly reliable and adaptable for the future. ExGo panels have a proven track record in complex installations of this type and we had no hesitation in recommending them.” Advanced panels protecting transport and infrastructure Constructed using around 420,000 tons of steel - enough to build 60 Eiffel Towers - the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge has been designed to last for the next 120 years, and is set to deliver significant economic advantages to the region. Thanh Tin, Regional Sales and Business Development Manager for Advanced, said “Advanced panels are trusted to protect transport and infrastructure projects around the globe. As the world’s longest sea crossing, the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau bridge is a fantastic example of this.” Specially designed for sensitive and strategic assets He adds, “Equipment that offers the highest levels of protection and reliability is essential for providing complete peace of mind to the client, combined with the flexibility to easily expand and upgrade the system in future.” ExGo has been developed specifically for sensitive and strategic assets such as server rooms and data centers, control rooms, as well as historic and cultural attractions. It is suitable for almost all single-flooding area applications and includes a range of control options and devices. Integration with Axis EN fire system ExGo can be integrated into Advanced’s Axis EN fire system or any third-party alarm system It is approved to EN54 parts 2, 4 and 13 as well as EN12094-1 and is among the first systems to combine these with EN12094 in a single solution. (EN12094-3 relates to the integrated manual release on the front of the panel). ExGo can be integrated into Advanced’s Axis EN fire system or any third-party alarm system. Intelligent fire systems and technology major Advanced, owned by FTSE 100 PLC Halma, has an impressive history of protecting critical transport and infrastructure sites across the globe, including the London Underground and the Istanbul Metro. 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 globally renowned firm in the development and manufacture of intelligent fire systems. The legendary performance, quality and ease of use of its products sees Advanced specified in locations all over the world, from single-panel installations to large multi-site networks. Advanced’s products include complete fire detection systems, multi-protocol fire panels, extinguishing control, fire paging and false alarm management systems.
Marioff will deliver and commission a HI-FOG® high pressure water mist suppression system for the new Päijät-Häme Central Hospital. The delivery to the Päijät-Häme Central hospital is scheduled in the first half of 2020. The HI-FOG system will protect the entire building, which spans 33,600 square meters, and is supplied with a HI-FOG Electric Pump Unit (EPU) and 2,300 sprinklers. The new building is under construction, and parts of the current hospital structure built in 1976 will be replaced. Security And Building Automation Technologies Marioff, a developer of water mist fire protection technology, is a part of Carrier, a global provider of innovative HVAC, refrigeration, fire, security and building automation technologies. “The HI-FOG system protects the entire building from fire. We are ensuring that if all current fire safety related links fail, the sprinkler will suppress the fire. Because of its benefits, we chose the high-pressure water mist system for both during the construction phase and later during the maintenance phase,” said Timo Nurmi, HVAC expert, Päijät-Häme Central Hospital. “The piping is moderately sized and stainless. The water source is moderately sized, and in case of fire extinguishing and emergency triggering, the extinguishing water is cleaner, and the amount used is a fraction of the traditional fire extinguishing system.” Comprehensive Life Cycle Services The Päijät-Häme Central Hospital in Lahti is the second largest central hospital in Finland and the seventh largest provider of specialized medical care. “The HI-FOG system protects the entire building, including public areas, patient rooms and operating theatres,” said Timo Suuronen, business manager, Marioff Finland. “Other sensitive areas, like X-ray, ICU and clinical labs, will also receive HI-FOG high pressure water mist fire protection. Marioff will deliver the system as a turnkey project. In addition to our technology, the customer has access to the comprehensive life cycle services we offer.” Construction of the new Päijät-Häme Central Hospital is scheduled for completion in 2022.
Kentec’s Vizulinx alarm management unit is providing a sophisticated, flexible and cost-efficient solution for a private residential property in Henley-on-Thames. The unit, installed by DPJ Fire and Security, was chosen because the property owners required a monitoring service that would alert the housekeeper and security team of any faults or alarms rather than a traditional monitoring service provided by an alarm receiving centre. Addressable Fire And Intruder Alarm System DPJ Fire and Security had designed, commissioned, supplied and installed a new addressable fire and intruder alarm system when the property was extensively refurbished, and turned to Kentec’s Vizulinx alarm management solution to solve the monitoring challenge. Steve Bidmead, Director of Projects at DPJ Fire and Security explains that with no ongoing service charges, Vizulinx was the ideal choice for the homeowner: “The Vizulinx unit has the ability to monitor up to 16 inputs that can be configured independently to one another to send alarm, alert, fault, disabled, test, technical alarm and security messages to mobile phones, pagers and email addresses via SMS or internet connection.” Convenience And Flexibility Steve also describes how it provides the utmost in convenience and flexibility: “The unit was installed in under a day using a built-in web server page. It is very versatile and can be configured to monitor any system that can provide a fault-free contact. Future plans include having the unit monitor the water and heating systems.” Brett Boyd, UK Business Development Manager, London and the South East at Kentec, says the Vizulinx is extremely user friendly and the speed of communication is especially useful: “Since all events are sent immediately, users can reduce the number of false alarms by investigating the cause of the alarm before it is escalated, preventing any unnecessary disruption.”