Tall Building Fire Safety
There have been challenges with completing fire safety maintenance and installation projects during the current Covid-19 crisis, most notably as a result of the difficulties for installers in safely accessing sites. Many construction projects halted for lockdown and this resulted in approximately 50% of the British installers we work with having to furlough staff. The challenges, however, are not just restricted to the UK. With Kentec panels sold in more than 90 countries across the world, we ha...
Venari Group has confirmed a major exclusive partnership agreement for the firefighting sector, with one of the helmet manufacturers, SCHUBERTH. SCHUBERTH is a famous, 90-year old, manufacturer of safety helmets for motorcyclists and motorsport, including Formula One. For decades, it has also been one of the most popular helmets among German motorcyclists. And having produced EN 443-certified firefighting helmets for over 50 years, the company has selected recently launched Venari Group as its...
Angloco Limited, the UK’s oldest manufacturer of fire engines, has secured a major deal to replace and service most of the UK Ministry of Defense’s existing fire fleet. UK Defence Fire and Rescue Project The £30 million order comes as part of the Defense Fire and Rescue Project – a significant outsourcing contract recently awarded to Capita Plc. Under the contract, Angloco will not only supply more than 80 new state-of-the-art fire vehicles but will also support them b...
Angloco Co. has announced partnering with Adaro Tecnologia to supply the Adalit range of professional safety torches. Adalit professional safety torches Designed for emergency services teams and other demanding professional applications where safety is critical, every Adalit torch features advanced optics, high quality engineering and has received ATEX approval. The Adalit range of professional safety torches include the L-10, the first re-chargeable flashlight to be specifically designed for...
The UK’s oldest manufacturer of fire vehicles – based in Batley – is readying itself for the biggest recruitment drive in its 54-year history, as the team prepares for its largest ever period of growth. Established in 1965, fire fighting and rescue vehicle specialist Angloco has already doubled production levels in the last 18 months, which sees 2017-18 turnover of £13m look set to rocket to £25m by the end of 2020. Water tender appliances But with the uplift sho...
On the 8th June, 2020, the North Yorkshire Fire & Rescue Service will be opening recruitment process for wholetime firefighters. Between now and then, the fire and rescue service wants to raise awareness of the role of modern day firefighters and encourage applications from all parts of the communities. Raise awareness on fire safety When the recruitment application window opens, the North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service will be recruiting wholetime firefighters for the following fire st...
Apollo Fire Detectors is delivering online training to members of the fire industry throughout the government lockdown thanks to a series of online events, including CPD webinars and virtual product training courses. Online fire focused CPD webinars Created in response to a significant volume of requests from consultants and specifiers for technical training, each week Apollo is delivering an online fire focused CPD, covering topics such as EN 54-23 Visual Alarm Devices (VADs) and An Introduction to BS 5839, Parts 1 and 6. In addition, the business has launched a weekly series of 30-minute product orientated webinars, hosted by Apollo Product Support Engineer, Warren Moyle. Providing useful advice and insights to installers, the webinars cover features and benefits, applications, demonstration videos and frequently asked questions for numerous Apollo ranges, as well as live Q&A sessions. XPander, the Apollo Test Set & Beam Detectors All webinars are being hosted using specialist webinar platform, Microsoft Teams events The first three sessions will cover XPander, the Apollo Test Set: Learning the Basics and Programming (part 1 of 4) and Beam Detectors, which will be delivered alongside Apollo’s sister company, FFE. More product related webinars will be announced soon. All webinars are being hosted using specialist webinar platform, Microsoft Teams events. The software is easy to access, with attendees able to watch live and interact with presenters via a moderated Q&A. Enhancing fire safety knowledge Warren Moyle stated, “Providing training and helping improve fire safety knowledge is fundamental to us at Apollo. In this unprecedented time, we feel we have a duty to the fire industry to offer the type of training and support that will enable people to grow their skillset from the safety of their own home.” He adds, “The sessions we have already announced have been very well received so far and we look forward to revealing the full webinar schedule in due course. All the sessions are free of charge, but attendance will be capped at 60, so it is important to register if you wish to take part.”
Kochek Company, LLC has introduced its new HiRise Kit, carefully designed to carry the basic tools and adapters needed to combat fire in hotel and high-rise buildings. Developed in response to requests from first responders for a convenient, grab-and-go bag, each Kochek HiRise Kit contains two spanner wrenches, one line-pressure gauge, one 09k valve, and one 2.5” elbow. Kochek HiRise Kit Kochek's HiRise Kit bag is constructed of heavy reinforced vinyl with a double heavy-duty waterproof reinforced bottom and measures 18"L x 12"D x 18"H. Extra wide nylon handle straps have a snap button closure which allows quick access even while wearing gloves. Its 288 cubic inch interior provides ample space for additional items such as wedges, adapters, door stops, door straps, rope, and tools. When fully packed with the included items, the Kochek HiRise Kit Bag weighs 16.25 lb. Efficient decontamination and cleaning Tool divider inserts attach with Velcro for easy removal to facilitate decontamination and cleaning. The bags are black and feature sewn-on reflectors for enhanced visibility. Reference new part number HIRISEKIT25-01-NH52.
Kentec Electronics, a life safety system manufacturer, has strengthened its international in-country sales team with the appointment of Morné Müller as Business Development Manager Africa. Morné joins recent recruits Ibrahim Ariqat, Business Development Manager Middle East, and Eloi Del Valle, International Business Development Manager. Eloi, based in Barcelona, works within Kentec’s central European and Scandinavian markets, while Ibrahim, who is based in Dubai, operates within the Middle East and Gulf markets. Morné has extensive experience within the fire and security industry, having managed a subsidiary entity for a communications engineering company that develops and supplies products for the fire and security industry. In his new role, Morné is responsible for Kentec customers in the African regions. Life safety systems Key, during this time, will be supporting customers in ensuring life safety systems are installed safely and within specific COVID-19 environments and regulations. Morné says what impressed him about Kentec was the warm professionalism of employees: “There is an experienced and knowledgeable team at Kentec and I am looking forward to contributing to the good work they do. Kentec’s suite of highly-reliable life-safety products will support me in this goal.” Efficient international operations We have furthered our ability to operate internationally without the need to travel amid the Coronavirus outbreak" Eloi, Ibrahim and Morné all have in-country experience within the fire sector. The result is that the team understands the languages, regulations and business cultures within the territories that they work. This supports Kentec in operating its international operations efficiently and effectively during this uncharted time, and beyond. Kevin Swann, Managing Director at Kentec, says the new team significantly strengthens Kentec’s ability to operate internationally despite the Coronavirus outbreak: “We have furthered our ability to operate internationally without the need to travel amid the Coronavirus outbreak. The team’s extensive knowledge and experience within the industry make it a valuable asset for Kentec.” Protect essential sectors With the team reporting into Costas Constantinides, Head of International Business Development, he says he is proud that Kentec has been able to grow its International team to support clients’ life safety needs: “We are lucky that our International team is accustomed to working from home, and is very well set up to support our customers. During this crisis, it is more important than ever to ensure essential sectors such as healthcare, data centers, and infrastructure are protected from fire.” Costas adds, “Having an experienced and professional, international-origin team, strategically based, demonstrates the paramount importance for Kentec to be even closer to its partners, clients and associates, and to ensure we understand different cultures – so vital for business development’’.
With a new version of its video-based fire detection system, AVIOTEC IP starlight 8000, Bosch Building Technologies now enables the early detection of fires with cameras, even in low light conditions. Both flames and smoke are reliably detected down to an ambient lighting level of 2 lux. AVIOTEC IP starlight 8000 For this purpose, Bosch has extended its proven video analytics in the camera by artificial intelligence, which processes the results of more than 20 algorithms and makes an alarm decision on this basis. This leads to a significantly improved sensitivity without compromising the solution’s robustness against false alarms. With the new firmware version 7.61, AVIOTEC IP starlight 8000 is suitable for application in areas with very low light With the new firmware version 7.61, AVIOTEC IP starlight 8000 is suitable for application in areas with very low light, such as warehouses and production plants at night. In case of changing environmental conditions, the sensitivity can be adapted to the requirements using programmable schedules. Quick early fire detection Thus, for example, it is possible to optimize the robustness against false alarms during busy daytime operation, while deserted buildings, where quick detection is required, benefit from high sensitivity at night. Since the new solution from Bosch also works reliably with minimal ambient light, it saves costs for planning, installation and operation of lighting. Furthermore, it significantly reduces the risks for applications with high fire load in those low light conditions. This benefits, for example, operators of multi-story car parks where risk is typically quite high. Enhanced protection for vehicles, electrical charging station AVIOTEC IP starlight 8000 guarantees reliable early detection to protect vehicles and electrical charging stations. In historical buildings, the solution can now also be installed in almost unused side rooms with minimal lighting, for example through tiny windows. In all environments, the installed cameras can be used simultaneously for fire detection and video surveillance, which further reduces installation and operating costs. Free firmware update The video-based fire detection AVIOTEC IP starlight 8000 is now delivered with the new firmware. Existing installations can be upgraded to the new technology by a free firmware update.
Fire & Safety Specialists (FSS), a globally renowned company in fire suppression and safety equipment services, has added the new Amerex Z-Series high performance fire extinguisher to its range of fire suppression equipment. Amerex Z-Series fire extinguisher The new Amerex Z-Series features a proprietary, zinc-enriched coating, which resists corrosion for up to 12 years in severely salt-contaminated environments, resulting in improved reliability and minimal repair and maintenance costs over time. The Amerex Z-Series fire extinguisher is recommended for use on sites with an elevated fire risk, such as heavy industrial, manufacturing, mining or processing sites, or anywhere else that chemical or corrosive-intensive work takes place. Certified for firefighting operations Chad Meaux, President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Fire & Safety Specialists (FSS), stated “The new Amerex Z-Series product line is verified by UL, the international organization in testing, inspection, certification, auditing and validation, to withstand 12 years of simulated severe corrosion.” Chad adds, “UL verification is an objective, science-based assessment that confirms the accuracy of marketing claims. Each unit displays the UL Verify Mark, the single most accepted certification mark in the United States, and we offer customers an industry-renowned 12-year warranty against corrosion on these units.” Available in compliance flow handheld units, FSS currently stocks the following ABC and PK models: 714, 715, 717, and 718.
The Clark County Fire Department (CCFD) is temporarily taking up to 12 suppression units out of rotation since they are experiencing a significant reduction in calls for service, particularly in the Las Vegas Strip resort area. Clark County Fire Chief John Steinbeck said the factors considered for the temporary shutdown include call volume, fire response, patient transporting, and additional in-station or surrounding resources. This is a very fluid situation. A unit that makes sense to temporarily shut down in the near future may very well not make sense later. Reduction in suppression units A majority of these units are in the resort corridor and are usually among the busiest in the country. The drop in visitor volume has caused service demand to fall significantly in these areas. CCFD will continuously reevaluate the demands for service across the County so they can fully utilize their resources as efficiently as possible. "This is an unprecedented situation that our community is in," said International Association of Firefighters Local 1908 President, Steve Thompson, adding "and management and labor must work together to get through this crisis." Effective response to fire and EMS calls Steinbeck emphasized that the department will still be able to appropriately respond to fire and EMS calls Steinbeck emphasized that the department will still be able to appropriately respond to fire and EMS calls and that public safety remains the highest priority. The stay-at-home orders, along with the closures of the resort properties have resulted in a 34-percent reduction in overall calls for service. The 12 units that are being taken out of rotation include five rescue units, four engine companies, one ladder truck, one rescue squad and one battalion chief. Temporary shutdown for cost savings Steinbeck said the temporary shutdown will save the department a significant amount of money, but a figure is difficult to predict since the length of the shutdown will be dependent upon the return of the visitor volume and increased demands of emergency services. Steinbeck said the department, much like departments across the County, will be reviewing other cost-reduction measures as well. Clark County officials estimate that tax revenues will drop US$ 1.1 billion for the 16 months leading up to June 30, 2021. The effect upon the County's General Fund is an estimated US$ 342.9 million. Nevada’s largest fire department CCFD is the one of the largest fire department in Nevada with 30 full-time fire stations and 10 volunteer fire stations in rural areas. The department received over 136,000 calls for service in 2019 and sent more than 161,000 pieces of apparatus to those calls. The Fire Department also maintains one of only 28 urban search and rescue teams in the country and provides fire and rescue services to the nation's 9th-busiest airport. Its full-time staff numbers include 730 paid employees and about 114 rural volunteer firefighters.
Those responsible for the specification of products which go into new modern buildings have been asking for safe, approved cabling, which play a critical part in electrical supply systems. The number of fires in high-rise buildings in Europe and the Middle East have brought the issue of quality of products for fire performance circuits into sharp focus, not least the Grenfell disaster. Meanwhile, new buildings become increasingly complex, with the use of new materials and the designs of many requiring complex electrical systems to support security and fire safety. New and refurbished buildings such as hospitals, schools, shopping malls or airports, may have complex addressable loop fire alarm systems which provide information on individual detectors. Conventional systems only provide information about specific circuits or zones. Indicating exact location of fire, fault For critical alarm circuits in buildings where large numbers of people move about there can be no greater priority than safetyThe addressable systems feature a fire control panel which receives information and status reports from each device, indicating its exact location and if there may be a fire, a fault, heat or contamination. For critical alarm circuits in buildings where large numbers of people move about – many of whom can be vulnerable – there can be no greater priority than safety. The cabling chosen for these systems is therefore critical. If the power to these alarm systems fails because the cabling does not meet the required performance, then the information available for fire and rescue services is directly affected and with it, the chance of finding people who may be in the building. To meet these design challenges, and with the inquiry into the Grenfell disaster still ongoing, it is the use of the very latest technology and science that is taking enhanced fire performance cabling onto a new level. Safe and compliant cable products Decision-makers in the supply chain want reassurance that the products they are specifying are safe and compliant, meeting all recognized specifications. Calls have been made by the Approved Cables Initiative (ACI) for all cable being used in the UK to conform to relevant British, European or international standards amid increasing concerns about the volume of non-approved cables coming onto the market. Installers have welcomed the development of a new generation of fire performance cabling Installers have welcomed the development of a new generation of fire performance cabling which ensures critical fire-safety circuits can continue to operate in the event of a fire from 30 minutes up to 120 minutes. The standard and enhanced cables in the Total Fire Solutions range are tubed, making them a welcome product for contractors with ease of installation. They are all UV stable and they all come with a hard insulant to resist any fault generation over time. These cables meet all relevant industry standards including ISO 9001 and is approved by the leading industry organizations nationally and worldwide including BASEC and LPCB. Carrying out fire risk assessment For the fire and rescue services, the continuity of power means they can continue to read fire alarm system information which can direct them to the seat of the fire and help to locate people who may be in the building. Responsibility for choosing the right system lies with the ‘responsible person’ under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 in business or any other non-domestic premises. This will be the owner, employer, landlord, or may be the facilities manager or building manager. As the responsible person, he or she must carry out a fire risk assessment of the premises and review it regularly and put in place and maintain appropriate fire safety measures. Ultimately, the responsible person faces a fines or jail if they fail to follow these measures and there is a fire. For some buildings, it is crucial to select the highest quality products to meet the most rigorous third-party tests and real-life fire scenarios Any items or products which go into these fire safety systems must be covered by standards set by national, European and international bodies such as British Standards. These will certify that when needed these products will perform their function and operate as expected in real life fire conditions. Ensuring cables meet fire safety standards In support of these standards, cable industry bodies provide testing regimes to ensure that different types of cable are fit for purpose and meet these standards when tested in fire conditions. For installers, or those procuring cables, there is a need to check the cable when it arrives to make sure it is exactly what was specified. Instances of unsafe non-approved cable continue to come to lightFor some buildings, it is crucial to select the highest quality products to meet the most rigorous third-party tests and real-life fire scenarios. These include environments such as hospitals, schools and care homes where older people and children move about. Specifiers looking at new large public sector projects such as hospitals should refer to BS 8519 for the electrical supply, and the most relevant cabling system. Counterfeit Flexible Cords campaign Instances of unsafe non-approved cable continue to come to light. Unsafe flexible cord, intended for use in domestic and industrial applications, has been found on sale in the UK recently, prompting the ACI to issue a fresh alert to the electrical supply chain. The latest find of sub-standard flexible cords is marked ‘Made in Turkey’ and ‘Ermaks’. Samples came to light following the initiative’s recent ‘Counterfeit Flexible Cords’ campaign which alerted the electrical supply chain to dangerous industrial flexible cords. We in the supply chain should all be vigilant to watch out and report these instances of non-compliant cabling wherever we see or suspect they have been installed, while developing only the safest products and systems of our own. We shouldn’t forget that we all have a duty and a responsibility where lives and property are at stake. Importance of MV cables to infrastructure Medium Voltage (MV) cables coming onto the market should be independently approved and certified as compliantThe demand for power has never been greater, with the explosion of development in towns and cities across the UK and the growth of industrial development and technology reliant on consistent supplies. Medium Voltage (MV) cables coming onto the market should be independently approved and certified as compliant as the pressure mounts on the installation of quality products in modern building developments. MV cables are crucial to our infrastructure. Electricity leaves the generating site and is routed via a step-up transformer to take it up to the National Grid distribution voltages of 400Kv, 275Kv and 132Kv. Once in the local area, the supply goes through step-down transformers that reduce the voltage to 415V with domestic supplies tapped off at 230V. To provide power to the sub-stations – very often located on the premises of the establishment that they supply – Medium Voltage (MV) cables are used. MV cables were only developed as the level of voltages increased and the need arose for a greater classification range. design and specification of the cables The technical design and specification of the cables is of paramount importance within the power distribution networkThe size of the market has developed to the point where the global MV cables market was valued at 39.31billion US dollars in 2016 and projected to grow at a rate of more than six percent until 2022. The technical design and specification of the cables themselves is of paramount importance within the power distribution network. There are a number of technical considerations to be taken into account including the size of the installation, the position of the installation in relation to the network and the presence of primary and secondary sub-stations. Prior to installation, a detailed route survey should also be carried out to plan where cables will be jointed and to identify any possible obstructions which may require special civil engineering works such as directional drilling. Underlying the critical nature of supplies to these types of services, the incidence of non-approved cables for these applications also plagues the industry.
Products for electrical systems that are installed into modern, complex buildings have to be fit-for-purpose for today’s challenging demands. With the background of numerous incidents still being felt by the fire performance industry, how is it to set the benchmarks for the future to make sure there is never another Lakanal House or another Grenfell? The long-term answer is for clearer guidance and legislation, if necessary, to enable the whole supply chain to make decisions which are compliant when choosing products. In the meantime, with the Grenfell inquiry projected to go on during 2019, what is the benchmark?The development of LSZH materials was accelerated following the King’s Cross Underground disaster in which 31 people died Cables With LSZH Materials We have standards through British Standards (BS) and testing regimes which cables should meet to validate that they meet these standards with approvals from various industry bodies including BASEC and LPCB. At AEI Cables, we have developed our Total Fire Solutions range of cables and accessories for all fire safety applications, incorporating Low Smoke Zero Halogen (LSZH) features. Traditional PVC cables which produce vast amounts of dense black smoke, toxic fumes and acid gas when exposed to fire, bring an added danger to people who may be caught in the fire. Cables which incorporate LSZH materials emit very little of these substances. In a real fire situation, the cables will enable the fire and rescue services to find and evacuate people and help to protect property Smoke And Noxious Gases Cause More Casualties The development of LSZH materials was accelerated following the King’s Cross Underground disaster in which 31 people died, many of them from toxic fumes. London Underground has banned the use of PVC cables as a result. The adoption of LSZH for cables and other materials is also endorsed by the Building Regulations themselves. According to Part B, referencing fire safety, it says clearly: “The primary danger associated with fire in its early stages is not flame but the smoke and noxious gases produced by the fire. They cause most of the casualties and may also obscure the way to escape routes and exits. Measures designed to provide safe means of escape must therefore provide appropriate arrangements to limit the rapid spread of smoke and fumes.” Helping Fire And Rescue Services The very latest in technology and science, including LSZH materials, offers enhanced fire performance cablingThe very latest in technology and science, including LSZH materials, offers enhanced fire performance cabling, accessories and technical support ensuring critical fire-safety circuits can continue to operate in the event of a real fire from 30 minutes up to 120 minutes. In a real fire situation, these cables will enable the fire and rescue services to find and evacuate people and help to protect property. At the same time, there is still evidence of non-approved cabling still coming onto the market, and we simply cannot compromise quality of these products being used in these applications. Applications include residential and commercial buildings, shopping malls, airports and protected buildings with a track-record ensuring that fire alarms, sprinkler systems, building monitoring and security systems can continue to operate in a fire.
The continuity of power in the event of a real fire has never been more important as modern buildings become more complex and the need for the highest quality of products comes under the spotlight. With power for lighting and fire alarms, the fire and rescue services can use the intelligence gathered to evacuate people quickly, confident that they have found all the people in the building. Without power, they are literally scrambling in the dark without good information upon which to make their rescue. The continuity of power will also ensure that sprinkler or water mist systems can continue to operate where they exist. In commercial buildings, there may also be smoke evacuation fans which help to enable safe evacuation. Fire alarms may be digital, with loop systems which will provide information for fire and rescue services Appropriate Cabling At the start of a project, the most appropriate cabling should be specified as part of the electrical system rather than at the end of a project. Fire alarms may be digital, with loop systems which will provide information for fire and rescue services across individual areas and floors. At the same time, there are new designs, materials and products continually coming on to the market for major projects, and with it an increasing need for the various parties involved to work closely together to make sure they get it right. There has been an increasing incidence of non-approved cables on the market and unfortunately it is not until cables have been installed, tested or used that issues become clear. For installers, or those procuring cables, there is a need to check the cable when it arrives to make sure it is exactly what was specified. Should there be a problem, have it checked and seek good advice. Keep records of purchase, including reel flanges with batch markings and a sample of the cable markings. Send lengths for testing and then decide on the most appropriate course of action. Choice of cabling is crucial at the start of major projects as issues may occur later Meeting Rigorous Third-Party Tests For some buildings, it is crucial to select the highest quality products to meet the most rigorous third-party tests and real-life fire scenarios. These include environments such as hospitals, schools and care homes where older people and children move about. Specifiers looking at new large public sector projects such as hospitals should refer to BS 8519 for the electrical supply, and the most relevant cabling system. It is crucial to select the highest quality products to meet the most rigorous third-party tests This Code of Practice specifies that the type of system selected during the design phase ‘should be derived from a detailed process of consultation with the relevant authorities’ and that ‘the design should be agreed at an early stage.’ The decision-making process for cable selection relevant for life safety and firefighting systems is clearly defined here. This covers three categories ranging from 30 minutes to 120 minutes fire survival time. Categories 1 and 2 cover means of escape for 30 minutes and then 60 minutes respectively, and these cables are tested in accordance with the relevant codes. Category 3 for firefighting to 120 minutes refers to power and control cables meeting the 120-minute test according to the relevant standards. It should be emphasised that only Mineral Insulated Cable (MIC) or a cable meeting the requirements of BS7846 F120 will meet this criteria. For clarity, BS 8519 does not take precedence over BS 5839 for alarm systems and BS 5266 for emergency lighting. In essence, choosing the most relevant cabling and electrical accessories which will continue to operate under fire conditions has become critical. Application Of Medium Voltage Cables As the incidence of non-approved cables continues then so the application of Medium Voltage (MV) cables into high-risk environments including hospitals, schools, care homes, industrial sites and sub-stations serving infrastructure sites also becomes critical. In the context off fire engineering, it is important to select the relevant MV Cables in these areas. Adhering to the latest regulations is no longer enough - there needs to be a risk assessment. In order to do this effectively, it is important to ask – are the fire safety procedures up to date? All AEI MV cables are third party tested and approved by BASEC. Educational establishments including schools, colleges and laboratories are some of the most prone structures to fire hazards The whole supply chain needs to take consideration of these areas where vulnerable people often move about such as children or elderly people in hospitals or care homes. The fire and rescue services may need a little more time than a conventional building including reading complex fire alarm information to ensure a safe rescue in the event of a real fire. Educational establishments including schools, colleges and laboratories are some of the most prone structures to fire hazards. This is due to ageing structures, high volume of combustible materials, and changing use in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths programmes where more combustible and flammable liquids are being used. Concerns have been raised by architects and and designers about fire protection regimes Sufficient Fire Risk Assessment Recent research by the Fire Brigades Union, for example, showed that a key focus for all educational institutions must be ensuring that there is an effective fire risk management process in place, delivered by suitable and sufficient fire risk assessment carried out by an expert in the field. The best practice under Business Information Modelling (BIM) and all best practice of fire safety engineering methods should be observed in conjunction with project partners. There have been concerns over a number of years around the fire protection regime for new buildings expressed by the architects and designers themselves. The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) points to the delays to Approved Document B with regard to the relationship of Building Regulations to changing design and construction. AEI Cables provides a full range of cabling products through its Total Fire Solutions service RIBA says the virtual disappearance of the role of the clerk of works or site architect and the loss of independent oversight of construction and workmanship on behalf of the client is a further issue for concern. In essence, RIBA believes that future proposals for the fire safety regulatory regime should be informed by the specialist fire safety expertise of relevant professional organisations and groups, and also take full account of this wider set of construction industry AEI Cables provides a full range of cabling products through its Total Fire Solutions service with the support of its parent company Ducab based in Dubai, with the design, manufacture and supply of MIC, Firetec Enhanced or Firetec Power depending on specific needs. The choice of cabling and accessories should not be underestimated at the earliest opportunity to ensure the fire and rescue services are given every chance of success in rescuing people and saving property.
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.”
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.
The Phase 1 report of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry, released Oct. 30, examines events of 14 June, 2017, when 71 people were killed in a high-rise building fire at Grenfell Tower, a residential tower block in North Kensington, London. The report finds London Fire Brigade’s planning and preparation for such a fire was “gravely inadequate.” The report reflects the first phase of the inquiry. Investigators will consider problems related to design, maintenance and renovation of Grenfell Tower in the second phase, as well as whether building and fire regulations were adequate and adhered to. Report Suggests Lack Of Training The report found that otherwise experienced incident commanders and senior officers attending the fire had received no training in the particular dangers associated with the building’s combustible cladding, even though some senior officers were aware of similar fires that had occurred in other countries. Otherwise experienced incident commanders and senior officers attending the fire had received no training in the particular dangers Although the London Fire Brigade purports to maintain an operational risk database (ORD) for buildings in London and has a risk assessment policy accessible by all operational firefighters at an incident, the database entry for Grenfell Tower contained almost no information of any use to an incident commander called to a fire. The database information was many years out of date and did not reflect the changes made by a building refurbishment. “None of the firefighters or incident commanders on the ground seem to have been able to conceive of the possibility of a general failure of compartmentation or of a need for mass evacuation; they neither truly seized control of the situation nor were able to change strategy,” according to the report. Evacuation Plans The report continues: “National guidance requires fire and rescue services to draw up contingency evacuation plans for dealing with fires in high-rise buildings that spread beyond the compartment of origin causing a ‘stay put’ strategy to become untenable. They should understand, for any given high-rise building in their area, when a partial or full evacuation might become necessary and provide appropriate training to incident commanders.” Friends and families still await justice for their loved ones following the report The public inquiry by Rt Hon Sir Martin Moore-Bick is being conducted in parallel to investigations by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) and Her Majesty’s Coroner for Inner London (West), Professor Fiona The decision to evacuate the building was delayed by almost an hourWilcox. Once the Grenfell fire was out of control, the decision to evacuate the building was delayed by almost an hour, which resulted in additional fatalities. A decision should have been made to evacuate the tower between 1:30 and 1:50 a.m., according to the report. The “stay put” strategy was not questioned, even in response to early indications the building has suffered a “total failure of compartmentation.” The "Stay Put" Recommendation The ‘stay put’ recommendation was based on general wisdom that most fires are likely to be contained in small areas of a building and that anyone trying to escape is likely to run into dangerous flames, smoke-filled corridors, or to interfere with fire-fighting efforts. Obviously, it was bad advice in this case since the fast-moving fire rapidly spread and engulfed the entire building. Combustible panels on the exterior of the building accelerated the fire. The aluminium composite material (ACM) rainscreen panels with polyethylene cores acted as a source of fuel. The ACM rainscreen panels with polyethylene cores acted as a source of fuel There were serious deficiencies in command and control. Although additional resources arrived swiftly, some senior officers failed to give sufficient practical support or inform themselves quickly enough of conditions and operations within the building, according to the report. Communication Strategies Channels of communication between the control room and the incident ground were improvised, uncertain and prone to error. Control room operators did not therefore know enough about conditions in the tower or the progress of responses to individual fire survival guidance calls, so they lacked a sound basis for telling callers whether help was on its way. In a statement in response to the Phase 1 report, the London Fire Commissioner Dany Cotton said: “We are disappointed at some of the criticism of individual staff members who were placed in completely unprecedented circumstances and faced the most unimaginable conditions while trying to save the lives of others.” Furthermore, Matt Wrack, head of the Fire Brigades Union commented: “Nobody [has] explained how you would alert residents when there’s no common fire alarm system.” He also said the building was already a “death trap” when firefighters arrived.
Infographics has announced that Humberside Fire and Rescue Service is the latest fire service to move to the company’s FireWatch Cloud, a fully-managed service based on the Microsoft Azure platform. FireWatch Cloud solution The new FireWatch Cloud solution will provide a resilient architecture, flexible access to the FireWatch integrated fire service management platform from remote locations, and includes software upgrade services and other benefits. Richard Jacques, ICT Data & Applications Manager at Humberside Fire and Rescue Service, said “We are delighted to be working with Infographics on our move to the FireWatch cloud platform. Although this decision is not as a direct result of the current COVID-19 situation, it clearly reinforces the validity of our strategy and benefits of having resilient systems available from anywhere, at any time, with the ability to quickly adapt and scale as needed without reliance on corporate networks and systems.” FireWatch integrated fire service management Richard adds, “That, along with the breadth of features, integrated user experience, teams and workflows available with the FireWatch Cloud platform, will ensure we are in an even stronger position to support the operations of our Fire Services during these challenging times and thereafter.” Russell Wood, Commercial Manager at Infographics, said “We are delighted to announce Humberside Fire & Rescue as another new client of our FireWatch Cloud offering. This follows multiple other recent new FRS contracts, with more to follow in the coming weeks and months. The benefits of the specialist, connected FireWatch Fire Service Management platform in the Cloud are clear and compelling – providing our clients with the ‘big picture’ of their operations and helping them keep working as an integrated service – whatever their location or circumstances.”
The Hyde Group is utilizing Aico’s revolutionary Ei1000G SmartLINK Gateway to provide a solution-focused approach to asset management that assures the safety of their tenants. With over 50,000 homes across London, the south and south east of England, the Hyde Group is taking a proactive approach to the management of its housing stock. Hyde ensures that as many of its homes as possible are occupied, redeveloping those that are not, and improving the efficiency of operations through strategic asset management. Keeping all residents safe from fire is paramount, and asset management is a route to achieving this. In order to mitigate risk and monitor the alarm systems within their properties, Hyde collaborated with Regional Specification Manager of Aico, David Cunningham to provide a solution that was cost-effective, met the requirements for Hyde and ensured minimal disruption for their tenants. Ei3024 Multi-Sensor fire alarm Each of the properties have now been fitted with an Ei3024 Multi-Sensor fire alarm and Ei1000G Gateway The installation of the new Aico SmartLINK Gateway was recommended to provide real-time data insight into the fire alarm system, reporting events such as alarm head removals and fire alerts. Each of the properties have now been fitted with an Ei3024 Multi-Sensor fire alarm and Ei1000G Gateway, giving Hyde a proactive approach to fault-finding, defining any trends in alarm activations and maintenance requirements, while drastically minimizing the issue of property access. The Ei1000G SmartLINK Gateway utilizes Aico’s next generation of wireless technology to interface the SmartLINK Gateway with Aico alarms, assuring easy installation and reliable connection. This allows full visibility of connected RF systems via an online, cloud-based SmartLINK portal system. By having this information in real time, it enables an effective, reactive approach, meaning safer homes. SmartLINK Gateway Compliance Contract Manager for Hyde, Jack Bernard, commented, “The Aico Ei1000G Gateway system enables us to proactively monitor smoke alarms in our homes. The location we initially installed the system in requires an enhanced monitoring function because it suffers from false alarms and tampering. The Gateway enables us to monitor the system in real time, providing specific and useable information to offer a truly safer home.” David Cunningham, Regional Specification Manager for Aico said of the collaboration “In the Hyde Group’s case, they were experiencing large numbers of false-alarming and tampering with the smoke alarms in their properties, resulting in an increase in callouts, maintenance, repairs and disruption to tenants.” With the Aico SmartLINK Gateway, Hyde can ensure the best quality, fit-for-purpose homes “The SmartLINK Gateway is the perfect solution because real-time notifications alert you to any alarm activations or when an alarm is taken off the ceiling. This data insight can enable Hyde to look for trends, identify any issues quickly and rectify these with minimal disruption to the tenants.” Fit-for-purpose homes With the Aico SmartLINK Gateway, Hyde can ensure the best quality, fit-for-purpose homes that are easier and more efficient to maintain and are fully compliant with safety requirements. Aico, an Ei Company, are the UK suppliers of home life safety by pioneering new technologies and offering high-quality alarms, developed and manufactured in Ireland. All Aico alarms meet UK standards and offer a variety of sensor types to guarantee protection for every home, the cornerstone of which is delivering quality, service and innovation. Established in 1967, the Hyde Group provides social housing in London, the south and south east of England with approximately 50,000 homes in their stock. Their mission is to provide affordable, quality housing in response to the housing crisis.
Pierce Manufacturing Inc., an Oshkosh Corporation company, has announced that it has secured an order for eight custom pumpers from Clayton County Fire and Emergency Services based just south of Atlanta in Riverdale, Georgia. Sold through the exclusive Pierce dealer for Georgia and Florida, Ten-8 Fire Equipment, the order for eight Pierce Enforcer Pumpers is the largest in the department’s history and a continuation of Clayton County Fire & Emergency Services’ 2016 apparatus additions. Like the pumpers ordered in 2016, the new pumpers will also be built on the Enforcer custom chassis adding to the 100 percent Pierce fleet. Pierce Enforcer Pumpers “This purchase completes the initiative to create consistency by making our fleet of first-out pumpers, as well as our reserve fleet, all Pierce Apparatus,” said Landry Merkison, Fire Chief and Emergency Services Director for Clayton County Fire & Emergency Services. “Our firefighters will now have the unique ability to work between pumpers in the field, as well as our reserve fleet, with uniformity in each apparatus when it comes to layout and operations of the unit.” The eight new Pierce Enforcer Pumpers will feature: Hale 1,500 GPM pump Cummins L9 450 hp Allison 5th Generation Transmission 750-gallon booster tank Pierce rear camera system Low hose bed/crosslays 197-inch wheelbase Pierce Carcinogen Awareness & Reduction to Exposure (CARE) clean cab features Efficient fire apparatus equipment Our team is grateful to once again support the incredible work of Clayton County Fire & Emergency Services" “Our team is grateful to once again support the incredible work of Clayton County Fire & Emergency Services with the selection of fire apparatus that we know will best meet their needs,” said Jeff Amlong, Sales Consultant for Ten-8 Fire Equipment. Jeff adds, “Our team would also like to recognize the important role of Clayton County’s Board of Commissioners, Finance Department, and Central Services who were all instrumental in making the apparatus order a reality. It was a team effort across the board that had a lot of moving parts, and in the end, all parties worked together toward the common goal of putting the right apparatus in place to best serve the community.” Clayton County Fire & Emergency Services Clayton County Fire & Emergency Services is an all-hazards department with 14 fire stations covering a service area encompassing approximately 122 square miles and 259,000 residents. Given the department’s proximity to the world’s busiest airport, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, as well as three major interstates that run through Clayton County, daily populations served can swell to over one million during peak hours. Tim Sweat, Assistant Fire Chief and Chief Financial Officer for Clayton County Fire & Emergency Services said, “The trust we have in Ten-8 Fire Equipment and Pierce to provide the durability, customer service after the sale, and unique support for the American Fire Service, gives us confidence that we will have optimal resources to offer the extraordinary level of fire protection that our community deserves.”
In the coming months, the Leipzig Fire Department will replace its entire HLF fleet (emergency fire-fighting group vehicles) as the current fleet has reached an average age of almost 20 years. The new fleet will feature 22 vehicles that are the Rosenbauer HLF 20 "Light Class", all identical in construction and equipped with the high-end extinguishing system N35 + DIGIMATIC42. They enter service in equal parts both with the professional and the volunteer fire brigades, who also drew up the specifications together with the Technical and Special Procurement Department of the Leipzig Fire Department. Leipzig Fire Department Fire chief, Andreas Rößler said, "This procurement is primarily intended to achieve the goal of creating a uniform initial unit for the professional fire brigade and the volunteer fire brigade. In addition, not only are 22 identical vehicles in use, but this is also advantageous for maintenance and repair. For this reason, the requirements for the HLF and its loading process were determined in detail by a working group with the various user groups, whereby very different needs had to be harmonized in some cases". HLF 20 "Light Class" fleet A special feature of the HLF 20 "Light Class" vehicle is its narrow width of 2.42 m, based on MAN's C cab A special feature of the HLF 20 "Light Class" vehicle is its narrow width of 2.42 m, based on MAN's C cab. Andreas Rößler adds, "We deliberately chose a narrow chassis in order to get through the traffic better. Leipzig is a rapidly growing city in which the volume of traffic is becoming increasingly dense, bringing the infrastructure increasingly to its limits”. He adds, “In addition, we had to take into account the different structural conditions in the alert zone as well as in our fire stations and equipment buildings when we had to procure such a comprehensive system. For this reason, for example, the vehicle height is limited to 3.15 m." COMFORT mounting system One of the challenges with the vehicle configuration was to accommodate the extensive standard load of the HLF 20 in a body with a reduced width. The COMFORT mounting system with its space-saving pull-outs (e.g. for hydraulic rescue equipment), rotary attachments (for power generators) and hose magazines performed outstandingly well. Bulky equipment (in its own box) and sliding ladders are transported on the roof with two one-man reels that can be mounted at the rear. There was also room for a light mast in the superstructure, and the Leipzig HLF also transports 400 l more water and 60 l more foam compound than the standard requirement (1600/120 l). N35 + DIGIMATIC42 extinguishing equipment The extinguishing equipment used also exceeds the standard requirements. The N35 pump has an output of up to 3,000 l/min at 10 bar. The DIGIMATIC42 pressure proportioning system has a spread of 0.1 to 42 l/min and is suitable for outputting both mains water and extinguishing foam. The central water axis automatically distributes all water in the vehicle to where it is needed (tank, pump or both at the same time). The machine operator can concentrate fully on the foam addition or the pressure side, which essentially consists of four low pressure outlets and another to the quick attack reel. The water/foam concentrate mixture from the DIGIMATIC42 is injected directly at the outlet, so that the water pump remains free of foam concentrate. Cabin with Action Tower The vehicle is mounted on a 15-t chassis, a 290 hp strong engine in combination with a TipMatic The vehicle is mounted on a 15-t chassis (MAN TGM 15.290 LL 4x2), a 290 hp (215 kW) strong engine in combination with a TipMatic, which provides plenty of pull when on deployment. The crew compartment is integrated into the body and is equipped with six seats (vehicle crew: 2+2+4) and four PA brackets. An "Action Tower" installed between the front seats offer storage space for rescue service backpacks, breathing masks, a battery charger for hydraulic rescue and electrical equipment (sabre saw, cordless screwdriver), thermal imaging camera, gas detector and walkie-talkies. Fully glazed doors allow the crew to get an optimal view to the outside. Prototypes tested for operational efficiency Two prototypes were used by the Leipzig Fire Department for testing purposes between November 2018 and March 2019. They were stationed at different stations (e.g. main fire stations, Westwache, Engelsdorf, Grünau, etc.) by professional and volunteer fire brigades, so that the teams could develop a feeling for driving and operating the pump as well as for the fast access to the devices and/or generally for technical procedures. After all, they had not yet had any experience with Rosenbauer vehicles; the 22 HLF 20s are the very first to be put into service in Leipzig. According to Brandrat Rößler, the feedback concerning the trial operation was very positive. He said, "The bright ambient lighting was one of the highlights, in the truest sense of the word. The Rosenbauer revolving staircase was also very well received, fully meeting our requirements for fast entry and exit into and out of the crew compartment and providing our emergency services with added safety. In any case, we are looking forward to being able to accept the first eleven vehicles into regular service in June after the predominantly positive experiences from the prototype tests and the subsequent optimizations." The Leipzig Fire Brigade The Leipzig Fire Brigade is one of the ten largest emergency rescue operations organizations in Germany The Leipzig Fire Brigade is one of the ten largest emergency rescue operations organizations in Germany. In addition to the 700 full-time employees in six fire stations of the professional fire brigade, there are over a thousand volunteers in 22 local fire brigades. In addition, 360 children and young people are involved in the youth fire brigade. The Leipzig Fire Department is not only responsible for fire protection and special rescue operations (high, deep, water rescue), it is also responsible for the general rescue service in the city and, among other things, transporting the sick. In addition, it acts as the garrison for the Federal Analytical Task Force. Robust, powerful fire-fighting vehicles In the previous year, the Leipzig Fire Brigade was alerted with more than 10,000 missions, almost half of which (4,634) - an unusually large number compared with other cities - were fire missions. Not least for this reason, the Fire Department opted for particularly powerful and robust fire-fighting vehicles for the latest procurement, which can be operated quickly and reliably and with which they can easily get through traffic.
The two cantons of Obwalden and Nidwalden are located in the heart of Switzerland, nestled in beautiful mountain landscapes of the Swiss Alps with high peaks, surrounded by lush green valleys, and picturesque serene lakes. However, this beautiful natural geography also brings with it many natural hazards to which the fire departments must adapt and respond to effectively, among other things with the help of the EMEREC operational management system. Since 2017, the fire departments of the Swiss cantons of Obwalden and Nidwalden have joined forces to form a fire department inspectorate. Over 80,000 inhabitants live in the operational area, which is largely rural. In addition to the specific geographical conditions, there are other challenges for the fire department: busy motorways with tunnels, three airfields, and a number of larger companies. There are also well-known tourist destinations with large hotels, ski resorts, and hiking areas, as well as many cable cars. Swiss fire departments rely on EMEREC The fire departments in the region must be prepared for and, above all, equipped for many dangers “The scenic backdrop is impressive, but the beautiful nature also holds dangers - streams, avalanches, lakes, storms, droughts leading to forest fires or flash floods have posed great challenges in recent years," says Stefan Enz from the Obwalden/Nidwalden Fire Department Inspectorate in Switzerland. In addition to this, there is heavy traffic and sometimes accidents on the busy transit routes. The fire departments in the region must therefore be prepared for and, above all, equipped for many dangers - from standard fires, through technical operations, to major catastrophes and natural disasters. EMEREC operations management system In order to maintain an overview of these challenging tasks, the Obwalden/Nidwalden fire departments inspectorate has adopted the EMEREC operations management system from Rosenbauer. "We have all operational plans, building information, and much more data pre-entered into the system. Thus, we always have the latest operational plans and essential data. Likewise, we can always query information on natural disasters when we are at the site of the operation," explains Stefan Enz. The benefits of the system are obvious to him, he says "It is easy to use, clear, requires little training, and is also available offline." A special partnership brings with it additional benefits: Rosenbauer's local distribution partner, Ecosafe, not only supplies its customers with the hardware and software for EMEREC, but also with its content. Ecosafe also creates a large number of contingency plans for emergency response organizations throughout Switzerland and is well acquainted with the dangers present in the region. Fire safety operations management EMEREC is already a valuable and helpful aid when managing missions Thanks to EMEREC, it is possible to maintain an overview and to provide an up-to-date, uniform picture of the situation for all participating emergency services, especially in the case of large-scale operations such as natural disasters with multiple operational sites. Communication and the exchange of information are essential success factors in the coordination and successful undertaking of such scenarios. However, the operations management system not only provides practical support in large-scale operations, but also in the everyday activities of the inspectorate's 19 fire departments. For Stefan Enz, it is clear that the modern EMEREC operations management system will continue to grow in importance over the coming years. Additional functions are already planned for implementation in the foreseeable future within the Obwalden/Nidwalden fire department inspectorate. EMEREC is already a valuable and helpful aid when managing missions. The use of this intelligent technology will certainly be expanded in the future in all likelihood.
Founded in France in June 2006, QIM specializes in the design, supply, installation and maintenance of quality automatic sprinkler systems. Created on the simple principle of providing quality products and service, QIM strives to ensure it offers the very best, most effective sprinkler protection systems for warehouses. Staying true to these principles, the company continues to see steady growth, with annual revenue reaching nearly £4 million in 2016. Tighter sprinkler regulations Focusing exclusively on warehouse projects, QIM works with some of the most respected construction companies in France. With French law requiring all warehouses larger than 6,000 m² in size requiring sprinkler protection, it is fair to say that QIM is used to large-scale projects. There is now a lot of choice, with many companies and products in the sprinkler world" Despite many changes in the industry, including tighter sprinkler regulations for warehouses, the company has continued to grow. When assessing what has changed in the industry in the last five years, Thomas Delahaye, engineer, at QIM, is clear while stating, “There is now a lot of choice, with many companies and products in the sprinkler world. Prices have also been steadily decreasing.” Tyco Factory Mutual (FM) pumps Despite continuing to grow, the company has never lost sight of its founding principle of providing quality products and service. Reflecting this, QIM’s CEO recently announced the company was seeking to maintain its current annual revenue rather than increase it. Whilst this may seem an odd aim for a company that has experienced such growth, Mr. Delahaye is in complete agreement with the policy, stating “This will allow us to choose our future projects and ensure we completely satisfy each customer.” Like most companies operating in the increasingly demanding construction industry, staying ahead of competition and keeping to tight schedules is vital - not just for their reputation but also their clients. Understanding this, QIM has, and continues to seek out, products and technologies that enable it to meet deadlines and stay ahead of the competition. This is why, Mr. Delahaye explains, the company continues to use Tyco products, “We have used Tyco products almost exclusively since our foundation. They continue to be our choice because of their prices and range of stock.” ESFR-25 sprinkler heads One recent project that the company is particularly proud of is a large warehouse recently completed in Amiens, northern France for an internationally-recognized global commerce company. Measuring 107,000 m2 in size, it is the company’s largest warehouse in the country. The scale and importance of the project meant installation was a huge undertaking; involving a staggering 10,000 Tyco model ESFR-25 sprinkler heads as well as 36 Tyco check valves and multiple Tyco Factory Mutual (FM) pumps. ESFR-25: Early Suppression Fast Response (ESFR) provides effective heavy sprinkler discharge at heights of up to 48ft (14.6m). Their benefits include Competitive prices Unique product range eliminates compromise The technical skills and know-how to ensure success Early Suppression Fast Response Benefits For this project, as with their others, there was no hesitation when it came to choosing which fire protection products to install, with Mr. Delahaye stating, “Tyco have the technical services and skills to answer our questions and solve problems, while their multiple locations mean getting Tyco products is quick and simple.”, stated Thomas Delahaye, Engineer, at QIM. In addition to the excellent reputation and uniqueness of Tyco products, Mr. Delahaye also highlighted another important aspect to the Tyco product range that is always a key consideration for businesses such as theirs own, which is the cost factor, “Tyco products are also very competitively priced compared to others,” added Mr. Delahaye.