Should a fire ever break out, every second will count. The best way of ensuring the safety of everyone is to get them evacuated as quickly as possible.
And in order to achieve that, you need a method which will spread the message to everyone in an instant.
A conventional fire alarm system will do just that.
As soon as it has detected a potential fire, the alarms will sound to make sure everyone is aware.
It’s also ideal for use in a number of different premises. The conventional fire alarm system is ideal for small shops and offices, schools, rented accommodation of all types, and more.
The use of zones makes it easy to identify the location where the alarm was triggered. That means when the fire brigade turns up, they can go straight to the location of the suspected fire.
The Brains Of The Operation
The control panel is the hub of the whole fire alarm system.
Everything on the system communicates via the panel. When a detector picks up a threat, it sends a signal straight here. That will then trigger all the sounders, bells and beacons on the system.
It is also where users and engineers can monitor the system from. So whenever there is a fault, or the alarms are ringing, this is your first point of call to fully understand the situation.
In fact, it also has the ability to fault-test itself. So that’s one less worry for you.
With alert inputs, you can use your fire alarm system for other purposes as well to make it multi-functioning. That allows you to use the bells and sounders to alert everyone to a class change or other purpose. You just need to ensure everybody understands what the different sounds mean.
When selecting which control panel to purchase, you should have an idea of how many zones you need. For example, you may want each zone to represent a different floor of your building, with another for the warehouse. They come with a choice of 2, 4 and 8 zones.
Discovering A Fire
Every room should have at least one detector. Just like traditional battery alarms, these come with a choice of different sensors: optical, ionisation, and heat.
That allows you to choose the detector which is most appropriate for the location. For example, in a kitchen area, you are likely to want a heat detector to prevent steam causing false alarms. Whereas, you’ll likely want to install an optical detector in your office space.
Placing detectors in every room gives the best chance of discovering a fire as quickly as possible.
Each zone should also have a minimum of one call point. This is because it’s likely that someone could discover a fire or smoke before the detector. The result of a manual method for raising the alarm means everyone can react a lot earlier than they otherwise would have.
Call points are simple to use and easily identifiable, but it is vital that they are not blocked so someone can find them with ease. You could locate them with firefighting equipment, meaning everything that might be needed is in one place.
Raising The Alarm
You need a method of warning everyone instantaneously. It needs to grab people’s attention and give no excuse for people to not be aware.
Sounders give a loud and recognisable auditory warning, with bells offering a more traditional sound. But either way, they will ensure everyone gets the message so they can take action.
It’s best that from time-to-time you perform a fire drill. That means everyone knows what they need to do when the alarms do go off and will become familiar with the sound.
Beacons offer a solution when it may not be possible for people to hear the warnings. These could be because they are working in a high-noise environment or have hearing difficulties.
Either way, with a range of beacons, sounders and bells, you have the best chance of making sure everyone is aware of the potential hazard.
Joining It All Together
In order for the system to actually work, you need to have cabling connecting it all together. However, you need to use fire-rated cables.
This ensures they have the ability to resist fire to keep working when you need them most. They give your fire alarm system the best chance of doing its job. Different cables have the ability to resist fire for longer than others.
The cable also needs securing correctly to prevent it from getting damaged. The recommendations state that cabling running horizontally needs fixing every 300mm. For vertically-running cables, fittings need placing every 400mm.
It isn’t always necessary to purchase this yourself when buying a fire alarm system. This is because many installers provide their own cabling.
And When The Power Goes Off
When the lights go off because of a power failure, you cannot afford for your fire alarm system to stop as well. That’s why you should have a battery backup in your control panel.
Batteries will keep the whole fire alarm system fully-functioning, and the control panel will then recharge the batteries once the power is up and working again. Plus these batteries have a long life and require little maintenance.
So batteries will help to keep everyone safe no matter what happens. Even if a fire cuts the power supply, you can ensure that the alarms continue to sound.
All these elements together help to build a fire alarm system which is reliable and robust enough to handle any challenge. Plus you can tailor your system to work for you and your business.
Whatever the needs are, and the potential risks which exist, your conventional fire alarm system will keep everyone safe.