How to Choose a Fire Alarm System for Your Business (part 2)

 

Choosing the most appropriate alarm system to protect the people on site

The most important element of a fire alarm system is to guarantee that it can alert all people on your premises to danger. It is your responsibility to protect all people on site, therefore, your business’s alarm system must consider the potential requirements of them.

If there are a number of people on your premises, you will need to directly communicate with them. In this case, a fire alarm system with a public address system built in is the most appropriate because it helps you give specific evacuation instructions as well as reassure people.

There may also be people who are hard of hearing or vulnerable people on site. In these cases, you have to ensure that your alarm system takes into account their safety needs. Moreover, special fire alarms which can send radio wave signals to pager devices may be required for people with hearing difficulties.

Is it necessary to have a fire alarm system which allows two-way communications?

In fact, two-way communications are necessary to provide communication between people on site and people outside of a burning building. It is appropriate in particularly dangerous situations or for the buildings having delayed evacuation procedure.

Special requirements for fire alarm systems

In some situations, it is necessary to use very early warning smoke detectors to detect a fire right the moment it starts so that the evacuation can begin immediately. This may be used in places like the concert, theatres, and entertainment venues with a lot of people gathering in a small space.

Museums or listed buildings may require wireless fire alarms because there are less upheaval and damage caused by having to lay physical cabling that may spoil the building.

Contact a professional specialist for installation and maintenance

It is advisable to consult the advice of a professional fire alarm specialist about how to best protect your business from fire.

Fire Detection and Alarm Systems: A Brief Guide (part 2)

Where to Start When Choosing a System

You should choose the type of fire detection and alarm system which is suitable for your fire safety objectives that flow from a risk assessment of your operation and facility. Your risk tolerance and your afford to lose is the important parts of this process.

The issues when considering the type of fire detection and alarm system for a hospital are not the same as they are for a warehouse. In a facility where human life safety is the main concern, like the hospitals where the patients mostly aren’t able to evacuate themselves, an early warning is necessary. Other facilities like hotels, dormitories where the occupants may be sleeping when a fire occurs also require an alarm system which provides more rapid notification.

Meanwhile, in a warehouse where the occupants are almost awake and aware and there are often fewer of them, the alarm system may not need to provide notice as early. In other facilities where life safety isn’t a major issue, the fire detection and alarm system can be slower.

When selecting a fire detection and alarm system, you also must consider the commitment which will be required over the system’s life. Requirements for these systems such as testing, inspection, and maintenance are extensive. Meeting these requirements over the system’s life will usually cost more than the original installation.

Initiating devices are the elements which originate the signal. This group of components also includes detectors, manual pull stations, and supervisory devices.

A manual pull station (Figure 1) may be just a switch which activates the alarm system when being operated by a building occupant. A manual pull station should be placed where it is easy for the building occupants to find. They are mostly located along travel routes which would be used while exiting the building.