Fire Alarm Systems

There are four core elements to any effective fire alarm system: the way it is designed, its installation, its commissioning and its maintenance.

No matter the fire alarm system, we have a range of flexible options and, depending on your requirements, we can:

System Types

Fire alarm systems are split into three main types:

  • Category L - primarily designed to protect life
  • Category P - primarily designed to protect property
  • Category M – the manual call points and sounders that form part of both L and P systems

Within these technical categories there is a wide range of choice, from conventional ‘non-addressable’ fire alarms to addressable analogue and digital systems that give building users and the Fire & Rescue services more details of where an incident may have occurred. These may either be hard-wired or wireless, and are commonly used in larger buildings or entire estates of buildings.

Residential property and smaller commercial buildings can be served by simpler mains-linked smoke and heat alarms. Whatever the system type we are specialist providers and preferred system integrators for a number of major manufacturers.

We’re also experts in aspirating smoke systems (VESDA/AIRSENSE) – used where access may be difficult, contamination levels vary or very early warning is required. 

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Design

We design fire alarm systems suitable for small domestic properties, to systems found in industrial estates, to those in national embassies. In every case the same principles apply – gaining a clear understanding of our client’s needs, assessing the structure and type of building and ensuring the design of the fire alarm system matches the intended use of the building.

The first stage of an alarm system’s design is for one of our fully qualified technicians to carry out a full survey. The aim of this is to identify any matters that may affect the design of the system. We will then put together a proposal for the best system to meet your needs and budget, itemising each component and supplying a comprehensive quotation.

TRAINING

Training in the operation of the fire alarm system at each site would be given on completion of the installation. During this training, system users would be instructed in the following matters:

• Basic control panel operation
• Weekly testing requirements
• Maintenance of the system log book
• Causes of false alarms and how to avoid them
• Fault identification and normal causes
• Fault reporting

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Installation

Our installation work is carried out to the highest standards. Cabling, for example, is only ever undertaken by qualified electricians and all devices are fitted by our own in-house installation teams and technicians.

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Commissioning

Commissioning is carried out by our in-house, qualified technicians in conjunction with the installation teams. We test every element, and the system as a whole, to make sure it matches the specified design and installation requirements. Only once this work has been carried out will we sign off and supply a commissioning certificate for the project.

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Maintenance

To maintain continuity of service our in-house technicians are given dedicated geographic areas, this enables them to build up a working knowledge of the sites in their care. We regularly audit our maintenance work and keep on-site and off-site records of visits and work completed.

All our technicians are either fully-qualified electricians or have a proven electro-technical background with relevant electronics-based qualifications. We invest in and continue to train our technicians through a combination of formal, on-the-tools and manufacturer courses to maintain high levels of product, system and standards knowledge, awareness of requirements and a sound overview of fire safety management.

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Verification

The final module is Verification – this is the review and analysis of complete systems from initial design criteria to current use against current risk. This process is generally completed by only the most competent and qualified of fire alarm organisations.

It involves all the other modules, plus the ability to correlate the information against the current risk factors present in a building; these may vary from the original design. For example, the original design could be for an open warehouse, the current use may be a commercial bakery with packing facilities, refrigeration and offices, resulting in a change of risk. Competent verification would assess the operation and compliance of the original installation and highlight the potential requirement for changes to address the new risks.

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