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Types of Fire Alarm Systems

types of fire alarms can include broken glass units

Are you interested to know about the types of fire alarm systems there are for industrial premises, retail premises and for fire safety in municipal, public, agricultural, and commercial buildings? You are, well read on – you can find out here in this fire safety blog article, compiled and written our fire alarm system experts here at RJ Wilson.

The main task of any fire protection installation is to prevent the spread of fire. Minimising fire protects human life and health, enables evacuation from the danger zone and prevents property damage.

The most popular systems of this type include fire protection installations with a high level of sophistication. These are undoubtedly extremely important safety elements that will allow you to quickly detect heat, smoke, or flames – namely the elements that are ultimately recognised as a fire, or the precursor to one, thanks to alarm systems – helping to increase the survivability of occupants and emergency responders, while decreasing property losses.

Categorisation of fire detection and alarm systems

Category M – Automatic fire alarm systems

Automatic fire alarm systems are typically the most used. Staff will activate fire alarms automatically when they discover a blaze and warn others nearby. A manual fire alarm system usually utilises broken glass units that are strategically installed in every building, sounding an alarm throughout the building. It is worth noting that here are automatic alarm systems that use a gong or hand bell for small businesses that do not require more than one device to effectively sound an alarm across the building.

Category L – Fire detection systems for life protection

  • L1 – Earliest possible fire detection
  • L2 – Fire detection in specified areas
  • L3 – Protecting paths to fire escape
  • L4 – Protection of fire escape routes
  • L5 – Localised fire protection

Category P – Fire detection systems to protect properties

Whereas Category L systems are designed to protect life, Category P systems aim primarily to protect properties against fires and smoke.

  • Category P1 – Complete fire protection for earliest possible warning
    Category P1 fire alarm systems include detectors installed across all areas. The purpose of such systems would be to provide protection for buildings critical to business operation. By using maximum fire security across all sites, fire officials will be able to quickly detect and neutralise any fire arising in any area. It lowers the risk and disruption and consequently reduces the costs associated with fires.
  • Category P2 – Fire detectors for defined areas of a building
    Fire alarms are usually installed in high-risk locations only for fire detector category P2. While this solution provides a similar level of cover for P1, it provides the best chance at locating the source of any kind of fire. This early detection will reduce time needed to reach the area and helps reduce the damage to property.

What types of commercial fire alarm system I can use for my business?

Fire protection requirements for building structures are regulated by Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 or “the Fire Safety Order”. It applies across England and Wales and came into force on 1 October 2006, requiring all companies to have an appropriate fire detection system. In the event of a fire hazard, you need a protective system that can detect the source of the fire and warn workers and people in and around the building as quickly as possible.

As a Director and employer, representing the Company, you are responsible for the Company’s fire safety. Installing a fire alarm is, therefore, an easy way to ensure the safety of the Company employees as well as comply with regulations. The most typical commercial fire alarm systems are used depending on the type of commercial building. This includes:

Conventional Fire Alarms Systems

A conventional system consists of groups of initiating devices, linked into individual zones, grouped into a single loop, and connected to a control panel. Although the initial installation costs of these systems are lower, they offer much less information about the activated devices and are not able to identify the places where the alarm occurs (the operator must locate the problem area manually). In search of maximum security and value, more large industrial companies are breaking with convention and choosing analog addressable systems.

Wireless Fire Alarms Systems

The wireless fire alarm system, the elements do not require traditional wiring. They are portable, easy to install, extremely flexible, and most suitable for commercial buildings where aesthetics play an important role and designers want a smoother finish.

Monitored Fire Alarms Systems

Fire monitoring is based on automatic transmission without human intervention. The fire service is alerted as soon as it is triggered.

Aspirating Fire Alarms Systems

Aspiration systems allow for a very early detection of fire risk, and at the same time eliminate the risk of false alarms. They work well in hard-to-reach and demanding spaces.

Gas Suppression Systems

Gaseous fire suppression systems are ideal for protecting assets where water may pose a risk. IT, Data and Communication areas are the most common applications for using this fire protection systems.

Addressable Fire Alarms Systems

Addressable fire alarms are made up of a series of detectors and alarms that are all connected to a central control panel.

Here at RJ Wilson, we provide our clients with assistance at every stage of the investment, from on-site inspection and risk analysis, through design and installation, to service and maintenance of installed fire alarms and fire detection systems.

We offer many types of systems and configurations that can be adapted to any type of facility; large commercial warehouse, office, school, farm, laboratory, factory, offices, and residential or industrial buildings that require special solutions. Fire protection systems are designed to detect a fire reliably and quickly, thus saving human life and minimising material losses.

Our offer includes a full range of fire safety systems, incl. sound warning systems, smoke extraction systems or fire extinguishing systems, water, gas, water mist and foam extinguishing systems.

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