Design, installation, commissioning and maintenance to Bs5839
IN THE UK around 80% of all fire deaths and injuries occur in dwellings, a total of 450 to 500 deaths and 14,000 injuries per annum, according to BS 5839-6: 2004.
The installation of a fire detection and alarm system can significantly reduce the risk of death or serious injury from fire. The fatality rate in fires in dwellings is three times higher where there is no smoke detector or where it is not working compared to dwellings where a fully functioning smoke detector is fitted.
Rented Accommodation / HMO (Houses in Multiple Occupation) Fire Systems
Design, Installation, commissioning and maintenance
We at London City Electricians specialise in HMO installation.We fit good tested established brands like Fike fire panels and Multi smoke / Heat detection.
With false fire alarms in HMO outlets and small business and catering commercial outlets/restaurants, this can be avoided. The Fike twinflex pro has the multi head smoke/heat and strobes all in one which saves on install time and the costmetic appearance of extra bell strobes in the work area. The main advantage is the fact that it has a delay for a local detection which is part of a dwelling and allows the end user to fix the small issues ie a burnt toast before it goes in full alarm mode.
See demonstration link
Inspection and Servicing
This information is provided for the general guidance of fire detection and fire alarm system users. As it is a summary, it omits much of the information included in BS5839 part 1. It is therefore not intended to be a replacement for the detailed recommendations included within British Standard.
Routine testing by the user
It is vital for a regular test to be undertaken to ensure that there has not been a major failure of the entire fire detection and fire alarm system that may otherwise go unnoticed.
• Test a manual call point during working hours to cheek that the control panel and alarm sounders operate satisfactorily
• Each week, a different manual call point should be tested
• Voice alarm systems should be tested weekly in accordance with BS5839 Part 8. If the system is connected to an Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC) for calling the fire brigade, it is very important that the ARC is notified before testing commences and when it is complete
• Any automatically started generator used for the fire detection and fire alarm system should be tested
• Any vented batteries used as a standby power supply for the fire detection and fire alarm system inspected
Inspection and Servicing by a competent person
The inspection and servicing should be undertaken by organisations with the appropriate competence. This can be assured by the use of organisations that are third party certificated, by a UKAS accredited certification body, specifically to carry out inspection and servicing of fire detection and fire alarm systems.
Periodic inspection and testing
• The period between visits to undertake inspection and service should he based upon a risk assessment but the maximum period between visits should not exceed six months.
• The log book should be inspected
• A visual inspection should be made to check whether structural or occupancy changes have been made that require changes to the fire detection and fire alarm system.
• False alarm records should be checked and relevant action taken if necessary
• Batteries should be checked and tested
• Control panel functions should be checked and tested
• Fire alarm devices should be tested
• Facilities for automatic transmission of alarm signals to an alarm receiving centre (ARC) should be checked after advising the ARC of the proposed actions
• All fault indicators and circuits should be tested and checked
• Printers should be tested
• Other checks and tests recommended by the manufacturer should be carried out
• Outstanding defects should be reported and the logbook completed and servicing certificate issued.
• The recommended period between successive inspection and servicing visits should not exceed six months.
Quarterly inspection of vented batteries
• Vented batteries should be examined by a person with relevant competence and should be topped up if necessary
Inspection and test of a system over a 12 month period
• The switch mechanism of every manual call point should be tested
• Every automatic fire detector should be examined and functionally tested. This includes, but is not limited to; smoke detectors, resettable heat detectors, optical beam smoke detectors, aspirating fire detection systems, carbon monoxide fire detectors and flame detectors
• All fire alarm devices (both visual and audible) should be tested
• Certain filament lamps should be replaced
• Radio fire detection and fire alarm system signal strengths should be checked
• Visual inspection of readily accessible cable fixings should be undertaken
• The cause and effect programme should be checked
• The standby power supply capacity should be checked
• Other annual checks and tests recommended by the system component manufacturers should be undertaken
• Outstanding defects should be reported and the servicing certificate issued.
• As this is labour-intensive servicing, it is recommended that the work can be spread over two or more service visits during each twelve-month period
The arrangements in the above section, inspection and servicing are intended to maintain the system in operation under normal circumstances. However, from time to time, the fire alarm system is likely to require non-routine attention, including special maintenance. Non-routine maintenance includes:
• special inspection of an existing fire alarm system when a new servicing organization takes over servicing the system;
• repair of faults or damage;
• modification to take account of extensions, alterations, changes in occupancy or false alarms;
• action to address an unacceptable rate of false alarms;
• inspection and test of the system following a fire.
For instance recommendations on unacceptable rate of false alarms:
Any false alarm investigation and subsequent modifications to the system takes into account the guidance provided in BS5839. Any organisation undertaking false alarm investigations and related remedial work should be able to demonstrate their competence to undertake such work. This section contains comprehensive information on all aspects of limitation of false alarms.
The measures to limit false alarms are divided into eight groups:
• Siting and selection of manual call points
• Selection and siting of automatic fire detectors
• Selection of system type
• Protection against electromagnetic interference
• Performance monitoring of newly commissioned systems
• Filtering measures
• System management
• Regular servicing and maintenance
A policy has been devised by the Department of Communities and Local Government for Fire and Rescue Services which isPolicies for Dealing with Unwanted Fire Signals from Automatic Fire Alarms.
In addition to government legislation, byelaws and local policy documents exist, created by local authorities at both district and county level, demanding the installation of fire alarm systems. These vary from area to area and advice must be sought from the appropriate local authority on any regulations in force.
British Standards Relating to Fire Alarms
The appropriate British standards for installation of a fire alarm in non domestic premises is BS 5839-1:2012 and BS 5839-6:2013 for the design, installation and maintenance of fire detection and fire alarm systems in dwellings. A number of British Standards relating to fire alarm systems follows.
Fire Alarm British Standards
Fire detection and fire alarm systems for buildings. Code of practice for system design, installation, commissioning and maintenance
BS EN 54-11:2001
Fire detection and fire alarm systems. Specification for manual call points has replaced BS 5839-2:1983
Specification for automatic release mechanisms for certain fire protection equipment.
BS EN 54-4:1998
Fire detection and fire alarm systems. Power supply equipment has replaced BS 5839-4:1988
BS EN 54-2:1997+A1:2006
Fire detection and fire alarm systems. Control and indicating equipment has replaced BS 5839-4:1988
Fire detection and fire alarm systems for buildings. Code of practice for the design, installation and maintenance of fire detection and fire alarm systems in dwellings
Fire detection and fire alarm systems for buildings. Code of practice for the design, installation, commissioning and maintenance of voice alarm systems
Fire detection and alarm systems for buildings. Code of practice for the design, installation, commissioning and maintenance of emergency voice communication systems
Guides to BS 5839
The Design, Installation, Commissioning and Maintenance of Fire Detection and Fire Alarm Systems: A Guide to BS 5839-1 (3rd edition)
A Guide to BS 5839-6:2004
The Design and Installation of Voice Alarm Systems. A Guide to BS 5839-8
Associated British Standards
Fire detection and fire alarm devices for dwellings. Specification for heat alarms
Fire detection and fire alarm devices for dwellings. Specification for smoke alarm kits for deaf and hard of hearing people
Remote centre’s receiving signals from fire and security systems. Code of practice