Conventional fire Alarms will need to be upgraded
The latest amendments to the fire code have seen a need to focus on the fire alarm systems within Residential Care homes, Nursing homes, or buildings where the occupants would need assistance to evacuate the building in the event of fire. In the latest version of the fire alarm design code BS5839-1:2013, it is very clear and states that for such properties with a sleeping capacity beyond ten people, the fire alarm system should be an addressable.
With the huge increase in Residential Care homes, nursing homes, assisted living and buildings of this nature, plus the fire tragedy of the fourteen fatalities at the Rosepark Care Home in 2004, the revised fire code appears to have focused its attention on these types of properties. People living within such properties are vulnerable due to ill health or age, and would usually require assistance if they had to evacuate the property. In many cases due to the limited amount of staff on a night shift and such is the health condition of the occupants, that an evacuation policy is not the preferred option. What is commonly used is a “stayed Put” policy. On hearing the fire alarm the residents are told to stay in their rooms until the fire and rescue service arrives. If the fire has started in an occupied zone compartment, the staff will relocate only the residents affected in that zone.
Therefore, providing the management of these establishments and the fire and rescue service the maximum amount of time to deal with a fire alarm activation is crucial.
Why an Addressable fire alarm system?
In simple terms, an addressable system enables the user or rescue service, to quickly and easily identify the exact location of an activated detector or manual call point.