Legislation & Standards | Fire
We take exhaustive measures regarding fire safety issues so you don’t have to.
For more information and links to British Standards go to British Standards Specifications
Portable Fire Extinguishers
|BS EN 3-10:2009
||Provisions for the attestation of conformity of portable fire extinguishers in accordance with EN 3 Part 1 to Part 5. Amendment 1
|BS EN 3-7 2004 + A1 : 2007
||Characteristics, performance requirements and test methods
|BS EN 3-8:2006
||Additional requirements to EN 3-7 for the construction, resistance to pressure and mechanical tests for extinguishers with a maximum allowable pressure equal to or lower than 30 bar
||Recommendations for colour coding to indicate the extinguishing media contained in portable fire extinguishers
Fire extinguishing installations and equipment on premises.
||Guide for the selection of installed systems and other fire equipment
||Hose reels and foam inlets
||Specification for sprinkler systems
||Commissioning and maintenance of portable fire extinguishers
||Specification for carbon dioxide systems
||Halon systems. Specification for halon 1301 total flooding systems
||Halon systems. Halon 1211 total flooding systems
|BS EN 13565-2:2009
||Code of practice for Selection and installation of portable fire extinguishers.
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.
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.
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 is Policies 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 RELEVANT TO FIRE ALARMS
The appropriate British standards for installation of a fire alarm in non domestic premises is BS 5839-1:2002+A2:2008 and BS 5839-6:2004 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
|S 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
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