Fire Alarm SystemsFor Life

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Fire alarm systems are mandatory in most or all structures. They are required to be installed in new construction and are required to be installed in older structures built before fire alarm systems were compulsory for all homes and buildings. It is a given that a building with some type of early warning sign or signs of a fire, as well as a sprinkler system, will reduce damage and loss of life by a good 50%. This fact alone is enough to encourage homeowners and building owners to not only install these systems, but to periodically have them inspected and maintained.

When homes and buildings are under construction, fire alarm contractors are hired to inspect the structures to be sure every part is up to code according to local and state laws pertaining to fire safety. They will install up to date fire alarm systems, in keeping with the requirements of the law.

Fire alarm systems are usually designed as a series of early warning detection, alarms, sprinklers, and other important components. These act together to signal the occupants of the structure and to give them enough time to begin their preplanned evacuation. An important fact to keep in mind is that, unless it includes a sprinkler system, a simple fire alarm system provides nothing to contain or extinguish a fire. When coupled with a suppression system such as sprinklers, fire alarm systems will provide early warning for the occupants as well as early control of the fire.

The more complex the fire alarm design is, the more expensive it will be. A simple heat detector is known to be the slowest warning system when there is a fire, and it is the least expensive system there is. The most rapid fire detection system is the air-aspirating smoke detection system which can cost the customer at least five to ten times more than the heat detector.

Surprisingly, in spite of having some type of fire detection system in place, out of 119 business surveyed, only 35% actually have an evacuation plan mapped out for their employees and staff. In medical facilities such as hospitals and nursing homes, 55% of fires are reported to be confined cooking fires. Non confined fires due to some type of electrical malfunction are the cause of 19% of hospital or medical facility fires. Another statistic shows that buildings and dwellings such as apartments, offices, medical facilities, and hotels are where half of high rise fires occur.

The function of fire alarm systems is two fold; to detect a potential fire in the structure or facility and to warn the occupants. It seems cut and dry, however, although an early detection system seems simple, the components that mold it together need to be state of the art and specific according to law. There needs to be no question that this system will work when it is needed. Lives and property depend upon the proper functioning of every step. In addition, in order to provide the ultimate protection, as mentioned earlier, a fire alarm system should ideally be coupled with a sprinkler system that will begin to control the fire while fire personnel are enroute. It is true that the early warning system is first and foremost in providing people with ample opportunity to evacuate the premises; however, a suppression system is necessary, as well, to save lives and to prevent as much destruction as possible to property.

Proper and periodic maintenance and inspection of a fire alarm system is imperative to its function. Lack of proper maintenance in chemical systems was the reason for 44% of failures. Local fire sprinkler repair services and fire alarm system repair companies are available in any town or city to install, inspect, maintain, and repair these types of systems. It makes no sense for a homeowner or building owner to install an expensive fire alarm and sprinkler system and cut corners on its continued maintenance, not to mention the inestimable and priceless cost of the lives of the occupants.

Fire prevention is a number one consideration for every homeowner, building owner, employee, and occupant. Without a system and a plan, nothing, and no one, is protected.

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