Installation of a fire alarm system is vital to providing fire protection in your place of business. As a business owner, you are required by law to have commercial fire alarm systems in your building.
This system will alert your employees, clients, customers, and neighbors of a fire somewhere within your building or facility.
By installing a fire alarm system in your building or facility, you’re not only keeping your employees safe but also protecting your property. Without it, your property is vulnerable to fire, and smoke damage and your employees are susceptible to fire-related injuries which often prove fatal.
This is a significant investment with equally significant returns. Imagine the huge losses you will suffer if your building or facility burns down and you lose or injure employees in a fire.
Benefits of installing a fire alarm system
Fire alarm systems are designed to handle fire emergencies and further enhance workplace safety and security. The latest systems are easy to use, leaving no barrier between the system and the user.
You can now integrate fire alarm systems with life safety systems such as access control systems, security surveillance systems, and emergency communication systems.
By integrating all these systems that protect lives, you and your staff will be better prepared to handle an emergency situation, expediting the handling of the emergency situation and prevents further damage and loss of life.
An integrated fire and security system will detect a breach in the building, such as a fire. And with the press of a panic button, it will notify the central monitoring station to alert the proper authorities. The responding authorities can receive critical information regarding the emergency situation and react strategically.
The latest commercial alarm systems are so well-engineered and well-designed that they empower the people in the building, allowing them to communicate to those outside the building or facility via text messaging, email, voice messaging, and outdoor speaker systems.
3 Types of Commercial Fire Alarm Systems
Conventional fire alarm systems
Conventional fire alarm systems also called “four-wire fire alarm systems,” are widely used in smaller places of business such as shops and restaurants.
These systems are the most affordable to purchase. They work by dividing the building into detection zones. There are detectors and call points within each zone (even multiple ones) hardwired on dedicated circuits to the control panel.
If a detector is activated, the control panel identifies the circuit that contains the triggered device and indicates the zone from which the fire alarm sounded.
With this type of fire alarm system, you would have to search the area to locate the triggered device.
Analog-addressable fire alarm systems
Analog-addressable fire alarm systems also called “intelligent fire alarm systems” can provide details such as the exact location of the fire, fault, or smoke on individual detectors. With the advancement away from zones and circuits, this system allows increased flexibility, a broad scope of control, and rapid identification.
This type of fire alarm system is designed for large commercial premises and more complex networked systems. It is much more expensive and more complicated than conventional fire alarm systems.
Wireless fire alarm systems
These fire alarm systems are easier to install and provide as much protection as the wired fire alarm systems. There are no cables between detection devices and the control panel. Therefore, there is no need for long-term cable tests.
Today’s wireless fire alarm systems need to comply with the EN54-25 standard and can eliminate signal blocking and collision.
Most suitable for buildings or facilities where wired installations are prohibited such as grade-listed properties.
Proper Placement and Usage of the Fire Alarm System
The placement of your alarm systems is incredibly vital to its effectiveness. Place smoke alarms in hallways or stairways on each floor level.
Fire alarms should be situated away from lights, air conditioners, ceiling fans, and vents, where airflow and heat can accidentally trigger the fire alarm or worse, prevent it from going off during an emergency.
The overall efficacy of your alarm system also depends on your staff’s understanding of the proper fire evacuation methods in the event of an emergency.
Train every one of your staff and give each a copy of your buildings fire emergency plan. Hold fire emergency seminars and fire drills annually. Many local fire alarm system providers offer this as a service, meaning they will come to your place of business and lead your staff in these types of drills and plans.
Having an ill-equipped staff in the event of an emergency will drive away your customers and clients and give your business a bad name. In the world of business, reputation is everything.
Keep Your Businesses and Staff Safe with Fire Alarm Systems
An alarm system is designed to alert the authorities not only during office hours but even after once everyone has gone home. After all, who will call for an emergency when a fire breaks out during off-hours?
Fire alarm systems make sure that you have a team monitoring your place of business at all times and that it complies with the NFPA code.