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Who Should Design Your Fire Alarm System?

There are many factors to consider when planning a fire alarm system.

When embarking on a new fire alarm system project there are a number of factors that need to be considered when you decide who should design your fire alarm system.

We’ve consulted BS 5839, Section 1, Part 6 – Exchange of information and definition of responsibilities – to create this short guide to the many factors you need to take into account.

Fire alarm systems essentially support the fire strategy for the building in question. It is advised that, rather than procedures being altered to suit a pre-set fire alarm system design, the fire system design should be tailored around the identified building evacuation procedures and any actions required to be taken after an alarm is triggered.

System requirements, such as the evacuation procedures, building configuration and building use, need to be clearly documented and communicated to the person/company who’ll design the fire alarm system. These will also be influenced by the local fire authority and the building’s insurer.

The extent of the system required has an impact on who is the best person for the job. Where a simple system is required a responsible person with an adequate knowledge of fire alarms may be suitable whereas in larger, complex applications an entire team of experts and specialist consultants may be required.

It is common for fire alarm system design to be undertaken by any number of parties, including but not limited to fire alarm suppliers, fire alarm installers and the end user. In many cases a combination of input from all parties involved will result in a comprehensive fire alarm system that has been considered from all angles.

Responsibilities during the system design and implementation need to be clearly identified at the initial contract stages of the project. To avoid confusion, it is essential to identify who will be responsible for key stages such as system design, installation (including system compliance) and commissioning of the system. These tasks do not have to be mutually exclusive, for example a single contractor could be hired for any or all of these stages.

In Part 6.2 of BS 5839 you’ll find a list of Recommendations which we advise you read in full, along with the rest of the document.

Discount Fire Supplies sell a range of fire alarms and fire alarm system accessories, call 01792 452 700 to talk to our team.

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