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News: The FireNet forum has now been located on another server that will now be its regular place. The database has been tidied up and although all your messages are still there you may experience a  missing avatar. Thanks again for your support and any question please get back to us and we will try our best to help.  All the best Kurnal & Colin
 
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Author Topic: Fire Alarm Classification  (Read 2184 times)
norman1
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« on: June 19, 2008, 07:32:34 AM »

Dear forum readers

Please could you advice, i have undertaken a fire risk assessment for an HMO premises, these are two main premises. Both premises have main entrance access by key fob into common area with two flats on the ground floor and two on the first floor. The larger has a further floor so six accomodation flats are present for the premises.
I have covered the common areas and with no fire alarm system installed i have placed within the actions to impliment an LD3 with additional hardwired detectors within the common areas. However, now been advised that; what i need to place in the report is what classification the whole system would be, the second question posed what why do we need to place any detection within the accomodations.

I welcome your thoughts on this.

Norman
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nearlythere
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« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2008, 08:01:11 AM »

Quote from: norman1
Dear forum readers

Please could you advice, i have undertaken a fire risk assessment for an HMO premises, these are two main premises. Both premises have main entrance access by key fob into common area with two flats on the ground floor and two on the first floor. The larger has a further floor so six accomodation flats are present for the premises.
I have covered the common areas and with no fire alarm system installed i have placed within the actions to impliment an LD3 with additional hardwired detectors within the main circulation areas to each flat.
However, now been advised that; what i need to place in the report is what classification the whole system would be, the second question posed what why do we need to place any detection within the accomodations.

I welcome your thoughts on this.

Norman
Because they are rooms opening onto the escape routes.
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lingmoor
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« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2008, 09:42:02 AM »

"the second question posed what why do we need to place any detection within the accomodations."

To save the occupants life if there is a fire
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kurnal
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« Reply #3 on: June 19, 2008, 10:59:31 AM »

Hi Norman
Welcome to the forum. I assume that you as owner of the proprties have carried out your own risk assessment. The questions you ask are all answered in the guidance document available for free download here

 http://www.communities.gov.uk/publications/fire/firesafetyrisk4

you should read table 1 on page 66 of the guide- and the footnotes- - this establishes the expected standards for fire alarms to be adopted under the fire safety order. However there is also new guidance being produced specifically for HMOs and due to be published imminently. I dont have a link for this but no doubt someone will post it on the forum.

Please read the guidance carefully and ensure that you understand it- it is very important that the responsible person carrying out the risk assessment seeks competent advice if they are unsure,   we will always be happy to help if we can
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jokar
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« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2008, 11:19:21 AM »

Norman, the document Kurnal has alluded to for HMO's is available as a free download, draft only at the moment, on the LACORS website.

Br careful reading the guidance that Kurnal has suggested as the Notes under the table conflict with the information supplied in the British Standard for Domestic premises Fire Alarms, BS 5839 Part 6.
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Martin
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« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2008, 01:29:25 PM »

Are these HMOs? A block of 6 flats with a common acess is not an HMO. These sound like six seperate domestic properties to me.
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kurnal
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« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2008, 01:36:35 PM »

It may be classed as an HMO if it does not meet the compartmentation requirements for a stay put policy. Housing Act refers to this.
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norman1
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« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2008, 03:18:13 PM »

Hi Martin

Thank you for your reply. The accomodations are self-contained flats over ground and one/two floors. Presently no detection in any. Main entrance lobby and stairs to each level.
The LD3 fire alarm system i have recommended as taken from the guidance, is based on interconnected powered smoke alarms with battery backup, with detectors sited in escape routes includiung rooms that open on to escape routes.
Surly this should be sufficient for flats and common areas, or am i going to far.

Or would an L4 system be allright with hardwired smoke detectors within circulation areas to each flat.

Your comments most welcome
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kurnal
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« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2008, 10:20:56 AM »

Does each flat have walls to a one hour fire resisting standard and a half hour self closing fire door at the entrance with fire and smoke seals?
Is any ceiling between flats to a one hour standard?
Are there any doors to other accommodation or store rooms, or any furnishings or other combustible materials in the common areas?
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norman1
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« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2008, 05:05:39 PM »

Hi Kurnal

There are fire doors fitted to each accomodation, the common areas are all clear no items. All accomodations are self-contained with compartmenation to al least 30 minutes.

Am i going over the top with the classification of fire system. I believe there should be detection to the common areas and each accomodation i,e hall, if this is so, is the system an LD3 and hardwired devices to the accomodation hall.

Look forward to hearing your comments.
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kurnal
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« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2008, 05:30:16 PM »

If the comparmentation between flats was to 1 hour then depending on layout and travel distances it may be possible to have no alarm in the common areas at all.

If it is only half hour then a fire detection system may be a compensation.  The key question is if in the event of a fire in one flat is it necessary for all the other flats to be alerted and evacuate the building or would it be  safe for other occupiers to stay put.

If you adopt a stay put policy there is little benefit in putting detection in the escape routes. Just put a stand alone  LD3 system in each flat.

But if you need all flats to evacuate then an L3 system with a smoke detectors in the common areas and with a heat detector in each flat entrance lobby , and a seperate stand alone domestic smoke detector system to LD3 covering each flat  should give you the right balance between safety and nuisance alarms.

If you put a common areas alarm system in then you need to consider additional sounders so it will wake people in the night.
I recommend a read of BS5588 part 1 if you can get hold of a copy- the local library may be able to help.
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