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Power cuts and the Pro Range

Power cuts and the Pro Range

Approximately one million people were affected by the power cut on the 10th August 2019. Homes and businesses were left powerless, people travelling on trains were stranded and traffic lights were cut off, all the result of two power stations disconnecting.

What has this got to do with fire safety?

The main issue is, how will fire safety products work if there is nothing powering them?

  • Some products are battery powered, for example, wireless household fire alarms and so will not be affected by loss of mains power.
  • Some products may be controlled by mains power but have a battery backup pack for scenarios where the power isn’t working.
  • Products that depend on mains power to work will no longer function

Is Fireco’s Pro Range compliant during a power cut?

Fireco’s Pro Range consists of Dorgard Pro and Freedor Pro. Both products allow you to keep a fire door open safely and legally. The Transmitter is connected to the fire alarm panel so when the alarm is activated, will send a radio signal to allow all doors to close, stopping the spread of smoke and fire.

The Pro Range is designed to be the highest form of compliance (Category A/Critical). It has a built in fail-safe mechanism so when there is no power being sent to the Transmitter, all Pro products will automatically close the doors. This means the Pro Range will remain compliant, even during a power cut.

If you are concerned about how power loss may affect your fire safety then please speak to a member of our team on 01273 320650.

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How to stay fire safe this summer

How to stay fire safe this summer

Do you know how to keep fire safe this summer? Many of us will be basking in the English sun, spending more time outside and without knowing it, potentially increasing the risk of fires.

Most summer fire safety hazards can actually be removed or reduced just by awareness and simple changes in behaviour.

BBQ’s

The risk: An exposed flame.

Tips:

  • Choose a good location- a flat surface and away from anything that can catch on fire, like tree branches, decorations or umbrellas.
  • It is not recommended to have BBQ’s on balconies, especially if they are particularly small or made out of wood.
  • Supervise the BBQ at all times and keep pets and children away.
  • Stay prepared for an emergency by having a bucket of sand or water nearby.
  • Once you have finished cooking, let the leftover coal cool down before you throw it away.
  • Don’t pour flammable liquids onto the BBQ for any reason.
  • If you are using a disposable BBQ, be sure to place it onto a solid, flat surface such as concrete. Grass, benches and plastic are not suitable.

Mirrors

The risk: Keeping a mirror somewhere the sun beams directly on to it (e.g. by a window) can ignite a fire if the mirror reflects the light onto something else. In 2015 a couples’ flat ended up with substantial fire damage after a mirror reflected light onto papers and furniture, sparking flames.

Tips:

  • Keep mirrors away from windows.
  • Ensure there are no sun rays shining directly onto any mirrors in your household.

Fire pits

The risk: The fire spitting out sparks or the flames catching fire to something else.

Tips:

  • Place on a flat surface and away from anything that can catch on fire, like tree branches, decorations or umbrellas.
  • It is recommended to place a fire pit 10 feet away from buildings and other people’s gardens.
  • Try to avoid cedar and pine as this type of wood is more likely to spit. Alternatively, you can buy a fire pit that is fueled by gas.
  • Try not to wear loose or flammable clothing when using the fire pit.

Littering

The risk: Glass, cigarettes and plastic can catch fire if left outside in the sun for a long period of time. During the heatwave in 2018, there were 56 roadside fires over just 10 days, many of which were thought to be caused by litter. 

Tips:

  • Don’t litter.
  • If there are no bins around, why not ask a nearby shop or restaurant to discard it for you or keep hold of the rubbish until you get home.

Propping open fire doors

The risk: During the hot summer months, it’s common for people to prop open doors to allow fresh air to flow through the building. If a fire were to break out and the fire doors were wedged open, smoke and fire would rapidly spread through the whole building.

Tips:

  • Keep doors closed and invest in air conditioning or fans.
  • Purchase a device that is suitable for holding your door open legally and safely.

We can only hope for a long hot summer here in England, but we can guarantee that we will have a fire-safe one! 

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What we showed at FIREX 2019

If you saw us at FIREX, we hope you enjoyed learning about what we had on our stand. For those who weren’t at FIREX, this blog will sum up what we showed and what we did.

We’ve spent the last year focusing on improving our installer relationships and developing a range of products that meet the growing needs of the market.

So, when we came back this year we wanted to introduce everyone to a new product as well as a range of upcoming innovations.

Thank you to Inspire displays for designing and building our stand and thank you to Bridgman IBC Limited and Sentry Doors Ltd for supplying us with fire doors for our display.

The latest product added to our installer exclusive Pro Range is Freedor Pro which we officially introduced to the market following our live demonstrations of it at FIREX.

We also released the first preview of solutions that are currently in progress.

Switch Pro. In the event of an emergency, this allows you to activate and deactivate important systems. For example, if the fire alarm goes off, all emergency lighting will be illuminated.

Pro Cloud. This allows you to view and control all sites containing Pro Range products. The information is updated regularly and can be accessed on any device. 

We also showed off the new alert options for DMS. Subscribers can now choose to receive an emergency message through voice, email, text or Whatsapp.

As well as meeting people on our stand. We also attended the seminars so that we could learn more about what’s going on in the industry at the moment. Our Business Development Executive Pete carried out his own seminar “When is a fire alarm not a fire alarm?” which discusses how to effectively communicate an emergency to people who are deaf or hard of hearing.

If you have any questions about our current or upcoming products, please feel free to contact us on 01273 320650. 

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Are fully wired systems still the best option?

There are a lot of fire safety products out there and knowing what is best for your building can sometimes be unclear. One topic that has been coming up recently is whether to go with a wireless system or a fully wired system. 

Wireless products are normally activated by sound or radio signal. There may be an element with a direct wired connection to the fire panel, though the units themselves avoid the need for cables as they are typically battery powered.

Fully wired systems involve running cables between the units and the fire panel. They are ideal for new build environments, where the cost of cabling is less prohibitive.

Wiring products through a building may not always be the best solution as it can bring with it a range of different problems.

Hidden costs

As well as buying the products to fit, you will also need to pay for a professional installer to run cables through the building. After cables are fitted, there will need to be restorative work carried out on floors, walls and ceilings affected.

Asbestos survey and control

Installing wires through buildings that are particularly old may not be possible due to safety reasons, for example, drilling through areas that contain asbestos. This involves major health risks and will need to be done by a specialist.

Dangers to staff and visitors when work is being carried out

Risk assessments should be filled out to ensure that occupants won’t be harmed during building work.

Business disruption

Running cables through a building can be a big job. Parts of the building may need to be blocked off for work to be carried out or the whole building may even need to be closed for business. This could even mean that no one is allowed to enter the building until work is complete.

Maintaining compartmentation

A fire can spread through a hole the size of a pen nib so it’s vital that compartmentation is maintained. If holes have been made and not filled correctly it will compromise the fire safety of the building. Once the work has been done, all holes will need to be filled so that the area remains fireproof.

Some people believe that fully wired systems are the only option when it comes to having the highest standard of protection. However, there are wire-free alternatives that are also suitable for high-risk areas and are often more cost-effective and easier to install.

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Fireco releases free-swing door closer suitable for high-risk areas

Fireco has just released its newest innovation, Freedor Pro. A radio activated, free-swing door closer that allows you to place a door open at any angle. Controlled by the Transmitter through a radio signal, Freedor Pro is not affected by background noise and so false activations are eliminated. This means that Freedor Pro, along with the rest of the Pro Range, is suitable for areas of high-risk.

Areas considered as high-risk can include corridors, stairwells and kitchens. However, there are certain buildings that are also a concern for fire safety, such as high rise buildings, care homes, and HMOs.

Due to recent events, including Grenfell, there has been an increase in demand for fire safety products that are acceptable for places of significant risk. Marketing Manager, Sam Iden explained “Our motto is Compliance Made Easy, so when customers started asking for a product that we didn’t yet have, we knew we needed to act. This led us to develop our existing range, to meet the current need for safe and legal products”.

The Freedor Pro is the latest addition to the professional range of products, which already includes the Dorgard Pro. This means the current products include a free-swing door closer and a door retainer. Fireco is also working on plans for other items to be added to the Pro Range.

Fireco will be demonstrating their new product and giving a sneak peek of future innovations at FIREX 2019. FIREX is 18-20 June 2019 and is held at the ExCel London, the stand number is FX727.

If you would like further information about Fireco’s Pro Range, speak to a member of the team on 01273 320650, or go to www.fireco.uk

Firex details

Date: 18-20 June 2019

Venue: ExCel London, E161XL

Stand number: FX727

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