Which AD part B relaxations?
What AD part B relaxations could residential fire sprinkler systems afford?
- Limited access for a fire tender: This is a common problem which can be addressed by the use of a residential fire sprinkler system as the 10 minute minimum run duration for the system provides extra time for Fire Crews to extend their hoses prior to tackling the fire which helps to satisfy Building regulation Approved Document part B.
- Open stairways: where a stairwell from a newly converted loft discharges into an open plan lounge there is often a requirement for a protected means of escape by constructing a stud wall from the foot of the staircase to the front or rear door of the premises. A residential fire sprinkler system can normally satisfy AD part B of the Building Regulations.
- Alternative means of escape: where the occupied space is more than 7.5M in height
- Compartmentation between different purpose groups: fire resistance between shops and flats above them can be reduced by utilizing a fire sprinkler system.
- Inner rooms. NHBC sponsored Research has concluded that : open plan flats with a sprinkler system (in accordance with BS 9251 or BS EN 12845,13 as appropriate) and an enhanced detection system (LD1 system in accordance with BS 5839-63) can provide a level of safety that is at least as good as that of a similar AD B compliant design.
The requirement for residential fire sprinkler systems seem to be generated primarily by the desire for compliance to Building Regulations part B. Often, those occupants of a property which has a residential fire sprinkler system are unaware of the reason for the inclusion of the fire sprinkler system. The inconspicuous flat plate which they are vaguely aware of on the ceiling provides little or no clue to it’s purpose.
Why is the system included within the property?
The answer generally is because there is a shortcoming in the normal level of fire resistance which means that it is absolutely essential that the system is maintained on a yearly basis.