What Fire Safety Should You Be Aware of in High-Rise Buildings?
Hundreds and thousands of UK citizens live in residential high-rise complexes across the country. However, there have been concerns about the safety of its occupants if a fire was to occur. Similar to the Grenfell Tower Fire. That’s why an in-home sprinkler system has become highly sought after and even made legally mandatory in certain situations.
But, what fire safety should people be aware of?
Know the Plan
The evacuation plan for your building should outline what inhabitants are expected to do in the event of an emergency, so make sure you are familiar with it. The building management should conduct a fire drill with tenants at least once a year and post the evacuation plan where all residents can see and review it.
When your building conducts drills, be sure to take part. Look for a building with an automated sprinkler system when searching for an apartment or high-rise residence. In less time than it takes the fire department to arrive, sprinklers can put out a residential fire.
Current Sprinkler Requirements
The BS 9251 is the British Standard for the installation of sprinklers throughout properties in the UK. Published in 2005, it has since had 2 amendments, including in 2014 and the post-Grenfell Tower fire in 2021.
The types of properties come in three different categories. Category 1 covers small residential buildings (less than 18m); category 2 refers to large blocks of flats (over 18m) and category 3 is large care homes and other social housing that is more than 10 residents.
Each category contains a set of minimal design requirements that indicate how many heads should be utilised to estimate the volume of water and pressure needed to operate the system. The overall number of heads required in any system depends on the size of the rooms. Also, their intended use, and the area that each head covers.
A minimum run time of 10 minutes is required for category 1 systems, and there should be one or two heads included in the estimate. Category 3 systems must have a runtime of at least 30 minutes, and the computation should take into account 2 or 4 heads.
Category 2 – High-Rise Complexes
As aforementioned, category 2 refers to the requirements for sprinkler systems within large high-rise blocks of flats that are over 18M high and in small residential care homes (10 residents or less).
Currently, high-rise buildings that are over 11m above ground level are required to have sprinklers installed within the premises.
Benefits of an In-Home Sprinkler System
A sprinkler system will prevent the fires from spreading to additional rooms in residential apartments. If a fire does start in a first-floor room, the sprinkler head next to it (and only that sprinkler head) will activate to put out the flames and prevent the fire from spreading.
Residents will have enough time to safely escape and wait for emergency assistance. Fire engines will still need to arrive at the structure. But, because the fire damage will have been reduced, fewer hoses of water will be required.
RAD Fire Sprinklers
Here at RAD Fire Sprinklers, we promote the installation of fire sprinkler systems throughout the London and South East area. There are many benefits to having fire sprinklers in both commercial and domestic buildings:
For more information, or to receive a quote on an in-home sprinkler system, fill in our online form. Or, give us a call on 01892 680 090 and speak to one of our team today. Why not follow us on Twitter? Our team posts helpful guides and updates on information related to domestic sprinkler systems. All delivered straight to your social feed.