To overcome new fire safety challenges, greater awareness on innovative fire safety technologies is needed.
Fire suppression specialist and BAFSA member Plumis is supporting the National Fire Chief Council’s (NFCC) sprinkler week campaign (18-24 May) but is highlighting the need for a broader discussion to tackle new fire safety challenges.
As the name suggests, the national campaign intends to raise the profile of sprinklers to keep more people and buildings safe from fire. However, in order to truly reduce the number of fire-related deaths and injuries, Plumis is calling for those championing the awareness week to take a more forward-looking approach to ensure opportunities to improve fire safety don’t go unmissed.
William Makant co-founder and CEO at Plumis, said: “Sprinklers are without doubt an amazing invention. Despite refinements, their basic design has remained fundamentally unchanged, which is testament to the brilliance of Grinnell’s original design. But the challenges presented to us today around fire safety, are changing as a result of changes in how we live and increased life expectancy.
“For example, whilst fires caused by smoking have declined, fires as a result of electrical items and white goods have increased. In addition to this, the people most at risk of death in domestic fires are those individuals considered to be vulnerable; the elderly, disabled and those who are unable to escape from a fire easily.”
The fire challenges presented by an ageing population calls for the next generation of fire safety technology and the integration of more sophisticated and flexible fire protection solutions. In light of this, Plumis is asking for the fire industry to rethink what is fit for purpose and encourage an open discussion about the various fire safety systems available to protect individuals depending on their unique needs and requirements.
Typically, sprinklers control the spread of a fire and in some cases, extinguish it completely, preventing fire damage and spread to adjacent areas. However, sprinklers can be slow to activate when tackling a fire with a slow growth rate and provide limited benefit for smoke control.
William said: “Awareness weeks like national sprinkler week, should focus on raising awareness about all automatic water suppression systems (AWSS) to avoid omitting perfectly suitable alternatives.
“To tackle smoke or toxic gas from a fire, the main cause of death reported from domestic fires, Automist Smartscan – our pre-engineered watermist suppression system – has been designed to ensure maximum opportunity to preserve life in the room where the fire starts. This is achieved by reducing heat and smoke, which gives vulnerable occupants more time to react to the fire and subsequently escape or be rescued.
“Automist Smartscan has been designed to activate at the earliest possible opportunity. Connected to a combined smoke and heat detector, its intelligent spray heads feature an infrared sensor and start scanning for a fire as soon as the alarm is raised. The system uses an intelligent algorithm and a double knock trigger to ensure it activates only when at least two of the required conditions are met.”
Unfortunately, many events planned for national sprinkler week have had to be cancelled because of coronavirus concerns, but Plumis is continuing to raise awareness for the initiative by advocating the need to embrace alternative AWSS, to truly reduce the number of fire related-injuries and deaths.
For more information, go to www.plumis.co.uk