By law, all commercial businesses and buildings are required to have a fire alarm system. The type of system you need varies based on the size of your building, number of occupants and what is being stored or produced in the building. However, as a general rule of thumb, most fire alarm systems must alert the occupants when smoke is detected through a series of sirens and alerts. However, in addition to this, there are many add-ons you can use or install to further increase the efficiency of the system and decrease the chances of a fire harming your employees or building. Here are some of the additional options you have when it comes to a commercial fire alarm system.
How the Alarm is Triggered
One of the options you have when it comes to a smoke alarm system is how the alarm is triggered. Most alarms are triggered by smoke sensors. In addition, an alarm can be triggered by someone using a manual pull station. Manual pull stations are convenient especially if an employee notices smoke, fire or any other emergency situation that they feel needs to be addressed right away. This will alert everyone in the building and send emergency responders to the scene immediately. However, an option you may want to consider is using heat sensors. Heat sensors can detect an abnormal amount of heat in a particular area and trigger the alarm. This is one of the earliest ways to detect a fire, since it notifies people in the building before smoke even begins to rise.
What Happens When the Alarm is Active
Traditionally, when a fire alarm system is activated, a siren in signaled. This siren wails, alerting people to the fact that they need to leave the building. However, a different option you may want to consider is strobe lights. In addition to the siren or sounds that the alarm system gives off, strobe lights begin to flash. This is ideal for those who may not be able to hear well or in case your sound system begins to malfunction.
Whether to Have an Emergency Voice Alarm Communication System
Another option you have when it comes to fire alarm systems is installing an emergency voice communication system. This type of alarm is typically used in large buildings, such as arenas, hotels and high rises, and gives instructions on evacuating and to where. Having this type of alarm can prevent large amounts of people from panicking or heading straight toward the fire, instead of directing them away from it. Typically, this type of system is installed in conjunction with a heat detection system. It detects where the heat or fire is coming from and alerts occupants to the exit that is safest for them to evacuate to. This type of system can also be used in the event of any other emergencies in the building, including security breaches, earthquakes or tornadoes.
What Interfaces are Used in Conjunction with the Fire Alarm System
The last option you have in regards to a fire alert system is additional interfaces. The most common interface that is used is the elevator recall and shut down system. When the alarm is activated, this interface automatically pulls the elevator back to the ground floor, to let any occupants off, and then grounds it there until the alarm is off, so no one can enter the elevator and possibly get trapped. Another common interface is magnetic smoke door holders. When an alarm is sounded, these doors are released, helping to keep smoke out of areas for as long as possible, giving your building occupants the chance to leave. The last common type of interface is duct-mounted smoke systems. When your fire alarm is triggered, dampers in the ducts automatically close. This prevents the smoky air from recirculating to other areas within your building. This keeps fresh air fresh so people can safely breathe while they evacuate your building in the event of a fire.
Having a correctly working fire alarm system is required by law. However, there are add-ons that are not required by law that can help ensure the safety of those in your building. Learning about these add-ons will help you decide which system you may want to install in your business.
For more information and options, talk with fire alarm system companies, such as Eastern Fire Protection.Share