The Importance of Fire Alarm Maintenance and Testing

Having your premises fitted out with the requisite safety equipment by a local electrician helps to protect both your premises and the people in and around it. However, having this equipment is only the beginning. Looking after and maintaining the safety of your building is ongoing and something which should not be ignored. Fundamentally, if you don’t have them serviced, why bother having them at all? Neglecting your fire alarm maintenance is not only dangerous and reckless, it is also illegal and something which can be easily solved by finding a local electrician.

In March 2017, a care home in Somerset (Almondsbury Care Ltd.) were fined £100,000 for a series of fire breaches. A routine Fire Service examination of a house used to house the staff at Hillview Nursing Home in Burnham-on-Sea exposed a number of potentially fatal faults, including a fire alarm that did not work, inadequate emergency lighting, a fire exit door that couldn’t be opened and blocked escape routes. During a trial at Taunton Magistrates’ Court, the company was shown to have failed to make a proper fire risk assessment and the fire risk assessment that they carried out clearly highlighted failures which had been ignored.

FIRE ALARMS

What are they for?

Fire alarms are significant warning systems that alert entire buildings the possibility of a fire. By alerting people as early as possible, it allows everyone to evacuate safely to designated points and wait for the assistance of the emergency fire services.

You have a responsibility, both legally and socially
As highlighted above, fire alarm maintenance is a legal responsibility. Failure to do so is, therefore, a failure to abide by the law. However, the responsibility does not simply rest solely on legal obligation. There is also a strong social obligation to anyone in your house, building or office. Ensuring that the necessary fire safety precautions are in place and that they are also maintained is at the very centre of this responsibility.

Common faults
Once you have had electrically installed the fire alarm, this is not the end of the process. Unfortunately, fire alarms are not indestructible, and they are not immune to errors. Many faults for alarm systems include power failures, which requires the system to be reset. However, ground faults can additionally put the system out of action by knocking out the power to certain circuits. Finally, although this is a rare occurrence, but if your premises sustain water damage this has the potential to knock out your system if the water manages to encroach on the circuits. Those competent and trained electricians who install the fire system are best equipped to recognise faults and with our electrical testing at Smoothe Consulting we can recognise any of these faults for those living near the Great Yarmouth area.

Reduce the risk of emergency repairs
While for most it is difficult to argue that money is more important than the safety of human lives, there is a cost factor involved with fire safety. However, it is one that is beneficial on both sides. Fundamentally, it is costlier to repair or replace a fire alarm system in comparison to maintaining one. So, with this is mind, it is essential to keep the risk of emergency action to a minimum by carrying out fire alarm maintenance.

Who should maintain your alarm system?
You want to find an electrician that is competent contractor and who has suitable experience of electrical equipment and special training. Since 2006, it’s been down to the building manager or employer to take care if fire safety in a commercial building. This responsibility has been taken away from officials, but this has been proven dangerous in most cases with standards slipping in terms of fire safety. Currently, businesses are not under any real scrutiny to uphold standards which would see regular servicing and maintenance of all fire safety equipment, with many either forgetting or simply tying to save the cost. At Smoothe Consulting we not only supply and install fire alarm systems, we service and maintain them too. It is vital that fire safety is a top priority, even if regulation allows for these discrepancies. If you want to learn more about our services and maintenance then simply contact us through our contact form on the website and we will be more than happy to discuss any questions and your requirements.