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BS5839: British Standard for Fire Detection Systems – 2017 Update

Posted 20-11-17

2017 has seen the introduction of an update to the British Standard for Fire Detection Systems. The update, released on the 1st September includes 25 changes to the standard. Below some of the key changes have been identified:

Video Fire Detection (VFD):

VFD is developing at an extremely fast pace, with new and more accurate equipment being made available to the market on a very frequent basis. As such, the British Standard now recognises their use as a fire detection method. VFD can now be used for protection in L5 and P2 consultant specified systems.

Call Point Covers:

This is one of the most significant changes to be made to the standard. Call Points are now recommended to be fitted with clear plastic covers to assist in the reduction of false alarms. Previously, and without covers, it was found that the ease at which the alarm could be activated was impacting false alarms through accidental use. The standard does not advise on all current systems being updated with covers, however at Sygma we are recommending all our customers carry out this change with immediate effect.

Annex E:

Annex E of BS5839-1 refers to the correct procedure for designers to follow when they are selecting detector types. The purpose of this being to reduce false alarms where possible, and to ensure accurate and continued protection of the space. Annex E now also recommends:

  • That systems are deactivated from the remote monitoring station during routine maintenance.
  • That fire alarms and security systems should be linked to ensure the responsible person is notified during periods when the building is unoccupied.
  • The use of staff to verify alarms before triggering an evacuation.

This blog is a quick reference to three key changes that we have seen made. There have been 25 changes to 14 parts of the standard, so please do ensure to refer to the BSI for full details of the changes.

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