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fire alarm design

Fire Alarm Design

Fire Safety Specialists

At ClearView, we specialise in fire alarm design, installation, commissioning, and maintenance in all commercial establishments.
The system category needs to be defined when a fire detection system requires a fire alarm design.
BS5839-1 separates 3 system categories – Category P System / Category L System / Category M System.

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Fire Safety

Fire Detection and Fire Alarm System Design

ClearView are fire alarm system design specialists. We are vastly experienced, competent and certified to the highest standards, including BAFE SP 203-1 through the National Security Inspectorate Fire Gold Scheme.

Detection and Alarm Systems
Fire Alarm Design

To determine what you would require, we would suggest that we send one of our designers to the location, carry out a fire alarm site survey, and review all necessary documents. This survey will allow our designers to assess the building’s current fire alarm design to provide a full survey report.
Our fire alarm system design will ensure you reach your fire safety requirements, ensuring compliance. Our experienced designers are fully qualified to the highest standards and can provide you with CAD drawings of the fire alarm design.

Our expert fire alarm designers will create a cost-effective design that will satisfy the Fire Alarm category your building /property requires. You can rest assured that this will align with BS5839-1 as we hold the BAFE SP203-1 certification.

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Book a Fire Risk Assessment
Category P Fire Alarm System

Category P system is for property protection and falls into two classifications (P1 and P2).

A category P aims to provide the earliest warning of a fire, minimise the damage to the building/property, and alert the fire brigade.

P1 – Protects the entire property.

P2 – Protects certain areas of the property, specifically the high-risk areas, i.e. Plant Room/Electrical cupboard.

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Fire Alarm Installation Categories
Category L Fire Alarm System

Category L systems are for life protection and are broken down into five categories (L1 / L2 / L3 / L4 / L5).

L1 – Provides/specifies Automatic Fire Detection (AFD) installed in all building areas.
L2 – provides Automatic Fire Detection (AFD) as defined in L3 and high-risk or hazardous areas. Examples of this could be Kitchens, boiler rooms, accommodation risks, storerooms if not fire-resistant or if smoke could affect escape routes.
L3 – Automatic Fire Detection (AFD) installation is required for all escape routes and rooms leading onto the escape route.
L4 – Automatic Fire Detection (AFD) installation is required for all escape routes.
L5 – Automatic Fire Detection (AFD) installation is required within buildings with a specific risk that has been identified. An example of this would be if there were an area of high risk of fire, like a plant room, that requires detection, then the category would be L5/M.

Specialist Advice
Category M Fire Alarm System

Category M Fire Alarm System is an operation only which means that it will only have manual call points at any exits and corridors where someone would not have to travel further than 45m to operate. All L categories will have an M type system installed.

Typical Category of SystemDescription
MThis solely relies on the building occupancy discovering the fire and sounding the alarm by operating the system. This would be by manual call points at exits or in corridors in which you travel no more than 45 meters to find one. This category is for the protection of life and should not be used if anyone sleeps inside.
P1 This would require installation throughout the building – the intention being to notify the fire brigade as soon as possible to ensure that any damage caused by fire is minimised. This category system is for building insurance protection purposes.
P2 Protection needs to be provided in areas of high risk of fire or where disruption should be minimised. This category is also for building insurance protection purposes.
L1Category L1 systems provide cover to the whole building with only minor exceptions. This is for the protection of life and should give the earliest possible warning to the occupants/users.
L2 Category L2 system is designed for the protection of life. Detection should cover all escape routes and rooms that lead to an escape route. This is an L3 Category but with the addition of installing detection in areas of high risk of fire (e.g. kitchen).
L3 Category L3 system is designed for the protection of life. Detection should cover all escape routes and rooms that lead to an escape route. This system provides the earliest possible warning to occupants before the fire escape routes become impassable.
L4A category L4 system is designed to provide an early warning of smoke in corridors. Detection will be placed in the escape route, although this may not be suitable depending on the risk assessment or the size/complexity of the building.
L5This category is used when special requirements can't be met by the other categories. This makes this category custom. I.e. electrical substation which is protected by an extinguishing system triggered by automatic detection.
Fire Alarm Installation
Fire Alarm Cause and Effects

The cause and effect of a fire alarm design are to document how the system will operate. The building’s fire strategy report usually directs this, which is generally in the form of a chart. Highlighting effects across the top and causes down the side, all necessary rows will be ticked. It determines the outcome of specific alarms (the cause) and the action (the effect). For example, if there is an alarm (fire), all access-controlled doors need to be released to enable the evacuation of staff/public and allow the fire brigade to access all areas. Once this document is produced and agreed the commissioning engineer will add this to the panel’s software.

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Fire Safety Regulations
The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005
Fire Alarm Zone Chart

Fire Alarm Zone Charts are required by law (Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005) and must adhere to BS5839-1. Zone Charts are a geographical subdivision of the protected premises. The fire alarm warning can be given separately and independently of a fire alarm warning of any other fire alarm zone. The primary purpose of a fire alarm zone chart is so the fire brigade, or fire marshal can quickly identify the location of the fire.

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