Passive Fire Protection uses a buildings’ structural design to reduce the spread of fire
Passive Fire Protection uses a buildings’ structural design to reduce the spread of fire, providing safer evacuation for occupants and entry routes for firefighters.
A legal obligation within the UK, Fire Protection solutions need to be meeting building regulations and as such architects and developers should consider these when designing a building.
In the UK, it is the building’s shareholders’ responsibility, including managers and owners, to maintain the PFP solutions.
Utilising the structural design of a building, Passive Fire Protection incorporates fire protection in the buildings design such as floors and doors to reduce the spread of a fire. PFP is a requirement by law set out in regulations such as Approved Document B.
The responsibility lays with the architect, developer and building manager depending on the progress of the building. Through early consultation, we can work with you to ensure your buildings’ continued compliance.
Through a comprehensive survey of your building’s design and an understanding of your needs, our teams will provide a detailed and holistic PFP plan. This will ensure your compliance with regulations without compromising its’ original design.
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Elements of Active Fire Protection?
Active Fire Protection entails a complete system of components working in unision to provide effective smoke clearance from a building and paramount safety to its occupants.
Below we explore:
A fire compartment is used to prevent the rapid spread of fire and smoke throughout a building; this encompasses using firewalls and fire-resistant flooring, reducing the spread and giving occupants time to escape.
Further securing fire compartments, a fire stopping solution is used to seal around the openings and between joints in fire compartment components. These seals and openings can result from unavoidable pipes moving through or natural cracks that need to be addressed.
A door with a fire-resistance or fire protection rating further reduces the spread of fire and smoke throughout the building. There are legal requirements for buildings depending on their structure and design; however, fire doors are obligated across a wide range of residential and commercial industries.
Regularly in use, a fire door can lose its effectiveness over time, reducing its ability to prevent the spread of a fire. Routine maintenance ensures it can continue to function and extends its longevity; new buildings require more frequent checks due to the initial high volume of use within the first year.
Our fire door installation and maintenance services are certified under the BM Trada Q Mark Scheme. We provide our clients with a full Q&M manual (Operations and Maintenance) which confirms your door is compliant to building regulations.
A fire and smoke dampers are used within an HVAC duct which passes through a fire compartment barrier (fire-resistant floors and walls). They are designed to automatically respond when a specified temperature or smoke threshold limit has been met, preventing its spread throughout the building.
These dampers provide a critical role in the buildings’ PFP service; it further secures the buildings’ fire compartments, preventing fire and smoke from passing through. Therefore, they must be regularly maintained to operate as they were designed, including checking for:
A fire curtain (often known as a safety curtain) is an automatic barrier activated by a fire detection system. A fire curtain automatically drops down between guide channels to secure the space between a wall and door.
With flexibility in their design and installation, fire curtains help provide maximum protection in a building with minimum disruption to its design. Whereas a building’s space and design can limit some PFP components, a fire curtain can be fitted within an open planned space, ensuring open planned buildings are meeting fire safety regulations.
These are often installed around staircases and lobbies essential in an escape route, thereby maximising its protection for occupants using or planning to use as part of their evacuation.