If you own a business, then there are certain regulations that must be followed, as you are probably well aware. One of those is regarding fire protection. Having some sort of fire alarm service is not only a legal requirement but is very important to keeping all of your workers and potential customers safe. Fires can start suddenly and grow quickly, leaving no time for anyone to do anything about it once it has already started. Having a fire suppression system in place helps to warn people with enough time to be able to get out of the building. In buildings that had a properly functioning fire suppression system, the National Fire Protection Association has no record to a fire that killed more than two people in total. However, in buildings that did not have a functioning fire suppression system, or any at all, those numbers are much higher, unfortunately. There are three main types of fire suppression systems that fire protection engineering companies recommended. They are water, inert gases and chemicals. Let’s take a closer look at each one.
An inert gas is a gas that does not go through any kind of chemical reaction or react with substances. Purified argon and nitrogen are usually used because they do not react with oxygen that is in the air.
It’s a commonly known fact that fires have to have oxygen in order to keep burning and in order to spread. Inert gases will cut off the oxygen supply and literally smother the fire in order to put it out. The nitrogen and argon can be dangerous but if used in a correct manner, they can be very effective and get the job done properly. Inert gases are a good method to use and are recommended by fire protection engineering companies if an area has a lot of expensive electrical equipment and water will cause as much damage as a fire. Inert gases will be able to put out the fire without causing further damage to the surrounding equipment.
Fire protection engineering companies tell us that there are two main kinds of chemicals used in a fire protection system: wet chemical agents and dry chemicals.
Wet chemicals are the most commonly used and the agent here is potassium carbonate. This is what is usually used in fire extinguishers because it is a very safe option. Potassium carbonate is often used in baking, wine making and medication because of how safe if it.
The dry chemical solution used is called sodium bicarbonate. This equates out to a powder that can be thrown on a fire to put it down. This, consequently is also used in baking at times and is a very safe chemical. Sodium bicarbonate particularly effective if there is a grease fire or electrical fire. The powder turns into a foam and extinguishes the fire.
This is, of course, the most common method used to put out a fire. We don’t need fire protection engineering companies to tell us that! Most places have some sort of sprinkler system set up, whether automatic or manual. An automated sprinkler is usually connected to a smoke alarm or smoke detector and when its sensors pick up a certain amount of heat, smoke or flame, will trigger the sprinklers and turn them on automatically. A manual system isn’t connected to any kind of detector so someone has to physically turn them on in order for them to work. A manual system is not as effective as an automated system because it requires someone already knowing about the fire to trigger the system. An automated system can be a life saver if no one knows that there is a fire even happening.
If you do not already have a fire prevention plan in place at your facility, then it is time to get one, now. Fires affect over thousands of companies every year in injury, property damage and even death. You can avoid all of these things if you will put a properly function fire suppression system in place. Put your mind, your employees’ minds and your customers’ minds at ease, simply by installing a good system. It’s better to have one and not need it, than need one and not have it.