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Domestic & Residential Sprinklers

Domestic & Residential Sprinklers
Sprinklers have been used for the protection of commercial and industrial properties for more than 150 years and there is now a growing recognition of their effectiveness in improving levels of life safety in other types of buildings and that sprinklers offer a highly cost-effective way of reducing the UK’s appalling fire death toll.

The 2006 versions of Approved Document B of the Building Regulations (in England and Wales) and the Technical Handbooks of Scottish Building Standards both incorporate clear recognition of the value of sprinklers in improving levels of safety for occupants as well as in preventing the spread of fire.

Other developments have demonstrated the value of sprinklers in providing additional levels of safety for firefighters in large, complex structures or in buildings where the fire load is excessive.

With the incorporation of the latest fast-response sprinkler heads there is clear evidence that, even in the compartment of origin of a fire, occupants of sprinklered buildings enjoy a significant additional measure of life safety. Unlike smoke detectors which can only warn of the need for evacuation, sprinklers can actually save those who are unable to help themselves.

It is also clear that when it is the most vulnerable members of our society who die, only sprinklers can actually prevent fire deaths.

One of the most often ignored benefits of sprinklers is the additional flexibility which this equipment can provide to designers and builders. In unconventional buildings, including sprinklers in a specification will often enable Building Regulations compliance to be achieved in a very cost- effective manner and where a truly green or carbon neutral building is demanded, a sprinkler system will ensure that no fire will destroy that building.

Benefits for Designers and Builders
One of the most often ignored benefits of sprinklers is the additional flexibility which this equipment can provide to designers and builders.

In unconventional or unusual buildings including sprinklers in a specification will often enable Building Regulations compliance to be achieved in a very cost- effective manner. Where changes of use are being anticipated, utilising sprinklers is often the only way in which means of escape requirements can be provided. In other situations, the freedom architects seek to implement a stylish or unorthodox design can only be accomplished using sprinklers.

Sprinklers have also been used as a compensating feature in developments where the Building Regulations cannot be complied with in respect of means of escape or access for the fire brigade. Some projects have even reported that providing sprinklers has resulted in a cost saving where the building authority has permitted trade-offs in respect of means of escape facilities.

Sprinklers are also ideal for protecting buildings constructed from non-traditional materials such as those constructed wholly or largely from timber or using recycled materials. Where a truly green or carbon neutral building is demanded, a sprinkler system will ensure that no fire will destroy that building.

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