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Fire panel doesn't work

Colin H

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Hi, I'm wondering if someone can help me. I own a small business and rent a unit which is about 460m square. I have been there about 6 years. There is a fire panel, there is call points at every exit, there is smoke detectors. The system doesn't seem to be connected as its dead. My insurance says I don't need it, yet another units beside me have working systems and the same landlord. Can you advise me what I need to do so I am legal, I don't want to fall foul of any rules. I employ 8 staff and at times have up to 10 members of the public on the premises.

many thanks


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What does your Fire Risk assessment (FRA) or review say about the need of a fire alarm system.The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, requires you to conduct a FRA which will show you what fire precautions you require to implement and if a fire alarm is required.





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Having looked at a similar unit to let to give me a feel for the size a FRA may find that you need as a minimum what is termed a Category M fire alarm (call points, sounders and control panel) particularly if the unit isn't open plan - whilst an electrical fire alarm system isn't always required you have to consider is a shout would realistically be heard clearly throughout the premises. Similarly whilst detectors aren't required in many normal premises you have to consider if the layout, usage and staffing of your unit is such that a fire could grow undetected long enough to compromise escape.

As you have the system already in situ it would not be a major expense to get it back in working order, the most likely expense would be new batteries and the cost of the fire alarm engineer powering it up, testing all the devices and issuing your test certificate. The only big expense would be if the panel is defunct or your current layout requires additional sounders or detectors.

If you do use the system you will need to test it weekly (the engineer can show you how) and get it serviced twice a year

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Thank you both for your reply's, I guess as it's me who has control of the premises, I am responsible and not the landlord. I will contact a fire risk assessor, and in turn a fire alarm company who can inspect the system and progress from there. Thanks again for the advice. 

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