Education facilities are places where people of different ages go to gain an education. These include establishments such as pre-schools, primary schools, secondary schools, colleges and universities. These facilities provide a variety of learning environments and spaces for students.
Education facilities vary in size and can range from very small, single room buildings to extremely large buildings spanning multiple floors. They can welcome thousands of students and members of staff every day and are sometimes open to the general public.
This type of building also often contains a variety of valuable equipment such as computer systems, interactive whiteboards and displays, projectors and other specialist equipment.
Therefore, it is essential that education facilities have a reliable fire detection system in place to protect buildings, assets and, most importantly, human life from fire.
What are the Risks?
- Students and Staff
- High volumes of students and staff working in or visiting education facilities can cause issues when trying to keep areas free of clutter. This not only increases the risk of fire, but can also hinder efficient evacuation.
- Poor Housekeeping
- If areas in these facilities are not kept clean and free from waste, the risk of fire is increased. Combustible materials that are not removed, such as packaging or general waste that is disposed of in public bins, can cause fire to spread more rapidly.
- Education buildings can be susceptible to arson attacks. Whether by disgruntled pupils or random acts of vandalism it is not uncommon for these types of buildings to be targeted.
- High Risk Areas
- There are also a number of high risk areas within schools where electrical equipment, science apparatus, flammable materials, gas supplies and hazardous chemicals may be present.
What are the Challenges?
- In some cases, education facilities are listed buildings and are, therefore, protected by the Planning Act. This means that the installation of fire safety equipment must not alter the appearance of the building or certain areas within the building.
- Cooling and Heating Systems
- Cooling and heating systems used in education facilities can cause unpredictable airflow, making it difficult for traditional detectors to detect the presence of smoke.
- Education institutions are responsible for the safeguarding of their pupils and, therefore, have restricted access. Some areas, such as classrooms and restrooms, may not be accessible during business hours.
- False Alarms
- Frequent false alarms can be extremely disruptive in a classroom environment. Therefore, the reduction of nuisance alarms is a high-priority.
Aspirating smoke detection (ASD) can provide an ideal solution for protecting education facilities from fire. It uses powerful fans to actively draw air from the protected environment via a series of sampling points. This means it is unaffected by unpredictable and varying airflows, can detect fires extremely quickly and the detection units can be installed outside of the protected area. Sampling points are discrete and have little impact on the aesthetics of a building and various filters can be used to remove contaminants from the sampled air, thus reducing the risk of false alarms.
ASD is cost-effective, reliable, discrete and easy-to-install.
VESDA is the most advanced range of aspirating smoke detection on the market today. Continuous research and development from experts at Xtralis has taken ASD from being a very niche and specialist type of detection to being a regular in the fire alarm engineers arsenal. VESDA-E, the most recent range from Xtralis, now sets the bar for reliability, stability and performance.
The detectors in the VESDA range that are most commonly used in education facilities include:
VESDA-E VEP Aspirating Smoke Detection
VESDA-E VEP detectors are built using Xtralis’ FlairTM detection, a revolutionary detection chamber, to deliver extremely early warning of fire, improved rejection of nuisance alarms, higher stability and increased longevity.
VESDA-E VES Aspirating Smoke Detection
VESDA-E VES provides all the features of the VEP. However, it includes a special valve mechanism that enables addressability across 4 pipes/sectors. This enables a single zone to be divided into four separate sub-zones, enabling the user to locate the source of smoke. Once the first sector has reached the alarm level, the detector continues to sample from all sectors to monitor fire growth.
VESDA-E VEU Aspirating Smoke Detection
The VESDA-E VEU detector has an ultra-wide sensitivity range, and provision for more sampling holes, to deliver increased coverage in high-airflow applications. Longer linear pipe runs and extended branched pipe network configurations provide the perfect solution for education facilities with higher ceilings; providing an increased coverage by up to 80% whilst allowing convenient detector mounting for ease of service and maintenance.
VESDA-E VEA Aspirating Smoke Detection
VESDA-E VEA combines the reliability of VESDA early warning smoke detection with the provision of pinpoint addressability. Once a fire is detected, the system uses a rotary valve to individually test each sampling point which enables the detector to accurately pinpoint the location of a fire.
Why Choose Eurofyre?
- Xtralis Gold Partner
- Eurofyre has ‘Gold Channel Partner’ status with Xtralis – the market leader in aspirating smoke detection. This recognition displays our level of commitment, including excellent customer service and competitive pricing.
- Complete System Supplier
- Eurofyre is a complete system supplier and has been a major Xtralis technical wholesaler since 2007. This means we can offer expert advice and supply all aspects of fire detection including aspirating smoke detection systems, conventional and addressable fire alarm control panels and linear heat detection.
- Pipework Design
- Eurofyre can also provide assistance with aspirating pipe network design to ensure optimum network performance and installation quality.
- Demonstration and Training
- We have a sophisticated training facility where we offer demonstrations and expert training on a range of systems, including VESDA-E aspirating smoke detection systems.
- After-Sales Support
- Eurofyre prides itself on providing after-sales care and support that is second to none. We offer both on-site and telephone assistance to help you ensure that your system is fully operational and working at its best.
For more information about VESDA aspirating smoke detection, or to discuss any of the other products that Eurofyre have to offer, please feel free to get in touch either by phone on +44 (0) 1329 835 024, by email to [email protected] or via the online enquiry form situated on our contact page.