The LWF Blog

Fire Engineering Design and Risk Assessment – Fire Safety Management – Part 8

December 23, 2019 2:08 pm

In LWF’s Fire Engineering blog series for Architects and others involved in building design, we have been looking at the activities of a company which can be classed as fire safety management. In part 7, LWF looked at the necessary approvals, certification, commissioning and handover for a new build. In part 8, we continue looking at commissioning and handover.

Commonly, the building project’s fire safety engineer isn’t asked to attend the final handover of the build to the building’s management team, however, when it is possible, the fire safety engineer should be involved in order to convey information and give information of the fire safety aspects of the handover, which otherwise would fall to the architect. Of course, the building’s management team should also be present to ensure they gain an understanding of every aspect of the building.

It is important that all fire safety systems which have been installed in the build are operational at the time of handover and before the building, or parts thereof, is formally accepted.

The installed fire safety systems must be commissioned and, where possible, tested in full commissioning tests involving fire and/or smoke as appropriate. These tests should be undertaken with the building’s management team present for the following reasons:

– To demonstrate the fire safety system design objectives are achieved
– To identify any problems of detail not previously considered in the design
– To show that the design has been properly implemented
– To identify any problems with systems interactions, or failures in that regard
– To allow management a chance to operate the system
– To give confidence to users of the building
– To give confidence and training to the Fire Service

Members of the management team who will deal with fire safety should be provided with information on all installed active and passive fire safety systems incorporated into the building and the information should be included in the fire safety manual.

This information should include any documentation from contractors and manufacturers of said fire safety systems, including any instruction manuals, guarantees, test certificates and spare parts.

As-built drawings of the systems, along with specifications and equipment-operating parameters and record drawings should also be included, along with any instructions on how it should be used, details of planned maintenance and testing and the results of any acceptance tests (which may involve regulatory authorities and insurance company representatives).

In part 9, LWF will look at the purpose and contents of the fire safety manual. In the meantime, if you have any questions about this blog, or wish to discuss your own project with one of our fire engineers, please contact us.

Lawrence Webster Forrest has been working with their clients for over 25 years to produce innovative and exciting building projects. If you would like further information on how LWF and fire strategies could assist you, please contact the LWF office on 0800 410 1130.

While care has been taken to ensure that information contained in LWF’s publications is true and correct at the time of publication, changes in circumstances after the time of publication may impact on the accuracy of this information.

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