The LWF Blog

Fire Engineering for Healthcare Premises – Fire Strategies – Part 63

November 29, 2021 1:25 pm

LWF’s blog series for healthcare professionals aims to give information on best practice of fire safety in hospitals and other healthcare premises. In part 62 of Fire Engineering for Healthcare Premises, LWF looked at the practical implications of fire strategies in a healthcare environment. In part 63, we consider Fire Drawings and their use in assessing fire precautions.

In order to assess the fire precautions at the design stage, a set of fire drawings should be prepared. Fire symbols for use in the drawings can be found in BS 1635 Recommendations for Graphic Symbols and Fire Protection Drawings.

To ensure compliance with all relevant fire safety guidance, including HTM 05-03, the fire drawings must illustrate the fire detection and alarm systems, means of escape, structural fire precautions, portable and fixed fire-fighting equipment, smoke control and ventilation arrangements and finally, access and facilities for the Fire Service.

Each set of fire drawings should include all necessary elements of the following:

  • A location plan showing the situation of the building(s) in relation to the surrounding area
  • A site plan showing the buildings and curtilage
  • A floor plan of each storey of the building(s), prepared at a scale of not less than 1:200
  • A floor plan of each department, prepared at a minimum scale of not less than 1:100 and preferably at a scale of 1:50 for greater detail
  • A set of elevations

At the construction stage of a project, it is common for variations to be required to accommodate changes. This may involve slight changes to structure and layout. The changes must not subvert the integrity of the agreed fire precautions. Any variations to the original plans should be recorded on the fire plans.

On completion, an as-built set of drawings can be prepared based on the marked changes, or on a list of products by name, to allow for the fire protection systems to be maintained and checked to ensure their continued operation and suitability for purpose.

In the case of healthcare buildings, the as-built drawings should be held by the Trust, so that any proposed alterations in the future can be checked against the fire drawings to ensure fire safety is maintained as intended and in accordance with requirements.

It should be noted that, as an operational requirement, there is no formal enforcement through the Building Regulations, although a formal handover of information is required elsewhere.

In Part 64 of LWF’s blog series, LWF will begin to look at specific examples of where fire safety engineering has been utilised in healthcare premises, as per HTM 05-03. 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 LWF on freephone 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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