Fire protection systems are designed to save lives of the people as well as protect the property. These systems are installed to avoid or lessen the unnecessary effects of fire. Depending on the environmental conditions the fire protection systems are installed, for example, the dry pipe systems are used in cold areas and at places where the assets must be safeguarded against water. The most common fire protection system is the wet fire sprinkler system that ejects water when the fire is detected and the temperature exceeds the preset value. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) provides the application, installation, and the design guidelines for the fire sprinkler.
Sprinkler systems and other suppression systems such as clean agents, halon, dry chemical, and carbon dioxide provide early fire control or extinguishment, helping to mitigate the hazards for occupants and firefighters (Burke, 2008). The sprinkler systems are designed based on the height of the ceiling as these systems are installed at the roof tops. The different types of sprinkler systems are the wet-pipe, dry pipe, deluge, and pre-action. The wet-pipe sprinkler system consists of an alarm check valve, water flow switches, value tamper switches, and other values, and the basic requirement for this system to work efficiently is the continuous flow of water supply and sufficient pressure to manage the sprinkler.
Sprinkler systems have one more component – a bell and it used to be common practice to install a mechanical water powered bell – called water bong; it is now more usual to find an electric bell (Morawski, 2007). This sprinkler system is controlled centrally in a property, and the fire department is notified of the fire when an alarm is sent out to the central station. Due to the overgrowing population and rising of the new buildings, the manual firefighting has become tedious and now everyone is installing the automatic sprinklers. The automatic fire sprinkler system is usually fed from a domestic water supply that has limited number of heads and does not require a control valve or a water gauge (Jones, 2008). The sprinklers are always fitted away from the heat of the fire but they are still in a position to douse the spreading fire.
Hazard can be defined as threat, risk or a danger to the life of an individual or to the property. The fire hazards can be caused by fuel that is easy to ignite, or a defective appliance that is connected to the power switch. There can also be some special fire hazards that can be caused by spray painting, combustible chemicals, flammable gas tanks, and oil switches to name a few. The water spray systems are used to reduce these kinds of hazards. The type of water spray required for any particular hazard will depend on the nature of hazard and the purpose for which the protection is required (NFPA, 2003). The most common example of a fire hazard is smoking tobacco. The highly susceptible areas that are prone to a fire hazard must be declared smoke free and the organizations must build strong no-smoking policies.
Fire risk can be defined as a possibility to recognize a fire hazard. There are high risk materials like the synthetic textiles, wooden floors, and the flammable solvents that contain adhesives or bonding agents. These materials pose a high risk and are easily combustible. Hazardous waste that poses a possibility of risk to the health of humans, animals and the environment must be disposed to make it risk-free. An example of high risk is the fiber paint spray workshop where the occurrence of fire is high because of the products involved and the equipment that is used for the paint process. In such booths or workshops the fire can spread very easily because of the composition of the chemicals in the paint. Every organization must perform a risk analysis to find out the high and low risk indicators. The risk analysis provides a means to the organization or business to identify the location of the combustibles and igniting materials, or if they are closely stored and the actions that can be taken to escape any fire related hazards.
Burke, Robert A., (2008). Fire Protection: Systems and Response, illustrated, CRC Press.
Morawski, E., (2007). Fire Alarm Guide for Property Managers. Lulu.com
Jones, Maurice A., (2008). Fire Protection Systems, Cengage Learning.
National Fire Protection Association, (2003). Operation Of Fire Protection Systems, Jones & Bartlett Learning,