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kayak
21-01-2010, 16:41 PM
Hi all,

I'm after some opinions, and any 'case studies' that might assist me.

I've been reading through guidance by LACORS, and also BS5839 which relates to the testing and maintenance of fire alarm systems. Most systems need a 'proper test', i.e by a competent person every six months, however Grade A systems need testing every week, and this noting in the log book.

Most systems Grade C and beyond, if the tenants are given instructions but this is not the case for Grade A systems. These types of systems are used in commercial buildings where this is understandable but a little less practical in tenanted properties.

I'm interested if anyone has any experience or comments, and particularly if you know of any cases where a prosecution has been attempted, or been made?

Cheers,

John

JK0
21-01-2010, 16:54 PM
The day I am asked to install a fire alarm will be the day I sell my property.

Now please all you nervous ninnies, don't start criticising me for my point of view. I am entitled to my views, and the OP asked for comments.

kayak
21-01-2010, 16:58 PM
Hi James,

Grade A systems are usually present in converted buildings to flats (3 or more stories, or old licensable HMO's where that used to be the requirement.

If you should have a fire alarm system in different houses is another arguement, but one I could give a strong case for :)

John

tom999
21-01-2010, 17:45 PM
I'm interested if anyone has any experience or comments, and particularly if you know of any cases where a prosecution has been attempted, or been made?Yes, these ones *:

London council prosecutes landlord of unregistered HMO (http://www.upad.co.uk/blog/2009/10/london-council-prosecutes-landlord-of-unregistered-hmo/)

Inside Out: rogue landlord caught on camera illegally renting out flats (http://www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice/pressreleases/stories/2006/10_october/02/inside.shtml)


* However, these cases are more related to missing or broken fire alarms, rather than alarm maintenance.

kayak
21-01-2010, 17:51 PM
Yes, these ones *:

London council prosecutes landlord of unregistered HMO (http://www.upad.co.uk/blog/2009/10/london-council-prosecutes-landlord-of-unregistered-hmo/)

Inside Out: rogue landlord caught on camera illegally renting out flats (http://www.bbc.co.uk/pressoffice/pressreleases/stories/2006/10_october/02/inside.shtml)


* However, these cases are more related to missing or broken fire alarms, rather than alarm maintenance.

Thanks but I'm specifically looking in the maintenance requirements the fire alarms as opposed to prosecution of those missing.

Poppy
21-01-2010, 18:07 PM
Please tell the members what type of property you have. You may get more responses that you regard as relevant.

red40
21-01-2010, 18:12 PM
Failing to maintain a smoke detection system would fall under the management regulations for HMO's really. A breach of not maintaining such a system carried a fine of upto £5000, I think.

Unfortunately when landlords are prosecuted, councils press releases dont break down the offence's committed. The only one I know of was from Bristol, but again exactly how much the landlord was fined for not maintaining the smoke detection system was not printed.

Link here (http://www.thisisbristol.co.uk/news/Landlord-fined-neglecting-property/article-659765-detail/article.html)

kayak
21-01-2010, 18:28 PM
Please tell the members what type of property you have. You may get more responses that you regard as relevant.

Hi Poppy,

I manage, or assist in the management of many different types of properties. Nearly, if not all of them have a fire alarm system with a maintenance plan.

The specific types of properties concerned are three storey buildings converted into flats, with a Grade A system (LD1 - LD3 or mixed), or HMO (licensable) (3 Stories, 5+ occupants), where the old requirement was for a Grade A LD1.

There is a requirement in BS5839 to test these systems weekly, and I don't think with a Grade A system it is possible to pass this responsibility onto the tenants. I'll cite when I can find it.

I'm therefore interested on if this has ever been enforced, or peoples practical solutions/personal experiences to the problem.

Hope that makes a bit of sense!

John

ray
21-02-2010, 19:59 PM
Hi,
There is nothing wrong with using a responsible tenant to carry out the weekly test, after all it only involves operating a call point and resetting the system afterwards.

As long as there is a written agreement with the tenant and the tests are recorded with a periodic check by the landlord it would deem to satisfy the legal requirements of both the Housing Act and the Fire safety Order.
Regards
Ray

Darren Baird
10-03-2010, 12:39 PM
Hi all,

I'm after some opinions, and any 'case studies' that might assist me.

I've been reading through guidance by LACORS, and also BS5839 which relates to the testing and maintenance of fire alarm systems. Most systems need a 'proper test', i.e by a competent person every six months, however Grade A systems need testing every week, and this noting in the log book.

Most systems Grade C and beyond, if the tenants are given instructions but this is not the case for Grade A systems. These types of systems are used in commercial buildings where this is understandable but a little less practical in tenanted properties.

I'm interested if anyone has any experience or comments, and particularly if you know of any cases where a prosecution has been attempted, or been made?

Cheers,

John

If you have a mixed system covering the common parts and the dwellings irrespective of if there have been prosecutions or not there is a legal requirement to test and maintain the fire system under Article 17 of the fire safety order 2005.

“Where necessary - the responsible person must ensure that the premises and facilities, equipment and devices provided …. are subject to a suitable system of maintenance... in an efficient state … in efficient working order and in good repair”

kayak
11-03-2010, 21:59 PM
If you have a mixed system covering the common parts and the dwellings irrespective of if there have been prosecutions or not there is a legal requirement to test and maintain the fire system under Article 17 of the fire safety order 2005.

“Where necessary - the responsible person must ensure that the premises and facilities, equipment and devices provided …. are subject to a suitable system of maintenance... in an efficient state … in efficient working order and in good repair”

I don't disagree but
a) Is that realistic is a block of student flats
b) Maintenance is covered by BS5839 but the maintenance section is not the same as the weekly checks section
c) This isn't about getting out of responsibilities, but prosecutions set precedents and laws and attitudes do change (i.e. Licensable HMO standards being relaxed)

John

Ash_1
01-10-2011, 10:19 AM
I don't disagree but
a) Is that realistic is a block of student flats
b) Maintenance is covered by BS5839 but the maintenance section is not the same as the weekly checks section
c) This isn't about getting out of responsibilities, but prosecutions set precedents and laws and attitudes do change (i.e. Licensable HMO standards being relaxed)

John

Hi John,

I think I'm in a similar position to you and I agree testing once a week doesn't seem practical when it's a shared house - I know if I was a tenant I wouldn't want the landlord coming round every week claiming to want to test the the alarm. So did you get any further info about this?

Thanks