Fire is an incident that happens often in Indonesia. In 2021 alone, there were 17,768 fire incidents reported in Indonesia. 5,274 or about 45% of it happened are caused by short circuits.
In running a business, suffering fire incidents will obviously be devastating. Resulting in the loss of billions or even hundreds of billions of rupiah. Not to mention the possible destruction of the nearby environment and loss of life.
As a company that paid attention to their workers safety, measures to mitigate the risk of fire incidents should be taken. Both to prevent and to mitigate the impact of fire incidents.
One of such measures is to install a fire alarm system. So, what is the function of a fire alarm system?
The Function of Fire Alarm
The main function of a fire alarm is to warn people about a fire incident in a vicinity through the alarm sound or indicator lamp, so that an evacuation should be immediately done.
Furthermore, a fire alarm can also indicate the location of the fire incident in the vicinity, either by zone or pinpoint location, depending on the system used. That is done to prevent the spread of fire effectively and efficiently.
Hence, from its function we could see that the main aim of installing a fire alarm system is not to prevent a fire occurring, but as a measure to mitigate the impact that could be done if a fire incident is to happen.
So, how does a fire alarm system work?
How a Fire Alarm System Work
A fire alarm system, just like any other system, needs several components for it to work as intended.
Simply put, these components could be categorized based on its function in the fire alarm system, namely: input, process, and output
The input component is the component used to detect a fire. Devices used in the component input are placed at locations in a building according to the needs and regulations.
There are two devices within the input component, that are:
Manual Call Point (MCP)
Manual Call Point or MCP can be a break glass, pull station, or push station. As the name suggests, MCP is a device in the input component that needs to be manually activated to detect a fire.
In other words, MCP could only “detect” a fire occurring when someone has activated it. So, the detection of a fire occurring is done by the one who activates the MCP and not the MCP device itself.
This is different with devices that are commonly referred to as a “detector”, that could detect a fire incident by itself.
Devices that are commonly referred to as a detector in the input component are devices that could automatically detect a fire incident occurring. There are several types of detectors, some of which are:
Some detectors detect smoke densities in the location where the detector is installed. When the smoke densities have exceeded a predetermined threshold, then a fire incident is considered to have happened and the smoke detector will activate.
Heat detector detects temperature and the change of temperature in the location it is installed. Depending on its type, once the temperature in its location has exceeded a predetermined threshold or a rapid change of temperature is detected, then a fire incident is considered to have happened and the heat detector will activate.
Once the devices in the input component have activated, then the information of a fire incident occurring will be sent to the next component.
The process component consists of one device, namely a Fire Alarm Control Panel or FACP (also known as Main Control Fire Alarm or MCFA). A FACP is the center of a fire alarm system.
It functioned to receive information of a fire incident occurring and process that information to be delivered to devices in the output component.
Devices in the output component are devices that process information given by the FACP and translate it into a warning sign that could be heard or seen by people in the vicinity. These devices are also placed at location in a building according to the needs and regulations.
Devices in the output component are alarm bells, announcers, and flash strobes that could give warning signs both audibly and visually. So that the people in the vicinity are informed that they should immediately evacuate.
Other additional devices such as water sprinkler and hydrant box are also considered as devices in the output component if it has been integrated with the fire alarm system so that it could also receive information of a fire incident occurring through the Fire Alarm Control Panel.
Overall, these three components are what construct a fire alarm system. The system itself is commonly differentiated into conventional and addressable fire alarm systems.
From those two types of system, which are the most suited for your needs?
Choosing a Fire Alarm System
Choosing the right fire alarm system should depend on your security needs. Considering that both systems have the same function and work similarly.
Aside from its difference in price, the significant difference between a conventional and an addressable fire alarm system is the way its input component “communicates” with its process component.
The conventional fire alarm system communicates using analog technology. In the conventional system, the installation of input devices is grouped into “zones”. A zone usually comprises multiple input devices.
Hence, when a fire incident is detected, the information given and shown in the FACP is the zone where the fire is detected.
With a relatively cheap price, the conventional fire alarm system is suitable for securing small facilities.
While larger facilities such as office buildings with lots of rooms, installing addressable fire alarm systems is more suitable and more efficient in securing the facility.
Utilizing digital technologies, every device in the input component of an addressable fire alarm system has its own address. So, information about the location of a fire incident occurring could be tracked specifically to the device that detected it. Greatly reducing the time needed to locate and put out the fire.
Protecting Your Assets with Nawakara
Whichever system you choose, the installation of a fire alarm system aims to mitigate the impact of fire incidents or avoid the spread of fire. Minimizing material losses and even saving life.
Here in Nawakara, we understand how important it is to protect your assets and one of the measures that you need to take is installing a fire alarm system in your facilities such as office buildings or production areas.
Our team of experts will ensure that your fire alarm system is suited to your assets protection needs and comply with every regulation.
For further information, feel free to click on this link to contact us.