- Security TWENTY
- Women in Security
Touchscreen-controlled ZFP addressable fire panels from the UK fire safety product company C-TEC are protecting Gates Power Transmission in Dumfries. A subsidiary of the US corporation whose motto is “If it moves you, there’s a good chance Gates has a part in it”, the company makes power transmission belts for the automotive and industrial markets.
Supplied and commissioned by the Scottish fire alarm and lighting product company, CMD Electrical Engineers Ltd and installed by Gates’ own engineers, a network of eight ZFP one and two loop addressable fire panels connected to over 300 devices including 90 of C-TEC’s new EN54-23 certified visual alarm devices were used as an upgrade the old fire alarm. To accommodate the plant’s 24/7 operation, a phased installation was required to ensure at least 90 per cent of the old fire system remained active during the change-over.
As the old system was a mix of old conventional and addressable panels in multiple buildings, a first step was to install, network and commission the new ZFPs to allow for the phased change-over of each area. The engineers then began the laborious task of working through the old fire system.
Craig Dolier of CMD said: “Gates’ engineers created loops between two radial circuits on the conventional systems and tested the wiring ready for connection. We then upgraded each addressable system to ZFP, working through the radial circuits to make loops and configuring and commissioning the new devices. The facility also had two zone 1 areas which needed to be integrated into the new system.
“The new system is a massive improvement on the old multiple one as, if a device previously activated, the area had to be physically visited to find out which one it was. With the new one, however, the identity and location of the triggered device is clearly visible on any one of the eight ZFPs.”
A phased evacuation is in operation to minimise false alarms. The first alarm is a pulsing warning signal which will be investigated and silenced if it proves to be false. If a true fire is discovered, however, a key-switch is turned to trigger the full-scale evacuation of the site.
Craig added: “The ZFP is extremely well-engineered, reliable and ticks all the boxes for EN54 compliance. We were especially impressed its capacity to be networked over multiple sites and the ease by which devices can be added to the system.”