Check Your Fire Sprinkler Systems Regularly to Protect Your Business
Fire protection professionals call it “failure to launch” — this is what happens when your fire sprinkler systems do not function as expected in the event of a fire event. While these water-based sprinklers have been one of the most popular ways to prevent industrial fires since the late 19th century, there are still plenty of fail points that should be reviewed by professionals on a regular basis. When your fire protection professionals tell you that your system needs maintenance, it is crucial that you address these recommendations as quickly as possible to protect your business assets, staff and customers. See how these regular checks and any necessary maintenance reduces your business risk.
Fire Doesn’t Discriminate
If we haven’t learned anything else from the recent devastation at Notre Dame due to an uncontrollable fire, we should have learned that fire doesn’t discriminate. No one considered that something could happen to the monument — losing generations of history, priceless works of art and causing billions of dollars in damage. The Notre Dame Cathedral is older than many of us can fathom as it was built between 1163-1345. It’s withstood hundreds of years of wars, changes in leadership but was nearly lost due to a simple electrical fire. While much of the Paris landmark was saved by intrepid firefighters, it will take many years before the site is rebuilt to its full and former glory.
Why Sprinkler Systems Fail
Apart from someone manually shutting them off, why do sprinkler systems fail? These fire protection devices are put in place for one specific function — to reduce the damage to a structure from fire. Nearly two-thirds of sprinkler problems are caused by human intervention: disabling a specific section, moving a valve without reviewing the impact with professionals and more. Damaged components make up approximately another 7% of the failures, while lack of adequate maintenance represents nearly 10% of failures.
If a sprinkler system fails to conform to updated standards, the majority of the system may be workable except for a small portion. Unfortunately, it doesn’t take much to restrict the viability of the entire system and cause it to either release without a fire — which can damage electronics, flooring, walls and important papers — or fail to trigger when smoke is present. Integrated fire protection and life-safety systems often work together to help maintain an adequate level of protection for your business.
Are Your Standards Out of Date?
While fire protection standards are relatively consistent over time, they can change when there are advances in a particular technology. There are a range of standards recommended by NFPA that are intended to help maintain the safety and security of your commercial buildings. Failing to maintain your building’s fire protection standards to adequate levels can also cause you trouble with the building codes inspector and can be expensive to update once significant or long-term damage has occurred.
The best way to protect your business investment as well as the safety of staff members and customers is to schedule regular fire sprinkler systems reviews annually plus a full review every 5 years. When you quickly schedule maintenance as recommended at your checkup, you are helping reduce the overall risk to your business. AAA Fire Protection has been the choice of businesses throughout California for decades, and we welcome the opportunity to help protect your business. Contact us today at 855-356-0020 to learn more or receive a free initial estimate for your business.