Fire Alarm Systems - Retail Sector

31st May 2016

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There is a huge number of retail outlets across the world. They range from small independent store fronts to huge shopping centres such as the New South China Mall that covers a staggering 892,000m2.

In the UK alone Shopping Centres, or Malls, cover around 4 billion square meters of ground. They are extremely busy environments that cater for an incredible amount of people each day, often across multiple storeys.

The UK's largest shopping centre is currently the Metrocentre in Gateshead, Tyne and Wear. It currently covers 190,000m2 and receives around 22 million visitors a year. Although this is the largest shopping centre other shopping centres in the UK receive just as many visitors and in many cases receive heaps more. The Westfield Stratford City shopping Centre in London (pictured above) is the busiest and receives over 40 million visitors each year.

The majority of shopping centre visitors are in unfamiliar surroundings, aren’t aware of their nearest escape route, the buildings layout or the centre’s evacuation procedure. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance that fire is detected quickly and reliably to ensure safe and efficient evacuation.

Shopping Centre Fire

In November 2013 a fire broke out in a Nandos restaurant and spread rapidly throughout the Southside Shopping Centre in Wandsworth. Over two and a half thousand shoppers were evacuated while six fire engines and thirty-five fire-fighters tackled the fire and brought it under control.

Luckily, a suitable fire alarm was in-place and the building was successfully evacuated before any of its visitors came to harm. Without suitable procedures and a reliable detection in place the consequences could have been devastating, not only with the risk of causing serious injury, but with death being a distinct possibility.

What is the Importance of a Reliable Fire Alarm System?

Most importantly, shopping centres receive large volumes of visitors who are often unfamiliar with the buildings exit routes. Therefore, fast and reliable fire detection is needed to ensure that any fires are reliably detected and evacuation can be carried out efficiently to avoid injury or death.

False alarms and avoidable evacuations could inflict unnecessary panic amongst shoppers causing huge disruption to the operation of a shopping centre. The time it takes to initiate an evacuation, investigate an alarm and re-open the closed areas could cost retailers thousands in lost revenue and damage their reputation. Therefore, in the event of an alarm staff need to be discreetly signalled so they can investigate the cause of the alarm without disquieting shoppers.

Cost effective solution

When considering the cost of a fire alarm system there are a number of factors to consider. While the initial cost of the system is an important factor it is also important to consider total cost of ownership. The average lifespan of the typical fire alarm system is ten years. Therefore, maintenance, servicing, breakdown and replacement expenses could end up costing more money in the long run.

While staying legal and protecting your investment and, of course, human life should be a priority, it is important that any fire alarm system used is expertly designed to suit its application and is installed and commissioned by a professional engineer. While this may make your initial outlay higher than expected, it will save money in the long run.

About Eurofyre

Eurofyre are proud, British manufacturers of specialist fire detection systems for commercial and industrial applications. Our expertise and experience enables us to supply complete systems for any application. Our ambition is to provide the highest possible quality and level of service to all of our customers and we endeavor to achieve this by providing concise online literature and specific training programs together with excellent pre- and post-sale technical support.

Our range of products includes, but is not limited to:

Conventional Fire Alarm Systems

ProFyre

Eurofyre’s ProFyre range of conventional fire alarm systems provides a fully featured and cost effective detection solution that has been designed with ease of installation and commissioning in mind.

2-Wire Fire Alarm Systems

Our ProFyre 2-wire fire alarm system benefits from conventional, analogue and 2-wire technologies providing complete wiring flexibility where conventional ‘radial’ or ‘loop’ wiring topologies are concerned.  This makes the ProFyre 2-wire fire alarm system ideal for both retro-fit installation and new projects.

Analogue Addressable Fire Alarm Systems

ProFyre Analogue Addressable Fire Alarm Systems offer a complete high quality and reliable fire alarm system for small to large applications. ProFyre analogue addressable fire alarm systems are built using a powerful communication protocol that has been designed to be reliable, flexible and expandable to benefit future developments.

Aspirating Smoke Detection

Eurofyre’s aspirating smoke detection systems provide an extremely early warning of fire in even the most demanding situations. Pipe networks can be easily hidden making it the ideal choice for applications where the aesthetics of the property are to be maintained.

Linear Heat Detection

FyreLine Linear Heat

Our FyreLine linear heat detection system uses heat sensing cable to provide an early warning of fire. It is highly cost-effective and can easily be installed as part of any conventional heat detection system.

Wireless Fire Detection

Wi-Fyre

Eurofyre’s Wi-Fyre wireless fire detection system has been designed to allow for integration between wireless devices and and existing hard-wired systems. This means that wireless devices can be installed wherever necessary to provide complete protection in the most convenient and cost-effective way.


To find out more about any of Eurofyre’s fire detection systems feel free to contact Eurofyre on +44 (0)1329 835024 or by email to info@eurofyre.co.uk. For all the latest fire protection news sign up to our newsletter using the form at the bottom of your screen or follow us online on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

Michael Clatworthy

Posted by Michael Clatworthy

Michael is the sales manager EMEA at Eurofyre.

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