Today we had our annual fire alarm inspection. The work typically involves individually testing all the fire alarm triggers, which are the pull stations, smoke detectors, and water flow sensors.
This, of course, involves triggering the fire alarm repeatedly, which can be annoying to building occupants. While the alarm is triggered, it is an opportunity to check that all the strobes and horns are working as well.
Since I was following the alarm inspector around, I took the opportunity to conduct my own inspection of the fire extinguishers. I did find one extinguisher that was low in pressure. I'll have to call to get that serviced. This is done by a separate company.
We also had our exit signs tested. This year, we have had our first exit sign failure. It is likely the battery that will need replacement.
We still need the fire risers to be tested. That testing involves opening up valves in the sprinkler system to allow water to flow. This tests the flow sensors for the fire alarm. If there is a fire and one of the sprinkler heads is activated, the water flow will trigger the alarm. Most fire alarm systems have redundancies to ensure that incidents are caught in time. If it's not water flow, it's the smoke alarm, or a manual trigger that will set off an alarm.
As a Facility Manager, one is responsible for the health and safety of a building's occupants. Having functional safety systems in place is vital to fulfilling that responsibility.