Derek Killaspy, Managing Director of Fireworks Fire Protection
Fire protection for hospitals and clinics is a crucial element of patient care. Fast evacuation in the event of fire is not option for patients with reduced mobility, in intensive care or in operating theatres.
While fire sprinklers have been the traditionally chosen solution in the past, at Fireworks we saw the beginnings of the transition to water mist fire protection around a decade ago. Private clinics were among the first to benefit from the superior life-saving properties offered by water mist. Many large hospitals around the world are following suit, especially now that total cost of ownership over the lifetime of the system has become more competitive.
Although most fire engineers and facilities managers are aware of the life-saving properties of water mist, it is probably true to say that the water mist sector has not done a particularly good job of evangelising these benefits – or explaining what water mist is – to a larger audience.
Like sprinklers, water mist is a water-based fire protection system, but its ability to rapidly suppress fire and heat is far superior. As water mist particles are much smaller than the water droplets emitted by sprinklers, they quickly cool the fire and suppress flames. Water mist is also the only fire protection solution to significantly reduce the spread of smoke and maintain a breathable environment, which is all the more critical in a healthcare environment.
Water mist is harmless to sensitive medical equipment
Water-based fire protection solutions can be safely used on electronic and medical equipment, when a water mist system is used. There is no better proof of this when we look at the hundreds of thousands of square metres of data centres that Fireworks already protect with water mist, backed up by international fire approval certifications.
Costs and installation
Water mist fire protection now offers all of the above benefits, but with a cost of ownership that is the same, or often lower than traditional sprinkler systems. Smaller and fewer components save space and mean than installation is cheaper and faster. These fast and easy to install solutions, with smaller pipes and fewer nozzles, also make water mist ideal for retrofitting into an already-operational hospital environment.
The migration to water mist fire protection solutions for large hospitals began in Scandinavia and Asia. At Fireworks we have seen a growth in enquiries for water mist from health care facilities in the United Kingdom and its likely we will see these systems being adopted in healthcare facilities in other European countries in the near future.
Find out more about water mist solutions for your project
To understand more about how these life-saving benefits are achieved, and to review some of the independent testing that has been carried out, we have created an Institute of Fire Engineers accredited CPD presentation on water mist fire protection. Visit www.fireworks-ltd to find out more, or contact us on email@example.com to discuss potential water mist applications for your project.
Supporting the Norfolk & Norwich Hospitals Charity
For more information, contact:
0800 975 7462