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Why you need to test your fire alarm

It’s not enough to simply install fire alarms at your business premises, you also need to test them regularly to ensure they are working efficiently. With considerable Government statistics showing a direct correlation between working fire alarms and reduced fatalities and injuries caused by fire, testing your fire alarms should be a priority for your business.

When triggered, a fire alarm can give people enough time to find safety, and alert the emergency services, minimising the risk of damage to your staff, your stock and your premises. A working alarm combined with a quick response can save lives and enable your business to recover from the impact of a fire.

Regular testing is vital to ensure there’s been no major failure of the fire detection and alarm system, which otherwise might go unnoticed.

How often you need to test them?

Government regulations for businesses state fire-fighting equipment needs to be maintained and tested regularly. Whether an office block, retail premises, or an industrial business, alarms should be tested once a week at a set time with employees being made aware. Areas at high risk of fire may wish to test alarms more frequently. Be sure to inform any customers or clients within your premises the ringing alarms are tests to avoid partial evacuation of your premises.

Staff must receive training and there has to be inspection and servicing at least once every six months by a ‘competent person’ – organisations which are third-party certified. On a weekly basis test a manual call point during working hours and voice alarm systems. Your service provider can provide a full list of actions. Good practice in homes is also to test once a week.

How do you test fire alarms?

Designated employees should test the fire alarm once a week by following testing instructions provided with your alarm manual or taught by your alarm installer.

It is also essential businesses have regular maintenance and servicing of equipment to ensure it is fault free and working correctly. Alarm maintenance should only be carried out by a professional installer to avoid damaging the system.

BWS Security install and maintain fire alarms for Gloucester businesses and businesses throughout the south west. If you’d like to enquire about our maintenance contracts, please get in touch with a member of our team on 01225 800 602.

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