Experts in fire safety pass on their knowledge

Published in Installers & Contractors on: Mon, Jul 2, 2018 4:22 PM

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Domestic Smoke Alarms – although effective - used to be pretty basic affairs; until recently that is.  


The technology now used in Smoke Alarms has resulted in improved response and resistance to false alarms, wireless alarm interconnection for minimum disruption, the ability to connect Smoke Alarms to other lifesaving systems, data extraction facilities and a raft of valuable system add ons such as alarm control switches, to name but a few.


Standards, regulations and best practice are also changing regularly to keep up with the latest alarm technologies and, with devolved power, the different nations that make up the UK often have their own set of requirements.



Keeping up to date with the latest developments is essential if you are to provide the best protection for residents of a property.  Training has a vital role to play here and not just for contractors, but for anyone involved in alarm specification and maintenance and even Asset Managers.


Smoke Alarm manufacturers are clearly best placed to advise you of the latest features in their own products, but it’s essential any training scheme you decide upon goes beyond that to look at best practice and relevant standards and regulations.


In the case of domestic fire alarm systems, training should cover British Standard BS 5839-6:2013 and Building Regulations; Smoke Alarm system categories & grades; Smoke Alarm sensor types; and system installation, including alarm interconnection options.



"An overview of Carbon Monoxide standards and legislation would also be very beneficial," adds Martyn Walley, National Technical Manager at Aico Ltd. "Ideally, the training scheme should have a means of advising you of changes to these, as and when they are made.


"Of course, time taken off for learning means time away from work so the training has to meet your specific requirements and be delivered in a suitable way.  Look for modular training programmes which make it easier to get the exact training you need, be it standards and regulations or alarm system design.


"Deliverability of that training is also a consideration.  Onsite training should be one option as it’s convenient, but visiting a dedicated training centre could offer you a more submersive, valuable experience without the day to day to distractions you’re bound to experience when holding training on your own premises.  Aico also offers an in between option with our Mobile Training & Demonstration Units which essentially deliver a mini training centre to your door.



"Our understanding of fire safety and the technologies employed are developing and changing faster than ever before.  Did you know, for example, that you can now easily integrate a domestic Smoke Alarm system with a Sprinkler System?


"Keeping up to date is essential if you are to provide the best possible protection; from a personal perspective it’s also rewarding to know that you are ahead of the curve."


Group Editor
Paul Groves

Sponsored by
Aico Ltd

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