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SCS Group commends maintenance message

A photo to show that maintaining a smoke control system is incredibly important. Here, two SCS Group staff check a system.

The maintenance of a smoke control system is incredibly important. Here, two SCS Group staff check a system.

WHEN it comes to maintaining your smoke control system, we really can’t emphasise enough how important it is to get it right and make sure the right person is maintaining it.

As a life-safety system it is imperative that it is in full working order and checked regularly to make sure it stays that way.

‘Get it right first time’

Brakel Airvent has also called on people to make sure they get it right the first time when it comes to smoke control maintenance, and we commend the company’s publicity of this message.

In a recent story in Means of Escape, Brakel Airvent’s director Charles Hurdman said: “Get it right first time – that’s our simple advice. You can’t mess around with smoke control and unfortunately that’s what some engineers do: they mess around. We’ve seen systems that have seemingly slight problems which can in fact have drastic knock-on effects, and we’ve seen other systems with obvious faults that are hard to believe without seeing them.”

Calls for proper maintenance

Brakel Airvent’s message falls firmly in line with SCS Group’s own recent calls for proper maintenance of smoke control systems.

Olly Lucas, SCS Group’s Service Manager, said: “If you are the person responsible for a building, you need to be sure that your safety systems work properly – because if they don’t, lives could be put at risk.

“In the event of a fire, smoke control systems limit and control the movement of smoke throughout a building. These systems are designed to both maintain clear escape routes for people in the building and protect firefighters entering the building. It is vital that smoke control systems can be relied upon – and that means making sure they are maintained and working correctly.”

Olly explained that smoke control systems should only be maintained by a competent person with specialist knowledge of smoke control systems, training on the particular system installed, adequate access to spares and sufficient information regarding the system. In addition to having experience and training of smoke control systems, the service engineer needs to have an industry recognised level 3 electrical qualification. Training in PLC systems is essential to enable an engineer to interrogate, repair and update the automated software programs utilised in modern smoke shaft systems.

He said: “The person responsible for the building should ensure engineers do hold the correct qualifications before any maintenance work is carried out on a smoke control system.  When selecting a contractor to maintain a smoke control system, SCS Group would advise you to choose a member of the Smoke Control Association (SCA).”

SCS Group also emphasises that between these visits it is crucial a test log is maintained, with full details of weekly and monthly tests carried out. SCS Group has a maintenance logsheet available to download at http://groupscs.co.uk/services/maintenance/

Olly has written a full guide to maintaining your smoke control system which you can read at http://groupscs.co.uk/smoke-control-systems-can-save-lives-functioning-correctly/

If you need help with maintaining your smoke control system get in touch today. Email our Service Manager Olly Lucas, here: o.lucas@groupscs.co.uk

For the full story on the Means of Escape website, click here.