Although the fire itself can cause serious damage, it is actually the smoke that kills the most people. Smoke inhalation can be fatal because it prevents us from breathing in enough oxygen, and because of carbon monoxide and the other deadly fumes it contains. Even when it is not lethal, smoke inhalation can cause irritation and damage to the skin and lungs.
In addition to being an immediate health hazard, a building full of smoke is a dangerous place to be, as smoke and hot air can combine to result in an explosion.
Smoke vents allow smoke to exit the building quickly and efficiently, and are essential to prevent damage, injury and death. To ensure the safety of commercial buildings, owners need to know that their smoke ventilation system meets and is compliant with the latest fire safety regulations.
Ensuring a reliable smoke ventilation system
During a building fire, smoke is considered a greater threat than the fire itself, which is why we are generally advised to crawl on the floor below the smoke. One of the other greatest threats in a fire is the inability of firefighters to access the building safely and quickly due to the structural damage caused.
For these reasons, the best and most effective smoke vents are designed to allow smoke to rise above the designated escape routes of the building. This functionality, provided by advanced AOV systems, offers greatly improved visibility and ventilation for the building’s occupants, while allowing firefighters quick and easy access to the building. The type of smoke vents you choose can truly make a difference, allowing for faster firefighting, improved safety and less permanent damage to your business premises.
The role of the smoke vent
The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 and the Fire (Scotland) Act 2005 both state that the person responsible for a building must take steps to ensure that it is fire safe. A vital part of fire safety for any commercial building, smoke vents can:
- Save lives by reducing smoke inhalation and keeping fire escape routes free from smoke
- Help firefighters to do their jobs by improving visibility and revealing the source of the smoke and
- Prevent damage that could lead to building collapse
At its most primitive, a smoke vent could be as simple as a manually-operated window or a skylight. But Automatic Opening Vent systems – integrated windows that open automatically when triggered by heat or smoke and – are far more effective.
At FSS Smart Control, we work with SE Controls, the leading manufacturer of smoke ventilation products, to manufacture AOVs to the required standards. Our partners, Silver Group, design and install a wide variety systems, as well as providing ongoing maintenance for all their products. So you can be confident that when you choose AOV windows from FSS Smart Control, you are guaranteed a fully-compliant, high quality system that will protect your building and its occupants from the damage that smoke can cause.
Protected from Fire
We take a comprehensive approach to fire safety covering all aspects from the installation of fire alarms and extinguishers to fire risk assessments and emergency lighting. We service all fire safety equipment, fire panels & alarm systems.
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