Report reveals 90% of false fire alarms are caused by faulty apparatus


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According to the latest Home Office report, false alarms make up 98% of automatic fire alarm confirmed incidents in 2020/21; with 90% of this figure a result of faulty apparatus.

The research from the Home Office, which was collated from Fire and Rescue services across the country from the last financial year, found that just 2% of the incidents from automatic fire alarms were a result of an actual fire.

The findings indicated that most of the false alarms could have been avoided with proper maintenance and ensuring the correct type of life safety product is installed for the environment in the first place.

Commenting on this latest report from the home office, Mr Shinsuke Kubo, Commercial Director for Hochiki Europe, Middle East, Africa and India, said: “False alarms are a major problem across multiple industries, they have a significant impact on production and ultimately the economy. Building owners who choose to work with installers and manufacturers who understand that no two environments are the same will reap the benefits because the products recommended will be both fit for purpose and properly maintained”

London Fire Brigade recommends that responsible persons must make sure the fire alarm system installed is carefully considered for the type of premises and of course the occupancy. Other key factors must be considered to increase the overall “alarm reliability” of fire detection and fire alarm systems and ensuring new systems are installed in the case of use change.

Kubo suggested that multi-sensors could be the answer: “For complex life safety installation projects which have multiple usage scenarios, or are adapted over time, using intelligent devices can really help reduce false alarms.

“Modern devices which detect heat, smoke and in some cases, CO, can learn from their environments from the moment of installation. Our ACD multi-sensor which uses the S.M.A.R.T. algorithm to continuously monitor its surroundings, is used by our customers across multiple sectors from university accommodation, housing associations, theatres, and schools – all of which have seen a reduction in false alarms”.

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