Fire Detectors and Alarm Systems

The Building Code of Australia in clause E2.2 General Requirements and clause G3.8 Fire and smoke control systems, specify the installation of fire detectors and alarm systems in buildings. Fire detectors and alarm systems ultimately are nominated as an essential safety measure by a building surveyor/ building certifier in the essential safety measures schedule/ determination.

Fire detectors and alarm systems are designed to alert occupants of a building to the presence of fire. Generally these systems use smoke, heat or flame detectors.

Building Code of Australia – Fire Detectors and Alarm Systems

Part E2 Smoke Hazard Management and Part G3 Atrium Construction, set out the requirements for when an fire detectors and alarm systems are to be installed in a building under a building approval.

Specification E2.2a Smoke Detection and Alarm Systems in particular contains two clauses:

  • Clause 3 Smoke alarm system, which nominates smoke alarms to comply with AS 3786-1993 Smoke alarms, and
  • Clause 4 Smoke detection system, which nominates a smoke detection system to comply with AS 1670.1-2004 Fire detection warning, control and intercom systems – System design, installation commissioning – Fire.

The following photograph depicts an existing fire alarm panel.

The following is a part extract of clause I1.1 for an Essential Safety Measure (as appeared in BCA 2013) known as fire detection and alarm systems (fire detectors and alarm systems):

Table I1.7 SAFETY MEASURES – AUTOMATIC FIRE DETECTION AND ALARM SYSTEMS

Safety Measures BCA Provision for Determining Standard of Performance
Smoke and heat alarm system Clause 3 of Specification E2.2a
Smoke and heat detection system Clause 4 of Specification E2.2a

Essential Safety Measures Audit – Fire Detectors and Alarm Systems

An essential safety measures schedule/ determination will nominate the presence of a fire detectors and alarm systems installed in a building to ensure fire safety compliance. The auditor must check the systems automatic fire detection logbooks to ensure regular inspection, testing and maintenance works are carried out, and deficiencies in the fire detectors and alarm systems should be recorded in the building’s essential safety measures logbook to allow for signing the Annual Statement, Annual Certificate of Compliance, Annual Fire Safety Statement, Annual Maintenance Statement and Annual Occupiers Statement.