Active and Passive

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There are two generalised groups of Fire Protection which allow for the quick containment and extinguishing of fires and these are vital as they allow for the safe evacuation of people from the workplace.

Active fire protection involves sprinkler and foam systems that automatically fight a fire when it breaks out. These activate themselves in the event of a fire and are designed to not only extinguish it but to also try and contain the fire within that area.

Passive fire protection are measures put in place to slow down or even totally stop the spread of fires. This can include fire doors, firewalls or coating flammable objects in non-flammable metal. Passive protection is often built into the design of the building or in an upgrade to an area. Both active and passive fire protection is unique to each and every building, but it needs to be implemented meticulously to each area so that it can work as effectively as possible. It is good to remember, however, that some workplaces will have a very low risk of fire, such as that in a typical office. Of course, there should be every-day fire systems in place such as alarms, extinguishers and blankets, but the risk of a full-blown building fire breaking out is realistically fairly slim. As such, it’s perhaps unnecessary for the most advanced fire systems to be used in standard situations. However, employers must make sure that sufficient active and passive fire systems are in a place where they are needed, and that they are all compliant with the relevant BS standards.