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Ironclad BS 8629 compliance for Sheffield development

20 February 2024

FIRE PROTECTION solutions manufacturer Advanced has supplied its BS 8629-compliant EvacGo evacuation alert system for deployment in the new build residential development The Ironworks, which is located in Sheffield.

Built on the site of the former Queens Hotel on Scotland Street, the 11-storey building comprises 228 one-bedroom and two-bedroom furnished apartments designed to offer affordable and high-quality rental accommodation.

The development also includes shared spaces such as a rooftop garden, a communal lounge and workstations, as well as a bookable meeting area that doubles as a cinema room.

In addition to the evacuation alert system, The Ironworks also benefits from robust fire protection of its landlord areas thanks to the installation of Advanced’s MxPro 5 fire panel. Fire and security service provider WPS Fire & Security installed both systems and was involved in the project from the design stage right through to commissioning.

First wave

Importantly, The Ironworks forms part of the first wave of high-rise construction to be completed since evacuation alert systems became mandatory in new residential buildings over 18 metres tall in England and Wales in December 2022.

The amendments realised for Approved Document B (Fire Safety) of the Building Regulations also stipulated that these systems adhere to BS 8629 (the Code of Practice outlining how evacuation alert systems should be designed, installed, commissioned and maintained). This should afford residents in buildings like The Ironworks complete reassurance that, if they need to leave the premises in the event of a fire, necessary instruction will be communicated both clearly and safely.

At The Ironworks, each EvacGo panel is housed inside an STS 205 security-rated enclosure with patented BS EN 1303-compliant lock and key mechanism for exclusive access by the Fire and Rescue Service. This ensures minimal risk when it comes to unauthorised use and full compliance with BS 8629.

The main panel is supported by a sub-panel, with one sounder in each of the 228 apartments designed to alert residents in an evacuation scenario.

Robust solution

Phil Souter, managing director of WPS Fire & Security, stated: “It was essential to choose a BS 8629-compliant evacuation alert system that would meet the changes laid down in the Building Regulations. Advanced is our preferred fire protection systems supplier, so we knew that we could rely on the company to provide a robust solution. EvacGo is easy and straightforward to install. The safety of the residents is protected.”

Shaun Scott, emergency evacuation systems application engineer at Advanced, responded: “It’s encouraging to see the first high-rise residential projects since the implementation of the revised Approved Document B nearing completion in the wake of an uncertain and challenging few years for the construction industry in the wake of the Grenfell Tower tragedy. The updated regulations provide much-needed clarity to the sector and it’s positive to see residents moving into new high-rise buildings with the confidence that systems like EvacGo are in place to keep them safe.”

For more information, visit www.advancedco.com