Tag Archives: Construction Sector

“Early compliance engagement is key to raising building standards” urges Bureau Veritas

With reports suggesting that the construction sector will continue to grow over the next two years, Bureau Veritas has been quick to assert that an industry shift towards earlier engagement with compliance partners is vital when it comes to raising quality and safety standards for all.

Despite a momentary downtime, largely the result of a post-Brexit slump in confidence and weakening pound, the consensus is that commercial construction will regain pace in the coming months. According to the latest Construction Products Association report, UK construction output will increase by 2.3% in 2019, primarily due to major infrastructure projects.

Concern focuses on the fact that an increased pressure on commercial and residential developers to build more properties, despite a declining workforce, presents a risk to ‘deliverability’ and quality control. A recent study, for example, estimated that over half of all new build properties have ‘major faults.’

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Andy Lowe, director for building control at Bureau Veritas, commented: “Amid incredibly tight construction deadlines, cost pressures and a raft of legislation, it’s understandable that the modern builder and developer has a lot to come to terms with. That’s why we always advocate early engagement with a certification specialist. Without the ability to influence the wider project, it can be incredibly difficult to optimise quality control procedures and enhance safety measures, while at the same time enabling developers to achieve stated targets.”

Lowe continued: “In some cases, it can even help streamline proceedings and improve efficiencies, and particularly so when it comes to ensuring that the design aspect correlates with the compliance requirements. Without the approver’s early input, for example, any decisions made by a design team could be borderline in terms of interpretation and, upon review, it may be that items such as the fire strategy or the number of staircases are questionable, thus affecting the design as a whole and even resulting in the need for a redesign.”

In conclusion, Lowe stated: “In this way, we believe an industry shift towards earlier engagement is core to not only increasing quality and safety standards, but also optimising efficiencies on current major projects going forward.”

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Abloy wins Gaia Award for Sustainable Building Products

Security expert Abloy has received the Gaia Award for Sustainable Building Products at Big 5 in Dubai, winning the accolade for its range of low energy locks.

The Big 5 in Dubai is the largest construction event in the Middle East, connecting thousands of global suppliers and buyers of construction products. For their part, the Gaia Awards honour construction equipment and products that have truly integrated the concept of moving towards a more sustainable built environment.

Abloy’s low energy locks were showcased at the ASSA Abloy stand. Visitors voting at the exhibition chose them for the Gaia Award 2016 for Sustainable Building Products.

The locks blend high security with eco-friendliness. They boast an ultra-low current consumption due to energy only being used when the lock status is changed. In addition to the energy and cost reductions involved, the locks have a very wide voltage range and a number of usage possibilities.

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Minna Sallinen, vice-president of product management at Abloy Oy, explained: “For Abloy, sustainability is a state of mind. It concerns all our processes – product development, choice of materials, the Health and Safety of our employees and customers, distribution and service.”

Aaron Yule, managing director of Abloy UK, added: “It’s fantastic to see Abloy products gaining international acclaim, and in an arena where sustainability is paramount. By selecting our low energy locks, specifiers can ensure they’re choosing a system that not only allows for swift and easy access and egress alongside an enhanced security provision, but also reduces the energy consumption and carbon footprint of a building.”

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Fire 360° service from Bull Products begins with free site survey

Bull Products has just launched its Fire 360° service for construction companies. Fire 360° is a 12-step plan designed to provide companies with an effective and comprehensive fire strategy.

From an initial enquiry to Bull Products, a BAFE-certified advisor will arrange to attend a given site within 48 hours, accurately assess requirements and provide expert advice on fire safety strategy. Site plans are fully assessed by the engineer and clearly marked, duly outlining what fire protection is required and where it should be located, saving valuable time and ensuring that the site is compliant.

Following on from the site visit, Bull Products returns quotations within one hour and subsequent orders are acknowledged within an hour of receipt.

Ensuring compliance

Once commissioned for a specific project, Bull Products ensures that all of its products are fully serviced and/or programmed to ensure compliance as soon as the equipment arrives on site. Configuration of alarms can take place before systems are sent out or on site if there’s an addition to an existing system.

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To ensure peace of mind, all fire equipment supplied meets all relevant standards with full certification of the alarm systems. Portable fire appliances are installed and serviced in accordance with the relevant British Standard.

Once the fire equipment is fully installed and commissioned, Bull Products is able to train site personnel in the use of fire extinguishers and on alarm system familiarisation so that it can be used to its full potential and eliminate any user error and false alarms.

Nationwide technical support

To back up its professional expertise with fire equipment, Bull Products provides nationwide technical support for all areas of construction from 6.00 am to 5.00 pm every day in order to assist with any site queries.

On becoming a Bull Products customer, an automatic servicing schedule will be in place designed to remind the client when their equipment is due for servicing to ensure compliance throughout the project.

Another bonus of the Fire 360° plan is that Bull Products can take care of asset management. Under this part of the service, once the fire protection equipment has been finished with on a project, Bull Products is able to arrange equipment collection from site for free of charge, subsequently stock holding it until there’s a need for re-use on a future project. This extremely useful service saves end user companies having to find space to store the fire equipment themselves, while equipment re-use clearly saves on the purchase of new solutions.

Bull Products also cleans and services all fire protection equipment before it’s sent to the next project in order to ensure that it remains compliant.

*Further information on the Fire 360° service is available from Bull Products on the website: www.bullproducts.co.uk

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New website launched by Bull Products for Cygnus wireless fire alarm system

Bull Products has just launched a brand new website at www.cygnusalarms.com devoted to its innovative Cygnus wireless fire alarm system.

Developed in conjunction with major construction companies, the Cygnus system is designed specifically for use on construction sites where the environment demands far higher radio performance than standard systems. The Cygnus system is able to link no less than 480 alarm devices in 15 zones.

The new website has been created to help construction companies specify the exact Cygnus system they would like for a particular project. As well as giving an explanation of the system and its capabilities, there’s a full listing of all the control panels and individual alarm units available.

There are also helpful videos to explain the system and its maintenance, and a gallery showing recent installations for end user customers including BSkyB, Crossrail and Scotland Yard together with a number of customer testimonials on projects as well as full Case Studies.

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Included on the site is a full technical section and servicing advice plus details of the standards relating to the use of fire alarm systems on different types of construction sites and conformity to regulations.

The Cygnus wireless fire alarm system is backed by an eight-strong customer support team who are there to help customers with their specific requirements, installation and servicing needs.

Five control panels, 31 alarm units

In the Cygnus family there are a choice of five control panels and 31 alarm units and accessories, all illustrated with their details on the website. A CYG6 control panel has recently been introduced to cater for smaller construction sites, handling 32 alarm devices in a single zone. There’s also a control panel available with a GSM modem allowing reporting via SMS text messaging.

Another innovation is a PIR option available on all alarm modules to detect intruders and alert off-site personnel for added safety protection.

The Cygnus fire alarm system has an impressive capability of linking up to 480 units across a construction site. Individual units may be either a fire alarm Call Point, First Aid alert point, smoke detector, heat detector or a combined Call Point/First Aid alert alarm. Further capabilities include out-of-hours notifications via an auto-dialling panel to key-holders.

Cygnus has been specifically designed for use in dense concrete and steel structured buildings, and areas where there are many other radio frequencies in use. Particular attention has been given to achieving an extremely long range connection. Operational distances in excess of 1.5 km have been recorded in an open air environment.

Cygnus covers impressive distances due to a meshing system which allows devices to communicate through one another and not directly to the panel.

Bull Products offers a full one-year guarantee on all Cygnus devices and provides high levels of technical, on-site and after-sales service support in addition to its standard maintenance contracts.

*Further information on the Cygnus wireless alarm system is available from Bull Products on (telephone) 01432 371170 or send an e-mail to: info@bullproducts.co.uk

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Tyco’s Fire Protection and Security Products now BIM ready

Tyco Fire Protection Products and Tyco Security Products are launching their own living Building Information Modelling (BIM) library from this month. Users will be able to access Tyco’s extensive range of BIM objects for security and fire protection products, including detection, mechanical and suppression solutions.

The library will also feature the company’s BIM user guide to support architects and engineers, providing additional information about Tyco’s BIM objects.

Raj Arora, vice-president and general manager for Fire Detection and Special Hazard Products at Tyco Fire Protection Products, commented: “The creation of BIM tools and families of objects is critical in supporting the technological advances in the design, construction and maintenance industries. At Tyco, we’re already seeing demand for BIM. Our investment in creating a range of BIM content based on a selection of our core products means we’re well placed to help designers, specifiers, contractors and engineers working within the BIM framework.”

By increasing the amount of data available and making it fully sharable from building design through to construction and maintenance, the BIM process enables users to immediately access and interrogate objects and models, helping to save time and unnecessary costs.

The technology will also enhance the accuracy of the planning and design stages of fire protection and security systems, improving efficiencies and delivering cost savings for the construction sector.

Available in Revit format, Tyco’s BIM objects will prove invaluable to users thanks to the depth of information made accessible. The files will comprise a 3D geometric representation of the product and contain all details about its specification, including size, dimensions and materials.

BIM objects for Tyco’s fire detection solutions will also provide further relevant information such as voltage, colour code and electrical data. Translated versions of Tyco’s BIM files will be available this year.

New era of digital modelling

“This is an exciting time for the construction industry,” said Peter Ainsworth, director of marketing across the EMEA region at Tyco Security Products.

“Tyco is ready to be part of the new era of digital modelling, supporting the UK Government’s Construction Industry Strategy mandate that all public procured construction projects from 2016 achieve BIM Level 2. Thanks to its future-proofing ability, BIM can provide facility management information throughout a building’s life, making maintenance and repairs simpler and more cost-effective.

Raj Arora added: “Offering BIM objects for our security, detection, mechanical and suppression products will enhance the design process for architects and engineers, providing them with an abundance of valuable information such that they can work more efficiently. A key feature of BIM when looking to install fire protection solutions in a building is the process’ spatial co-ordination capability. BIM enables multiple trades to integrate objects concurrently as if they were in a single model, therefore detecting any potential clashes which can be resolved in the design process ahead of the construction phase. That saves on both time and money.”

By making its fire protection and security products accessible through BIM files, Tyco is helping the construction sector in its mission to reduce build and operation costs, lower carbon emissions and save production time by 2025.

*For more information and to download Tyco’s BIM objects and user guide visit: www.tyco-fire.com/BIM

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BAM becomes early adopter of Bull Products’ Cygnus fire alarm system

A division of BAM, one of the UK’s foremost construction groups, has installed the Cygnus wireless fire alarm system from Bull Products at over 10 construction sites since the solution was launched in May 2014.

One of these projects is a new development for Hayes Retail which incorporates an Asda supermarket boasting 8,000 square metres of floor space and including car park and petrol filling station.

Due to the large site footprint and separate office and welfare complex, the project management team at BAM Fire Protection Services opted to install the Cygnus system as the temporary fire alarm system.

The complete Cygnus system with the control panel (centre) and alarm modules either side

The complete Cygnus system with the control panel (centre) and alarm modules either side

Mike Whitfield, the contracts manager at BAM Fire Protection Services, was so impressed with the development of the new Cygnus system that he, along with the Health and Safety Department, has put the system forward under Safety Best Practice to the entire BAM London region as a recommendation for all BAM site managers, project managers and Health and Safety officers.

Whitfield explained: “We were looking to adopt a wireless fire alarm system within the group. We particularly like the Cygnus system’s addressability, and Bull Products also integrated a First Aid alert within the Call Point which satisfied our needs.” Bull Products is now working on a future option for controlling panels on a remote basis.

Linking 480 units in 15 zones

Launched only two months ago, the Cygnus wireless fire alarm system can linkno less than 480 units in 15 different zones around a construction site, with each zone having the capacity to accommodate 32 units. The individual units can be fire alarm Call Points, First Aid alert points, smoke detectors, heat detectors and a combined Call Point-First Aid alarm. The alarms – which can be used “time and again” – are addressable to the panel and may be re-addressed very simply after being relocated.

Intended purely for use on construction sites, the Cygnus system has been specifically designed for deployment in dense concrete and steel-structured buildings and areas where there are many other radio frequencies in operation. On that basis, particular attention has been given to achieving an impressive connection range. Where there are multiple sites within range of each other, the Cygnus system has been designed to operate on different site addresses in order to keep each system separate and free from interference.

The Cygnus fire alarm Call Point in detail

The Cygnus fire alarm Call Point in detail

A major feature of the Cygnus system is the optional control panel which provides a very sophisticated capability with an event log function which records any events such as an alarm activation, low battery warning and signal faults, all of which can be viewed if necessary in the history folder held on the panel.

The system also has the ability to test all units and has an evacuate function which will act as a Call Point to the rest of the alarm units.

Each unit in the system can provide the panel with information at regular intervals. This explicit information confirms the unit is still present and what the battery status of each device is at the time. Known as the ‘heart beat’ this message is monitored by the control panel where fitted and, if the ‘heart beat’ is not heard for several intervals, the control panel logs a full status for that unit.

Further information is available at: http://www.bullproducts.co.uk

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