Another very important passive fire prevention measure is the regular testing, cleaning and maintenance of fire dampers. These are metal louvres that can open and close and are installed across the ductwork to form a temporary barrier when closed but allow the free flow of air when open. You may not even be aware that your ventilation system has fire dampers, but they fulfil a very important function, so you must be sure that they are in working order.
In the event of a fire travelling through ductwork, the fire damper must close, to restrict the oxygen supply to the fire and create a barrier that slows the spread of the fire. This buys valuable time in which to safely evacuate shoppers, especially the more vulnerable and less mobile centre visitors.
There are different types of fire dampers; some are spring operated, some have fuseable links and there are other designs that are remotely operated. All types must be regularly tested, using a method known as drop testing, cleaned and maintained. According to BS 9999 guidance updated early 2017, all fire dampers must now be tested at no more than twelve-month intervals.
We can help you locate your fire dampers, create access to inaccessible fire dampers then drop test, clean and maintain them for compliance. More information can be found on our fire dampers page.