In all hospitals and medical facilities, reliable fire protection systems are crucial. However, implementing fire safety initiatives can be a big challenge for healthcare facilities, as the codes and standards are always changing. This makes medical facilities one of the most complicated building projects for fire systems, as one option- such as a smoke detector- may be more cost-effective and easier to operate, but a different option- such as traditional dampers- may be required by the fire safety codes instead.
Top Fire Code Violations
A few of the top fire code violations in hospitals all have to do with fire extinguishers, including blocked, empty, and missing fire extinguishers. Blocked fire extinguishers are against fire code in a hospital because people should never need to worry about moving something out of the way in order to grab the extinguisher. Having an inaccessible or blocked fire extinguisher puts everyone in the building at risk, and is an extremely important code to follow. Empty fire extinguishers is another common code violation, as trying to use an empty extinguisher is a hazardous time waster. Lastly, a missing fire extinguisher is another common fire code violation. If an extinguisher is missing or damaged, the medical facility is not properly prepared for an emergency.
How Do Hospital Fires Occur?
Thankfully, hospital fires don’t happen often, but they do happen occasionally. One main cause of hospital fires is similar to dorm fires– cooking equipment. From 2012 to 2014, 1,100 hospital fires were reported. The leading cause of all hospital fires was cooking equipment (68.5 percent,) and a majority of these fires occurred from 12pm-1pm, which coincides with lunchtime meal preparations. However, cooking only accounted for 6 percent of nonconfined hospital fires, which are larger and more serious. These fires happen less often, and the leading cause is an electrical malfunction (22 percent.)
Fire Sprinklers For Hospitals
Installing automatic fire sprinklers in all hospitals and healthcare facilities is crucial for 24/7 safety and protection of all patients and staff. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) states that complete automatic sprinkler protection is required for all new facilities, and in all existing healthcare facilities that go through renovation. Also, “quick response” sprinklers should be installed throughout smoke compartments containing patient sleeping rooms. Everyone in the hospital depends on the sprinkler operation, so it is essential that these systems are installed and maintained correctly, and in accordance with the codes and standards.
Fire Prevention and Protection Services from Fireline
Whether you need smoke detectors, fire extinguishers, or an automatic sprinkler system installed at your rental property, Fireline has you covered. We have been protecting people and properties from fire damage since 1947—and our experience shows in our excellent work! We are known for our wonderful customer service, our expertise, and our reliability. For more information on how we can help your residential or commercial property, visit us online or give us a call at (800) 553-3405. For more fire safety tips, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+.