Fire protection goes hand in hand with installing a mezzanine, ensuring your premises meet building regulations and giving your business peace of mind. It protects your staff, premises and inventory.
When do mezzanines need fire protection?
Your mezzanine will need to be fire rated if it:
- is used by members of the public
- has staff working on it
- is more than 10 metres long or wide (increased to 20 metres if approved automatic fire detection and alarm system in place) and is more than 50% of the location’s floor space.
- has more than one tier
With the e-commerce boom driving a surge in demand for storage and distribution space, insurance provider Zurich has warned there could be an increase in warehouse fires.
“As well as posing a threat to life, warehouse blazes devastate businesses, send shockwaves down supply chains, and lead to the loss of jobs and productivity,” said Charles Bush, Zurich’s Head of Property and Energy Claims. “A failure to make new warehouses more resilient to fire risks damaging Britain’s growing e-commerce economy, and the many jobs and businesses that depend on it.”
One-Hour Fire Protection System
At Hi-Level Mezzanines we use a One-Hour Fire Protection System appropriate for mezzanines. It incorporates the following components of fire protection :
- column casings
- ceiling tiles
We will look at including stairway enclosures to help with travel distance off the floor to a fire door, alarms, horizontal and vertical escapes, protected corridors, emergency signage and lighting.
We will take into account the existing building structure, for example whether it already has a sprinkler system. Sprinklers underneath a mezzanine floor may not always be adequate, and large multi-tier floors need further protection.
We are confident that the mezzanine fire protection we put in place is safe, but requirements from local authorities, fire officers and insurers can vary so we will guide each client according to the circumstances of their installation.
Our expertise will help you through the complexities and we will advise you on engaging with fire officers, local authorities and approved inspectors. Insurers may have further demands: for a multi-tier mezzanine we installed for a leading retailer we put in sprinklers, our One-Hour Fire Protection System and two one-hour fire corridors.
Our advice will be based on Fire Safety (Approved Document B) of the UK Building Regulations, which relates to fire safety. It covers all the fire protection measures needed to slow the spread of fire and maintain structural integrity long enough to allow safe exit by employees and entry to firefighters should someone need rescuing.
Our advice will also be based on our 30+ years of expertise in this sector. For more on our commitment to safety and high standards, you may be interested in this interview with Victoria Steel-Page, our Safety, Health, Environmental and Quality Co-ordinator. You can also find out more about our Quality and Accreditations here.