A subsidiary of the giant US corporation whose motto is: “If it moves you, there’s a good chance Gates has a part in it”, Gates Power Transmission is a specialist manufacturer of power transmission belts designed for use within the automotive and industrial markets. The business operates a facility in Dumfries. The facility’s management team identified a need to upgrade the old fire alarm system. To accommodate the Dumfries plant’s 24/7 operation, a phased installation was required to ensure at least 90% of the old fire system remained active during the changeover.
Supplied and commissioned by fire safety specialist CMD Electrical Engineers Ltd and installed by Gates Power Transmission’s own engineering team, a network of eight ZFP one and two-loop addressable fire panels is now connected to over 300 devices including 90 of C-TEC’s new EN54-23 certified visual alarm devices.
As the existing system was a mixture of old conventional and addressable panels in multiple buildings, the first step was to install, network and commission the new ZFPs to allow for the phased changeover of each area. The engineers then began the laborious task of working through the old fire system.
CMD Electrical Engineers Ltd’s Craig Dolier said: “Gates Power Transmission’s engineers created loops between two radial circuits on the conventional systems and tested the wiring ready for connection. We then upgraded each addressable system to ZFP, working through the radial circuits to make loops and configuring and commissioning the new devices. The facility also had two Zone 1 areas which needed to be integrated into the new system.”
Dolier continued: “The new system is a massive improvement on the old multiple one. Previously, if a device activated then the area had to be physically visited to find out which one it was. With the new set-up, however, the identity and location of the triggered device is clearly visible on any one of the eight ZFPs.”
A phased evacuation is in operation to minimise false alarms. The first alarm is a pulsing warning signal which will be investigated and silenced if it proves to be a false alarm. If a true fire is discovered, however, a key-switch is turned to trigger the full-scale evacuation of the site.
Dolier concluded: “The ZFP solution is extremely well-engineered and reliable and ticks all the boxes for EN54 compliance. We’re particularly impressed by its capacity to be networked over multiple sites and the ease with which devices can be added to the system as and when required.”