I am interested in views on isolation of sprinkler systems in multi-storey buildings.
The specific is an occupied sprinklered office building over 14 storeys - i have been told by the fitout contractor that it is ‘standard’ practice to allow 4 adjacent floors to have the sprinkler system for those 4 floors shut down 24/7 for the duration of the fitout.
Is the scenario above considered acceptable by other fire engineers.
I said only one floor isolated at a time for this situation and reinstated at the end of the day.
It is not uncommon for multiple floors of a high rise building to be isolated at the same time for fit out type works. However, the isolations are generally only permitted during normal working hours, with all floors fully reinstated at the end of each day.
A building of that height should have floor isolation valves, unless it is really old, which means they can easily isolate a floor at a time, rather than draining the whole system, or they can cut in valves as required.
The number of floors isolated at a time depends on the work and staging, but I would expect that each floor is live overnight, and where possible live during the day as well. For example, if a ceiling is removed or ceiling level heads are plugged while work is being done, then the high level concealed space can often remain live and provide protection and alarm coverage.
The alarm system including sounders and manual callpoints needs to be kept live at all times, including on the building site.
thanks - my concern is contiguous floors in a building creates too great a risk of uncontrolled fire over multiple floors that would then not be stopped by the sprinkler system or it would affect the structural fire rating for the building which would consider sprinklers functioning.
I had a report that after we certified a system for a building handed over for fit-out, the builder instructed that the system be drained due to fears of accidental damage during fit outs. Very dubious.
Obviously not the builder doing Parks Residences where 7 fires were lit just before Practical Completion!
Restoring systems nightly may not be common practice, as this costs time and money.
Decommissioning four contiguous floors is certainly not an “accepted” practise.
Certainly, if the building has concealed space protection, plug off the drops and turn the water back on