11 September 2015
The former St Thomas More Community Centre in East Dulwich, London is home to a new three-screen cinema with a café-bar and a courtyard garden. Refurbished in 2015, East Dulwich Picturehouse & Café offers diverse programmes to all sections of the local community and is equipped with the latest digital and satellite technology, enabling live broadcasts of the best performing arts productions from around the world. As part of the refurbishment project a new fire alarm system was installed, together with Vimpex’s EN 54-3 approved Multi-Message Fire-Cryer® Plus Voice Sounders to ensure timely building evacuation in the event of fire. The fire alarm system was designed and commissioned by Southern Fire Alarms Ltd in partnership with consultants LTS International and installed by D.W. Electrical.
“There is a high level of noise pollution in today’s modern building environment. Fire alarm bells, sirens, sounders, security alarms, public address and mobile ringtones are just some of the cacophony of noises that bombard building users on a daily basis,” explains David Fell, Sales Director of Southern Fire Alarms. “The confusion of tones means people can become complacent and ignore safety critical alarms. From experience we know that the addition of unambiguous voice messages that are heard and understood vastly reduces this confusion. Fire-Cryer® Voice Sounders deliver this as a very cost effective solution compared to standalone voice evacuation systems.”
A total of 35 Mini Fire-Cryer® slimline base sounders were installed under ceiling mounted fire detectors in all parts of the building. The Mini Fire-Cryer® provides an attractive and unobtrusive solution and is installed on a conventional 2-wire sounder circuit. A two-stage alarm strategy was deployed - stage one alerts staff using flashing beacons and then after a 3 minute investigation delay stage 2 initiates a full building evacuation aided by the Fire-Cryers® with the fully synchronised message: “Ladies and gentlemen, in the interest of safety this building must be evacuated. Please leave immediately by the nearest exit. Staff will assist you.”
Other models in the Fire-Cryer® range include wall mounted units with optional integral synchronised LED strobe and high-output versions for use in wide open spaces and outdoors. Each voice sounder can be programmed with up to 7 messages from a library of thousands, many of which are multi-lingual, ensuring that any site requirement can be fulfilled. The Fire-Cryer’s® multi-message capability also ensures that system test and all clear messages can be easily transmitted avoiding confusion with the fire/evacuation alarm.