27Mar 2013
by The Safety Centre

Manual Call Points On Fire Alarm Systems

People can often still detect a fire long before automatic fire detectors; hence manual call points are important components of fire detection systems in occupied buildings to ensure timely evacuation in the event of a fire. All call points should be approved to EN54-11, and should be of type A, that is once the frangible element is broken or displaced the alarm condition is automatic.
Manual Call Points

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Where Should Manual Call Points Be Positioned

Manual Call Points should be mounted on all escape routes, and at all exit points from the floors of a building and to clear air. It should not be possible to leave the floor of a building without passing a manual call point, nor should it be necessary to deviate from any escape route in order to operate a manual call point. Call Points mounted at the exits from a floor may be mounted within the accomodation or on the stairwell. In multiple storey buildings where phased evacuation is to be used, call points should be mounted within the accomodation to avoid activation of call points on lower levels by people leaving the building.

Manual Call Point Mounting Heights

In order to provide easy access, call points should be mounted between 1.2m and 1.6m from the floor, and should be clearly visible and identifiable. The maximum distance that anyone should have to travel in order to activate a manual call point is 45 metres, unless the building is occupied by people with limited mobility, or a rapid fire development is likely, in which case the maximum travel distance should be reduced to 20 metres. Call points should also be sited in close proximity to specific hazards, for example kitchens or paint booths.

Manual Call Points On Category M Fire Alarm Systems

Please Note: In order to comply with the requirements of building regulations approved document part M, which requires electrical switches including manual call points (MCPs) to be mounted at between 1 metre + or – 200mm on wheel chair access routes, these should be listed as a variation on the certificate as BS requires Manual Call Points to be mounted at 1.4 metres in height + or – 200mm.

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