26 February 2010
Never mind the horror of death, injury and destruction that could result from a serious fire at your work premises, it could also see you being dealt a hefty fine or jail sentence should you be found guilty of negligence.
Indeed, in terms of South African law (Occupational Health and Safety Act 1994), employers have a legal obligation to make their premises safe for staff and visitors – and this includes ensuring that there are fire alarm systems in place, says Valerie Bingham, product manager for Elvey Security Technologies.
For anyone unsure of what system to choose, she recommends the new Bentel J424, a micro-processor-based control panel that meets the exacting international EN54 fire standards.
Suited to medium and large applications, it comes standard with 8 zones on the main board and can support two additional J400-EXP8 expander modules for an extra 16 zones, she says.
Unlike traditional fire panels, the J424 can take up to 21 different devices per zone. These include conventional fire detectors, alarm buttons and gas detectors. That translates to an impressive 504 devices when the panel is fully expanded. The gas zone on this unit is also compatible with 4 – 20 mA gas detectors says Valerie.
Each detection zone is equipped with an alarm-repeat output for selective alarm management in the event of fire. Further, the control panel has supervised and silence-able alarm output functions that allow for the control of its self-powered sirens, piezoelectric sirens, fire bells, flashers and telephone dialers.
Easy to use, the control panel is protected by a lockable front plate, accessible by authorized personnel only. It’s also available with a backlit display, which shows all the information regarding the control panel status. The optional Software in Windows™ environment allows full systems management of events memory, files, reset and all programmable functions provided by the control panel. To this end, authorized personnel can access up to 50 event logs viewable on computer.