Fire detection in the heart of the city

Knightsbridge is home to some of the most prestigious addresses in central London. It’s a leafy district, with high-end retail stores and Hyde Park on its doorstep. Number 1 Knightsbridge, a landmark office building situated on the south side of Knightsbridge, is now being protected by the latest fire detection products from Apollo.

Tony Marsh, National Operations Manager (Integral Fire) at Integral UK, explains more:

“We were brought in by the building services and environmental consultants for the site to help improve the fire detection systems within the refurbished building. False alarms were becoming a major problem with the legacy system in place. While this presented an obvious nuisance to any occupants of Number 1 Knightsbridge, it was also causing issues with its neighbours. The offices are situated next to a 5-star luxury hotel and every time an alarm was activated the hotel was notified in order for it to take appropriate action in the event of a fire. Clearly with increasing false alarms occurring, this was an unsustainable situation.

“Overall, the team at Number 1 Knightsbridge were happy with the Ampac panels already on site, so in order to upgrade the system we needed to use open protocol detectors and call points. Apollo’s XP95 range provided the solution. We increased the number of Ampac addressable panels – putting one on each floor and then installed more than 1,000 XP95 products including smoke detectors, manual call points, heat detectors and some Visual Alarm Devices. In addition, we installed Apollo’s Intrinsically Safe equipment in the basement, which was used for oil storage. With the risk of explosion this could present in the event of fire, we needed detection equipment that the occupants could rely on even in this harsh environment.”

“Working in the heart of London and next to a luxury hotel definitely placed some constraints on the installation. We could only work through the night and, with guests sleeping nearby, noise needed to be kept to a minimum. The familiarity the team had with Apollo equipment and the ease of installation made the night time working a lot easier.”

Integral continued to install the fire detection system during the refurbishment of the whole building and found Apollo’s ceiling tile mounting box particularly useful. Designed to make the installation of detectors and sounders quick and easy prior to the fitting of a false ceiling, the boxes enabled Integral to work around other contractors and complete the fit before completion of the refurb.

The installation took the Integral team just under four months of night-time work to complete.

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