Nov 21, 2019 Last Updated 10:52 AM, Aug 14, 2019
Published in Product Innovation
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Taff Housing Association, a not-for-profit, community-based association in Cardiff with 1200 homes, has used the latest developments in smoke alarm systems to improve the level of fire safety, whilst also integrating the smoke alarm systems with Carbon Monoxide (CO) alarms, providing tenants with added safety measures.


Taff has Optical alarms from Aico’s Ei160RC series, which are mains powered with rechargeable lithium back-up, in the bedrooms and Ei2110 Multi-Sensors in hallways and landings (and, in the case of flats, in the lounge). The Multi-Sensor contains two separate sensing technologies – Optical and Heat. As such, the unit is capable of monitoring two very different by-products of a fire – smoke and heat – so has the best response to all fire types. The alarms are hard wired to each other to provide the earliest warning.

Taff recently decided to extend its current smoke alarm systems in all of its housing stock to provide enhanced protection to occupants. This has seen the addition of mains powered Heat alarms in kitchens, and Ei262 CO alarms to protect tenants from the potential dangers of a CO leak.

A RadioLINK Base (Ei168RC) was added into the smoke alarm system to enable the CO alarm to interconnect with the other alarms on the system using Radio Frequency signals rather than cabling. Such wireless interconnection technology makes mains powered alarms quicker and easier to install.

A wall-mounted Alarm Control Switch is fitted in each dwelling to allow residents to tell whether a fire or CO leak has been detected. It also allows residents to quickly locate the exact alarm that has detected the fire or CO leak and to test and silence all the alarms on the system without needing to stand on steps or chairs.

Red Sea House, one of Taff’s Sheltered Housing schemes that consists of 15 self-contained flats, has also recently been upgraded and Aico’s new Ei414 Fire/CO Alarm Interface installed. This provides a dedicated connection between Aico Smoke and CO alarms and the Tunstall Warden Call system already in place there. It enables an emergency signal to be transmitted directly to the Warden Call system if fire or CO is detected.

“In our sheltered accommodation, where we house some of our most vulnerable Tenants, our existing fire systems sent the same signal to the Community Alarm Call Centre regardless of whether it was a smoke or Carbon Monoxide alarm,” explains Philip Dunn, Head of Property at Taff Housing Association. “We wanted to be able to distinguish between the two alarms so that our tenants and the Call Centre had the earliest warning of what the actual problem was.

“It will be easier to set up and uses less equipment than we currently use, also the unit is much more stylish and easier for us to test the units on site.”

For Taff Housing Association, advances in smoke alarm technology have provided them with a greater level of flexibility, which makes for a more robust system that is fit for purpose well into the future.


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