60% of commercial establishments in India do not have NOCs and do not follow fire safety norms. What are the repercussions of this? Disasters that cannot be averted due to a lack of preparedness.
Commercial buildings are susceptible to a lot of different threats which your average fire alarm system is simply not equipped to deal with. And it’s not just safety you should be worrying about; it’s also the compliance to have specific systems in place for commercial establishments. According to Section 13 of the Fire Service Act, NOC is mandatory for cinema halls, wedding halls, multiplexes and malls which exceed 500 square yards and are over 6 meters in height. Besides this, banks, offices, police stations and stores which are more than 15 meters in height require a NOC.
So, if you fall into any of these categories, following the fire safety norms is a must. Gas detectors are an extremely important element in this. Just having one gas detector in your establishment is not enough. Let us have a look at some of the not-so-common gas detectors that could make all the difference to averting potential disaster.
Methane Detectors for Industries & Premises using Fuel Gas like PNG
Gas Grid for Natural Gas is one of the major initiatives of Govt of India. Natural Gas is being supplied across India for fuel needs. It is being used by factories, hotels, homes etc. Natural Gas is mainly methane, which when leaked poses as a risk since it is highly combustible. Why methane is so dangerous is because it is odourless and impossible to detect without a detector. What’s more is that it is incredibly flammable when combined with oxygen, and has an explosion limit of 5%. Methane can seep through cracks and can escape the pipeline & containers, putting the entire establishment at risk of explosions. This is why while methane detectors are an integral part of commercial fire protection systems, these are often overlooked.
Refrigerant Gas Leak Detector for Cold Storage Facilities
Refrigerant gas detectors are equipped to issue a warning if the gases are released from a cold storage facility. Cold storage facilities may use NH3, HFC/HCFCs, CO2 etc. as refrigerants. Some of them are expensive gases and leaks can cause direct commercial loss. Some of them are hazardous and pose problem to health. Some of them have Global Warming Potential.
Carbon Monoxide Detector
The issue with parking lots is ventilation, and most parking lots in commercial establishments are enclosed. This is dangerous because enclosed spaces with many vehicles always pose the risk of carbon monoxide, which is a common phenomenon with cars or two-wheelers that may have issues with the engine. Carbon monoxide is odourless and colourless, but very potent giving it the nickname of “silent killer”. This is why it is of grave importance to have such a detector in the parking lot.
Hydrogen Gas Detectors for Battery Rooms
Lead Acid Batteries are commonly used by UPS and inverters, Fork-Lifts and other industrial equipment for storing electrical energy. They pose the risk of hydrogen gas leaks when batteries are overcharged. Usually bank of Batteries is installed in a room. Hydrogen is highly flammable. Therefore it is important that Battery Rooms are installed with Hydrogen Detection System integrated with Ventilation System.
Ammonia is commonly used in commercial and industrial refrigeration. It is a very pungent, toxic, corrosive and reactive gas which can cause adverse effects on human health. On contacting water, it can cause serious damage to the respiratory system. For these reasons, it is important to have ammonia detectors in commercial establishments using Ammonia as a refrigerant.