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Lessons Learned?

The deaths of a number of firefighters in recent years has highlighted the increasing need to have all cables secured by fire resistant cable supports, not just fire alarm cables.

Currently, BS5839 pt1 states (fire performance) cables should be secured by supports that can withstand a similar temperature and duration to that of the cable.  In effect, plastic trunkings must not be the sole means of cable support for FP cables. At least one recent death was attributed to the firefighter becoming entangled in cables that had dropped in the doorway after the plastic trunking had melted in heat.  Melted plastic from cables that were not fire retardant, including popular flex and twin & earth, can stick to skin and clothing.  The fallen cables made rescue efforts impossible. The dangers of inadequately secured cables in trunking were highlighted, after the investigation by Hertfordshire Fire & Rescue Service.

Coming out of this investigation was a recommendation that the Building Regulations should be amended to ensure that all cables, not just fire alarm cables, in domestic buildings are supported by fire-resistant cable supports. The Coroner said that this could be achieved by an amendment to BS7671 ("Requirements for electrical installations"). 

The FCLIP by D-Line is an easy-to-fit and specifically designed solution which has been fully tested and certified as conforming to the requirements of BS5839 part 1, showing it’s suitability as an integral support that will keep cables secured to surfaces even if trunking has melted. Specifiers use the F-Clip for peace-of-mind, knowing installations are then compliant too. In light of recent fatalities caused by dropped and molten twin & earth cables it is our view all surface mains cabling should be securely fixed. 

Having bought one D-Line unit, we now have four dotted around the house - and the office too" L.K.

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