Dry Risers are an important fire safety system that need to be accessed fast in an emergency. During recent testing visits we have discovered systems in very bad repair. If you are a property owner or managing agent it is vital that you are aware of your responsibilities with regards to Dry Risers, ensuring they are checked regularly and fit for purpose.
What are Dry Risers?
Dry risers are used to provide water within buildings in the event of a fire. They differ from wet risers in that they do not hold water when not in use. A Dry Riser is a normally empty pipe that can be externally connected to a pressurised water source by firefighters in an emergency. The pipe can then distribute water to multiple levels of a building as part of a fire suppression system.
Why do they need to be tested?
Dry Risers need to be ready for use in the event of a fire and severe penalties can be imposed if they fail to work. If systems fail, they could endanger life and property. The annual testing and maintenance of Dry Risers is the responsibility of a property owner or managing agent. British Standard 9990:2006 recommends that the system is visually inspected every 6 months and serviced annually to ensure that the equipment is ready for immediate use in an emergency. Testing looks for signs of vandalism, finds any blockages in the pipework and checks air valves. It is recommended that a ‘full wet test’ be carried out annually, comprising of a wet pressure test to 150 PSI or 10 Bar subjecting the mains to a full working test.
Finding Dry Risers in an unfit state has become more common. Many of our recent inspection visits have seen Dry Risers in disrepair. A recent survey on a block of flats in Bristol led to it failing its fire safety test due to damaged and therefore unusable Dry Riser systems. If you do not undertake regular testing you could invalidate your insurance, not to mention threat to life if these systems are not working properly.
Examples of non-compliant Dry Risers
If the Dry Risers at your property look anything like the ones in the images below, it is important to get them serviced as soon as possible.
How can we help you?
If you know you have Dry Risers in your building that have not been checked, we can help. We provide responsive testing to British Standards and can supply the full range of products that may be required for new and existing systems. We can arrange all testing at times to suit your business and ensure there is a minimum amount of disruption to work environments. Our testing is comprehensive, testing pressure levels, all outlets and equipment and any storage areas. All service work we undertake will be in line with your building’s fire risk assessments and fire certificate.
If you have Dry Risers on your property it is paramount that you get them tested as soon as possible. Contact Us now to book a site visit.