Sigma Smart+Shield – Deterring the Misuse of Emergency Exits

Emergency exits need to be accessible and easy top open, however, casual use of these exits can cause obvious problems, for example in shops and schools. The Smart+Shield Emergency Exit Alarm is designed to solve this problem.

Sigma Smart+Shield Emergency Exit AlarmThe exit alarm is fitted on or next to the exit door and sounds a very loud alarm if the door is opened un-authorised. The unit can be powered by either a 9V battery or from the mains. You can set the volume to either 75dB or 95dB and there’s also a delayed alarm setting, which will only sound if the door is left open – which is helpful for doors that need to be used regularly by authorised personnel. Following a door alarm activation the alarm can self-reset after either 30 or 180 seconds, or you can choose to activate it with the integrated keyswitch.  All Smart+Shields are also supplied with a fluorescent sticker that can be placed across the alarm, making it clear that the door is not for casual use.

ECSG950 Smart+Shield for panic bars in situThe base model of the Smart+Shield will work with any door when installed next to a magnetic contact (supplied with the alarm) on the door or the door frame. If you have installed panic bars you can mount the appropriate Smart+Shield behind the bar, increasing its impact as a visual deterrent.

The touch and panic bar models also have an extra feature: pre-alarm. They can sense slight pressure on the bar, starting a temporary alarm. If the bar is released then the alarm will silence itself, but will convert to a full alarm if the door is opened.

To place an order or find out more about the Smart+Shield visit our product listing. Alternatively you can contact our friendly sales and support staff by calling 0800 612 6537 or sending an email to support@safelincs.co.uk.

Daniel Bennett

Daniel Bennett

Product Administrator

Daniel is one of our product administrators. He has a wealth of knowledge when it comes to emergency lighting, fire alarms and smart products.

Latest Posts by Daniel Bennett

Sigma Smart+Shield – Deterring the Misuse of Emergency Exits19th April 2017

Exit Hardware – the “What’s What” Guide!

What’s it for?

Fitting exit hardware devices provide the users of a building with a safe means of escape without compromising the security of the building by persons without authorisation. Along with emergency and panic hardware installed internally, access locks and digi-locks can be installed on the outside to allow authorised access.

What is emergency exit equipment?

push-padsAs a rule of thumb emergency latches and bolts are used in non-public areas where escape routes are well known by the building’s occupants and the exit hardware is familiar.  Emergency exit devices are usually push pads fitted with either rim latches or shoot bolts.

What is panic hardware?

panic-barsPanic hardware, including panic bars (also called panic latches and panic bolts) are suitable for public areas. Panic hardware is designed to cover the full face of an escape door so that in an evacuation with the ensuing panic the doors will always open open, even if people are pushed hard against the door. All products suitable for ‘panic’ situations should be certified to EN1125:2008.

What is a latch or bolt in terms of exit hardware?

Latches and bolts are two terms that are often banded around when discussing exit hardware for fire exit doors. The terms can be misconstrued but in actual fact are quite simple and we have all seen examples of them in buildings. A latch product has a rim latch that retracts when the push bar (panic hardware) or the push pad (emergency hardware) is pressed. A bolt device has vertical shoot bolts that are normally in the locked position and retract from the frame at the top and the bottom of the door when the push bar or the push pad is de-pressed. Emergency hardware suitable for installation should be certified to EN179:2008.

For more information on a range of panic bar and emergency pad devices take a look at a fire exit equipment range.

Please note: The Redlam Panic Bolt, while called a ‘Panic’ bolt by everybody in the industry, is actually only an ‘Emergency’ bolt and should therefore not be used in public spaces.

Fire safety in offices

Office fire safety is often taken for granted by staff. When you spend so much of your day in an office, it is easy to forget the risks that are present. Office fires are rare, but they can be devastating when they do occur. The following reminders relate to fire safety actions affecting your staff. A detailed fire safety assessment of your own premises can be found in your company’s fire risk assessment, which is a legal document and looks at all the fire risks in your organisation and the remedial actions and structural fire safety provisions.

Fire Drills

Every member of staff must be made aware of where the nearest fire exits are and which routes to take when exiting the building. The best way of ensuring that all staff know the escape routes is to carry out regular fire drills.

To start the drill, sound the fire alarm system by triggering individual alarms or manual break points (every time from a different location). Then check that all your staff and visitors have arrived at the assembly points. For this purpose it is important that visitor books are filled in correctly and taken by the fire warden to the assembly point during the drill. A visitor having left the premises without signing out will cause you a lot of headache during fire drills!

During fire drills, simulate one or two of the fire exits being blocked by fire. Place a fire warden in front of the fire exits, turning back members of staff trying to leave through this exit. It is surprising how difficult staff find it to identify an alternative, safe escape route.

Record the trigger points being used to set off the alarm system and record the fire drill in your fire safety logbook. Any failings experienced during the drill must be recorded and acted upon swiftly.

Escape routes

Staff escaping a building must be visually directed to the safest and usually quickest route leading to the nearest fire exit. Ensure that photoluminescent (glow in the dark) fire escape route signs are indicating the nearest exit and are clearly visible. You need to ensure that even if the mains power fails, all escape route signs are visible and that stairs and awkward floors are lit sufficiently to escape safely. You can achieve this by installing emergency lights or by installing illuminated fire exit signs in the first place.

Fire Extinguishers in offices

Portable fire extinguishers can be very valuable in stopping small fires getting out of hand and turning into large fires which threaten lifes, property and even the business’ survival. However, if fire extinguishers are used incorrectly or if the fire is too large to be extinguished safely, staff might get injured and fires might still get out of hand. Train your staff in the correct use of extinguishers. Where possible reduce the number for different fire extinguisher types to a minimum to avoid confusion. The new dry water mist fire extinguisher development allows to have just one extinguisher type covering most fire risks in an office. The application of this extinguisher type is also very safe and simple.

Ensure that you cover all risk areas with fire extinguishers. Ensure that your extinguishers were commissioned by a service engineer at your premises and are maintained in accordance to British Standards. Please note that where self-maintenance extinguishers are installed, a yearly visual inspection by your staff is still required and must be documented in your fire safety log book.

In addition, your own staff representatives must visually inspect all your extinguishers on a regular base to ensure that the extinguishers are not damaged in between the yearly maintenance visit or even empty.

Manual Call Points (MCP)

Make sure that all employees understand that the first thing to do if they discover a fire is to press the nearest manual call point (also called manual break points). This alerts all of your staff of the fire. New staff must be shown the call points during their induction period. Fire action signs help to re-inforce the correct behaviour in case of a fire.

Where office buildings are shared with other companies, make sure that a system exists of notifying all the companies in the building if there is a fire.