An industry report has predicted the number of connected devices being used worldwide will grow to 20.8billion by 2020*. What opportunities could this present for social housing providers and landlords?
Nick Rutter, Chief Product Officer for FireAngel, explores the latest connected safety solutions and how they are transforming the capabilities of fire safety technologies…
Over the last decade the development of internet of things (IoT) and the notion of a ‘connected home’ has undergone significant developments. Initially starting as a rather fantastical concept, today’s IoT technology is relevant to everyday life, primarily designed to ‘make life easier for the user’.
As residential fire safety, particularly in multi-storey buildings and tower blocks have been the centre of attention since last June, the groundswell of opinion is clearly behind the installation of fire sprinkler systems as part of a multi-million pound programme of fire protection upgrades.
While discussions continue regarding how the work is being funded, it appears that local authorities and housing associations are likely to make a significant contribution to the cost, so it’s inevitable that ‘value’ and ‘cost effectiveness’ will form part of the tendering procedures that are already taking place.
The tragic events of the Grenfell disaster last year cast a long shadow and one that will remain with the industry for decades to come.
Of course lessons will be learnt and perhaps at long last due attention will be paid to safety above other considerations when deciding upon risk critical building products such as fire doors and fire door assemblies.
More immediately however we all await the inevitable changes to legislation and good practice, following Dame Judith Hackitt’s independent review and how it will shape future product specification, installation and ongoing use throughout the life cycle of the building.
The industry has seen a 39% rise in the number of housing associations seeking contractors to do fire safety work, a recent report from Inside Housing has found.
It isn’t clear whether these works are being undertaken on new projects, or refurbishments, but what is clear is the question as to why these issues have not been addressed before?
With innovation in fire safety and performance in the built environment now more abundant than ever, the time for excuses is over. From foundations to fixings, contractors and specifiers involved in all types of building projects now have a plethora of options to choose from.