• April 27, 2021

    Considering investing in your business’ fire safety and upgrading to a monitored fire alarm system? We’re covering all the information you need to know, from how much it’s going to cost to if it’s a legal requirement. 

    Do fire alarms have to be monitored?

    The short answer to this question is no. However, just because it’s not a legal requirement, doesn’t mean it’s not beneficial to have a monitored fire alarm. In fact, having a third party constantly monitor your fire alarm increases your business’ overall fire safety as well as reduces the risk of injury to your employees and visitors. Within the UK there were over 500,000 fire-related incidents attended by the fire and rescue services in 2018/2019, with 318 fire-related deaths, showing the importance of proper fire safety and prevention in the workplace. If all of these incidents had had professional fire alarm monitoring in place, these figures would likely be significantly lower, due to the increased rate emergency services could have arrived at the scene. This is because when a system is monitored, the monitoring provider will automatically action an emergency services response if a legitimate fire alarm is triggered. 

    How much does fire alarm monitoring cost?

    The cost to have your fire alarm systems monitored varies with each monitoring provider, as well as the size and type of fire alarm system you have in place. A more complex system with hundreds of fire alarms will of course cost more to monitor than if you had one or two. However, some contracts could cost you as little as £10 a month. 

    Most monitoring companies will carry out an on-site survey, whereby they can access your system and give you a bespoke quote. Most monitoring contracts are charged on a monthly or annual basis and will cover total monitoring of your fire alarm system 24/7 and for 365 days of the year. 

    Is it worth the cost?

    A monitored fire alarm system is an investment into your business’ safety but will be extremely valuable when you need it most. Hopefully, a fire doesn’t break out, but if one does you’ll reap the benefits of a monitoring system and the immediate support the monitoring can provide in your time of need. 

    The cost of a monitoring contract is therefore a small price to pay, compared to the potential loss and damage to your property, stock, equipment, other assets and even life. 

    In some cases having a monitoring contract in place for your fire alarm system can actually reduce your insurance premiums as your site is considered less at risk from fire damage! Therefore in some incidents, fire alarm monitoring can be cost-effective in the long run.

    Is fire alarm maintenance required?

    Maintenance contracts are also available to cover your fire alarm system. These consist of various system checks, tests and servicing throughout the year, to ensure all your fire safety equipment is in good working order and is set to last for years to come. 

    Certain maintenance checks are required and advised by the UK government and BS 5938, such as inspections every 6 months as well as weekly fire alarm testing. 

    It’s important to adhere to the latest fire safety regulations. Using a third party, therefore, gives confidence that your fire safety system is up to date and meeting all necessary requirements. 

    How much does fire alarm maintenance cost?

    Much like a monitoring contract, the cost of fire alarm system maintenance depends on various factors, such as the size of the site, type of system and number of components with the system, such as fire alarms and extinguishers. 

    Choose a monitoring & maintenance contract

    At BusinessWatch, we can provide a monitoring & maintenance contract that covers both the monitoring of your fire alarms and identification of false alarms, as well as the overall servicing, upkeep and repairing of your entire system. We are completely BAFE certified and provide a world-class professional service with friendly and helpful support. 

    If you’re interested in our monitoring and maintenance contracts or are looking to switch from your current supplier, get in touch with us on 0330 094 7404.