While airport safety and security are widely being discussed in the public, railway security is in most parts an insider issue. But new threats require a lot more attention, and as railway stations are changing their character with airport-like check-ins for high speed trains, extended shopping areas and integrated office buildings, security becomes ever more important. Fire alarm and evacuation systems as well as intrusion detection, access control and video surveillance must be adapted to meet new requirements, but what's more, they need to be integrated into a single security system with central operations and management.
Operators of large train stations are faced with a wide variety of safety requirements. The necessity of equipping the station concourse including all platforms as well as all other buildings with fire alarm and extinguishing systems is quite clear. However, the essential task of protecting human lives can only be effectively fulfilled by such systems if they are coupled with high-quality Public Address (PA) systems that can be used to issue easily understood instructions for evacuation in the event of an emergency. There is a considerable need to catch up here for many train stations. In addition, video cameras are needed to monitor buildings as well as extensive open spaces with limited visibility. Critical areas such as signal towers, railway monitoring centers, retail shops or equipment rooms must also be secured against unauthorized access by means of intrusion alarm systems and access control systems. More and more often, all these systems are being integrated into an intelligent building management system.
Fire Detection and Prevention
High fire loads such as cable networks, extensive technical equipment, luggage that cannot be examined, as well as the inattentiveness of passengers or staff pose a permanent danger of fire. A comprehensive fire protection concept must therefore be developed, based on the structural conditions of each train station. The relatively small underground through station Bruxelles-Central has completely different requirements in this regard than the above-ground Gare du Nord in Paris, which also has physical barriers for access to the high-speed trains.
It is never possible to completely exclude the occurrence of a fire.
However, to avoid a fire or a smoldering fire turning into a disaster, early and earliest detection is of particular importance, because in its first stage of development a fire can usually be fought without major consequences and without evacuation.
Therefore, adequate coverage of all parts of buildings with fire detectors is a matter of course. However, the fire alarm system should also be capable of localizing incoming alarms - the more accurately the better. In extensive buildings like train station halls, the information that a smoldering fire has been detected somewhere is not of much use to the fire department. Modern alarm panels with intelligent bus systems therefore provide a way to uniquely identify and also localize each individual alarm. To accomplish this, optical, thermal and chemical sensors with different levels of sensitivity can be used to accommodate varying requirements of individual sections of the building. In up-market retail shops or lounges, it is even possible to use nearly invisible detectors that are completely integrated into the ceiling and fit ideally into design oriented interiors
The ever growing cabling systems in major train stations represent a specific challenge for fire fighters as well as for planners of fire detection systems. Here, the use of low smoke zero-halogen (LSZH) cables is recommended, as these are harder to ignite than standard PVC insulated cables. Also, they release much smaller amounts of toxic and corrosive gases during combustion. Finally, LSZH cables help to keep evacuation routes and attack routes for firefighters smoke free - and smoke is usually more dangerous than the fire itself.
Another critical component of the station infrastructure needs special attention, too: the data center. Not only can a fire cause tremendous physical damage here, but it has the potential to disrupt the entire operation of a train station for days, if not weeks. In order to prevent fires here, it is advisable to reduce the amount of oxygen in the data center. This will reduce the opportunity of a fire getting started, but it will not altogether eliminate the risk. Measures must therefore be taken to detect incipient fires in a very early stage. This is where aspirating smoke detectors come in, which consist of sampling pipes in the monitored area and a detector unit that can be located elsewhere. The detector generates a vacuum in the sampling pipes to ensure continuous air intake from the monitored area and will detect smoke particles therein with very high sensitivity.
Related Articles :
Keywords : access control access control systems detection fire alarm and evacuation systems fire alarm system fire protection technology intelligent building management system intrusion alarm systems smoke detectors Video cameras video surveillance railway securityEmail requestCompany Homepage
Bosch Sicherheitssysteme GmbH
Tel: +49 89 6290 1647
Fax: +49 89 6290 281647