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Integrated Passive Fire Protection

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Vijay Systems Engineers Pvt. Ltd. is one of the companies of the Vijay Group providing specialized product range in passive Fire protection. Founded by Ratilal Salot in 1959 as a fire extinguishers trading and machinery parts manufacturing unit in Mumbai, the company has grown in to a large conglomerate of companies specializing in fire protection, safety & prevention. Pradeep Dani, GM (Sales & Marketing), speaks to Buildotech about the integrated fire safety solutions.

What are some of the important factors taken in account for fire risk assessment?

The fire load in the particular area is assessed depending upon the presence of combustible materials, the accessibility of the area and the response time for rescue operations. The occupancy of the area at lean hours and peak hours and the average footfall in public places are also critical factors taken in account for fire risk assessment.

Please explain some building design elements that can increase fire safety hazards

Inadequate staircases, lobbies and passages, Absence of separate fire exit staircase isolated and compartmentalized, Absence of separate electrical ducts, Absence of Isolated electrical switch room are some of the elements of building design which increase the fire hazards.

Is there adequate fire safety awareness among the property owners/developers?

The corporate developers have fire safety awareness and do implement statutorily required fire safety norms. However, the awareness is lacking among small developers and there is almost no awareness among property owners or end users. Therefore, there is a need to arrange awareness programs for common people through fire safety departments and social forums. There is a need to bring uniformity in fire safety norms implemented in various regions in India to standardize the requirements of products and systems. Further, the implementation agencies need to be strengthened ensuring compliances on regular basis with periodic inspections.

Vijay Systems integrated approach towards providing fire safety solutions

The Company was set up in 1985 to undertake dedicated operations in passive fire protection and offers all the passive fire protection products. The company undertakes turnkey projects including supply and installation. Thus, the clients can off load all their passive fire protection requirements of the project as a single point responsibility.

We have expanded our range of products and obtained certification from Factory Mutual, USA to offer products that meet the requirements of Global market. We have two manufacturing units at Silvassa and Umbergaon producing fire retardant coatings, fire penetration sealing systems and fire doors.

The products we offer are passive fire protection systems, which aim to compartmentalize the area and isolate fire, smoke & heat so that it does not propagate to other areas for a rated period of maximum up to four hours. This enables safe evacuation of people and prevents further damage to property. Vijay systems offers FM approved mortar type and panel type fire sealing system, fire retardant coating for electrical cables, fire retardant structural steel coating, fire resistance doors, and PVC pipe collars for compartmentalization and retardation of fire.

What are the general guidelines for implementation of Passive Fire protection systems?

Industrial establishments: All the electrical power panels should be sealed at the bottom with fire sealing systems. The wall openings and floor openings through which power cables are passing should be sealed with fire sealing system as per compartmentation plan. The power cables should be coated with fire retardant cable coating at tees and intersections of cable trays. All vertical cables should be coated to full length.

Commercial establishments and high rise residential establishments: Fire doors should be installed at fire exit staircase at each floor with panic exit hardware. The openings of vertical shafts at each floor should have Fire Doors. The electrical room, AHU rooms and lift lobbies should be separated by fire doors. The vertical shafts should be sealed at each floor with fire sealing systems. The power cables should be coated with fire retardant coating to provide a firebreak.

What are some of the major projects undertaken by the company?

Vijay Systems caters to a host of industries such as, Petrochemical companies; Power (Coal & Nuclear); Refineries; Steel, Mining, Real Estate and Auto. With the advent of large-scale real estate development projects like, residential towers, malls & townships, implementation of fire safety norms is mandatory. We are looking to market our products globally and establish our company as a leading global player in the passive fire industry. We are executing projects in commercial and residential complexes and catering to clients like IOCL, BHEL, NPCIL, NTPC and L&T.

Testimony of the effectiveness of one of Vijay Systems products was seen in the unfortunate incidence of fire at Mont Blanc Building in Mumbai last year. The fire initiated on the 12th floor of the building did not travel beyond the 12th floor through the shafts and ducts as those were sealed with our fire stops, few years ago. This averted further damage to the building and saved many lives.

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