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Apollo Fire Detectors protects former rehabilitation centre during COVID-19 crisis

20 May 2020

TEAMWORK, FLEXIBILITY and a commitment to customer service have resulted in Apollo's fire detectors being installed, commissioned and operational in just one month at a former defence sector medical rehabilitation centre that's being transformed into a community-style hospital for use during the pandemic.

Despite the company's warehouse being closed for a stock-take, Apollo Fire Detectors ensured that the essential fire safety equipment was personally delivered to the Surrey site the day after the order was placed. Headley Court will re-open and serve as a temporary community hospital for patients needing rehabilitation or convalescence, those receiving end of life care and those who are recovering from COVID-19 and do not require critical or acute hospital care.

The facility closed back in 2018 and the existing fire systems were no longer viable. Detect Fire & Security was appointed by Corrigenda Facilities Services to install a new fire system into nine buildings in just four weeks and chose the XP95 from Apollo Fire Detectors as the solution.

Joe Presswell, technical manager at Detect Fire & Security, explained: “The site was already configured with ward space and other clinical areas, so it was ideal to be converted for use as a community hospital. After the initial site survey it was a relatively straightforward installation process focused on swapping the equipment and re-programming the system on the new Advanced Electronics addressable fire panels. That said, the timescales were demanding. We were originally asked to work on three buildings, but this soon changed to nine buildings, with the order in which they were expected to be completed changing throughout the installation. Apollo Fire Detectors was a great partner to work with. The company ensured good stock levels at all times and was accommodating of all our requirements.”

Presswell added: “It took only four weeks to complete the installation in nine buildings. In normal circumstances, it would take around three weeks per building. This was a brilliant team effort.”

Nicolas Duke, operations director at Apollo Fire Detectors, explained: “The Apollo team has always prided itself on its level of customer service and flexibility. Working with Detect Fire & Security on the Headley Court project was a prime example of this. Thanks to the fantastic support and dedication of our operations staff, who have continued to work on our life-saving devices through all of the Coronavirus crisis, we were able to maintain our stock levels of key products. The first order arrived on a day when manufacturing was closed due to stock-take. Therefore, it was actually packed and made ready for next day pick-up by the Apollo Leadership Team. We are all proud of the contribution that Apollo and its many customers have made to the national response to the virus.”

Mike Sutton, sales manager at Apollo Fire Detectors, concluded: “Communication and teamwork were the keys to the success of this project. We really pulled out all the stops to help make this project come together so quickly. I personally delivered the first batch of products to site and our managing director was packing boxes in the warehouse to ensure the project could start on time. We’re delighted that the facility is protected and patients can be cared for in a safe environment.”