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Electrical safety body lends support to ongoing AEI Cables campaign

22 March 2022

THE CAMPAIGN orchestrated by AEI Cables to highlight the revised version of the Code of Practice for Category 3 Control fire performance cables – and which states that only approved cabling should be used in signal and control equipment – has won support from a major electrical safety industry body.

Electrical Safety First has now voiced its support for the message about improving information on – and compliance with – the Code of Practice.

Martyn Allen, technical director at Electrical Safety First, told Fire Safety Matters: “Electrical Safety First strongly supports this initiative and all those who improve the fire safety of cables, with a particular emphasis on cables installed in high-rise residential buildings. Safe cables provide more time for evacuation and also help to reduce the extent of fire damage and its attendant costs.”

Allen continued: “The Code of Practice is a great way in which to encourage designers, specifiers and insurers alike to ensure compliant and approved fire-rated cables are installed in new builds and major refits. Such cables will be installed for a significant period of time so they must be absolutely safe.”

Campaigning charity

Electrical Safety First follows the fire safety membership body The Institution of Fire Prevention Officers in supporting the AEI Cables initiative.

Electrical Safety First is a campaigning charity that aims to reduce deaths and injuries caused by electricity in UK homes, working with the Government, the electrical industry, manufacturers, retailers and consumer safety-focused organisations to improve safety regulation and standards.

For its part, AEI Cables has been highlighting the importance of the systems powered by these cables – including smoke and heat extraction systems – in assisting Fire and Rescue Services in the event of firefighting tasks and safe evacuation procedures when it comes to life safety.

The new revised Code of Practice under BS 8519 applies to all Category 3 Control fire performance cables.

The application of Category 3 Control fire performance cables also applies to evacuation alarms for the disabled in care homes, emergency voice communication systems and voice alarm systems in relevant buildings including tall buildings, office spaces, hospitals, care homes, Shopping Centres and stadiums.

Independent approval

At present, AEI Cables is the only supplier in the UK with independent approval from the Loss Prevention Certification Board (LPCB) for BS 8519 Category 3 Control fire performance cables with a fire survival time of up to 120 minutes.

The company’s Firetec Enhanced cabling has been approved and certified by the LPCB to BS 8519 (Annex B) Category 3 Control in addition to Category 2 Control.

The Code of Practice under BS 8519 contains six categories of cables: three for power cables and three for control cables, each covering survival times of 30, 60 or 120 minutes.