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MCP's in a garage inspection pit
#1
i don't know about this!

steps down into a garage inspection pit, not full height but about 5 and a half feet deep. covered over in the middle (80%) and 18 metres long with 2 exits (1 at each end)

do we need mcp's in there? technically it's a change in level leaving the pit to go back up to normal floor level, but not a full storey. you could also say that they need an mcp in there if something catches fire before they exit the inspection pit....
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#2
BS 5839-1:2017
20.2
f) The figures of 45 m and 30 m recommended in e) should be reduced to 25 m and 16 m, respectively, in the following circumstances:
1) where a significant proportion of occupants have limited mobility and it can reasonably be anticipated that one of these occupants will be the appropriate person to first operate the fire alarm system in the event of fire;
or
2) where processes in the area result in the likelihood of rapid fire development (e.g. where there is use, or processing, of highly flammable liquids or flammable gases).

g) Where specific equipment or activities result in a high fire hazard level (e.g. kitchens or cellulose paint spraying), a MCP should be sited in close proximity.

So i would say yes put them in the pit.
www.fia.uk.com

Technical Manager FIA

All comments and views are mine own and may not reflect the views of FIA
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#3
In relation to siting MCPs, BS5839-1 states 'at all storey exits and all exits to open air'

A garage inspection pit is not a storey - at best you could argue it is plant - and as such I would not be siting MCP's in one.  These pits are often filthy and narrow. Workers will be carrying & using tools in this confined space and the risk of an unwanted activation is high. The MCPs would have to be flush mounted and then fitted with a cover. That isn't easy and would slow the evacuation of anyone in the pit - not a great idea

When there is doubt, its worth considering the rationale as to why the BSI Panel in their collective wisdom came up with this wording. It's clear the siting of MCPs in this context is about capturing staff as they leave their floor into a place of relative safety, or the building into a place of ultimate safety. 

Anyone leaving an inspection pit is likely to be in an area which is not a place of relative safety, and as long as they can reach a MCP within the given travel distance I cannot see an issue of omitting them from the pit

An inspection pit is not a likely place for someone with limited mobility to be working regularly, or a place of rapid fire development, or a high fire hazard area

So for the avoidance of doubt, I cannot think of any example of where an MCP is necessary in such a location
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#4
(20-07-2019, 11:57 PM)Messy Wrote: When there is doubt, its worth considering the rationale as to why the BSI Panel in their collective wisdom came up with this wording.

LOL would not talk to much about the collective wisdom of the BSI Panel Scrt

I'm part of that panel Biggrin

I would only put them in not because of the change of level but because its a longish pit with highly flammable liquids, petrol, oil etc you could put them outside the pit if you are within the reduced 25m travel distance but with out seeing the place i can't really comment
www.fia.uk.com

Technical Manager FIA

All comments and views are mine own and may not reflect the views of FIA
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#5
Will

Biggrin That did make me laugh and has put me firmly in my place!!!! And for the record, its rare that I am so complimentary about the BSI panel so expect it too often ;) 

The main thrust of my reply was in relation to the OP's inference that MCPs would be required due to the change of level, which I cannot accept

Thanks
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#6
I wouldn't put one in there.

What a mare to cable that one.
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#7
Cheers all. The pit is 18 metres long and starts near the front of the garage and they have mcps next to every roller shutter door so probably still within the 25 metre rule for reaching an mcp.

i know it's not a separate storey but it's pretty close. It is covered by a semi flexible roof for 80% but that roof is temporary and can be removed in sections for access.

I'd say it is a high risk area in garage pit as any flammable fluids etc are likely to accumulate there and there will be welders/electricity etc. but there are mcps within 25 metres of the risk. (and afd above)

bit of a grey area. I'll let it slip. It's a new system takeover you see and i'm doing the snagging report.
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#8
Spilled fuel in a pit.... Oh dear!
Becomes vapour and then it's a problem to have electrical kit including fire alarm.
Tell them to move with the times and use ramps!
Last big Mod workshop I used to maintain had no pits, ramps for hgv with trailer is the way to go!
Bugger, I did isolate the dialer...didn't I?
Oops
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#9
(24-07-2019, 09:45 PM)luggsey Wrote: Spilled fuel in a pit.... Oh dear!
Becomes vapour and then it's a problem to have electrical kit including fire alarm.
Tell them to move with the times and use ramps!
Last big Mod workshop I used to maintain had no pits, ramps for hgv with trailer is the way to go!

For som reason they have 1 inspection pit and 4 others with ramps..
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#10
Years ago as an electrician I installed fluorescent lighting within inspection pits and they were/had to be intrinsically safe.

Therefore if MCPs were to be fitted should they be intrinsically safe also?
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