Each business has a specific set of safety precautions aimed at providing a safe workplace for employees as well as protecting company assets. A crucial element of safety precautions consists of those centered around fire protection. Amplifying your building’s fire safety plan can only benefit your operations. A great way to do this is by implementing smoke vents into your business.
What is an AOV System?
The purpose of automatic opening vent (AOV) systems, or “smoke vents,” is to help clear smoke out of buildings in case of an emergency such as a fire. They allow for a clear evacuation route and much cleaner air to breathe for the occupants during an evacuation, giving everyone inside more time to get out. The system is typically triggered when sensors detect a high enough temperature or when the vents themselves have a physical seal or lock that will break away due to high temperatures, making the vents spring or fall open.
Protecting Occupants and Property
Fires are a very real and serious safety concern and sufficient safety measures need to be taken to prevent as much loss as possible in the event that one occurs at your building. Fire alarms, sprinkler systems, and escape plans are, of course, always at the top of the list. However, another critical safeguard is smoke vents which are less often discussed. Being able to expel the smoke quickly will save both lives and property.
Smoke created by a fire burning inside of a building can make it difficult to breathe and see, consequently making it much harder to find the way out and think clearly. Additionally, the large buildup of smoke trapped inside due to a lack of smoke vents can cause asphyxiation. In fact, the National Fire Protection Association states that, “Most fire deaths are not caused by burns, but by smoke inhalation,” Additionally, “Often smoke incapacitates so quickly that people are overcome and can’t make it to an otherwise accessible exit.”
Another advantage that the installation of smoke vents allows for is the ability for firefighters to work on extinguishing the fire sooner once they arrive on the scene. The quicker the fire can be put out the more equipment, building, and product can be saved. A warehouse or factory will also have significantly less smoke damage, such as soot and persistent odors, with automatic opening vent systems in place.
Types of AOV Systems
There are a few different types of AOV systems that are used depending on the location and environment demand. Car park ventilation systems use fans as well as varying kinds of vents to clear out car exhaust and other fumes through day-to-day use while also being equipped to handle smoke from fires. The other two types of AOV systems that are most popular, and which DCI provides, are as follows:
- Mechanical: Our mechanical smoke vents, as the name implies, are vents that open and close to release smoke when needed. These vents are available in both steel and aluminum.
- Drop Out: The drop out smoke vents do not move at all. Instead, they provide a consistent method for smoke to escape and come with standard fall protection.
America’s Trusted Source for Quality Smoke Vents
Design Components, Inc. is the United States’ trusted provider of OSHA-approved, quality smoke vents. Our ventilation products are both UL-listed and FM-approved, ensuring that they are premier products ready to provide optimal safety.
Ready to add to employee and building protection today? Contact Design Components, Inc. today, and learn more about our smoke vents and how they can benefit your business. DCI is committed to improving your operational capabilities and making your commercial steel building functional and safe.