The fire pump is an integral component of fire protection systems, helping to ensure building occupants and contents are safe in the event of a fire. As a result, the system’s design, installation and maintenance are subject to strict regulations and standards, including those set by NFPA 20, UL and FM. Failure to meet these requirements can result in serious consequences, such as property damage and loss of life.
While most fire pumps have not changed much over the years, technological advances are changing the information the pump can provide to users. For example, a smart nozzle can track water availability and operate at rated nozzle pressure and flow; communicate with the attack crew via wireless communication; and charge a hose line on-demand without tying up the pump operator or communication line. These innovations help to reduce maintenance and downtime while also providing valuable operational information to the attack team.
Choosing the right fire pump manufacturer for your needs is crucial to ensuring a safe and efficient system. Look for a company with a commitment to quality and a solid track record of product innovation. They should have the UL and FM stamp of approval, as well as be able to offer a complete range of fire pumps.
The most common type of driver for fire pumps is an electrical motor, outlined in Chapter 9 of NFPA 20. This system takes electrical power from a utility connection, generator or other approved source and spins an impeller to drive the pump. A diesel engine is another option, outlined in Chapter 11. These systems require more infrastructure and maintenance, including on-site fuel storage, batteries for engine startup, combustion air, increased ventilation, and a governor system.