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Keywords: Building
Chew Yit Lin Michael
2007/2008 Bu
Issue Date: 15-Oct-2010
Abstract: In the life cycle of a building, maintainability is indispensable. Sufficient consideration for the maintainability of fire protection system will reduce the number frequency of breakdown, its negative impacts and avoid any hazards that have the potential in threatening the building users’ life and safety. Hence, the consideration of maintainability of the fire protection system demands attention. Literature reviews showed that fire protection system is an emergency service in a building and its importance is to alert the occupants and save lives. It was found that, as the system is seldomly used, defects can be overlooked leading to hazards. Hence maintainability of this system is of high necessity. However, little research is done on the prevalence and significance of the defects found in a fire protection system. Hence, this research addresses this knowledge gap, which is to analyze and quantify defects and finally the originality lies on development of a Maintainability Scoring System (MSS) for fire protection system for commercial buildings of Singapore. From site investigations at 8 large commercial buildings, it was found that most of the 116 common defects in a fire protection system are due to mechanical wear and tear, insufficient maintenance practices and vandalism. To assess the seriousness of the defects and to determine the significance, a survey questionnaire was designed based on the information collected from 1st phase of research. Experienced 33 FMs were asked to grade the defects during a face to face interview in terms of frequency and impact on economic loss, system performance and health, safety and comfort loss consequences. A total of 63 defects under maintenance group from interview surveys were found. The frequency of occurrence of the defects was seldom, with a minimum value of 1.18 and a maximum value of 2.30. However, the impact of defects scored a higher value as any occurrences of such defects would impair the economic, performance of the system and threaten the safety of the occupants. It was found that only 2 defects that were significant, ii which has p-value less than 0.005. These were suppression activator failed to operate and damaged firepumps. Considerations of defects with mean value more than 3 were also taken into account as moderate and serious impacts can cause a failure operation of the emergency system. 45 significant defects were found having mean value more than 3. All in all, there were 47 defects out of a total of 63 defects under maintenance group that were significant. Next, a MSS for fire protection system for commercial buildings was developed. An acceptable score of 68% and 3 levels of scoring were also proposed for benchmarking of the level of maintainability of fire protection system. The MSS proposes that fire protection system that can achieve a score of 68% to 100% is categorized as high level of maintainability, a score of 38% to 68% is categorized as medium level of maintainability, and any score below 38% is categorized unacceptable as fire protection is emergency system. With the proposed MSS, it serves as a comprehensive checklist for the FMs or maintenance personnel to benchmark his preventive maintenance schedule against the level of maintainability, with respect to maintenance and operation. It was concluded that though due to complex components and operations, fire protection system have potential number of serious defects, but in Singapore it is unlikely to happen even for old buildings as violation of codes is a rare incidence. The credit was given to strict by-laws and quality control during installation and regular inspection. The findings from this research these had also contributed to the NUS “Maintainability Under Tropical Conditions” research project at Works are also on the two following papers in progress: (1) BRSNet Symposium Paper: Sustainability in Design, Construction, Environment & Management (2) MSS for fire protection systems for commercial buildings of Singapore, which is intended to be submitted to IEEE journal.
Appears in Collections:Bachelor's Theses

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