Fire system installed in new Yakima jail

Sunday, January 1, 2006

YAKIMA, Wash.--Derek Karel, president of E3 Solutions, recently completed the biggest commercial fire integration package that his company has ever done at the brand new county jail here
A top consideration for Karel and other planners was how to configure the system to ease the process of moving inmates in the case of a fire or when the system needs to be serviced.
"You can't just evacuate the building, because these are criminals," said Karel.
Fortunately, Karel said, he was involved from the early planning stages. He worked with county officials, architects and the system manufacturer, Honeywell's Silent Knight, to draw up specifications for the project.
Karel's three-year-old company, which also did the security system for the 228-bed facility, provides fire and security systems, CCTV, access control and full low-voltage for 500 commercial and high-end residential accounts in Washington. His business is 75-percent commercial; fire makes up 30-35 percent of the commercial side.
For the jail, Karel chose Silent Knight's Farenhyt IFP-100/1000Voice Integration Panel system, a system that Jeff Hendrickson, director of marketing for Silent Knight, described as a "standard type of fire system with the added caveat that it's vandal resistant and involves design and accessories to protect components of the system like detector heads and smoke detectors."
Special features include addressable devices [up to 1016 of them] that allow jail personnel to pinpoint exactly where a device has been activated or needs attention, and helps them determine which inmates need to be evacuated or relocated first in the event of a fire or service call.
The system also has an integrated voice evacuation feature. An alternative to horns and flashing lights, this system will give verbal instructions, and can be multi-lingual.
Karel integrated it with a smoke control system that can clear an area of smoke by "shutting down the circulation of air and kicking in fans to move the smoke out of an area," Karel explained.
While the system has many special features, it's not all that different from other commercial systems, said Hendrickson "We bring our addressable technology down market to smaller systems."
The planning stage lasted a year, but the installation was accomplished single-handedly in four months by one of Karel's technicians. Inmates occupied the Yakima jail late last year.