An impairment occurs when a fire protection or detection system, fire alarm system or other system designed to maintain the fire resistance of the building element or structure is taken out of service, either wholly or in part, planned or unplanned.
Fire protection or detection equipment subject to impairment management includes automatic sprinkler systems, fire protection water supplies, fire pumps, fire mains, gas extinguishing systems, foam systems, fire detection systems, water mist systems, powder systems, explosion suppression systems, etc.
Other fire safety systems may include fire doors (including sliding fire doors) their associated warning systems and self-closing mechanisms; fire walls and their associated service penetrations and other openings, fire curtains, etc.
A Fire Protection Impairment Management Programme is used to:
- Supervise the safe shutdown of fire protection systems
- Control potential fire hazards during impairment
- Minimise the duration of the impairment by reinstating the fire protection system as soon as possible.