A standpipe system consists of a network of inlets, pipes, and outlets that are intended for direct firefighting purposes. In NYC, standpipe systems are required in many high-rise buildings (i.e. 75’), although they are found in many other buildings as well. In many newer buildings, the sprinkler and standpipe systems are combined into a single system.
The standpipe (Class I) is designed for use by the fire department only. Each outlet has a 2.5” male coupling, and a valve to open the water supply after the attack line is connected. Often, the hose is already connected to the hose valve and is stored either on a rack or in a cabinet. Responding fire personnel will carry the hose into the building with them regardless, usually in some sort of roll, bag, or backpack. Because the working space in the stairway is usually limited, firefighters will generally connect the attack line to the standpipe outlet one floor below the fire. To prevent the hose from becoming tangled, the firefighter will then flake out the hose line before opening the valve, and charging it with water.
The flow and pressure capabilities of the standpipe system are determined using calculations based on fire protection engineering fundamentals. It is imperative that the standpipe system delivers the designed pressure and flow. If there is too much pressure, the hose could rupture or the excessive nozzle pressure could make the line difficult to handle. Likewise, if there is too little pressure, the flow of water to fight the fire will be dangerously limited.
If you would like to learn more about what a standpipe system is, contact Capitol Fire Sprinkler today. In addition to fire sprinkler and standpipe installation, inspection, and repair, we also provide support for building owners in violation of NYC fire sprinkler codes. Call us at (718) 533-6800 to learn more.