High-rise Buildings

A high rise building undergoes many risk assessments with the aim to not only reduce the probability of the fire occurring but also In the unlikely event of a fire how the heartbeat of the building will function when it’s needed to save lives during evacuation. The critical circuits need to function for extended periods due to evacuation time for large buildings or many floors and there is a high chance these buildings will be densely populated at the time.

The areas of consideration include:

  • The Fire Alarm System
  • The Sprinkler System
  • The Smoke Extraction System
  • Communication Or P.A System
  • The Emergency Lighting
  • Signage

Within every high rise or densely populated building there will be a fire plan to advise personnel the safest and quickest route out of a building that in many cases can be dozens of storeys high. Careful consideration is given on how each critical circuit will perform whilst evaluating each escape route.

In many cases during a fire visibility can be reduced by at least 50%. At night, with no power or signage this becomes zero. Experiencing a power cut, even in a familiar room can lead to panic. Imagine trying to find your way down many flights of stairs in complete darkness in unfamiliar locations.

However, the following scenarios are all too common:

Fire alarm & Monitoring system - “Fire alarm cable stops working after several minutes, residents remained in the building believing this was a false alarm after repeated false alarms the previous week”

Sprinkler systems  - “The sprinkler system did not activate which allowed the spread of fire rapidly. Intermittent faults with the sprinkler system was a regular occurrence.”

Stay put policy - Until recently the advice in these buildings to any occupants on higher floors was to stay put and communication from ground level is given on what actions to take. This advice stopped coming after a period leaving residents uninformed on what actions to take as the fire in the building took hold.

Extraction System - The stair wells within these buildings not only act as an escape they are also designed with non-combustible materials. High powered extraction fans act to remove smoke, fumes and dust from the stairwells meaning a “safe pod” for residents of the building if exiting the building is restricted. However, the stairwell filled quickly with smoke and got worse. Residents could not breath and visibility was virtually zero.

Emergency Lighting - In the event of a fire the main lights will fail relatively quickly. It’s the job of the emergency lighting and signage to guide residents (via the risk assessed escape plan) through the building to the nearest emergency exit. However, the corridor was completely dark and numerous doors and wrong directions were taken trying to find the escape route.

The added complication is that many of these facilities cannot afford to be under maintenance. Most buildings are now managed under maintenance contracts and cost for these inspections are extremely expensive. MICC copper sheath means it has its very own built in conduit, does not require any additional mechanical protection. MICC cables can be surfaced mounted without conduit and reduce inspection times saving further annual costs.

Fire resistant cables supply critical circuits to high rise buildings during a fire, or incident, where circuit integrity is essential for extended periods. It is the unique properties of MICC which make it the only cable option for all buildings where fire safety is paramount.

WMC Quality
The quality and reliability of Wrexham Mineral Cables is recognised worldwide and throughout the electrical industry. Our cables are manufactured to meet British and European standards, achieving endorsements & certifications from many regulatory bodies including BRE - LPCB, the world renowned approvals body for fire performance products. Our LPCB product approval register has been maintained for over 25 years, one of the longest in Europe for any fire performance cable manufacturer. Our Quality system is also approved to ISO9001 through LPCB and our entire facility is run in accordance of ISO9001 Quality system standards.

WMC Approvals
BS5839-1:2017 Enhanced to Clause 26.2 BS EN 50200:2015
BS 8434-2:2003 + A2:2009 BS 8591 & BS 8491 CAT C BS6387:2013 C,W & Z BS 60331
The termination glands are ATEX EExd & IECEx approved to EN 60079 for use in potentially explosive atmospheres under the ATEX Directive 2014/34/EU.

WMC Warranty
For over 30 years we have manufactured in the UK, more than 180 million meters of MICC with ZERO failures in the field.  With this impeccable record you can have complete confidence in our 30 year warranty cable system.

WMC project portfolio extends to many high rise buildings such as Harrods London, Golden Bay Tower Qatar & Claridge's Hotel London. MICC is an important element to high-rise buildings, as it aids evacuation time for occupants in the highest stories. MICC will also allow sprinkler and extraction fan units to continue to operate during an emergency, which is key to occupants evacuating safely through corridors and down stairwells.


For further information on how WMC can help with your electric and data cables, please contact us