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Importance of Fire Safety and Prevention Planning

Read on to learn more about fire safety and planning for prevention.

Fires affect thousands of companies each year resulting in injury, lost customer trust and building damage. By establishing a fire prevention and preparedness program, you can help avoid injuries to your employees and visitors, costly damages, and potential fines to your business. Below are some best practices to help prepare your facility for a fire emergency.

Implement a Fire Emergency Evacuation Plan – Emergency response is easier when everyone knows their respective responsibilities. Establish a detailed fire emergency evacuation plan that dictates how to respond, when to respond, and identifies a path of egress. If employees have special needs or require special attention, address these details in the plan.

Establish a Fire Prevention Plan – A fire prevention plan provides facilities with documentation outlining the employees responsible for identifying combustible materials, fire hazards and heat-producing equipment. It also outlines the procedures necessary to prevent potential emergencies. The fire prevention plan should be communicated with all employees and available in writing for review at any time.

Train Team Members – On an annual basis, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and NFPA require fire extinguisher training for employees. Every employee should receive required training and be briefed on new or updated regulations.

Maintain Emergency and Exit Lights – To ensure paths of egress and exits stay illuminated at all times, implement a routine maintenance plan to check lights and replace broken or burnt out bulbs. In addition, regularly test emergency backup power and exit lights to confirm they are functioning.

Practice Proper Housekeeping Techniques – Daily housekeeping tasks play an important role in keeping facilities clear of fire hazards. Make sure trash and packing materials are in metal containers with tight-fitting lids. Clean up flammable materials immediately, including chemical spills and oil to reduce the risk of fire. Likewise, extra storage and equipment should be in proper storage areas clear of aisles or fire exits and not interfering with automatic sprinkler systems.

Create a Fire Emergency Response Team – Develop a team of individuals who are trained and educated in fire emergency plan procedures and are willing to enforce fire safety and prevention methods throughout the building. The team members will assist others during a fire emergency and help guide people to safety.

Preventative Maintenance – Enlisting a licensed and certified fire protection company provides facility managers with quality inspections, safety tests and repairs to fire protection equipment. Establish frequencies as outlined in NFPA code by the equipment manufacturer and the local Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ).

Waterline Controls™

Our level sensors and controls aren’t just for use in residential potable water holding tanks; some of the other applications include cooling towers, sump pumps, wastewater, boilers, water storage tanks, and building fire protection water tanks.

Why Do Sump Pump Float Switches Fail?
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What is a Building Management System?

The primary aim of the BMS (Building Management System) is to guarantee the safety of facility operation – read on to learn of some examples.

1.HVAC System. The duct temperature, pressure, and humidity, as well as exhaust temperature are connected to the BMS, and if their value exceeds defined limits, an alarm is generated.

2.Central Fume Collection, Laminar Flow Units, Dust Collection System, Central Vacuum System, Heat blowers. The BMS monitors the performance of these systems, allowing for early identification of units requiring maintenance. Sudden breakdown would signal via alarms and then appropriate action can be taken to protect the product.

3.Technical Steam System. Should, for instance, the pressure or temperature in the piping system fall below the defined regulatory values for clean steam, the BMS shall trigger an alarm, indicating a threat to product quality.

4.Hot Water System and Central Heating. Temperature and pump control monitoring via the BMS allows for a proper functioning of hot water distribution through the facility.

5.Chilled Water System. Control of the facility chillers could be supervised by BMS to monitor proper behavior of the system in terms of water/coolant temperature control or pump control to assure proper distribution within the distribution loop.

6.Sprinkler System (for fire safety).

7.Electrical Monitoring System. The BMS may monitor the consumed electrical power and the state of main electrical switches.

BMS Advantages

  • It protects your most costly equipment by allowing you to keep close tabs on it and ensure it functions properly.
  • It simplifies the management of your facility, making it easy to access and control any area of your building’s operations.

It helps your building operate more cost-efficiently through automatic scheduling and occupancy controls.

BMS Disadvantages

  • Building management systems are expensive, sometimes costing hundreds of thousands of dollars at the outset in addition to high recurring fees to keep it operational.
  • The limitations in the data it provides won’t help you achieve maximum energy savings and operational efficiency.
  • It may be missing some of the smaller equipment that also offers opportunities for savings.
  • BMSs are disparate, siloed systems that don’t work collaboratively.


Waterline Controls™

Our level sensors and controls aren’t just for use in residential potable water holding tanks; some of the other applications include cooling towers, sump pumps, wastewater, boilers, water storage tanks, and building fire protection water tanks.

Importance of Fire Safety and Prevention Planning
Written by webtechs

What is a Fire Water System?

A fire sprinkler system is an active fire protection method, consisting of a water supply system, providing adequate pressure and flowrate to a water distribution piping system, onto which fire sprinklers are connected. Although historically only used in factories and large commercial buildings, systems for homes and small buildings are now available at a cost-effective price. Fire sprinkler systems are extensively used worldwide, with over 40 million sprinkler heads fitted each year. In buildings completely protected by fire sprinkler systems, over 96% of fires were controlled by fire sprinklers alone.

A firewater system generally has four main sections:

1. A supply of firewater. This can come from storage tanks, a firewater lagoon, or a natural body of water such as the sea or a lake or river.

2.A pumping system that provides a sufficient flow of water to extinguish the fire.

3.A header network of pipes, often in the form of a ring main that transfers the water from the pumps to the fire.

4.Hydrants, nozzles, sprinklers, or other local devices for directing the firewater to the location of the emergency.


Waterline Controls™

Our level sensors and controls aren’t just for use in residential potable water holding tanks; some of the other applications include cooling towers, sump pumps, wastewater, boilers, water storage tanks, and building fire protection water tanks.

Importance of Fire Safety and Prevention Planning
Written by webtechs

Fire Protection vs. Fire Prevention

What is the difference between fire prevention and fire protection? Read on to learn more!

Fire protection and fire prevention are both essential to keeping you and your property safe but they are subtly different.

Fire prevention involves proactive steps taken to reduce fire hazards so that a fire does not have a chance to ignite. Fire prevention reduces these hazards through regular maintenance, inspection, and testing of the systems in your building. You should have regular maintenance and testing scheduled with a professional to keep systems in working order. Fire protection systems are a series of components that work together to detect fires and mitigate the negative impacts. Fire protection includes alarms, suppression systems, sprinkler systems, extinguishers, and any technology that allows you to alert people or monitor the fire.

Why you Need Fire Protection and Prevention

Do you have your heating system regularly inspected but don’t know the last time you’ve checked the fire extinguishers? If so, you are neglecting your fire protection and require fire protection services. Do you feel confident your building is up to code on the amount and location for fire alarms but your staff is not trained on fire prevention strategies? If so, you are missing an integral component of fire safety. Both fire protection and prevention are necessary for your safety and security. Fire prevention is essential to limit risks and reduce hazards that could potentially start fires. However, not all fires can be prevented and risks are almost never entirely eliminated. For that reason, fire protection is also necessary.

Fire prevention and fire protection are extremely important but can also be complicated with so many moving parts. That’s why it’s important to choose a fire protection service provider that is knowledgeable and experienced. 


Waterline Controls™

Our level sensors and controls aren’t just for use in residential potable water holding tanks; some of the other applications include cooling towers, sump pumps, wastewater, boilers, water storage tanks, and building fire protection water tanks.

Importance of Fire Safety and Prevention Planning
Written by webtechs

Fire Protection Systems

Fire systems are not only integral to the operation of a business, their benefits are incalculable in the event of the fire, increasing the likelihood of reduced damage to equipment, inventory and documents. Read on to learn more.

Understanding How a Fire Protection System Functions

A common fire protection system is a smoke detector and a sprinkler. If a fire sparks, smoke sets off the detector causing the sprinkler system to activate. The water protects against the spread of fire. However, automatic fire suppression systems using clean agents are a superior choice.

Benefits of Fire Protection Systems

A fire impacts business operations for a significant period of time and may cost millions to a small business.  Equipment may need to be replaced, and valuable contracts could be lost. All of this must be taken into consideration. An additional benefit of some types of fire protection systems is the automatic dispatching of emergency services.

Determining the Appropriate Fire Protection System

As many fire protection systems are permanent, so it is vital to think about your facility’s future needs, not just its present needs.

You must hire a company who understands your needs who can customize your fire protection options. If you do not have adequate protection, you may face exposure and downtime.

Active vs. Passive Fire Protection

Fire protection can be active or passive. Examples of passive protection include fire doors and fire escapes. Active fire protection uses a system that reacts in case of a fire. Examples of active fire protection include sprinkler systems and special hazard fire suppression systems.

Active vs. Non-Electric Detection

Non-electric fire detection does not require electricity.

You will also want to think about the system offering and any services that come with it.

  • Will the system give you around the clock detection?
  • Does it notify authorities once triggered?
  • What are the recommendations for ongoing inspection or testing of the equipment?

When you want to protect critical equipment or machines, a fire suppression system may be your best option.

Waterline Controls™

Our level sensors and controls aren’t just for use in residential potable water holding tanks; some of the other applications include cooling towers, sump pumps, wastewater, boilers, water storage tanks, and building fire protection water tanks.

Myths and Facts About Commercial Fire Sprinkler Systems
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Types of Fire Protection Systems

Minimizing the risk of fire at your business or home is highly important. Read on to learn more about the different types of fire protection systems.

Active Systems

  • Fire sprinkler systems, fire extinguishers, smoke and fire alarms are all part of an active fire system.
  • Active systems can be manually activated or automatically activated.
  • Active systems are designed to alert people of an emergency so they can evacuate.
  • These systems are most effective when people are aware of how they work and know what to do in case of an emergency. hence why fire drills are so important!

Passive Systems 

  • Passive fire protection extends the time period for evacuation by suppressing smoke and fire.
  • Examples of passive systems more commonly used for commercial installation include fire-resistant walls, fire doors, and fire dampers for air ducts.
  • The design of these devices enables them to automatically engage when heat or smoke is detected. Their purpose is to contain the fire in the location that it originated in order to slow it from spreading to other areas of the building.

Clean Agents

  • Clean agents protect one-of-a-kind assets. This agent avoids damage often associated with traditional water sprinkler systems.

Gas Systems

  • Gas systems work by displacing oxygen that is present.
  • These systems are designed to be safe for use in areas where people are working, although if only carbon dioxide is used for fire suppression.
  • Gas systems leave no toxic or liquid residue that might damage or be a hazard to property or equipment.

Dry Chemical

  • The dry chemicals, also known as powders, are typically made of sodium bicarbonate or mono-ammonium phosphate.
  • The powder type will depend on the type of business the system is being installed in. 

You can also utilize a combination of above known as hybrid systems. Water Line Controls can assist you in choosing the best options for your business or home.


Waterline Controls™

Our level sensors and controls aren’t just for use in residential potable water holding tanks; some of the other applications include cooling towers, sump pumps, wastewater, boilers, water storage tanks, and building fire protection water tanks.

FPT50 Controller
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FPT 50T – Fire Service Water Tank Level Control w/ High & Low Alarms, 40F Temperature

FPT50T – Fire Service Water Tank Level Control w/ High & Low Alarm, 40F Temperature

Complete Kit Includes:

NEMA4x Control Panel
Sensor w/ 50 ft. Cable
Sensor Mounting Assembly


  • Dry contacts to BMS for measuring Fill “ON” time
  • Low Water Alarm
  • High Water Alarm
  • Temperature 40F Indication (per NFPA requirements)
  • Fault conditions
  • Operates 110VAC Solenoid Valve
  • 110VAC 95db Audible Alarm w/ Silencer Switch Installed in the Panel


The system is automatically controlled within an operating range (this range can be set by custom ordered probes or cutting the current probes to length in the field). The system also monitors for a high water level condition and a low water level condition.
These conditions have three outputs each which are:

  1. Close a set of dry contacts for the BMS
  2. Operate a relay rated at 30AMPS / 250VAC
  3. Turn on an LED to indicate the sensor has tripped

The Fill dry contacts can be used as a comparative to develop a baseline benchmark of water usage for the system.

Custom Sensors lengths available upon request.

*If you are a Reseller, Sales Organization, Distributor, Contractor or an OEM we want to talk with you to determine an SPA price program for your organization so please call us at 1(888) 905-1892 or contact us now.

Altitude Valve
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Replace Altitude Valves with Modern Controllers

Replace Altitude Valves with Modern Controllers

Many ground level or elevated water storage systems use what is known as an Altitude Valve. These valves close at a preset high-level to prevent overflow of water in a ground storage tank or reservoir, opening to refill the water in the tank or reservoir as the level lowers. In crude systems they are reliable and effective.

Modern water storage requirements are not usually well served by such stand-alone devices though.

Fire Safety Water Holding Tanks

For fire protection, a much more effective, less temperamental and less expensive solution is an electronically operated system that connects to automated building management systems, has alarms, or even redundant switching and alarms.

FPT50 ControllerA better solution for Fire Safety holding tank systems, and a replacement for them, is the Waterline Controls WLC FPT-50. This Fire Service Water Tank Level Control with high and low alarms gives you modern, state of the art control, visible and audible alarms, and peace of mind.

Our systems come with a modern, intrinsically safe, electronic sensors. Our systems connects to a BAS or building management system for many modern code requirements, or just logical safety precautions.

Written by webtechs

Fire Protection Water Tank Level Controller System

Fire Protection Water Tank Level Controller System

Fire SafetyYour Fire Protection System is dependent on assuring your water reserve requirements are met at all times:

You really need look no further than the revolutionary
Electronic Sensors and Solid State controllers from Waterline Controls

Fire Water TankTypical regulations usually include languarge such as:

Regardless of use, all tanks shall be equipped with a device that will ensure that the tank contains the designated amount of water for fire flow duration as determination by the fire department”

Water Storage Tanks are an integral part of fire protection systems and the use of an above ground water storage tank that is correctly sized for the application could make the difference in an emergency situation and may be required by local fire code as a secondary on-site water supply for automatic fire sprinkler systems also known as a break tank.  A break tank is a water tank providing suction to a fire pump, but the tank’s capacity or size is less than that required by the fire protection systems served.

50 ft. sensor wire
Sensor Low Voltage Raceway
TO AUTOMATION SYSTEM – 2 for each function plus
2 for fault conditions. (see truth table for BAS wire quantities)
AC Power Input
Internal Relays (N.O.)
are rated 30 amps
at 250VAC.
Low Level Alarm
* See written specification for more details.
* Contact the factory for Custom Sensor requirements.
Reference – BLACK
3″ Pipe Clamp
used as adjustment sleeve
4″ Slip Fitting
(Slip x Male NPT)
Maximum Operating Level
Minimum Operating Level
Low Alarm
Custom Fitting
Low Alarm – BROWN
Minimum Operating Level – WHITE
Maximum Operating Level – RED
5/8″ Equalizer
Vent Hole (2)
1. The 3″ PVC Pipe needs to be at least 2″ longer than the longest Sensor tip.
2. Adjustment occurs by moving the 3″ PVC Pipe up or down and tightening the
clamp so it rests on the Custom Fitting.
Operating range
4″ NTP
3″ PVC Pipe cut to length
4″ Threader into the tank
High Alarm
High Alarm – GREEN
High Level Alarm
Fill to
Reservoir or Tank
“Y” Strainer
110VAC activated valve
as specified
Service Level Control
Service Level Fill Control with Low and High Alarm
Low-Low Alarm
Low-Low Alarm – BLUE
Low-Low Level Alarm
or Temp (optional)
Internal alarm
with silencer switch
WLC 4000 Series
Written by webtechs

Water Tank Level Controller High Water Alarm

Water Tank Level Controller High Water Alarm

Our water supply system and its infrastructure are intended to plan for the collection, storage, distribution and transmission, including treatment, of water for homes, commercial use for industry and irrigation, as well as for such public uses as fire fighting.

All of these uses require reserve water or a guaranteed supply of water to operate. The normal solution is a water holding tank at or near the place of intended use. In domestic supplies, this might be a municipal water tank or resovoir. Many municipal systems are required to keep a minimum of at least 30 days supply ‘banked’ in underground or above ground systems.  This aspect, along with several other aspects of water management falls under civil engineering services provided by the local county or city government in charge of managing the water systems.

Rooftop Water TanksMany rural areas are on private or local wells. In many residential areas with low yield wells (typically less than 5gpm but it is sometimes considered as a function of requirements) an elevated holding tank is a requirement. The long familiar sight of high rise inner city buildings with water tanks on the roof, in use today, provides high-rise residents the water from those tanks located on the roofs of the buildings. In addition to being a storage device the tank creates water pressure by gravity, which brings water to each apartment as needed. They can also potentially provide fire safety in those high rises by providing instant local access to water.


For most commercial and fire saftey systems the common storage solution is a holding tank. Both cooling towers for HVAC and storage tanks for fire supression must have a reliable system for regulating the water level. Amazingly, many safety systems still have old fashioned float type switches or early generation electric water level switches. The first forms of electric sensors did improve on the mechanical float switch, while introducing new problems to be learned and overcome, such as corrosion or deterioration of sensors rendering them inaccurate or useless. In the cases of power failure there are other issues with the loss of electricity itself at the site.


Potable water is the essence of life. Wasting it is not an option in our society today. Our work with local utilities shows how properly regulating water levels does indeed save water and money.

Recently, we added a Normally Closed (NC) relay to a high alarm and wired the well pump through the relay; when activated the relay would open and turn the pump off. This is a safety switch just in case the relay that operates the pump contacts fuses closed. We can custom fit almost any application.

Legal Requirements

A High Level Alarm or shutoff is a water conservation device to conserve water waste, damage from spillage, etc. In California, the law changed a year ago and now requires not only that all cooling tower systems have both a shutoff and an alarm, but must report to a BAS: “Open and closed circuit cooling tower installations must … be equipped with an overflow alarm to prevent overflow of the sump in case of makeup water valve failure….alarm shall send an audible signal or provide an alert via the energy management control system to the tower operator in case of sump overflow.”

Our integration with BAS, our UL listing and our rock solid reliability backed by our exclusive 100% guarantee is reason enough to employ Waterline products in all your water level management applications. When you realize the simplicity of maintenence, advanced state-of-the-art system operation and advanced microprocessor control finally gives you what you want at a cost that is exceptionally reasonable, you will wonder why you haven’t made the step up to waterline controls before.

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