A fire alarm pull station is a wall-mounted device that usually has a T-shaped lever in the center. This station is connected to an alarm system that sounds when the lever is depressed. In some cases, pulling this lever will cause a light to flash as well. The alarm and flashing lights usually alert building occupants as to the presence of fire in a building.
This early warning device is typically found in a commercial office building, large retail outlet, manufacturing facility, or any other area where members of the public gather. Many local governments regulate the placement of a fire alarm pull station in newly constructed buildings.
This mechanism is typically a square or rectangular box, which protrudes just slightly from the surface it is attached to. It is most often painted a bright red color so it can be easily located in case of emergency. The station may also be identified by the words fire alarm in white letters across the top. The lever usually has an arrow on it to let a person know which way to pull, in order to activate the alarm system.
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A fire alarm pull station is usually hung at or near eye-level in a hallway or on the wall of a common area. Ideally, it is located in a section of the facility that is unobstructed by other items and easily accessible. A large factory or an office complex with many floors may have several of these stations strategically placed throughout the facility.
Most of the time, these alarms are uncovered so an individual does not need to worry with removing a cover before sounding an alarm. There are also models that have a clear, heavy-duty plastic cover over the top. These are mainly used when there is a concern that someone may set off a false alarm intentionally, such as in a school. An enclosed fire alarm pull station often makes a beeping noise when the cover is removed to deter persons from tampering with it unnecessarily.
These alarms generally require very little maintenance, aside from an annual inspection by a trained fire inspector. They are relatively easy to operate, so personnel do not normally need any specialized training. This means a fire alarm pull station is usually a valuable resource to a business owner or landlord, and can be used to help save lives and protect property.