By: Bill Henderson

Even the most jaded Luddite among us must now concede that climate change is, in fact, a reality.

This year, the fires began to burn in northern Alberta as soon as the snow melted. European countries are already scrabbling to find enough water to keep hydrated amidst the 40-degree Celsius heat – and it’s only the very beginning of summer.

With extreme climatic conditions affecting every corner of our planet, we know that we need to plan for increasingly frequent power grid disruptions. Our technology relies on a central grid to keep our buildings warm or cool and our Life Safety equipment operating. Every property and facility manager needs to be aware of their responsibilities with respect to emergency standby power in the face of the inevitable loss of utility power.

To assist those of us charged with the Life Safety of our occupants, the Canadian Standards Association has developed the CSA 282-15 Emergency electrical power supply for buildings. This standard, in conjunction with other codes, comprise an action plan to assist us keeping our facilities safe and comfortable for everyone who passes through our doors.

As a facility manager, you need to implement an inspection and reporting system that closely follows the CSA 282 standard to demonstrate your diligence and adherence to Life Safety. This is important because, not only will the local fire marshal ask to see the generator inspection log, but the TSSA and your insurance company will also require this document should any issues arise due to loss of power to fire pumps, elevators, fire alarms, and so on.

The two sections that deal with inspecting and reporting are in Section 11 and are as follows, verbatim:

11 Operation and maintenance program

11.1.1 Operation and maintenance
The emergency electrical power supply equipment shall be operated and maintained in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations and instruction manuals and the requirements of Clauses 11.1.2 to 11.5.

11.1.2 Inspection, testing, and maintenance log
A permanent log of the inspection, testing, and maintenance of the emergency electrical power supply system shall be maintained in accordance with the manufacturer’s manual of operating and maintenance instructions and cover at least the items specified in Tables 2 to 6. This log shall be kept on site and shall include:

  • the date on which an inspection, testing, and maintenance exercise was carried out;
  • the name(s) of the person(s) who performed the inspection, testing, and maintenance;
  • notes on any unsatisfactory conditions observed or discovered and the steps taken to correct such conditions; and,
  • copies of the design and installation performance test certificates.

11.5 Maintenance

11.5.1 General
The emergency electrical power supply shall be maintained as specified in the manufacturer’s manual of operating and maintenance instructions, provided that the manual covers at least the items specified in Tables 2 to 6. The owner's representative shall ensure that competent personnel perform the maintenance work.

11.5.2 Frequency of procedures
The minimum frequency of inspection, testing, and maintenance procedures shall be as specified in Tables 2 to 6. Additional requirements may be specified by manufacturers, operators, or authorities having jurisdiction and shall be permanently recorded in the manual of operating and maintenance instructions and the log.

11.5.3 Records
A permanent log of the maintenance work (including inspections and tests) shall be maintained in accordance with the manufacturer’s manual of operating and maintenance instructions (see Clause 11.5.1). The permanent log shall be kept on site and shall include at least the following:

  • the date on which the work was done;
  • a note of parts replaced;
  • a note of any unsatisfactory condition discovered and the steps taken to correct it;
  • the name of the person who performed the work; and,
  • a note verifying that any switches or controls that were deactivated for safety purposes during maintenance have been restored to their intended operating condition.

Please note that this short primer is by no means exhaustive on the subject of the CSA 282 and how it applies to facilities, condominiums, health care residences and many other places where the public safety is of primary concern.

We have included some photos of our weekly inspection report to be completed by onsite maintenance staff, along with a completed annual inspection report completed by a T&T Power Group technician.

If you wish to acquire copies of the weekly inspection report, or require some assistance in setting up a planned generator maintenance regime that complies with the CSA 282, please contact the author by email at: bill.henderson@ttpowergroup.com

 

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