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Life Safety at Highlands House brings Peace of Mind

Updated: May 12, 2021

PRODUCT: Fire Detection

Situated in a quiet Cape Town suburb, Highlands House is a Care Centre for the elderly and a Frail Care Facility that provides accommodation for men and women aged 60 and over. The facility consists of multiple rooms on three levels and it was determined that, without the correct level of fire detection, all occupants would be at risk in the event of a fire.


With extensive experience in integrated electronic life safety platforms, FS-Systems was approached by Highlands House when stakeholders came to the realization that, with an ageing Fire Alarm System, it would be exceptionally difficult to detect and initiate an emergency evacuation in the event of a fire.

Highlands House can accommodate roughly 220 residents aged 60 years and over. The facility consists of 182 single rooms, 12 double rooms, 26 bathroom-en-suite rooms, industrial kitchens, canteens and laundry facilities.


Early warning devices alert duty staff and occupants in the event of a fire and ensure orderly evacuation if needed. Systems range from entry level through to high sensitivity aspirating smoke detection and can be linked to evacuation, firefighting, building management, PSIM and fire brigade systems.


Highlands House partnered with FS Systems and Consultmech Consulting Engineers to design, supply, install, commission and maintain a new Fire Alarm System.


SERVICE: Consultmech, in collaboration with FS Systems, designed a Category L1/M Ziton ZP2 Analogue Addressable Fire Alarm System. At design stage we considered the fact that that most of the occupants of the facility are elderly. An added concern is that, in the Frail Care Centre, time is of the essence and it is therefore critical that smoke be detected early enough to warn and safely evacuate residents, staff and visitors.

ASSURANCE: After meeting with the client and understanding their operational requirements, FS Systems formulated a project plan to ensure minimum disruption while driving the project to completion aggressively. Due to the urgent nature of the project, FS Systems kicked-off on the 23rd of December and worked through the festive season in order to meet the deadline of the 28th of February.

Starting in the West Wing Frail Care Building, FS Systems installed one Ziton Panel, 141 Detectors, 12 Resettable Break-Glass Units, 12 Sounder Beacons and more than 2500m PH30 Fire Cable in a record time of just over 10 days (practical completion). We then moved to the main building where we installed two Ziton Panels, 635 Detectors, 41 Resettable Break-Glass Units, 41 Sounder / Beacons and over 12000m PH30 Fire Cable.

VALUE / IMPACT: Being a live site, FS Systems faced many challenges including access to rooms and work stoppage due to noise from drilling. Working closely with the Highlands Maintenance Team, FS Systems managed to meet the client’s expectation and deliver a successful handover within the project timeline.

EXPERTISE: On completion, FS Systems handed the system over to the client and Consulting Engineer after which we entered into a planned maintenance agreement to ensure that the system remains compliant.


  • 3 x Panels

  • 776 x Point Detectors

  • 53 x Break-Glass Units

  • 53 x Sounder / Beacons

  • 15000 m cable

  • 1 x Project Manager

  • 4 Teams

  • 2 Months


To date the system is maintained according to SANS10139:2019 and Highlands House still enjoys the peace of mind knowing that they will be able to detect smoke early enough to evacuate the building.


“Once again, FS Systems delivered at a level that surpassed our expectation. Thanks for your professionalism”

Hanzel Roux of Consultmech

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