Do we or Don't we during a Hurricane?
Hi Firefighters......... I'm not one but wanted to ask what I've been told many times is a very interesting question. I have to explain my thoughts so it may end up rather long.
I am a maintainence dude in a 7 story clinical office building on the bay of Tampa Bay. There are no overnight patients (no beds). It has a 400kw Emergency generator that powers only Fire Life Safety Equipment such as fire panel, lights, a elevator, and the Fire Pump. Nothing critical like resporators.
Before our level 1 Evacuation do we leave the generator in Auto or do we turn it Off? The building will be cleared of occupants and securely locked.
Pros to leave ON
1. Protect the structure against a possible fire.
2. Provide lighting
3. Provide sirens and strobes
Cons to leave ON
1. Since the power company surely will systematiclly cut power to grids the generator will run until it runs out of fuel or it is submerged in water thus destroying the engine and may get violent.
2. No generator for life safety if damaged or out of fuel for after the storm when people will be around cleaning up or inspecting. No guarentee it will work anyway.
3. Live circuits among damage, water and passerbys which may cause a injury or fire that the sprinkler system may not be able to put out depending on damage, if any, to the system.
I spoke with my insurance carrier and they sugested we leave it on. I wonder if there was a rule or something that would address this issue, maybe even the AHJ.
Personally it scares me to have it runnung without supervision and mayham going on outside.