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SETTORE SANITARIO -Dragons Heart Hospital

When plans were revealed to turn Cardiff's Principality Stadium into a 2,000-bed field hospital to ease pressure on the NHS from the coronavirus pandemic, the Fire Division of Ceaton Security Services Limited, based in Cardiff, were contracted to design and install the vital fire detection system, utilising Hochiki products.

The temporary hospital is key for providing additional capacity to support the NHS and was named “Dragon's Heart Hospital”, a name chosen by staff and the public from over 2,000 responses. It becomes the second biggest hospital in the UK, after the Nightingale Hospital in London which was also set up to deal with the pandemic.


Designed and operational in incredibly tight timescales, The Dragon’s Heart hospital will help fight the COVID-19 pandemic with the first operational beds already up and running in dedicated areas within the existing stadium. Work is continuing at pace to complete the new ward infrastructure on and around the pitch. This includes building one of Europe’s largest tented structures under the stadium’s closed roof and constructing large raised platforms over the lower stands.


Angie Beasley, Managing Director from Ceaton Security Services admits the project was a challenge:


“This has been an amazing project to work on, with the whole Ceaton team pulling together to achieve something amazing – designing, installing and commissioning a completed fire detection system in just 10 days is an amazing feat and we’re continuing to work with the main contractors to do our utmost to support this project”.


One of the main challenges faced by the design team at Ceaton was the requirement for a fire detection and alarm system to be installed throughout the tented structure, with no solid wall or ceilings to support the usual cables and detection devices. Ceaton’s system designers soon realised that the best approach to provide a compliant system in such a short space of time would be to install air-sampling detection. This would reduce any potential disruption to the critical services in operation inside the buildings, with the detection units all being installed outside of the protected area and just light-weight sampling pipework inside the wards.


The Ceaton team worked closely with their counterparts at Hochiki Europe, who were also able to support on some of the design challenges, utilising the flexibility and reliability of Hochiki’s FIRElink Aspirating Smoke Detection system to meet the unique requirements of this project.


Paul Biggs, Acting Fire Division Manager, thanked Hochiki for its advice and assistance during the early stage of the project, saying:


“Hochiki’s support went way beyond any expectations and with their assistance and the rest of the team working so hard to complete this urgent project, we have been able to deliver a reliable system, in very tight timescales, that will protect staff and patients alike”.


Martin Green, Hochiki’s Regional Sales Manager for the South West added:


“I was asked to get involved in this project by Ceaton right at the start as they needed advice and assurance that we could support them in terms of stock availability and quick delivery – it has been unlike anything I’ve worked on before, the sheer scale of the build and the extremely short schedule were major challenges to all involved. But I was pleased to assist Angie, Paul and their team and was able to assure them that Hochiki remains fully operational during the current crisis and is ready to support any of our customers, on any project where a level of advice is required”.


Ceaton Security Services remain on site whilst the rest of the hospital comes together, extending the fire detection system as and when required in what is continuing to be a complex install.


Angie concludes:


“We’ll carry on putting everything we have into getting this installation completed, it’s such an important build for the Cardiff area. We love the fact that we are involved in a scheme that combines two well-established Welsh institutions – the NHS, born in Wales, and the home of Welsh rugby".


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