Lightning protection for care homes and nursing homes is crucial, particularly in view of the fact the residents are likely to be elderly, infirm and in some cases bedridden. A lightning strike to an unprotected care home could have catastrophic consequences.
It can cause a serious fire – and evacuating the property would be difficult due to the health issues of the residents, who are likely to have mobility issues – with potentially fatal consequences. It can also cause total electrical failure, which will immobilise any medical equipment reliant on a power source.
A lightning protection system performs a simple function: it creates a specific path along which lightning can travel. When a care home is equipped with a lightning protection system, the devastating power of the lightning strike is channelled safely into the ground; leaving the residents, their personal belongings and the property unharmed.
Lightning protection is now an integral part of care homes and nursing homes, in the same way as it is vital for hospitals and other healthcare premises.
Lightning protection systems must be designed, installed and maintained to British Standard BS EN 62305, covering new structures and extensions to existing structures. To minimise the risks of loss of life, injury and property damage, a fundamental part of the lightning protection system is surge protection to combat dangerous sparking.