Block Plans for Fire Alarms And Hydrants

Block plans or block diagrams

Designers and engineers create drawings during the design phase for planning, review, approval and then construction of a building. Once these documents have served their prime purpose, and the occupancy permit is issued, the key drawings remain important for a number of reasons.  These reasons include

  • locating facilities and equipment for use
  • identifying and locating equipment for routine maintenance
  • serving as the basis for later modifications to the building
  • identifying the emergency equipment for occupants in an emergency
  • identifying and locating essential safety measures, (Note 1) and applying the maintenance requirements of the occupancy permit or the Maintenance Determination developed for the ongoing equipment integrity, generally using AS1851.
  • providing critical information to first responders in an emergency
  • providing information to investigators following a significant incident or emergency


  1. Essential Safety Measures, refer Building code of Australia BCA2006
  2. Reference Australian Standard AS1851-2012 Maintenance of fire protection systems and equipment
  3. AS851 states that baseline data is necessary to benchmark the performance of fire protection systems and equipment and this baseline data may include block plan information.

What is meant by Block plan information?

Block plans are generally represented as plan or layout views ( seen from overhead). For buildings of more than two or three levels an elevation (i.e. side view) will also be used. They are as complex as they need to be, for example a simple drawing identified as ” Level 2 Building evacuation plan” and a more detailed drawing for a multilevel building with it’s own basement fire water pump. These drawings are not to scale but most usefully must show relative positions and indicative proportions. These drawings may simply show schematics of equipment with a equipment represented by a block, and lines to represent a wall, fire water pipe or a communication signal, whatever may be relevant

Image 1. A complex schematic showing multiple building entrances and water supply points.

Image 2. A basement layout showing only smoke detectors









Image 3. An elevation of a multi storey building with fire pump in the basement

Image 4. Fire alarm panel with an alarm connection schematic


Image 5 Simple evacuation diagram for a hotel – level 2

Image 6 Hydrant layouts in a 5 storey building – mostly UNREADABLE

Image 7. No block plan or and drawing at all!








How can we help you ?

If your block plans need updating, or are missing, we can help. Let’s see what drawings you already have. If needs be, we can visit your site to gather data and discuss with you the drawing or package of drawings that would best meet your compliance needs.

Call us on 1300 134 971