LPS 1276 Issue 2.0 Requirements for the LPCB certification and listing of above ground suction tanks for sprinkler systems

This standard specifies the requirements for the LPCB certification of above ground suction tanks for use in automatic sprinkler systems. The tanks are required to act as the water supply source for automatic fire sprinkler protection systems in the event of a system activation. This standard addresses the design, manufacture, installation and commissioning of the tank for use as part of an automatic fire sprinkler system.

This standard addresses the following key elements, as a minimum, for the provision of the LPCB approved tanks employed for use as part of an automatic fire sprinkler system:

Installation and commissioning of tanks forms a part of the requirements for this scheme. The supply of tank packs as an ex-works activity is not permitted under this scheme.

 Earthquake Load

Applied load arising from a potential seismic event based on; geographic location, frequency and severity.


Supply of tank packs and/or associated components direct from the factory or place of manufacture without installation and commissioning via the approved company.

Approved Company for the Tank

The Approved Company may subcontract various aspects of their activities but shall remain responsible for the overall provision of the LPCB approved tank including but not limited to the design, manufacture, installation, commissioning, ongoing record keeping for the LPCB approved product and the release of the associated marking (rating plate).

Maximum Effective Capacity

The volume of water, in cubic metres available for the fire sprinkler system. It is calculated in accordance with the requirements of BS EN 12845.

Nominal Capacity

The maximum water storage capacity, in cubic metres, of the tank.

Commissioned Tank

The tank shall have demonstrated through filling and in-situ operational testing, that all LPS 1276: Issue 2.0 requirements have been met and that a fully operational tank has been provided. Only after it has been demonstrated that the ‘above ground suction tank for automatic pumps for use in automatic sprinkler systems’ is fully functional can the rating plate be issued for the specific tank by the Approved Company and the LPCB approval to this scheme be declared.

Design Calculations and Declaration

For the complete range of tank volumes and geometries covered by the application a completed LPS 1276: Issue 2.0 Design calculation verification form (Annex A of this standard) shall be provided as part of the application for review.

The declaration shall be verified by an independent competent person such as a Chartered Engineer with at least 5 years’ experience of designing load bearing structures. The CV and evidence of professional standing shall be included with the submission for information.

Design Options

Design options available under this scheme are:

  1. The Approved Company has a fixed range of pre-engineered tank designs which specify volumes and geometries. The verified design calculations shall cover the complete range of specified design options.
  2. The Approved Company has a methodology or software package which enables the design to be bespoke for each application. In such cases the verification of the design calculation must identify all limitations in design detail and show that the scope of the calculation method and functionality of the software package has been fully verified. Where this option is employed the software version and revision status will be listed as part of the approval.

Design Factors

The review of the design requirements shall include, but not be limited to:

  1. The intended scope of design including implementation and control of design drawings and associated algorithms.
  2. The limits of design geometries such as:
  • Tank shapes,
  • Panel configurations,
  • Panel designs,
  • Range of tank heights (maximum permissible height for non-metal tanks is 4m),
  • Range of tank volumes (maximum permissible volume for a single tank unit is 1300m3).
    1. The limitations on environmental applications such as:
  • Wind loading (empty and filled states), as applicable to territorial applications. Minimum design load accepted for a single unit is 45m/s.
  • Operational temperature ranges (limits of movement, expansion of tank joint details etc).
  • Snow load (both roof and side loading), where appropriate.
  • Seismic design details, where appropriate.
  • Be rigid;
  • Exclude direct daylight;
  • Prevent water from becoming contaminated with extraneous matter;
  • Be fitted with a lockable access hatch of minimum 600mm x 600mm size.
  • Be designed to withstand wind uploads and snow loadings for the region in which the tank is to be installed (a minimum snow loading of 0.75kN/m2); and
  • Be designed such that any part is a minimum of 50mm above the highest water level (including supporting structures, with the exception of central support pillars).
  1. f) Lined tanks shall:
  • Not be fitted with tank liners manufactured from fibreglass.
  • Be protected to prevent damage to the liner on installation.
  • Be protected to prevent damage to the liner from bolt heads and panel edges during use.
  • Be provided with a generic tank design for approval with detailed design calculations for all stresses of the liner. The design calculation must show that the fixing details of the liner and the liner itself are capable of taking both the applied load of the empty liner during tank construction, filling or maintenance and the loading during normal service.

Operational requirements

  1. The tank shall provide water for automatic fire sprinkler systems.
  2. The tank shall be designed such that the need for emptying the tank for first time maintenance shall be a period of not less than 10 years. This period excludes the need for maintenance caused by accidental damage or exceptional circumstances. Tanks should be subject to regular inspection and maintenance of ancillaries in-line with the Approved Companies specifications.

Durability Requirements

Applications shall include relevant details to demonstrate the requirements of durability set out in this standard have been met.

It shall consider the required service conditions applicable to the tank and associated ancillaries when used as part of an automatic fire sprinkler system covering the applicable environmental, geographical and geometric design considerations.

Where additional design considerations are required such as those related to the local Regulating Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJ), these shall not reduce the performance characteristics of the approved tank design required under this Scheme and are subject to separate approval reviews by BRE Global.

Material Performance Requirements

The material specifications and durability details for all critical components including the tank shell, liners (where applicable) and associated ancillaries shall be provided. For all materials and components, the applicable material characteristics, specifications, sizing details and associated tolerances shall be detailed.

Annex B provides informative details of current materials of construction.

Structural Metals

All structural metal specifications shall detail the grade (where appropriate), physical, chemical and dimensional properties of the element and be supported by an BS EN 10204 3.1 certificate and BS EN 1090 – Structural Steel specifies the requirements for conformity assessment of the performance characteristics for structural steel and aluminium components declaration. The conformity assessment in BS EN 1090 covers the manufacturing characteristics, and where appropriate the structural design characteristics.

All steel shell tank panels shall have a minimum material thickness of no less than 1.8mm prior to the provision of external and/or corrosion protective finishes such as galvanising. A thickness of less than 1.8mm may be considered subject to provision of evidence of strength and durability in line with the requirements of this standard.

Corrosion Protection of Metal Tanks

Tanks shall be protected against corrosion in order to meet the requirements of this standard. Where alternative corrosion protection options to those cited in this section are proposed, suitable equivalence data shall be provided to demonstrate the suitability of the approach.


Where galvanising is used to provide corrosion protection it should be in accordance with BS EN 10346 and/or BS EN ISO 1461, as appropriate:

  • Unlined tanks should be coated to a thickness of 600g/m2 per side (1200g/m2 of galvanising in total),
  • Lined tanks should be coated to a thickness of 300g/m2 per side (600g/m2 of galvanising in total)

All galvanised panels shall be supplied with Certificates of Conformity for the galvanising thicknesses.

Small areas of galvanising damaged by welding, cutting, rough treatment or erection shall be made good by the use of at least two coats of zinc rich paint to BS 4652 -specification for zinc rich priming paint.

Coating of Metal Tanks

Relevant standards may include:

  • Coating in accordance with BS EN ISO 12944 (Paints and varnishes – Corrosion protection of steel structures by protective paint systems),
  • Coating in accordance with BS 5493 (Protective coating of iron and steel structure against corrosion), or equivalent;

Ancillary Equipment

As part of the submitted tank design details of the following ancillary equipment shall be provided. The commissioning process shall demonstrate, log and record the operation of this equipment. Full maintenance details shall be included as part of the Handover Documentation.

Ladders and Access Platforms

To enable personnel access for the maintenance and/or test of float or ball valves and other ancillary equipment, whilst keeping both feet on the platform, a permanently attached access ladder shall be provided for all tanks, which incorporates a platform and guard-rail. The ladder and access platforms shall conform to BS 4211.

Internal Access Ladders

To enable personnel to enter the tank, internal access ladders, where fitted, shall be designed to be corrosion resistant.

Ball or Float Valve

A ball or float valve for maintaining the required level of water in the tank shall be installed. The valve shall be LPCB listed to LPS 2083 The Requirements and Test Procedures for the LPCB Approval of Automatic Water Level Control Valves for use in Above Ground Suction Tanks for Sprinkler Systems.

An access opening in the tank cover shall be provided. This shall be of such size and location to enable the testing, maintenance and replacement of the ball valve equipment. The cover of this opening shall be permanently attached by hinges or other means. It shall be securely latched when closed and be capable of being opened by hand.

Tank Level Indicator

The tank shall include a device to show the total amount of water present and which monitors the quantity of water down to below the suction pipe outlet to the pumps.

This device shall be capable of being maintained without draining the tank. The primary gauge shall be fitted to the external face of the tank at a height not greater than 1.75m from the tank base. Any additional remote readouts shall be suitable for use in the location in which are they are placed.

Immersion Heaters

Any immersion heater provided must be of a type which shall not burn out when exposed to the air, e.g. when the water level in the tank is lowered below the immersion heater. The heater shall be of the dual element type. Each element shall be capable of operating independently and preventing water in the vicinity of the ball or float valves from freezing, to maintain the operational function of the tank. Each element shall be capable of being maintained or removed without draining the tank;

The provision of an immersion heater can be omitted only where the ambient water tank temperature around the ball or float valve can be maintained or shown not to drop below 4°C.

Where an immersion heater is not fitted there shall be a statement included in the Commissioning and Handover

Drain down facility

The tank shall be fitted with a drainage facility that will enable the tank to be emptied for maintenance and inspection purposes.

Vortex Inhibitor

The tank shall be fitted with an outlet pipe to feed the sprinkler suction pumps. An LPCB approved (LPS 2070) Vortex Inhibitor shall be fitted to the inlet of the outlet pipe.

Overflow / Vent

An overflow arrangement in compliance with the relevant water authority requirements shall be installed.


An access hatch at the base of the tank with a minimum opening of 600mm x 600mm or 600mm diameter shall be provided.

Stop Valves

Where required, LPCB approved (LPS 1185) stop valves shall be used.

Pump connection

Sealing arrangements shall adequately seal the pump test return pipes into the tank structure to prevent ingress of extraneous matter.

Balance pipes

Where balance pipes are installed, stop valves shall be fitted to enable isolation of each tank for maintenance. These valves shall be monitored.

General Documentation Requirements

The documentation pack shall include, as a minimum to demonstrate compliance with the requirements of this scheme:

  • Document Register detailing all documents included in the submission.
  • Design calculation pack containing all information and independent approvals as detailed in Clause 3.1
  • Documentation to demonstrate compliance with Clause 3.2, 3.3 and 3.4.
  • General assembly drawings containing all component and ancillary equipment (clause 3.5) arrangements including materials and finishes.
  • Identification of critical components and full material specifications for these elements including component drawings, manufacturers details and associated designations as part of the Quality Plan (PN111).
  • Detailed drawings of the panels/plates including material specifications and finishes.
  • Details of sealing and jointing products including material specifications, manufacturers and details of any specialist tooling and procedures. Details of any material compatibility issues.
  • Details and drawings of the pump connection requirements, Clause 3.6.
  • Technical drawing of the marking/name plate, Clause 9.
  • Installation and Commissioning Manual(s), Clause 4.2

Tank Liners

Where liners are used as part of the tank design the following information as part of the requirements of 3.1.3 (f) shall be supplied, as a minimum:

  • Technical drawings of the tank liners for the complete range of sizes included in the application.
  • Detailed design calculations and validated methodology for the design algorithms for the range of liner materials and sizes used; including eyelet type, spacings, reinforcements, support rings etc.

Tank Ancillaries

Technical details and drawings (including materials, specifications and finishes), for all ancillary equipment, shall be provided to demonstrate compliance with the requirements of the standard and in addition:

  • Diagram of the overflow arrangement, in accordance with water authority requirements. For UK application details of the Type A/(AB) air-gap design is required. Evidence of any alternative local AHJ requirements shall be provided.

Installation and Commissioning Manuals

Installation and commissioning manuals shall be controlled through the Document Register and will form part of the approval listing. The Manual(s) shall be provided in English, translated versions for local operations shall also be referenced as Controlled Documents. The manual(s) shall be provided in printed format as part of each tank installation package. The manual(s) shall clearly detail all installation and commissioning activities.

The manual(s) shall contain, as a minimum, details of:

  1. Health and Safety details and practices
  2. Details of any specialised tools or equipment required and applicable working practice and training requirements,
  3. Initial site inspection prior to installation covering the acceptance criteria for the tank support structure including level tolerances, slab size specifications and tolerances.
  4. Preservation of tank components and ancillary devices prior to and during installation.
  5. Installation and build methodology addressing all arrangements for ensuring that the installation complies with all requirements of this Scheme and include:
  • Tank supporting structure,
  • Tank shell erection,
  • Tank panel fitting patterns,
  • Fitting requirements such as panel tightening torques, anchor bolt fitting details etc.
  • Installation of tank roof,
  • Installation of all ancillaries and components, including clearly identified sections for each piece of ancillary equipment,

Externally Sourced Providers (EPs)

Where the Approved Company uses externally sourced providers for the installation of their tanks, two options are available.

Option 1 – Externally Sourced Providers (EPs)

The Approved Company shall have procedures in place to:

  1. Control the installation of the tank systems to ensure they are compliant with the requirements of the approved tank design.
  2. Where the Approved Company uses EPs they shall maintain and make available a list of trained providers.
  3. Ensure the design, installation and commissioning of the tanks are undertaken in accordance with the Approved Company’s requirements and take appropriate action if this is not carried out.
  4. Adequately train personnel. This training shall be carried out by a competent representative of the Approved Company and shall be refreshed at least every 2 years or as required following changes to the Approved product.
  5. Keep EPs appraised of product updates and critical issues.
  6. Report and record failures in service together with remedial actions.
  7. Ensure EPs have competency to carry out investigations, report and take the necessary actions after products in service are found to fail or experience issues. The Approved Company may carry out this investigation and action.
  8. Make regular checks of installations carried out by EPs. At least one new and one existing system shall be inspected per year for each EPs and territory covered by the approval. Reports from these inspections shall be made available as part of the FPC audit process.

 Option 2 – Cross-listing

The Approved Company may choose to have an Externally Sourced Provider listed as part of

the product approval. This will be undertaken as a Type 2 cross-listing as detailed in BF406.

Technical Competency Requirements for all Installation activities

These requirements are applicable to all installers whether in-house or externally sourced.

  1. The training programme provided to the installer by the Approved Company, shallbe provided in document form to BRE Global.
  2. Training records for all candidates who have successfully completed the training course to show installer competence shall be maintained and provided to BRE Global as part of the audit programme.
  3. Certificates should be provided to all successful candidates.
  4. The methodology for update programmes and the frequency of refresher courses shall be documented and evidence of attendance and effectiveness of any courses shall be made available. The Approved Company shall keep installers appraised of product updates and critical issues. This will form part of the audit requirements for both the Approved Company and associated installers.
  5. Records of all approved installations shall be maintained, and the information shall be available from the Approved Company and provided to BRE Global as part of the audit programme.
  6. Reports of complaints and in-service failure records shall be maintained and shared with the Approved Company to ensure control of approved systems is maintained. Details of installation failures and corrective actions will be audited at both the Approved Company’s and installer audits as applicable.


The rating plate for the tank shall not be issued by the Approved Company or affixed to the tank until a Commissioned Tank (see 2.6) has been provided. This shall be confirmed by the Approved Company through receipt of the Commissioning report.

Commissioning of the tank shall be performed by the Approved Company or their nominated deputy as either a stand-alone activity or as part of the fire protection system commissioning.

Full details of the tank commissioning shall be recorded, and the records maintained by the Approved Company as part of the project files. These shall be reviewed as part of the FPC audit activities.


For each tank system installed and commissioned under this Scheme, the Approved Company shall retain records of, as a minimum:

  1. The companies unique project reference.
  2. Site location
  3. Copy of client agreed tank design and drawings
  4. Copy of as built tank drawings
  5. Copy of design change history


As part of this scheme, BRE Global will select appropriate examples of tanks to address the range of designs within the application.

To confirm conformity to the technical documentation supplied by the applicant against the requirements of the Scheme:

  • Filled and operational tanks not less than three years old will be selected and inspected.
  • A tank under construction will be witnessed.

The applicant shall demonstrate control of the tank installation and commissioning processes. They shall provide documented procedure for training, monitoring and auditing these processes as detailed in this scheme.

Whether the installation and commissioning of the tank is an outsourced or in-house activity additional review and auditing to monitor the control of these activities will be required when the scope of the Approved Company covers multiple regions and territories.

BRE Global reserve the right to involve independent qualified structural and corrosion specialists to examine the specification and tank (either empty or full) to verify compliance with this standard; and where appropriate, additional tests or assessments may also be carried out as part of the evaluation at the expense of the applicant.

LPS 1276 Issue 2.0 Requirements for the LPCB certification and listing of above ground suction tanks for sprinkler systems

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