Fenway Park turns 100, with help from AFA

AFA Protective Systems updates historic park’s life safety systems
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Wednesday, June 27, 2012

BOSTON—Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox and one of the oldest and best-known ballparks in the nation, turned 100 years old in April. Timed with the anniversary was the completion of a 10-year renovation plan for the ballpark—a job that included the design and installation of an emergency voice/alarm communications network throughout Fenway Park and its associated buildings by AFA Protective Systems.

“I think it’s pretty cool,” Joe Golini, AFA sales supervisor, told Security Systems News, when asked about the role he and AFA played in updating the life safety systems in the historic park—which seats about 40,000—to meet modern standards.

AFA is a super-regional that is headquartered in Syosset, N.Y., but has 18 offices along the East Coast, including one in Boston.

Golini said that with Fenway’s former fire alarm system, “heat detecting wire ran all over the place,” from the concession stand to the seating areas. Today, he said, “the wire is gone and everything is up to code.”

AFA, which has serviced the park for decades, utilized the Gamewell-FCI E3 Series EVAC system for the job, which included the park and nearby structures such as executive offices. Now, Golini said, if an alert is necessary for any type of major emergency, “they can literally take over the public announcement system and make the announcement.”

And when a small electrical fire occurred in February in an administrative office at the ballpark, Golini said that “the system worked perfectly” and the blaze was quickly located and extinguished. The $100,000 in damages was due primarily to smoke and water, news reports said.

The EVAC system was installed about two years ago. Most recently, AFA completed a smaller renovation at the ballpark, doing some fire alarm work on the players’ club area and in a new history room, adding pull stations.

AFA and other companies involved in the decade-long renovation project at Fenway were invited to the ballpark June 5 for an official thank you for their work.

AFA Protective has 18 offices spread along the East Coast and throughout the Southeast. It recently made an acquisition in Philadelphia that included $50,000 in RMR and helps the company expand into that city.