Dry and Wet Risers

What are Dry Risers?

Dry risers are systems of vertical pipework which are used to get water to the upper floors of a building in the event of a fire. Should a fire break out in a building with a dry riser installed then fire fighters will use this as the easiest way to get large amounts of water up to the fire floor, pumping it up via a ground floor inlet box, often found in staircases or other accessible locations.

Dry risers are commonly used fire protection systems in multi-storey buildings and are usually mandatory under building regulations for properties with floors in excess of 18 metres above ground level.

Differing from wet risers, which are kept full of water ready to be used for fire suppression, dry risers are maintained with empty pipes which must have water pumped into them by fire fighters on their arrival.

What are Wet Risers?

Wet risers are used to supply water within buildings for firefighting purposes. The provision of a built-in water distribution system means that firefighters do not need to create their own distribution system in order to fight a fire and avoids the breaching of fire compartments by running hose lines between them.
Wet risers are permanently charged with water. This is as opposed to dry risers which do not contain water when they are not being used, but are charged with water by fire service pumping appliances when necessary.