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Fire Protection Glossary - B


Bell. A single stroke or vibrating type audible notification appliance which has a bell tone.

Bell, Single Stroke. A bell whose gong is struck only once each time operating energy is applied.

Bell, Vibrating. A bell that rings continuously as long as operating power is applied.

Bell, Motorized. A bell whose gong is motorized and rings continuously as long as operating power is applied.

BOCA. Building Officials and Code Administrators, 4051 W Flossmoor Rd, Country Club Hills, IL 60478.

Box (or Station) Fire Alarm (Noncoded). A manually operated device which, when operated, closes or opens one or more sets of contacts and generally locks the contacts in the operated position until the box is reset.

Box (or Station) Fire Alarm (Coded). A manually operated device in which the act of pulling a lever causes the transmission of not less than three rounds of coded alarm signals. Similar to the noncoded type, except that instead of a manually operated switch, a mechanism to rotate a code wheel is utilized. Rotation of the code wheel, in turn, causes an electrical circuit to be alternately opened and closed, or closed and opened, thus sounding a coded alarm that identifies the location of the box. The code wheel is cut for the individual code to be transmitted by the device and can operate by clockwork or by an electric motor. Clockwork transmitters can be prewound or can be wound by the pulling of the alarm lever. Usually the box is designed to repeat its code four times and automatically come to rest. Prewound transmitters must sound a trouble signal when they require rewinding. Solid state electronic coding devices are also used in conjunction with the fire alarm control unit to produce coded sounding of the audible signaling appliances.

Box, Breakglass Fire Alarm. A fire alarm box in which it is necessary to break a special glass or fiber element in order to operate the box. The special element must be replaced once the box is actuated.

Box, Non-breakglass (BNG) Fire Alarm. A fire alarm box, which is held in its normal state by a spring or other mechanical device. Once the box is actuated, it must be manually reset with a key or special tool.

Box Battery. The battery supplying power for an individual fire alarm box where radio signals are used for the transmission of box alarms.

Branch Circuit. The circuit conductors between the final overcurrent device protecting the circuit and the outlet(s).

Bridging Point. The point at which the distribution of signaling line circuits to trunk facilities, leg facilities, or both occur.

Building, Existing. Any structure erected or officially authorized prior to the effective date of the adoption of this edition of the Code by the agency or jurisdiction. With respect to judging whether a building should be considered existing, the deciding factor is not when the building was designed or when construction started but rather the date plans were approved for construction by the appropriate authority having jurisdiction. It is intended that the initial assessment of the building, when new, should be based on new occupancy requirements for the edition of the Code in effect on the date of plan approval. Subsequent assessments of the building made while that edition of the Code is still in effect should also be based on new occupancy requirements.

Business Occupancy. Business occupancies are those used for the transaction of business (other than those covered under Mercantile Occupancy), for the keeping of accounts and records, and for similar purposes. Business occupancies include air traffic control towers (ACTCs); courthouses; city halls; dentists"’" offices; college and university instructional buildings, classrooms under 50 persons, and instructional laboratories; doctors' offices; general offices; outpatient clinics, ambulatory; and town halls.
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by Michael B. Baker. All rights reserved.
ISSN 1554-074X

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Some information may be found within this web site that is reprinted with permission from one or more of the following: NFPA 70 National Electrical Code®,NFPA 72® National Fire Alarm Code®, & NFPA 101® Life Safety Code®, Copyright© NFPA, Quincy, MA 02269.

This reprinted material is not the complete and official position of the NFPA on the referenced subject, which is represented only by the standard in its entirety.