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December 8, 2002

                             ET NEWS
================================================================
        NEWS AND INFORMATION FOR ENGINEERING TECHNICIANS
----------------------------------------------------------------
Issue No. 76                                           12-8-2002
================================================================

Contents
--------
- News
- ET Journal
- NICET Test Dates
- AFAA Class Schedule
- Comments and Contacts

================================================================
NEWS
================================================================

I'm off to Lexington, KY this week.

Have fun!

Mike

================================================================
ET JOURNAL
================================================================

Q & A
-----
An oft asked fire alarm question is some variant on the
requirement to supervise a fire alarm control panel with a smoke
detector.

NFPA 72-1999 1-5.6 Automatic smoke detection will be provided at
the location of each fire alarm control unit unless the location
is continuously occupied.
Exception: Where ambient conditions prohibit the installation of
automatic smoke detection, automatic heat detection is permitted.

Appendix A provides additional explanatory material.

NFPA 72-1999 A-1-5.6 The intent of 1-5.6 is to have the fire
alarm system respond before it is incapacitated by fire. There
have been several fatal fires where the origin and path of the
fire resulted in destruction of the control unit before a
detector responded.

CAUTION. The exception to 1-5.6 permits use of a heat detector
if ambient conditions are not suitable for smoke detection. It is
important to also evaluate whether the area is suitable for a
control unit.

The code intends that only one smoke detector is required at the
control unit even when the area of the room would require more
than one detector if installed according to the spacing rules in
Chapter 2.

So, what is a fire alarm control unit?

NFPA 72-1999 1-4 Fire Alarm Control Unit (Panel). A system
component that receives inputs from automatic and manual fire
alarm devices and might supply power to detection devices and a
transponder(s) or an off-premises transmitter(s). The control
unit might also provide transfer of power to the notification
appliances and transfer of condition to relays or devices
connected to the control unit. The fire alarm control unit can be
a local fire alarm control unit or master control unit.

"... the control unit might also provide transfer of power to the
notification appliances ..." indicates that a remote power supply
is a fire alarm control unit.

NFPA 72-1999 2-3.4.3.1 Spot-type smoke detectors shall be located
on the ceiling not less than 4 in. from a sidewall to the near
edge or, where on a sidewall, between 4 in. and 12 in. down from
the ceiling to the top of the detector.

Where does one install a smoke detector to supervise a fire alarm
control unit installed in a warehouse with a 25 foot ceiling?

NFPA 72-1999 2-3.4.1.2 Where the intent is to protect against a
specific hazard, the smoke detector(s) is(are) permitted to be
installed closer to the hazard in a position where the detector
is more likely to intercept the smoke.

In conclusion;
1) A smoke detector shall be installed to supervise fire alarm
control panels and remote power supplies unless they are
installed in a constantly attended (24 hours/day and
365 days/year) location.

2) If the fire alarm control panel and/or remote power supplies
are to be installed where ambient conditions prohibit the
installation of a smoke detector, move the fire alarm control
panel and/or remote power supplies to a location where ambient
conditions will allow for the installation of a smoke detector.

3) May I suggest that a smoke detector installed to meet this
requirement be installed closely to the equipment it is intended
to supervise such that there is no question as to its purpose.

You may also consider permanently labeling this smoke detector
in an effort to avoid invoking the dreaded "... reasonable
expectation ..." hue and cry from others who may confuse the
purpose of this smoke detector with their complete protection.

NICET Fire Alarm Systems Level II
34003 SURVEYS FOR FIRE ALARM AND DETECTION SYSTEMS
--------------------------------------------------

34003 is a Level II Special Work element.

34003 DESCRIPTION
Know the items required to achieve a complete survey of property
for layout of and preparation of plans for an automatic fire
detection and alarm system, including type of automatic fire
detection devices and alarm notification appliances that are best
suited for the application in keeping with applicable building
and fire codes. (NEMA Guide to Code Requirements for Fire
Protective Signaling and Detection Systems, NFPA 72 and 101,
Basic/National Building Code, Fire Alarm Signaling Systems,
Standard Building Code, and Uniform Building Code)

34003 REFERENCES:
NEMA Guide to Code Requirements for Fire Protective Signaling
and Detection Systems http://global.ihs.com/doc_detail.cfm?custo
mer_id=%21%25%40%2CN%0A&shopping_cart_id=%27%25X%5B%2EJ0HMY%40%2
0%23%0A&country_code=US&lang_code=ENGL&document_name=NEMA%20GUID
E%20TO%20CODE%20CD&input_doc_number=&input_doc_title=NEMA%20Code
%20Requirements%20for%20Fire%20Detection%20Systems

NFPA 72 http://www.nfpa.org/catalog/product.asp?category%5Fname=&pid=7299

NFPA 101 http://www.nfpa.org/catalog/product.asp?category%5Fname=&pid=10100

Basic/National Building Code http://www.bocai.org/shop/301-99.htm

Fire Alarm Signaling Systems http://www.nfpa.org/catalog/product
.asp?category%5Fname=&pid=fass94

Standard Building Code http://www.sbcci.org/store5/merchant.ihtm
l?pid=117&lastcatid=81&step=4

Uniform Building Code http://www.icbo.org/e/prodshow.html?prodid
=100S97&stateInfo=lffbuiOjwiipbebl9350|3

34003 DESCRIPTION BREAKDOWN:
"Know the items required to achieve a complete survey of
property for layout of and preparation of plans for an automatic
fire detection and alarm system, including type of automatic fire
detection devices and alarm notification appliances that are best
suited for the application in keeping with applicable building
and fire codes."

Consider the objective(s) to be met by the fire alarm system:
- Life Safety
- Property Protection
- Mission Continuity
- Heritage Preservation
- Environmental Protection

NFPA 101 and/or model building codes describe fire alarm
requirements by occupancy (example: business) or building type
(example: high-rise). Where a fire alarm system is required,
these building codes reference other codes and standards such as
NFPA 72 for additional performance requirements. NFPA 72
references other codes and standards (example: NFPA 90A and UL
268) for specific applications (NFPA 90A -> HVAC) and testing
(UL 268 -> smoke detector) requirements.

NFPA 101-2000 and model building code arrangement:
Chapter 3 Definitions (including occupancy definitions)
Chapter 6 Classification of Occupancy
Chapter 9 Article 9.6 Fire Detection, Alarm, and Communications
Systems
Chapter 11 Special Structures and High-Rise Buildings
Chapter 12-42 Occupancy Requirements

NFPA 72-1999 1-6.1.1 The authority having jurisdiction is to be
notified prior to installation or alteration of equipment or
wiring. At its request, complete information regarding the system
or system alterations, including specifications, wiring diagrams,
battery calculation, and floor plans is to be submitted for
approval.

NFPA 101-2000 6.1.1 Occupancy Classification. The occupancy of a
building or structure, or portion of a building or structure,
shall be classified in accordance with 6.1.2 through 6.1.13.
Occupancy classification shall be subject to the ruling of the
authority having jurisdiction where there is a question of proper
classification in any individual case.

NFPA 101-2000 6.1.1.2 Occupancies in special structures shall
conform to the requirements of the specific occupancy Chapters
12 through 42 except as modified by Chapter 11.

NFPA 101-2000 6.1.14.2 Mixed Occupancies. Where a mixed occupancy
classification occurs, the means of egress facilities,
construction, protection, and other safeguards shall comply with
the most restrictive life safety requirements of the occupancies
involved.
Exception: Where incidental to another occupancy buildings used
as follows shall be permitted to be considered as part of the
predominant occupancy and subject to the provisions of the Code
that apply to the predominant occupancy.
(a) Mercantile, business, industrial, or storage use
(b) Nonresidential use with an occupant load fewer than that
established by Section 6.1 for the occupancy threshold.

NFPA 101-2000 6.2.2.1 The hazard of contents of any building or
structure shall be classified as low, ordinary, or high in
accordance with 6.2.2.2, 6.2.2.3, and 6.2.2.4.

NFPA 101-2000 6.2.2.2 Low Hazard. Low hazard contents shall be
classified as those of such low combustibility that no
self-propagating fire therein can occur.

NFPA 101-2000 6.2.2.3 Ordinary Hazard. Ordinary hazard contents
shall be classified as those that are likely to burn with
moderate rapidity or to give off a considerable volume of smoke.

NFPA 101-2000 6.2.2.4 High Hazard. High hazard contents shall be
classified as those that are likely to burn with extreme rapidity
or from which explosions are likely. (For means of egress
requirements, see Section 7.11.)

NFPA 101-2000 9.6.2.8 Where a complete smoke detection system is
required by another section of this Code, automatic detection of
smoke in accordance with NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm Code, shall
be provided in all occupiable areas, common areas, and work
spaces in those environments suitable for proper smoke detector
operation.

NFPA 72-1999 NFPA 72-1999 2-1.4.2.1 If required, total coverage
shall include all rooms, halls, storage areas, basements, attics,
spaces above suspended ceilings, and other subdivisions and
accessible spaces; and the inside of all closets, elevator
shafts, enclosed stairways, dumbwaiter shafts, and chutes.
Inaccessible areas will not be required to be protected by
detectors. (see exceptions)

NFPA 101-2000 9.6.3.5 Where a standard evacuation signal is
required by another section of this Code, the evacuation signal
shall be the standard fire alarm evacuation signal described in
NFPA 72 National Fire Alarm Code.

NFPA 72-1999 3-8.4.1.2.1 Distinctive Evacuation Signal. To meet
the requirements of NFPA 72-1999 1-5.4.7 (Distinctive Signals),
the fire alarm signal used to notify building occupants of the
need to evacuate (leave the building) will be in accordance with
ANSI S3.41, Audible Emergency Evacuation Signal.

NFPA 101-2000 9.6.3.8 Audible alarm notification appliances
shall be of such character and so distributed as to be
effectively heard above the average ambient sound level
occurring under normal conditions of occupancy.

Include an average ambient sound level measurement, on the "A"
weighted scale, of all occupied areas of the property to be
surveyed.


THE INFORMATION HEREIN IS PROVIDED AS A GUIDE ONLY AND IS
INTENDED TO ASSIST YOU IN PREPARING FOR AN EXAM. IT IS NOT
INTENDED TO BE INCLUSIVE OF ALL INFORMATION THAT MAY BE ON AN
EXAM BUT RATHER IT IS INTENDED TO BE A SMALL SAMPLE OF THE KIND
OF MATERIAL THAT YOU MAY BE EXPECTED TO KNOW.

================================================================
NICET TEST DATES
================================================================

OREGON
------
OR1 PCC Sylvania, Portland;
Test 1/25/03. Postmark deadline 12/7/03.
Test 4/26/03. Postmark deadline 3/8/03.

OR2 Clackamas Community College, Oregon City;
Test 3/15/03. Postmark deadline 2/1/03.
Test 6/21/03. Postmark deadline 5/3/03.

WASHINGTON
----------
WA1 Bates Technical College, Tacoma;
Test 12/14/02. Postmark deadline 10/26/02.
Test 2/22/03. Postmark deadline 1/4/03.

WA2 Walla Walla Community College;
Test 2/22/03. Postmark deadline 1/4/03.
Test 5/17/03. Postmark deadline 3/29/03.

WA3 Spokane Community College;
Test 2/22/03. Postmark deadline 1/4/03.
Test 5/17/03. Postmark deadline 3/29/03.

These dates are from the NICET web site. For a complete list of
all test centers and test dates, visit
http://63.70.211.210/cfdocs/nicetschedule.cfm

================================================================
AFAA CLASS SCHEDULE
================================================================

------------------
December 10-12, 2002 Lexington, KY
------------------
Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar. Contact Dave Becker at
(502) 776-1551 or mailto:dave@fescofire.com more information.

------------------
January 14-16, 2003 Denver, CO - Sponsored by
the Rocky Mountain AFAA
------------------
Advanced Fire Alarm Seminar.
http://www.afaa.org/afaa/PDF/ADV_Denver_Jan2003.pdf

------------------
January 21-23, 2003 Oklahoma City, OK - Sponsored by OK AFAA
------------------
Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar.
http://www.afaa.org/afaa/PDF/IntFA_OKC_Jan2003.pdf

------------------
February 4-6, 2003 Orlando, FL
------------------
Advanced Fire Alarm Seminar.
http://www.afaa.org/afaa/PDF/ADV_Orlando_Feb2003.pdf

------------------
February 10-13, 2003 San Diego, CA - Sponsored by CAFAA
------------------
Fire Alarm System Testing and Inspection Seminar.
More information will be available soon! 
Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar.
More information will be available soon!

------------------
February 18-20, 2003 Portland, OR  - Co-sponsored by Oregon AFAA
------------------
Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar.
http://www.afaa.org/afaa/PDF/IntFA_Portland_Feb2003.pdf

------------------
February 19-21, 2003 Raleigh, NC 
------------------
Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar.
More information will be available soon!

================================================================
COMMENTS AND CONTACTS
================================================================

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The NICET acronym found herein refers to: http://www.nicet.org
NATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR CERTIFICATION IN ENGINEERING TECHNOLOGIES
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The AFAA acronym found herein refers to: http://www.afaa.org
AUTOMATIC FIRE ALARM ASSOCIATION "We're celebrating 50 years!"
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reprinted material is not the complete and official position of
the National Fire Protection Association on the referenced
subject, which is represented only by the standard in its
entirety.
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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.