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April 25, 2004

                               ET NEWS                               
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             NEWS AND INFORMATION FOR THE ENGINEERING TEAM           
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Issue No. 148   http://etnews.org   mailto:mike@etnews.org   4-25-2004
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Contents
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- News
- ET News Journal
- Job Opportunities
- Fire Alarm Class Schedule
- Comments & Acknowledgements

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NEWS 
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DARE officer battles 'Silent Killer' - and wins
Roxboro Courier Times - Roxboro,NC,USA
... Gentry. "I went and got a carbon monoxide detector and read the symptoms
(listed on the box) and I had every one of them. ... 
http://www.roxboro-courier.com/sections/topstories/0404172DARE.htm

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FIRE underlines need for sprinklers
Pioneer Press Online - Glenview,IL,USA
... New homes and buildings will be safer due to the new ordinance, which
requires fire alarm detection systems and fire sprinkler systems," said
Countryside Fire ... 
http://www.pioneerlocal.com/cgi-bin/ppo-story/localnews/current/li/04-22-04-276787.html

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FIRE wipes out family's home in Elk River
Star News - Elk River,MN,USA
... night, we could have all perished," he said. "If you have a fire alarm
system and nothing in the garage, get a heat detector." ... 
http://www.erstarnews.com/2004/April/20fire.html

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DE Baca County squabble leaves sheriff concerned
Clovis News-Journal - Clovis,NM,USA
... from preventing access by any person authorized access by the Board of
County Commissioners" to areas of the courthouse containing a fire alarm and DWI 
http://cnjonline.com/engine.pl?station=clovis&template=storyfull.html&id=5684

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I'll see you in Anaheim, CA this week. 
http://www.afaa.org/afaa/PDF/TI_IntFA_Anaheim_Apr2004.pdf

Have fun!

Mike
mailto:mike@etnews.org

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ET NEWS JOURNAL 
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DOING THE RIGHT THING
---------------------

The theme for this year's annual AFAA meeting was "Doing the Right Thing". It
reminded me of something that happened to me years ago while performing a
service call at an adult care facility. They weren't a regular customer so I had
no history of their system. When I arrived I found their fire alarm system in
the following condition:

Alarm lamp on
Trouble lamp on
Alarm Bell Silence Switch in the on position
Trouble Buzzer Silence Switch in the on position

What's wrong with this picture? That's right, the fire alarm system was
inoperative. What troubled me most was that it had been rendered inoperative by
a person allegedly working in a facility that provided care to adults whom
needed assistance to evacuate a burning building. Further, no one knew how long
it had been in this condition. What would you do? Let's review some Codes and
Standards language. 

NFPA 72-1999 Chapter 7 and NFPA 72-2002 Chapter 10, INSPECTION, TESTING, AND
MAINTENANCE includes the requirement; "If a defect or malfunction is not
corrected at the conclusion of system inspection, testing, or maintenance, the
system owner or the owners designated representative shall be informed of the
impairment in writing within 24 hours."

International Fire Code 901.7 Systems out of service. Where a required fire
protection system is out of service, the fire department and the fire code
official shall be notified immediately and, where required by the fire code
official, the building shall either be evacuated or an approved fire watch shall
be provided for all occupants left unprotected by the shut down until the fire
protection system has been returned to service. ...

These two articles define the boundaries of the required response when a
deficiency is found. If I performed an inspection of the adult care facility
fire alarm system and found that the system worked properly but that I found a
pull station hanging by its circuit conductors or that a smoke detector was
located a bit too close to a supply air register I would correct the deficiency.
If the property owner hadn't authorized me to make the repairs (hadn't agreed to
pay me) I would inform the property owner in writing within 24 hours.

What I found however, was an inoperative fire alarm system, which meant that the
property owner was required to evacuate the building or post a fire watch. The
property owner had already demonstrated that they weren't going to voluntarily
do the right thing so I called the fire department. As it turned out the fire
department was the reason why I was there! Their recent inspection required the
property owner to service their fire alarm system. After hearing about my
inspection, the fire chief offered the property owner two choices: evacuate the
building or station a fire watch.

Article 901.7 in the IFC goes on to describe a tagging requirement, which some
states have adopted. I like the idea of tagging systems according to their
operability.

Green = System is operational
Red = System is inoperative
Yellow = deficiency requiring correction

It seems to be a good way for fire alarm contractors to help their fire
department enforce compliance of existing state law.

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JOB OPPORTUNITIES 
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Place your "job opportunity" or "seeking employment" ad here. 
mailto:jobs@etnews.org

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FIRE ALARM CLASS SCHEDULE 
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------------------
April 27-29, 2004 Anaheim, CA
------------------
Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Fire Alarm Systems 
Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar (NICET I/II) 
http://www.afaa.org/afaa/PDF/TI_IntFA_Anaheim_Apr2004.pdf

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May 3-5, 2004 Phoenix, AZ
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Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Fire Alarm Systems 
Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar (NICET I/II) 
mailto:dmitchell.sales@fsec.net?subject=AZAFAA_Seminars

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May 11, 2004 Buffalo, NY
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Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Fire Alarm Systems 
http://www.afaa.org/afaa/PDF/FASTAI%20Registration04.pdf

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May 18-20, 2004 Cleveland, OH
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Fire Alarm Plan Review Seminar
Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar (NICET I/II) 
http://www.afaa.org/afaa/PDF/PR_IntFA_Cleveland_May2004.pdf

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June, 2004 Denver, CO
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Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar (NICET I/II)
More information is forthcoming.

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June, 2004 Colorado Springs, CO
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Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar (NICET I/II)
More information is forthcoming.

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June 15-17, 2004 Des Moines, IA
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Fire Alarm Plan Review Seminar
Understanding Fire Alarm Requirements of the International Building Code
http://www.afaa.org/afaa/PDF/PR_UCR_DesMoines_Jun2004.pdf

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July 6-8, 2004 Seattle, WA
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Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Fire Alarm Systems 
Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar (NICET I/II) 
More information is forthcoming.

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July 13-14, 2004 Chicago, IL
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Advanced Fire Alarm Seminar (NICET III/IV)
More information is forthcoming.

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July 20-22, 2004 Salt Lake City, UT
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Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Fire Alarm Systems 
Intermediate Fire Alarm Seminar (NICET I/II) 
More information is forthcoming.

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COMMENTS AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS 
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Purchase NICET Element Review Handbook here http://tinyurl.com/28ldd

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Some information may be found within this email message that is reprinted with
permission from one or more of the following; NFPA 70 National Electrical
Code(r), NFPA 72 National Fire Alarm Code(r), NFPA 101(r) Life Safety Code(r),
Copyright(c) 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. 
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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.