Groups urge approval for codes

SSN Staff  - 
Saturday, June 1, 2002

MINNEAPOLIS-Members of the National Fire Protection Association were set to vote on several changes to the NFPA fire alarm code at the NFPA World Safety Conference in May, changes which the two major trade associations of the alarm industry were urging its members to support.

Under Proposal 381, changes were made to part of NFPA 72 that deals with remote station fire alarm systems by the NFPA's Supervising Station Fire Alarm Systems Technical Committee. Those changes included altering the methods of monitoring to include two acceptable methods: monitoring at a fire department or other public entity or monitoring at an alternate location acceptable to the authority having jurisdiction.

Changes were also made to the third party oversight requirement. Where remote station fire alarms are monitored by private entities, on-going quality assurance is now required by certification, placarding or a government equivalent.

The groups were also urging support of section 72-19a, which deals with certification. Proposed changes included a change of the definition to clarify the process used by the listing organization to ensure an organization's continued compliance with the code. A change was also made to the code so that approval of a system that isn't certified by a listing organization can be instead approved by the AHJ.

Section 72-145 of the NFPA code, which mandates that there be third-party certification of an installation, if approved, would now require that there be third-party verification of an installation only at the acceptance test of the system and that the third party organization is one approved by the AHJ. Maintenance and testing would follow NFPA Chapter 7.

The organizations were also supporting changes to section 72-382 8.4.2.1.2, which stipulates that a listed central station may be considered an acceptable alternate location for the receipt of fire alarm and other supervisory signals. Changes were made to this section to ensure that central stations were accepted as an alternative but remained in the wording of the remote station standard.

At press time, the vote was scheduled to take place Wednesday, May 22 in Minneapolis.