Get Free Security Quotes From
Leading Alarm Companies
in Canada

Cost-Effective Security Solutions~Award Winning Security Professionals~Easy-To-Use Systems

Fire Alarm System

A fire alarm system is an active fire protection system that controls all the fire alarm components in a building. Fire alarm systems are subject to stringent bounding.

The design of fire alarm systems is required to be performed by competent engineers with experience in fire protection, who are licensed within the geographical area of practice, such as a US State or a Canadian Province. Extensions of existing systems should be done using the original specification for the system and more than likely will be proprietary to match the existing equipment.

A fire alarm system should include, but not be limited to, alarm initiating devices, alarm notification appliances, control units, fire safety control devices, annunciators, power supplies, and wiring.

The A/E should provide a design in compliance with the NFPA fire codes unless a variation is approved in writing by the VA. It is recommended that approval come those knowledgeable in Fire Alarm Design (e.g. Safety and Fire Protection Engineer, VACO Chief Fire Protection, etc.).

Fire alarm systems shall comply with requirements of NFPA 72 unless variations to NFPA 72 are specifically identified within these contract documents by the following notation: "variation". The design, system layout, document submittal preparation, and supervision of installation and testing shall be provided by a technician that is certified NICET level III or a registered fire protection engineer. The NICET certified technician shall be on site for the supervision and testing of the system. Factory engineers from the equipment manufacturer, thoroughly familiar and knowledgeable with all equipment utilized, shall provide additional technical support at the site as required by the Contracting Officer or his authorised representative. Installers shall have a minimum of two years experience installing fire alarm systems.

A (DACT) digital alarm communicator transmitter should be connected to a pair of dedicated telephone lines to transmit an alarm signal only to a central station that is responsible for dispatching the fire department. The connection to the fire department is usually via a central station monitoring company that is contracted on a monthly basis by the facility. If a connection to the fire department is not already present, the facility will need to determine if there are two telephone lines available for this connection.

The main fire alarm control unit should automatically transmit alarm signals to a listed central station using a digital alarm communicator transmitter in accordance with NFPA 72.

The boundaries of the fire alarm system per building should be identified. The following questions must be answered for the contract. Every VA hospital will have many of the items identified below, some multiple times. Providing a list is very helpful for all readers of the specification including VAMC staff and contractors:

1. What buildings are involved in the project; list the specific buildings?

2. What interface is there with door magnets?

3. What interface is there with the elevator (shut down and recall; speakers in cars)?

4. What interface is there with HVAC systems for fan shut down?

5. What interface is there with Kitchen Hood suppression systems?

6. What interface is there with fire sprinkler systems?

7. What interface is there with dry pipe sprinkler systems?

8. What interface is there with preaction/deluge systems?

9. What interface is there with a fire pump?

10. What interface is there with temperature switches for storage tanks and dry pipe valve rooms?

11. What interface is there with door locking systems?

12. What interface is there with electric eyes (they could open doors upon detection of smoke)?

13. What interface is there with fire department?

14. What interface is there with the pagers or hand radio system?

15. What interface is there with the emergency generators?

16. Where is the fire command station?

17. Are two-way fire phones to be provided, where?

When fire alarm systems malfunction, they will often produce nuisance alarms.