In my daily work, I come into contact with many electrical contractors. A few of them really stand out. In fact, a select number tend to work on most of our projects. I understand why that happens: The better contractors have learned how to differentiate themselves from the rest of the crowd.
Conducting a fire alarm system acceptance test in front of a fire official can prove daunting, even when the system passes muster. But doing any form of fire alarm system testing without having the proper tools is downright foolish.
Why can’t more technicians get it right? The answer: installation company owners must have a commitment to provide the appropriate training. And, technicians must have a commitment to participate in the appropriate training, so they will develop a passion to always do what’s right.
Today, casinos are being built nationwide—this construction is not limited to locales in Nevada and New Jersey. However, we still follow fire and building code requirements that were radically changed by deadly fires in Las Vegas casinos close to 30 years ago.
The very nature of design/build projects requires you to participate in the design process. You may even feel comfortable with assisting in this process. However, these types of projects come with increased responsibility. With most design/build projects, the owner will ask you for your opinion.
How could maintaining a fire alarm system in a government building possibly be different than a private commercial building? It may not seem obvious, but attempting to maintain a fire alarm system in a government building brings many unique issues into focus.
Readers of the National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) 72 2010, the National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, will find many changes including three new chapters. One of the new chapters is dedicated to circuits and pathways.
Fire-Lite Alarms by Honeywell, Northford, Conn., has released its 2010 training schedule comprising 100 accredited educational sessions taking place throughout the United States. Its traditional two- and three-day courses covering fire alarm basics to hands-on installation and programming are free.
Typically, contractors know what codes and standards are in force in their market areas, and if they don’t, they should find out. But often this is limited to the code they use the most, the National Electrical Code (NEC).
Most contractors install strobe lights to comply with the National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code by simply using a combination audible-visible appliance everywhere one or the other is shown on the plans.
We have all had experience with smoke detectors. Specifying the right smoke detector for the application will improve the reliability of fire alarm systems tremendously. Of course, the detector must be installed correctly to prevent problems.