A good fire alarm system design becomes a function of how well you understand fire-protection principles as well as the requirements of NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, and NFPA 70, National Electrical Code (NEC).
Too often, contractors seem to assume that only Article 760 of NFPA 70, National Electrical Code (NEC), applies to fire alarm installations. I have witnessed many jobs where this has been the case. In fact, other NEC sections also apply.
NFPA 70, the National Electrical Code (NEC), is an installation code, while NFPA 70E is the Standard for Electrical Safety in the Workplace. There is an unofficial line of demarcation between the two documents.
It makes sense that most contractors focus on the codes that relate to the system types they install. Specifically, professional systems contractors most use NFPA 70, National Electrical Code and NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code.