Fire and Life Safety: Notification and Emergency Communication Systems

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Every facility has inherent and unique risks, which introduce emergency communication design challenges. Understanding emergency communication system design, installation, and maintenance criteria requires engineers to be familiar with the applicable codes and standards, primarily NFPA 72: National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code. Whether designing to provide emergency communication for fire or mass notification emergencies, NFPA 72 can be used as a tool to enhance the design, installation, and reliability of fire alarm systems used for emergency communications.

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  • Fire EVACS can also provide MNS.
  • Kowloon Station Development Mega Tower – 107 stories (480 m)
  • Change in philosophy proposed for the 2016 edition. The Emergency Communication Systems Technical Committee met Sept. 9=11, 2013 in St. Louis and approved a number of public inputs addressing Risk Analysis. Risk analysis will be required to be commensurate to the complexity of the facility that the MNS is being designed for.The MNS can be designed to meet the emergency communication needs of an existing Emergency Response plan.
  • Clarify when it is required in the first place.
  • Fire and Life Safety: Notification and Emergency Communication Systems

    1. 1. Fire and Life Safety: Notification and Emergency Communication Systems
    2. 2. 1. The audience will understand applicable sections of the 2013 edition of NFPA 72: National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code. 2. Attendees will learn the design criteria for emergency communications systems (ECS). 3. Viewers will understand the factors required to be considered when designing mass notification systems (MNS), a subset of emergency notification. 4. Viewers will learn how to apply (and subsequently specify) available notification technologies in ECS and MNS applications. Learning Objectives
    3. 3. Ray Grill, PE, FSFPE, LEED AP, Arup, Washington, D.C. Moderator: Jack Smith, Consulting-Specifying Engineer and CFE Media, LLC Presenters:
    4. 4. Sponsored by: Fire and Life Safety: Notification and Emergency Communication Systems Ray Grill, PE, FSFPE, LEED AP Principal Arup
    5. 5. Agenda • ECS in the context of NFPA 72 • Overview of NFPA 72 requirement for designing ECS and risk analysis required • Key considerations for the analysis • Design features driven by the risk analysis • NFPA 72 requirements for notification appliances
    6. 6. Chapter 24 – Emergency Communications
    7. 7. Systems Addressed • 24.4 One-way ECS – 24.4.2 In-building Fire EVACS – 24.4.3 In-building MNS – 24.4.4 Wide-area MNS – 24.4.5 Distributed Recipient MNS • 24.5 Two-way ECS – 24.5.1 Two-way in-building wired – 24.5.2 Two-way radio enhancement – 24.5.3 Area of refuge ECS – 24.5.4 Elevator ECS
    8. 8. Why Risk Analysis in NFPA 72? • Incorporated into the Scope for ECS TC • Recognizes that emergency communications need to be designed to be: – Specific to the facilities and hazards – Coordinated with the emergency response plan • Prescriptive requirements can not address all situations
    9. 9. What is a risk analysis? • In the context of NFPA 72: – 3.3.246 Risk Analysis. A process to characterize the likelihood, vulnerability, and magnitude of incidents associated with natural, technological, and manmade disasters and other emergencies that address scenarios of concern, their probability, and their potential consequences.
    10. 10. Risk Analysis vs. Emergency Response Plan NFPA 72 Definition • 3.3.93 Emergency Response Plan. A documented set of actions to address response to natural, technological, and man- made disasters and other emergencies prepared by the stakeholders from information obtained during the risk analysis.
    11. 11. New to the 2013 Edition
    12. 12. When is a Risk Analysis Required? • When other signals need to take priority over fire
    13. 13. When is a Risk Analysis Required? • Determination of pathway survivability for ECS circuits when not specifically defined in NFPA 72 – MNS circuits may have a different level of survivability than circuits required for fire emergencies 24.3 ECS – General Requirements
    14. 14. 2016 Proposed Change to Survivability for Fire EVAC • Two new exceptions – Level 1 survivability shall be permitted if the building construction is less than 2 hour rated – Circuits required to be survivable are Class X and the runs are separated by at least 1/3 the diagonal of the notification zone through which they are passing
    15. 15. When is a Risk Analysis Required? • When providing a mass notification system (MNS)
    16. 16. 2016 Proposed Changes • 24.3.11.2 The detail and complexity of the risk analysis shall be commensurate with the complexity of the facility for which the mass notification system is designed. • 24.3.11.3 The risk analysis shall be permitted to be limited in scope to address the communication requirements of an existing emergency response plan.
    17. 17. When is a Risk Analysis Required? • 24.4.3 In-Building Mass Notification Systems
    18. 18. When is a Risk Analysis Required?
    19. 19. When is a Risk Analysis Required? • 24.4.4 Wide-Area Mass Notification
    20. 20. When is a Risk Analysis Required? • 24.6 Information, Command and Control
    21. 21. Tools for the Risk Analysis • A.24.3.11.1
    22. 22. Emergency Response Plan • Emergency response team structure • Emergency response procedures – Related to building system emergencies, – Personnel/occupant emergencies – Terrorism – Events of nature • Emergency response equipment • Notification/communication – Message content – Authority to communicate – Initiation procedure • Emergency response training and drills
    23. 23. Design Considerations • Management/ staff capabilities • Extent of notification • Coordination with the emergency response plan
    24. 24. MNS Design Features driven by Risk Analysis • Capability for remote operation • Definition of notification zones • Survivability of speaker circuits • Priority of signals and messages (MNS versus fire)
    25. 25. MNS Design Features driven by Risk Analysis • Inclusion of devices to automatically activate MNS notification (i.e. CBRN) • Type, location and security of control and interface equipment • Control of other building systems (i.e., elevators, HVAC, security, proce ss, etc.) • Need for wide area MNS
    26. 26. MNS Design Features driven by Risk Analysis
    27. 27. Framework for Risk Analysis I. Project description II. Goals and purpose of MNS (user driven) III. Expected characteristics of the occupants and management IV.Occupancy/use characteristics V. Anticipated events presenting a risk VI. Design features required to address events presenting a risk
    28. 28. Chapter 18 – Notification Appliances • 18.4.1.4.1 – Designer required to identify rooms and spaces requiring audible notification • 18.4.1.4.2 – Only requires audible devices in occupiable areas • 18.4.1.4.3 – Requires the designer to document the sound pressure levels required to be produced • 18.5.2 – Requires documentation of visual appliances
    29. 29. Chapter 18 – Notification Appliances • Designing for Intelligibility
    30. 30. • Designing for Intelligibility
    31. 31. Chapter 18 – Notification Appliances • 18.4.10.2.1 – Specifically states that intelligibility is not required in every ADS (Acoustically Distinguishable Space) • 2010 Edition of 72 incorporated the requirement that the designer identify ADSs
    32. 32. ADS Example
    33. 33. Chapter 18 – Notification Appliances • Table 18.5.5.4.1 (a) – Revised to delete the column for installations using two lights per room on opposite walls
    34. 34. Sponsored by: Thank you! Ray Grill, PE, FSFPE, LEED AP Principal Arup 1120 Connecticut Avenue, N.W., Suite 200 Washington, DC 20036 Ray.Grill@arup.com
    35. 35. Ray Grill, PE, FSFPE, LEED AP, Arup, Washington, D.C. Moderator: Jack Smith, Consulting-Specifying Engineer and CFE Media, LLC Presenters:
    36. 36. Fire and Life Safety: Notification and Emergency Communication Systems

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