Fire Alarm out of service fire watch required
IFC International Fire code section 901.7 states that where a fire protection system is out of service, the fire department and the fire code official shall be notified immediately and where required by the fire code official, the building shall either be evacuated or an approved fire watch shall be provided for all occupants left unprotected by the shutdown until the fire protection system has been returned to service. Where utilized, fire watches shall be provided with at least one approved means for notification of the fire department and their only duty shall be to perform constant patrols of the protected premises and keep watch for fires.
A customer was upset that the alarm company notified the fire marshal about the fire alarm system that did not function properly and they were required to spend several thousand dollars to fix that system and they were upset with the alarm company for breaking their trust. The alarm company did not have a choice if they follow code. There are levels of problems and the fire marshal will determine if the building should be evacuated or not. If one smoke detector is not functioning normally that is not reason enough to red tag the system but the owner would be notified and the part should be installed or fixed as soon as possible. If the problems are more serious then the AHJ should be notified immediately.<1>
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