Fire Alarms and Sprinklers

 

When is a Fire Alarm Verification Required?

Fire alarm verification is required in all new buildings equiped with fire alarms systems.

When an existing FAS in the building is subjected to an addition or alteration (replacement of components, addition, modification, repair, adjustment to system hardware, or any change to software), then the extent of the FAS re-verification must be provided as follows:

  1. When a control unit, CACF or an annunciator has been replaced, repaired or modified on the existing FAS the entire FAS must be re-verified.
  2. When a component or components of the existing single zone fire alarm system have been subjected to an addition or modification the entire FAS must be re-verified.
  3. When fire alarm initiating devices have been added or modified in a fire alarm initiating zone (a manual station, a smoke detector, a flow switch or a heat detector), then that entire fire alarm initiating zone shall be re-verified. (See Notes).
  4. When audible signal devices have been added or modified in a fire alarm signalling zone (speakers, bells, vibrating gongs, etc.) then that entire fire alarm signalling zone shall be reverified.
    (See Notes).
  5. When an existing fire alarm system component (a field device, voice communication module, a control unit, annunciator, etc.) has been modified or replaced with a component from a different manufacturer, all existing and new/modified devices must be compatible. The requirement of Clause 3.1.4 of the Standard ULC S524-01 states that “All devices incorporated in a fire alarm system shall be compatible”.

Verification must be completed and submitted to the Shuswap Developmentand Building Department prior to the Shuswap Developmentand Building Department issuing any form of Occupancy.

Verification of Fire Alarm Systems

The Shuswap Development and Building Department requires that fire alarm systems
installed in buildings must be verified to ensure satisfactory operation in conformance with CAN/ULCS537.

The Shuswap Development and Building Department acceptance criteria for organizations involved in verification of fire alarm systems is described in Requirements for Verification of Fire Alarm Systems.

Upon completion of the verification procedure, a verification report must be submitted to the Shuswap Development and Building Department by an acceptable fire alarm verification organization. The fire alarm verification report must be provided with the form

ULC-S537-04 (FIRE ALARM SYSTEM VERIFICATION REPORT)

completed and signed by a qualified person employed by the acceptable fire alarm verification organization.

All fire alarm systems on Shuswap Band Land, as of May 1st, 2009, are required to be connected to a Central Monitoring Station. For example, an alarm monitoring company.

When a fire alarm system (FAS) is connected to an acceptable central monitoring station (24 hour monitoring company) a ULC Certificate “Central Station Fire Protective Signalling Service” must be completed as a part of verification report.

 

 

Requirements for Verification of Fire Alarm Systems

The Shuswap Development and Building Department requires that installation of fire alarm systems in buildings must conform to ULC Standard S-524. This article also states that upon completion of the installation, each fire alarm system must be verified to ensure its satisfactory performance. This procedure must be done in conformance with ULC Standard S-537.

3.2.4.5.(1) Fire alarm and voice communication systems shall be installed in conformance with CAN/ULC-S524-M “Standard for the Installation of Fire Alarm Systems”.
(2) Fire alarm systems shall be tested in conformance with CAN/ULC-S537-M. “Standard for the Verification of Fire Alarm Systems”, to ensure satisfactory operation. ULC-S537 provides requirements for a verification procedure and for a verification report. The preface of this Standard indicates that the verification procedure described therein must be conducted by an organization other than the installing contractor and that the verification must be carried out by qualified personnel in the employ of an organization acceptable to the authority having jurisdiction. Clause 3.1.1 of this standard states that the conformance of the fire alarm system components with installation requirements of ULC S-524 must be included in the verification procedure. These requirements of the CAN/ULC S-537 mean that qualified persons involved in a verification procedure must have sufficient technical knowledge of fire alarm system components, their function and performance, and must have necessary electrical qualification for evaluating conformance of these devices with installation provisions mandated by the ULC S-524 and Section 32 of the Canadian Electrical Code, Part 1.

The following acceptance criteria have been established by the Shuswap Development and Building Department for organizations involved in verification of fire alarm systems:

  1. A qualified person(s) employed by a ULC listed manufacturer of a FAS (i.e. qualified persons employed by Simplex, Edwards, Honeywell, Mircom, Notifier, etc.). Presently (in accordance with section 4(1)(e) of the BC Electrical Safety Regulation) employees of an electrical equipment manufacturer are deemed to be “qualified” for the purpose of doing electrical work of “commissioning” of the equipment supplied by that manufacturer.
    Notes:
    a) Acceptance of technicians employed by these manufacturers is based on the fact that these technicians have respective factory Shuswap Development and Building Department with detailed substantiation in this regard.
  2. A Professional Electrical or Fire Protection Engineer (P.Eng) registered with the APEGBC.
    BULLETIN 2003-009-EL April 19, 2007
    REQUIREMENTS FOR VERIFICATION OF FIRE ALARM SYSTEMS IN THE CITY OF VANCOUVER
  3. A Certified Technologist (ASc.T) registered with the ASTT BC in the Electrical Technology area who in addition has successfully completed a full set of the CFAA courses for verification of fire alarm systems.
  4. A qualified person employed by a fire alarm service company, provided this person possesses sufficient documentation indicating a successful completion of relevant factory training on fire alarm equipment and possesses a provincial certificate of qualification to do electrical work on alarm systems.
    Note: The following criteria is provided by the BCSA
    “The current Electrical Safety Regulation permits the following qualified persons, that are the holder of a valid Certificate of Qualification (C of Q), perform electrical work on fire alarm systems;
    • C of Q in the trade of Electrician,
    • C of Q Restricted Class ‘C’ or
    • C of Q Restricted class Alarm & Communication class ‘AC’”.
Definitions:
  1. A qualified person is deemed to be a person in the employ of the verification organization (proof of qualification-training courses and relevant fire alarm and electrical certificates, etc., is required).
  2. A Professional Engineer is deemed to be Electrical or Fire Protection Engineer registered with the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of the Province of British Columbia (APEGBC), who is not involved in the installation of the fire alarm system subjected to this engineer’s verification.