This is a standalone, single-story 6,800sf building that is fully sprinklered and classified as Ambulatory Healthcare (Dialysis center). Is it required to have full coverage smoke detection? What code section should I refer to?
In NFPA 101 you'll all the requirements for an Existing Ambulatory Health Care, check this chapter:
Chapter: 21.3.4, check section 9.6.
All references are to the 2018 NFPA 101, Life Safety Code.
For the NFPA 101 the answer should be it depends on other sections of the code for the general initiation fire alarm system as mentioned in Subsection 21.3.4.
Subsection 220.127.116.11 Initiation. Initiation of the required fire alarm systems shall be by manual means in accordance with 9.6.2 and by means of any detection devices or detection systems required.
Actuation of any required fire or smoke detector, activation of a required sprinkler system, or operation of a manual fire alarm box must automatically, without delay, initiate the alarm system and sound audible alarm devices within the building.
18.104.22.168 Where a total (complete) coverage smoke detection system is required by another section of this Code, automatic detection of smoke in accordance with NFPA 72 shall be provided in all occupiable areas in environments that are suitable for proper smoke detector operation.
When are the complete smoke detection required in NFPA 101:
Thank you for your quick response.
By reading and interpreting the sections mentioned above, I do not see the need for a total coverage smoke detections system on this application. I'd like to know if someone concurs or differs from my interpretation.
Milton: As I was digging deeper in the Xchange forums, I came across your comment:
"For instance 2015 NFPA 101 has provisions for total (complete) smoke detection in Sections 22.214.171.124.5.2, 126.96.36.199.2.1, 188.8.131.52.2.3, 184.108.40.206.3.2, 220.127.116.11.5.2, 18.104.22.168.2.1, 22.214.171.124.2.3, 126.96.36.199.3.2, 188.8.131.52.3, and 184.108.40.206.3."
Chapters 20 and 21 for new and existing Ambulatory Healthcare are not within the sections you listed.
The reason for my question is that some team members on this project believe there should be a "full coverage" smoke detection system, even though the building is fully sprinklered.
The first code you should consult is the building code that applies in the jurisdiction where the facility is located. This sounds like an outpatient facility which many building codes classify a group B (Business) occupancy. Not all jurisdictions use NFPA 101. Is it a good idea to have both sprinklers and smoke detectors? Of course it is. The earlier a fire is detected, the more time staff will have to disconnect patients so they can evacuate before a fire is hot enough to set off sprinklers. But only the applicable code in the local jurisdiction can tell you whether either or both are REQUIRED.
I was just making the design team informed about the NFPA 101 request so that good sense and judgement will prevail in their decisions. The life time cost of a smoke detection system that not required by the building safety code seems to be and issue for this outpatient facility. The best smoke detection for life safety in health care facility is the staff and there training to respond. They are going to smell the smoke long before a detector senses it.
Absolutely agree, Milt. It seems as though there are a lot of folks out there designing buildings and protection systems who don't understand that NFPA does not write their local codes.
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