Monday, February 19, 2018

NFPA 72 2016 Chapter 24 Changes

NFPA 72 2016 Chapter 24 - Emergency Communications Systems (ECS)


The following information contains the changes, updates and additions to Protected Premises for Fire Alarm Systems found in Chapter 23 of the NFPA 72 2016 edition.  Remember if you see a * make sure to consult the Annex A for additional information.

All information highlighted in this light blue color is NEW to the 2016 edition of NFPA 72.

  • 24.3.1.2* Where no listed loudspeakers exist to achieve the intelligibility requirements of the Code for a notification zone, non-listed loudspeakers shall be permitted to be installed to achieve the intelligibility for that notification zone.
Learn more about voice intelligibility here:
  • 24.3.5.4 Where emergency communications systems utilize Class N pathways that are also shared Level 1 or Level 2 pathways as a means to support ancillary functions, devices, or interconnected systems, the shared pathways shall meet the requirements of 23.6.3
  • 24.3.5.4.1 In addition to the requirements of 23.6.3, a risk analysis shall be performed and approved by the AHJ.

NFPA 72 2016 Chapter 24 - Emergency Communications Systems (ECS) - Pathway Survivability


  • 24.3.13.7 Two-way in-building emergency communications systems shall have a pathway survivability of Level 2 or Level 3.
    • Exception: Level 1 shall be permitted where the building is less than 2-hour fire-rated construction.
  • 24.3.13.9.1 Area of refuge emergency communications systems shall have a pathway survivability of Level 2 or Level 3.
    • Exception (1): Level 1 shall be permitted where notification zones are separated by less than 2-hour fire-rated construction.  

NFPA 72 2016 Chapter 24 - Emergency Communications Systems (ECS) - In Building Mass Notification Systems


  • 24.5.14* Mounting of LOC Controls
    • 24.5.14.1 Controls that are intended to be accessed by authorized users shall be mounted in accordance with 24.5.14
    • 24.5.14.2 LOC controls, including switches, microphone, latches and so forth shall be located above the finished floor at a minimum of 36" (91 cm) and a maximum of 48" (122 cm) where the horizontal reach is less then 10" (25 cm)
    • 24.5.14.3 If a horizontal reach of 10" (25 cm) to 24" (61 cm) is required, the maximum elevation shall be limited to 42" (107 cm) above the finished floor and the minimum elevation shall be limited to 28" (71 cm).
    • 24.5.14.4 Text and visual indicators, including lamps, screens, displays, instructions, or labels, associated with control or operation shall be visible within all points of elevation between 40" (102 cm) and 60" (152 cm) above the finished floor.
    • 24.5.14.5 Where controls and information are provided in accordance with 24.5.14.2 through 24.5.14.4, provision of additional or redundant controls shall be permitted within the same vicinity at an elevation or reach other than those indicated.
    • 24.5.14.6 Dimensions other than those identified in 24.5.14.2 through 24.5.14.4 shall be permitted when documented within the emergency response plan that ADA guidelines are not applicable or when otherwise required by the AHJ.
Notifier LOC Panel for Mass Notification
Notifier LOC Panel for Mass Notification
  • 24.5.18.8 Addressable primary textual and graphical visible appliances using signaling line circuits shall meet the performance requirements of section 23.6.
  • 24.5.18.9 Non-addressable primary textual and graphical visible appliance circuits shall meet the performance requirements of section 23.7.

NFPA 72 2016 Chapter 24 - Emergency Communications Systems (ECS) - Area of Refuge


  • 24.10.3 The remote area of refuge stations and the central control point shall communicate with each other via pathways based on their performance capabilities under abnormal or fault conditions in accordance with the requirements for Class A, Class B, Class N, or Class X pathways specified in Chapter 12.
  • 24.10.4 All pathways between a remote area of refuge stations and the central control point shall be monitored for integrity.

NFPA 72 2016 Chapter 24 - Emergency Communications Systems (ECS) - Elevator Emergency Communications Systems


  • 24.11 Elevator Emergency Communications Systems. This was in section 24.5.4 of the 2013 edition of NFPA 72
  • 24.11.3 Inspection and testing of elevator emergency communications systems shall be performed in accordance with ANSI/ASME A17.2, Guide for Inspection of Elevators, Escalators and Moving Walks

NFPA 72 2016 Chapter 24 - Emergency Communications Systems (ECS) - Stairway Communications Systems


  • 24.12* Stairway Communications Systems.
  • 24.12.1 Where required by the building code in force and not included as part of another emergency communications system, a stairway communications systems shall be installed in accordance with 24.12.
  • 24.12.2 The stairway communications system shall be permitted to be integrated with another two-way emergency communications system providing it is installed in accordance with 24.12.  
  • 24.12.3 The stairway communications system shall comprise remotely located communications points and a central control point
  • 24.12.4 Each remote point shall have the capability to communicate with the central control point.  Similar language for Areas of Refuge in Section 24.10.2
  • 24.12.5* Quantity and locations of the remote communications points shall be as required by the building code in force and engineer specifications.
  • 24.12.6* If the central control point is not constantly attended, it shall have a timed automatic communications capability to connect with a constantly attended monitoring location acceptable to the authority having jurisdiction here responsible personnel can initiate the appropriate response.  Similar language for Areas of Refuge in Section 24.12.5.
  • 24.12.7 The physical location of the central control point shall be as designated by the building code in fomrce or the authority having jurisdiction.  Similar language for Areas of Refuge in Section 24.10.6.
  • 24.12.8 The remote communications points shall provide for two-way communications, provide an audible and visual signal to indicate communication has occured, and indicate to the receiver the location sending the signal.  Similar laguage for Areas of Refuge in Section 24.10.7
  • 24.12.9 instructions for the use of the stairway communications system, instructions for summoning assistance via the systems, and written identification, including in braille, of the location shall be posted adjacent to each remote communications point.  Similar language for Areas of Refuge  in Section 24.10.8.

NFPA 72 2016 Chapter 26 - Supervising Station Alarm Systems


NFPA 72 2016 Chapter 23 - Protected Premises Fire Alarm Systems