Fire alarm monitoring services provide valuable help to save people and properties during an emergency, when seconds count. There is not much that property owners can do if they are unaware of an emergency, especially for unoccupied buildings. Protecting businesses and commercial properties requires a quick response whether they are occupied or unoccupied.
When Commercial Fire Breaks Out, Seconds Count
Fires can double in size in just one minute, which makes it critical to have quick detection, notification, and deployment of emergency personnel. A reliable fire alarm monitoring service can be the difference between life and death. The sooner that firefighters arrive at the scene of a fire, the more likely the building will experience less damage and lives will be saved. In fact, depending on the occupancy of your building, it could be required to have a professional alarm monitoring service.
National fire safety codes often determine the type of buildings that require fire alarms and alarm monitoring services.
NFPA101 Standards for Fire Alarm Monitoring
Fire alarm monitoring ensures that an emergency signal is assessed and verified quickly, ruling out a false alarm and transmitting to first responders within minutes. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) lists the main requirements for maintaining active alarm monitoring services in NFPA 101 Section 188.8.131.52. This standard states the occupancies that are to be equipped to automatically transmit notification of any emergency or fire alarm to the municipal fire department.
New installations of fire alarm systems are required to have alarm monitoring services prior to the final test for acceptance by the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) and are required to be maintained after acceptance. Any jurisdiction may adopt and enforce current safety code standards such as:
- International Building Code (IBC)
- International Fire Code (IFC)
- NFPA Standards
Some jurisdictions will have supplemental requirements or have their own code and policies. In big cities like Chicago, additional considerations like the Chicago Building Code must be considered. Typically, the AHJ is the local fire Marshal and may be under the municipality’s building and code departments.
NFPA 70 and NFPA 72
Most states will have their own legal requirements for commercial fire alarm installation and monitoring. State code requirements take precedence over national code in cases where they differ. National code requirements include NFPA 72, the National Fire Alarm and Signal Code and NFPA 70, the National Electric Code which detail guidelines for how life safety and security companies must install and monitor alarm systems.
Commercial Insurance Requirements
Commercial properties are often required by their insurance provider to have some sort of security alarm monitoring. Businesses that are at a high risk for fire may be required to have security alarm monitoring by their insurance carrier, even if the occupancy is below the threshold for national fire alarm code requirements.
Benefits of Commercial Fire Alarm Monitoring
The benefits of reliable fire alarm monitoring for commercial properties and businesses are many, with the most important being saving lives. Fire alarm monitoring 24/7 allows for quick dispatch of emergency responders which is critical when occupants require fast evacuation. Fire alarm monitoring services give business owners peace of mind in knowing that their building and occupants are protected in case of emergency.
The many benefits of professional fire alarm monitoring include:
- Saving lives
- Reducing injury
- Reducing property damage
- Reducing false alarms
- Possible lower insurance rates
- Protection against liability and fines
Choosing the right commercial fire alarm service company is important to achieve maximum benefit and feel confident in your fire and life safety system.
High Rise Security System Fire Alarm Monitoring
HRSS is a leading provider of commercial fire alarm services to businesses in the Chicagoland area. We help business owners to evaluate the right fire alarm equipment for their property, their business operations, and occupancy and provide reliable alarm monitoring services 24/7/365. With vast technical knowledge of all fire alarm and life safety code regulations, we ensure that your entire fire alarm system is code compliant to your requirements including code regulations from the NFPA, the IBC, the Chicago Building Code, ADA and any other state or local applicable code regulations.
Commercial fire alarm monitoring is one area where businesses should not cut corners or costs as you simply cannot put a price on potentially saving lives. Additionally, quick dispatch of firefighters can potentially save tens of thousands of dollars in property damage. When businesses are required by code regulation to have fire alarm monitoring, the only question is which fire alarm service provider will give you the most value for your cost.
High-Rise Security Systems is recognized as a fire and life safety system specialist with expert knowledge of all code regulations, quality UL listed equipment and value-added services. We are often called upon by other safety providers, building and electrical contractors to offer the best fire and life safety system solution. Contact us to learn more about our many services including consulting, inspections, testing, maintenance, and reliable fire alarm monitoring services 24/7/365.