Alerting, Notification & Communication - Three Different Concepts for Signaling System Design
Presented by Robert P. Schifiliti, P.E., FSFPE of R.P. Schifiliti Associates, Inc.
Alerting, Notification & Communication (A/N/C) are three totally different forms of signaling. Each can be simple or complex in design and implementation. How you present your plan to owners and authorities will determine the success or failure of your design.
If you read between the lines, you will see that NFPA 72, the National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, incorporates these concepts. However, NFPA 72 is not a design manual. The selection and implementation of A/N/C varies for each project – and so will your success or failure in getting your system approved. It’s a matter of trying to balance costs versus mission.
Occupant notification is not just about being able to hear or see a signal. It’s all about trying to change the behavior of the target audience in the most efficient and effective way possible. It’s also about trying to balance costs versus mission. Prescriptive code-based methods work for most situations, but not for challenging environments. This presentation is focused on audible notification but also emphasizes the importance of integrating other forms of notification.
This presentation shows how to plan and present a signaling strategy that will win approval and that will be effective if ever called upon in an emergency.
Mr. Schifiliti is a licensed Fire Protection Engineer board certified in Forensic Engineering and holds a Master of Science degree in Fire Protection Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI). He has forty years’ experience in fire protection and prevention work. For much of that time he has developed expertise and focused his engineering practice on the design, analysis and forensic investigation of fire detection, alarm and signaling systems. Mr. Schifiliti is the past chair (2006 – 2016) of the NFPA Signaling Systems for the Protection of Life and Property Correlating Committee, which is responsible for the development of NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code and NFPA 720, Standard for the Installation of Carbon Monoxide (CO) Detection and Warning Equipment. He is a member of the Notification Appliances technical committee for NFPA 72, which he chaired from 1993 to 2003 and is a member of the Commissioning and Integrated Testing technical committee (NFPA 3 and NFPA 4). Mr. Schifiliti is the author of the “Notification Appliances,” chapter in the NFPA Fire Protection Handbook and the principal author of the "Design of Detection Systems" chapter in the SFPE Handbook of Fire Protection Engineering. In addition, under a grant from the NFPA Fire Protection Research Association, he studied and developed engineering strategies for visible signaling in big box stores.
Copyright © 2019
New England Chapter of the Society of Fire Protection Engineers