NFPA 72 HDBK
National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code Handbook
|Publication Date:||1 January 2019|
Each NFPA code or standard begins with the "scope," a statement that clearly explains the extent of influence that the document has on its title's subject. In the case of NFPA 72, the scope clearly spells out the many items (application, installation, location, testing, and maintenance, among others) related to a fire alarm system, supervising station alarm system, public emergency alarm reporting system, fire and carbon monoxide detection and warning equipment, emergency communications system, and their components that are covered in the Code.
NFPA 72 covers the application, installation, location, performance, inspection, testing, and maintenance of fire alarm systems, supervising station alarm systems, public emergency alarm reporting systems, fire and carbon monoxide detection and warning equipment, and emergency communications systems (ECS), and their components.
NFPA 72 provides the minimum installation, inspection, testing, maintenance, and performance requirements for fire alarm systems used in any application. Requirements address the application, location, and limitations of fire alarm system components, such as manual fire alarm boxes, automatic fire detectors, and notification appliances. The Code also provides the minimum requirements for fire warning equipment, which includes single- and multiple-station alarms and household signaling systems addressed in Chapter 29. New for the 2019 edition of the Code is the inclusion of carbon monoxide detection and warning equipment requirements throughout the Code. This inclusion is reflected in the scope of the document. Carbon monoxide requirements previously found in NFPA 720, Standard for the Installation of Carbon Monoxide (CO) Detection and Warning Equipment, have now been incorporated in the chapters of NFPA 72, where appropriate.
The organization of the Code facilitates the application of requirements common to both fire systems and emergency signaling systems. There is a need to present requirements for fire alarm systems clearly while addressing many other emergency signaling conditions. These occur often in conjunction with a fire alarm system, but at other times, they do not.
The organization of the Code places its content into four common groupings: administrative chapters, support chapters, system chapters, and usability annexes. Commentary Table 1.1 outlines the chapters that belong with each grouping.
The provisions of this chapter apply throughout the Code unless otherwise noted.
Chapter 1 provides a foundation from which to apply the requirements of the Code. These administrative requirements apply throughout the Code but can be modified by the special requirements set forth in the subsequent chapters. As an example, Section 1.4 indicates that the requirements are not intended to be retroactively applied.
The commentary following 1.4.1 elaborates on provisions of the Code as they specifically apply to new and existing systems. References are made in 7.1.2 for documentation and to the requirements of inspection, testing, and maintenance of systems as noted in 14.1.4.
To provide a consistent framework for users, all NFPA documents follow a standard format, which is specified in the Manual of Style for NFPA Technical Committee Documents. This format is particularly specific for the administrative requirements in Chapter 1.
For the purposes of carbon monoxide detection, this standard is primarily concerned with life safety, not property protection.
This subsection makes clear that the installation of carbon monoxide detection, which is a part of this Code, is intended to provide life safety protection for the occupants of the building and not for the protection of the actual building such as fire sprinklers could provide