In this section we’ll bring you updates on the important work done by our Codes & Standards, Government Affairs and Advancement Work Groups.

Our Work Groups are the vehicles by which:

  • Members’ voices are heard as SBC develops new public policy, codes, and standards (Government Affairs, Codes and Standards)
  • We develop Training Programs and Educational Content (Education)
  • Members tell us how to improve the Coalition to better serve them and the mission (Advancement)
  • Members can hear first changes in the industry involving all of the above
  • Each Work Group is guided by a Chair and a Vice Chair. The reports below will provide monthly updates from the Chair of each Work Group.
  • Participation in Work Groups is one of the best ways to realize value form your Safer Buildings Coalition Membership. Work Group participation is open to all Members of every type.

If you are interested in participating in a Work Group, please contact the Chair of the group.

Work Group Updates:

Codes & Standards Work Group

Advancement Work Group

Government Affairs Work Group Next update: March newsletter.

Codes & Standards Work Group Update

Codes and Standards Work Group

During its latest meeting, the Codes & Standards workgroup reviewed the recent FD Committee meeting for the development of the 2022 Edition of NFPA 1225, Standard for Emergency Services Communication Systems. The FD meeting was the first of a three-stage process for the development of the next edition of the BDA installation standard. 

These are some of the key items of interest to the industry from the committee meeting.

  • New BDA Chapter: Currently the BDA requirements are included in a section of Chapter 17. The Committee decided to create a dedicated BDA chapter because of the interest and importance of in-building communications for emergency responders. 
  • UL 2524: BDA equipment (repeaters, transmitters, receivers, signal booster components, remote annunciators and operational consoles, power supplies and battery charging system components) are required to be listed as complying with UL 2524. The Committee also approved adding UL 2524 to the list of standards listed in Standard. 
  • Pathway Survivability: Revised the requirement for all backbone cables to be routed through an enclosure that matches the building’s fire rating to the following. If the pathway is not located within a building protected by an automatic sprinkler system complying with NFPA 13 the following shall apply:
    • Either the cable shall have a fire-resistance listing or shall be protected by an assembly having a fire-resistance rating
    • Where the primary structural frame of a building is required to have a fire-resistance rating of less than 2 hours, the minimum fire resistance rating shall be 1 hour
    • Where the primary structural frame of a building does not require a fire-resistance rating, a fire-resistance rating shall not be required
  • Supervision of Passive Components: The Committee rejected multiple proposals to require passive components to be monitored for integrity (supervised)
  • Communications Coverage: Revised the general building coverage requirement for BDA systems from 90% to 95%. This correlates with IFC requirement. 
  • Frequency License Holder(s): Added new requirements in multiple sections that no BDA shall be installed without prior coordination and approval of the AHJ and the frequency license holder(s)
  • Inbound and Outbound Signal Strength: A minimum -95dBm to provide usable voice communications
  • The next step in the process is the official balloting of the FD Committee actions and then the Public Comment phase

Also on the agenda the workgroup discussed the formation of a new Public Safety Technology Workgroup, which will focus on such topics as E-911, two-way critical communication, location technologies, etc.

Advancement Work Group Update

Advancement Work Group

The Advancement Work Group continues its review of member versus non-member access rights for validity. During its latest meeting, the group also focused on how the SBC can continue to serve the best interests of our members, as well working on defining topics that’ll encourage non-members to join the SBC organization.  

Additionally, the group assessed the different verticals within the organization to determine where we have the necessary representation and where more is needed. The group will take this cross-member analysis and reach out to verticals, along with AHJs with introduction invitations about the SBC organization.