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rate of interest for loans. These unethical operators have increased their prices tremendously and cut down the quality of their installations to be able to continue in business. With the financing of legitimate and ethical companies once again, these unethical operators will find a very hard time continuing to install shoddy equipment at exorbitant prices.

The members of the Automatic Fire Alarm Association who are engaged in home fire-alarm activities are all conscientious people who are dedicated to the profession of saving lives. We invite similar conscientious people to join us. However, we find our activities slowly being stified and turned over to less conscientious people. We cannot continue to operate without sound financing of home alarm sales.

To rectify this situation, the Automatic Fire Alarm Association has developed a program, which we hereby respectfully submit. It requires the cooperation of the Federal Housing Administration.

We have established a standard for equipment and installation in home fire-alarm systems, sufficient to guarantee proper protection. This is detailed and technical in character. It is based on the best recognized practice in the fire-alarm industry. A copy of same is attached, which I will not attempt to read at this time. Technically speaking, it offers the finest form of protection for any homeowner.

A code of ethical practices governing the sale of fire-alarm systems has been made part of the standards. With the adoption of this code as part of the eligibility for FHA financing, we are convinced that any complaints will cease immediately.

We urgently request that the financing of home fire-alarm systems be restored by the Federal Housing Administration, and that the above standards and codes be utilized by FHA as a guide in developing an enforcement program which will make available to the American public priceless protection of their lives from the ever-present and growing menace of home fires. At the same time it will guarantee that the public will be able to purchase a fine fire-protection system at an established price from a legitimate and sound dealer.

The Automatic Fire Alarm Association pledges its wholehearted support and cooperation in carrying out this program.

Senator SPARKMAN. Thank you very much, Mr. Levy.

Senator MONRONEY. What is the usual cost of these ethical firealarm systems?

Mr. LEVY. The usual cost of the system, taking a 6-room house as an average, would run from $400 to $500. This would include the standard type of equipment that is approved by the Underwriters Laboratories or some other nationally recognized testing laboratory.

Senator MONRONEY. It is an alarm only or does it have sprinklers and other things!

Mr. LEVY. It is just an alarm system.

Senator MONRONEY. It notifies the residents that fire has broken out.

Mr. LEVY. Yes.
Senator SPARKMAN. Senator Douglas.

Senator DOUGLAS. I can understood the need for this fire-alarm system in a multiapartment house, but in a single-family dwelling I wonder if it is so necessary.

Mr. LEVY. Sir, the purpose of the system is to save people's lives. We are not primarily interested in saving the property, although that is important. Most fires occur at night, and most of the people that are killed in fires are suffocated. They are never burned. The statistics will show this. The National Fire Protection Association has compiled them over a period of years, and at the present time approximately 12,000 people are killed in fire annually in the United States.

Senator DOUGLAS. But how many of those in single-family dwellings?

Mr. LEVY. I would say that approximately 75 percent of them occur in homes of different types, and the majority of them are in singlefamily dwellings. I would say that of the 12,000 people killed in fires annually, a minimum of 6,000 are in single-family dwellings.

Senator DOUGLAS. Is that a firm estimate that you have? Mr. LEVY. Yes, that is based on the statistics that have been compiled.

Senator SPARKMAN. What makes the alarm work-heat?

Mr. Levy. Well, speaking as a manufacturer, our system works on the expansion of the air. As a matter of fact, we use the same detection devices in the home that we are at the present time selling to the Government on Army installations. That is the detecting equipment itself.

Senator SPARKMAN. Air expansion as a result of heat?
Mr. LEVY. As a result of heat.

Senator SPARKMAN. How do you keep it from going off on a hot day? ?

Mr. LEVY. Well, these units, the particular device I am referring to, go off when the temperature rises 5° within 20 seconds, and you cannot get that normally.

Senator SPARKMAN. It is the increase in the heat?

Mr. LEVY. The increase in the heat. They also go off from 136° to 190° fixed temperature.

Senator SPARKMAN. Thank you very much, Mr. Levy. We appreciate having your viewpoint, and the matter will receive the consideration of the committee.

(The document referred to by Mr. Levy is as follows:)




The provisions of these standards apply to the installation and maintenance of local automatic fire-detection and alarm systems for private dwellings and similar uses in providing a material measure of protection by sounding an alarm warning, in case of fire, to the occupants of the premises protected.

Automatic fire detection equipment designed to provide prompt notification of fire in its incipient stage is of great value in arousing occupants so that they may escape from the burning building before the spread of fire and smoke blocks exits, call the fire department, use any extinguishing equipment or take other appropriate action for the saving of life and property. It is essential that equipment be adequately located and sufficiently loud to awaken sleeping occupants; any equipment which is not reliable in operation or does not awaken sleeping occupants may give a false sense of security. Attention is directed to the fact that self-contained unit alarm devices located in basements or other spaces remote from sleeping rooms may not awaken sleeping occupants.

The integrity of any fire-alarm system is dependent upon the kind of material used and the installation and maintenance thereof. This code contains basic minimum provisions considered necessary for safety. Compliance therewith and proper maintenance should result in a dependable installation.


These automatic fire-detection and alarm systems consist of electrical circuits and associated instruments and devices having their operation under the control or domination of the owner or others interested in the property protected.

The intent and meaning of the terms used in these standards are the same as those of the National Electrical Code and National Fire Protection Association Pamphalet No. 72.


These automatic fire-detection and alarm systems shall consist of a main control unit, alarm-sounding devices, fire-detection equipment and wire all of which shall be approved by Underwriters' Laboratories, Inc., or equal nationally accepted testing laboratory for the purpose for which they are intended, namely fire-detection service.

All systems shall be installed in a workmanlike manner and in accordance with these standards.

All devices shall be so located and mounted that accidental operation will not be caused by vibration and jarring.

All systems shall test free of grounds except parts of circuits or equipment which are intentionally and permanently grounded to provide ground fault detection, emergency ground signaling, or circuit protective grounding. All systems shall be designed so that they do not depend upon the effectiveness of any ground connection for normal operation.


Definition.A control unit as covered by these requirements consists of a unit assembly of electrical parts having provision for connection of powersupply circuits routed through the control-unit equipment by a prescribed scheme of circuit. The circuits are extended to separate devices by which the operating parts of the control unit are actuated for signals, and to separate or incorporated devices by which the signals are indicated so as to form a coordinated system combination for definite signaling services.


General.Except as otherwise indicated in this standard, a system shall be electrically supervised so that the occurrence of a break or a ground fault condition of its installation-wiring circuits which prevents the required operation of the system, or failure of its main power supply source, will be indicated by a distinctive trouble signal.

NOTE.—(a) The provision of a double loop or other multiple-path conductor circuit to avoid electrical supervision is not acceptable except as indicated in section (a) of paragraph on alarm signal sounding circuits.

(0) Electrical supervision of conductors for a short-circuit fault is not contemplated by this requirement.

Power supply circuits supervision.—All sources of energy except the following secondary sources:

(a) One employed for the operation of trouble signal circuits and appliances.

(b) One employed as an auxiliary means for maintaining the normal operation of the system following trouble signal indication when the main supply source is interrupted.

(c) One employed as a means for operating a supplementary circuit for alarm bells, annunciators, and similar circuits, the failure of which will not prevent the operation of the system for the required signals.

(d) The battery leads of a trickle-charged battery. Fire-detecting circuits.The electrical supervision shall include all circuits for signals initiated by the operation of fire-detecting equipment, automatically operated devices which initiate or transmit signals either manually or automatically, except :

(a) The circuits of a supplementary signal annunciator, provided that the fault condition of this circuit wiring results only in the loss of annunciation,

Supplementary control circuit.A supplementary circuit for operating fan motor stops or similar control equipment intended to be actuated at the time of an alarm signal, need not be electrically supervised, provided a fault condition of the circuit in no way affects the normal operation of the signaling system.

Alarm signal sounding circuits.-All circuits for operating alarm sounding devices and appliances except:

(a) Alarm signal sounding appliances employing self-contained vibrating armature contacts for signal operation when (1) alternately connected to two or more circuits and approximately equally distributed throughout the building, or (2) connected to a double loop circuit so that a break or a ground fault does not prevent the operation of any sounding pliance.

(b) The circuit of an alarm bell installed in the same room with a system control unit, provided the bell circuit conductors are installed in conduit or equivalently protected against mechanical injury and tampering.

(C) A trouble signal circuit.


Distinctive trouble signals.Trouble signals shall be distinctive from alarm signals and shall be indicated by the continuous operation of a sounding appliance, which may be common to several supervised circuits.

Silencing switch.A switch for silencing the trouble signal sounding appliance may be provided only if it transfers the trouble indication to a lamp or other acceptable visible indicator adjacent to the switch. The visible indicator shall remain operated until the silencing switch is restored to its normal position unless the audible trouble signal will be obtained when a fault occurs without restoring the switch to normal.


General.—Except as indicated below, every fire detection and alarm system shall be connected to two separate power supply sources, as follows:

(a) Main power supply of adequate capacity to operate all detection and alarm signaling circuits.

(b) Auxiliary power supply of adequate capacity for operation of trouble signal circuits.

NOTE.—In case of main power failure, an arrangement may be provided for the temporary transfer of full system operation to the auxiliary power supply: in which case the auxiliary supply must equal the main supply in output capacity.

Light and power services.-A reliable electrical light or power service may be used as the main power supply or the auxiliary power supply of a signaling system but not for both purposes in the same system.

Rectifiers, direct-connected.-A rectifier employed as a direct source of supply for the signaling system should be approved for the purpose of adequate capacity to maintain voltage regulations between 130 percent rated voltage at no load and 100 percent of rated voltage at maximum load.

Transformers or transformer-rectifier assembly.The transformer or transformer-rectifier assembly employed as a source of power must be listed for the system with which it is used.

Batteries, trickle-charged.One set of trickle-charged storage batteries is acceptable for use as both main and auxiliary power supplies, providing the battery is capable of operating the system for not less than 24 hours with the maximum normal load and the power supply of the charger disconnected.

Primary batteries.-A primary battery may be used as the auxiliary power supply. In the same system a second primary battery may also be used as the main power supply providing the supervisory current drain is not more than 15 milliamperes and the maximum load is not more than 3 amperes.

FIRE DETECTING EQUIPMENT Spacing.–Fire detecting equipment spacings shall not exceed the linear maximum indicated in Underwriters' Laboratories, Inc., fire protection equipment list for the particular device used. Closer spacing may be required due to structural characteristics of the protected area, possible drafts, or other conditions affecting detector operation.

The placement and spacing of detecting equipment should also be based on consideration of the ceiling construction, ceiling height, room or space areas, space subdivisions, the normal room temperature, possible exposure of the devices to abnormal heat and to draft conditions likely to be encountered at the time of a fire.

Location.Detecting equipment shall be located permanently on or near the ceiling and shall be installed throughout all parts of the protected premises including: all rooms, halls, baths, closets, storage areas, bạsements, utility rooms, attics, and attached garages.

Support.-Individual detectors shall be supported in all cases independently of their attachment to the wires.

High temperature areas.-Special detecting equipment shall be used in furnace rooms or other areas where necessary, in accordance with the manufacturers' recommendations.


Location.--Alarm bells or other sounding devices shall be permanently installed and located where they will be audible to all occupants of sleeping quarters under all conditions.

Distinctive signals.—Sounding devices shall produce signals which are distinctive from other devices used for other purposes in the same area.


Outside wiring.Wiring circuits complying with the requirements for communication circuits and the National Electrical Code and reserved solely for fire detection and alarm services are acceptable for outside wiring.

Inside wiring.-General circuits : Construction cable for use with circuits not exceeding 150 volts shall be constructed as follows:

(a) The conductors shall be of copper, not less than No. 14 AWG for 2-conductor cable, not less than No. 18 AWG for 3- or 4-conductor cables and not less than 22 AWG for cable having more than 4 conductors.

(b) The individual conductors shall have rubber or thermoplastic insulation having a nominal thickness not less than one thirty-second of an inch.

(c) The cable conductors shall have a lead sheath or a moisture-resisting and flame-retarding jacket providing equivalent protection against mechanical injury to that obtained with nonmetallic sheathed cable defined in the National Electrical Code.

Installation.The cable may be installed exposed on ceilings, or not less than 7 feet from the floor on side walls, if adequately protected against injury. Concealed cables and cables passed through floor or located on side walls within 7 feet from the floor shall be installed in approved raceway or conduit. The cable shall be supported by the terminated in approved fittings.

Limited-energy circuits.—General: Special cable may be used for limitedenergy fire detector circuits where the following conditions exist:

(a) The open circuit voltage does not exceed 50 volts.

(6) Overcurrent protection or not more than 2 ampere rating is provided. A fuse shall be of noninterchangeable type. If the current is from a transforming device having energy-limiting characteristics, the fuse may be omitted.

(c) The capacity of the supply circuit is limited in its maximum rated output to not exceed 100 volt-amperes.

Construction.The conductors of a cable for use with limited-energy circuits shall be of copper not smaller than No. 20 AWG and shall have thermoplastic insulation of not less than 0.015 inch nominal (0.010 inch minimum) thickness. The cabled conductors shall have a thermoplastic jacket having a nominal thickness not less than 0.035 inch (0.030 inch minimum). Other insulation having equivalent performance characteristics may be accepted.

Installation.The cable may be run concealed or may be run exposed if adequate precautions are taken to prevent injury.

Line thermostats.—Line type thermostats including insulated copper tubing of pneumatically operated detectors employed for both detection and wiring purposes shall be installed in conformity with the requirements for limitenergy circuit cable as mentioned in the preceding paragraph and shall provide adequate insulation for the voltage rating of the thermostat.


Upon completion of the installation of a system, a complete test of the entire installation shall be made in the presence of the purchaser.

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