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Commissioning Of Life Safety & Fire Protection Systems

While the code requirement for the Integrated Systems Testing of Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems (CAN/ULC S1001-11) is relatively new, Authorities Having Jurisdiction are adopting and enforcing it quickly. Umbra sat on the ULC Standards 500-series committee for several years, writing this standard which requires that an integrated systems test be done as part of commissioning a building’s life safety and protection systems, as well as going forward every five years for existing buildings (existing buildings will not be grandfathered in, so this affects all existing building assets).

An Integrated Testing Coordinator (ITC), who must be a professional engineer, is required to provide a plan that will allow for the complete testing of a building’s life safety and fire protection systems, and the plan must be useable not only for the first test, but also for future, periodic testing. Because building systems interconnect, the new code requires that all life safety systems (e.g. fire alarms, sprinklers, fire pumps, elevator recalls, emergency lighting, and air handling for smoke control) operate together and be tested together. The aim is to ensure that the building’s complete life safety system operates in a coordinated manner, as designed. Our experience both in commissioning and on the ULC committee, make us uniquely qualified to act as a third-party, Integrated Testing Coordinator as well as to assist clients in planning for upgrades.

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