When it comes to mission-critical systems such as mass notification emergency communication (MNEC), there is no room for error. To a certain degree, codes are in place to help system engineers meet certain standards. This five question quiz is designed to help you identify if you are as knowledgeable about mass notification codes as you ought to be.
The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has addressed certain standards related to emergency notification for fire and non-fire related with codes such NFPA 72 and NFPA 101. That’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to codes impacting MNEC system design.
Take this quiz to gauge your mass notification code knowledge:
Designing a Mass Notification System – Audio Solution
Depending on how you did on the quiz, you may need to brush up on your mass notification code knowledge. Even if you scored 100 percent it’s essential that mass notification system designers be vigilant in making sure their up to speed on relevant codes.
For instance, a lot of security or AV professionals charged with designing MNEC systems might not realize the importance of shutting down ambient background sound in the event of an emergency in order to avoid any conflict of signals and to help easily direct building occupants to safety, points out Jonathan Leonard, president of audio and life safety solutions provider Lencore.
It’s not that soundmasking and MNEC can’t co-exist, just that they need to be integrated properly and up to code.
“In the event of an emergency, according to NFPA 72 code, notification and direction must be clearly understood in order to direct people to safety,” says Leonard.
“Furthermore, think of those with disabilities. The ADA is very serious about mass notification codes enforcement for those with disabilities, including people who are either hearing impaired or vision impaired.
“It is paramount to ensure that there are no competing audio signals, including sound masking, or waterfalls, which can be both disorienting and mask all speech, which then can make it very difficult to understand where to go and what to do.”
This free resource from Lencore, Know the Code: Sound Masking and NFPA 72, is a good way for mass notification system designers to brush up on their code knowledge.