Almost all newly-built commercial buildings in the country should comply with the International Fire Code (IFC) 510 building code. This involves a test performed by a qualified and certified technician. A “Letter Of Certification” is often submitted by these professional testers to your local fire officials before the local government issues a “Certificate of Occupancy” to your building.
To avoid costly and embarrassing delays in your project, as well as penalties and potential loss of business, ensure that your contractor is familiar with the current IFC 510 requirements.
What Is IFC 510 Building Code?
IFC Chapter 5, Section 10 says, “All new buildings must have approved radio coverage for emergency responders within their building.” This allows more efficient and reliable communication among emergency first responders within the building.
How do you know if your building meets the IFC 510 requirements?
New commercial and multi-resident residential buildings must provide radio coverage to emergency service personnel. So, you should contact certified technicians to inspect your building using specialized equipment to measure Radio Frequency signals being transmitted from the local Digital Trunked Radio System.
Your local authorities will require you to install an Emergency Responder Radio System (ERRS) if your building fails this mandatory radio signal test. ERRS is an independent, public-safety booster antenna system that makes it possible for radio signals to reach the problem areas in your building. It must also include a secondary power source that can operate the ERRS for at least 24 hours.
Who Certifies and Tests Buildings for the IFC 510 Building Code?
Any qualified and experienced professional, including Radio Frequency engineers and test technicians, can perform IFC 510 testing using state-of-the-art, industry-standard, and calibrated equipment. They work closely with your local fire department to ensure that the testing services they provide meet current requirements. They will also be the ones to give the local fire department a “Letter Of Certification” stating that your building passed the testing and that you are eligible for a “Certificate of Occupancy.”
Maintaining an ERRS
Your responsibility as a building owner goes beyond after passing the IFC 510 test. The building code states that the radio system for responding to an emergency must be tested annually or whenever structural changes, such as additions or remodels, could change the original field performance test.
Meaning, you should continuously work with experts to inspect your building yearly to ensure that your equipment is operating correctly according to the IFC510 requirements. For services like these, you can contact Diversified Electronics because they can also help you design a new ERRS if you’re planning for renovations. They also provide two way radios for education if you are a school establishment. Click here for more information on their solutions and services.
Who pays for the IFC 510 Building Code Test?
As the building owner, you are responsible for all the costs and arrangements involved with the testing. That’s why it’s necessary to pick a company that will help you comply with the IFC 510 building codes. These companies can also help you plan for installing an ERRS to make sure that all necessary equipment such as conduit, access panels, and rooftop access to an antenna system. will be included in your construction budget and plans. They can even help you pre-install components in your building, which will make it easier to install ERRS.