Safety

Keyes Q&A: Fire damper testing, hazardous rooms, ceilings, corridors

Healthcare Life Safety Compliance, August 1, 2019

This is an excerpt from a member only article. To read the article in its entirety, please login or subscribe to Healthcare Life Safety Compliance.

Editor’s note: Each month, Brad Keyes, CHSP, owner of Keyes Life Safety Compliance, answers your questions about life safety compliance. Follow Keyes’ blog on life safety at www.keyeslifesafety.com for up-to-date information.

Fire damper testing

Q: NFPA 80-2010, section 19.4.1.1 indicates the required testing and inspection of fire dampers to be one year after installation. Afterwards, the inspection frequency should be four years, except in hospitals, where it shall be six years. If the hospital contains areas that are classified business occupancies, do fire dampers in these areas need to be inspected every four years? If the fire damper is in an occupancy separation, do you go with the hospital interval or the business interval? If the hospital is a series of buildings connected together, does the whole facility count as a hospital, or are the buildings treated separately?

A: A hospital is a building with many occupancies in it. This is why NFPA 80 does not say “healthcare occupancies” but rather “hospitals.”

If the business occupancy is located inside the hospital, then the fire dampers are tested every six years, not every four years, because the occupancy is inside the hospital. But for a business occupancy that is freestanding and is not physically connected to the hospital (or is separated by a two-hour fire-rated barrier), the fire dampers must be tested every four years.

This is an excerpt from a member only article. To read the article in its entirety, please login or subscribe to Healthcare Life Safety Compliance.

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