Safety

Questions & Answers

Healthcare Life Safety Compliance, June 1, 2010

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A. This is one of those “it depends” answers. NFPA 13 (1999 edition) is a standard and not a code, and generally it does not specify when you have to install sprinklers in a building. Rather, it specifies how you install the sprinklers. 

So, we do not begin our search in NFPA 13 for guidance on sprinklers in a hospital. Instead, we look at the 2000 edition of the Life Safety Code® (LSC). Is the hospital considered an existing or new healthcare occupancy? Or, more specifically, is the elevator equipment room considered new or existing? That is a big issue because there are few requirements to install sprinklers in an existing healthcare occupancy. The only requirements are:

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