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Requirements for Indoor Coverage

No person shall erect, construct, change the use of or provide an addition to any building or structure that does not support adequate radio coverage for emergency responders. Determining the existence of adequate radio coverage and the correction of deficiencies are the responsibility of the building owner.

  • California Fire Code Title 2, Part 9 Section 510 specifies a minimum received signal strength of -95dBm in 95% of the building. NFPA1, Annex O further defines coverage as being required in all Critical Areas and 90% of the general building area. Critical areas include emergency command centers, fire pump room(s), exits, stairs, elevator lobbies and other areas deemed critical.
  • Appendix J of the 2011 Fire Code and NFPA1, Annex O provide the basic technical requirements used in local ordinances to define indoor coverage, equipment, testing and acceptance.
  • NFPA 72-2013 Chapter 24 defines the core requirements for an Emergency Responder Radio Coverage System.
  • NFPA 1221-2016 and NFPA 72-2016 further define the installation and quality requirements for Emergency Responder Radio Coverage.
  • Buildings that do not support adequate radio coverage shall be equipped with FCC approved amplifiers, backup power and an indoor antenna system to distribute the signals within the building.
  • Fire Code Enforcement is typically performed through the Building Permit Process, however to ensure Public Safety, the Fire Code Official may also enforce the code at any building.

The Radio Systems utilized by first responders operate in one or multiple frequency bands allocated to Public Safety including VHF, UHF, 800MHz NPSPAC and new 700/800MHz Spectrum. The Authority having Jurisdiction (AHJ) will specify the type of radio system and frequency spectrum that is utilized in your area and is responsible for approving test documentation and providing renewable permits to operate amplification systems installed by the building owner. Annual testing must be performed to demonstrate and document Indoor Radio Coverage.

RFSignalman provides an economical service that meets NFPA requirements for testing and documentation. The benefits of using RFSignalman include:

  • Accurate and consistent test results provided within 12-24hrs.
  • Online access to test reports with Email distribution.
  • Engineering analysis and support.
  • FREE access for Public Safety Agencies with data interface for GIS apps.
  • Multi-user account setup for Building Owners and Public Safety Agencies.