Emergency Responder Radio Communication Systems
At Gill Security Systems, we understand the importance of reliable communication during emergencies. That’s why we’ve partnered with Honeywell to provide top-of-the-line Emergency Responder Radio Communication Systems (ERRCS), including Bi-Directional Amplifiers (BDA) and Fiber Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS). Our comprehensive Public Safety Radio Signal Coverage in-building coverage solutions ensure that first responders can communicate effectively when it matters most.
Building and fire codes dictate the ERRCS/BDA systems. Certain architectural features like concrete walls, and Low-E Glass limit how much signal can penetrate a building. For these reasons, it is best to work with a professional contractor that can analyze the need for equipment, design a proper system, install it and provide Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) with the necessary documentation that allows them to sign off on the Certificate of Occupancy.
What Are Emergency Responder Radio Communication Systems (ERRCS)?
Emergency Responder Radio Coverage Systems (ERRCS) are in-building communication systems that improve critical two-way communications for emergency responders. Today’s buildings are made of complex and dense materials such as specialty glass, metal, wood, concrete, and brick that can interfere with or completely block communication signals. Your local authority having jurisdiction is (AHJ) is the contact point for such requirements. Gill Security has installed many of these systems and can help you navigate this process.
What Are The Benefits Of The ERRC System?
First and foremost, an effective ERRC system will allow emergency responders to maintain two-way radio communication during an emergency. Whether a firefighter needs to alert their team to a certain location, or a law enforcement officer needs to call for backup while inside the building, they won’t need to worry about a weak signal or poor connection.
Another benefit of having an ERRCS is to meet the fire safety requirements for your area. Most major cities have mandated the installation of ERRC or BDA systems in new construction buildings over 7,500 square feet, especially if those have 3 or more levels. Your ERRCS will need to be in place and in working order to obtain a certificate of occupancy. Not every building will require ERRCS. A radio frequency survey will be required to determine existing signal strength in and outside the building. Results will be forwarded to the AHJ for determination of system need.
When To Start The ERRCS Process?
New building owners subject to the NC 2018 Fire Code Section 510 are required to submit a Radio Signal Strength Study that demonstrates that the existing Radio System signal levels meet the Code or they will be required to install an Emergency Responder Radio Coverage System (ERRCS) to boost the radio signals up to the required levels. Section 510 of the 2018 NC Fire Code for new construction is attached as Appendix A at the end of this document. All owners of new buildings, as well as their general contractors and ERRCS vendors/installers, should be familiar with all provisions of the relevant codes and standards.
Pre-Planning For ERRCS
Because the Radio Signal Strength study cannot be performed until the building is nearly complete, and because of the lead time in procuring and installing an ERRCS, building owners/managers are well advised to consider the strong possibility that accommodating an ERRCS installation late in the building process may well delay final building acceptance and add cost beyond what would have been required for a pre-planned ERRCS. Some steps may be taken during building design and early construction that can help alleviate some of the delays and expense should an ERRCS be required. Such steps would include pre-planning a roof penetration and conduits for the coax cable feeding the roof-top donor antenna as well as ceiling conduits for the interior DAS cabling. Building owners and General Contractors are encouraged to engage early on in the building design process to make sure their building designers are aware early-on of the possibility of the need for an ERRCS installation and plan accordingly.
A radio survey does not necessarily mean a system will be required. Gill Security can provide a not-to-exceed quote once building plans have been finalized.
Gill Security: Your Fayetteville and Cumberland County NC ERRCS Provider
Let Gill Security’s ERRCS design professionals discuss the requirements and process to determine all your ERRCS needs. We can walk you through the process, design and install the system and perform annual testing as required.
You should also engage your local authority with jurisdiction for requirements specific to your project. This is usually the local Fire Marshal office.