B. Sprinklered Buildings: The required fire flows and pressures for buildings provided with
automatic sprinkler protection shall comply with NFPA 13 and other applicable NFPA
standards. Also provide a minimum hose stream allowance for total combined inside and
outside fire fighting to comply with NFPA 13.
5.3 Fire Pumps:
A. When a fire pump is necessary to supplement fire flow and pressure, size it to comply with
NFPA 13 and 14. Where hose is not installed or otherwise provided in the facility, the fire
pump will be sized only for the sprinkler system requirements. The local responding fire
department will provide the necessary flow and pressure for manual fire fighting operations.
The fire department's capability of handling the manual fire fighting requirements shall be
verified and documented.
Note: Standard operating procedures by most fire departments do not allow them to
use occupant hose lines within buildings since they are generally not aware of the
condition of the hose, and if used, could create a dangerous situation. These
procedures also generally require them to hook up a pumper truck to the fire
department connection to augment the pressure to the sprinklers and standpipes.
Hence it is the VA's position that the pump be sized only for the sprinkler system
demand and to let the fire department handle the manual fire fighting pressure
requirements. The fire pump should be sized to handle manual fire fighting
requirements in NFPA 14 only where the fire department pumper truck can not provide
the necessary pressures, and this is not anticipated at any VA facility. The designer
must verify that the fire department capabilities can handle the manual fire fighting
B. Separate fire pumps from all other areas of the building by fire resistant rated construction in
accordance with NFPA 20. In new construction the fire pump must be in a separate room
from other mechanical and electrical equipment.
C. Design fire pump installation to comply with the details in the Appendix to NFPA 20. Provide
a test header and a flow meter. The test header is to be piped to an exterior straight type
header that can be tested without damaging landscaping, etc. Provide a bypass with normally
open valves. All fire pump system valves shall be electrically supervised by tamper switches.
However, padlocks and chains may be substituted in lieu of tamper switches for normally
closed valves on a case by case basis.
D. Pumps shall start automatically at 69 kPa (10 psi) below jockey pump start pressure. Pumps
shall be manually shut down.
Note: Manual shut down of the fire pump will ensure that the pump does not shut down
prematurely before controlling the fire. In addition, someone at the facility should go
to the fire pump upon alarm to ensure that it is operating properly. NFPA 20 does not
permit automatic shutdown where the fire pump constitutes the sole source of water for
a sprinkler or standpipe system.
E. Pumps shall be electric motor driven, horizontal split case centrifugal type unless not feasible.
Power transfer switch and fire pump controller shall be factory assembled and packaged as a
unit. Separate transfer switches are not permitted. Controller shall be monitored by the fire
alarm system. Protect feeder circuit to comply with NFPA 20.
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