VOIP Phonelines for Fire Alarm dialout UPS?

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zbang

Senior Member
Just to flog a dead equine- VoIP is Voice over IP, not any audio signal over IP. The only reason that fax's work is because the terminal adapters specifically recognise fax tones.
 

gadfly56

Senior Member
This is from Cablevision's TOS as I was saying above:

Cablevision does not support the use of Optimum Voice for Business as a connection between (i) medical alert systems, (ii) any high security monitoring systems (UL 681 or similar) or (iii) fire alarm systems (UL 864 or similar). and the central station monitoring Subscriber must maintain an alternate connection.

I would further add that it won't make any difference if you are using the dialtone off a cable modem or the broadband internet connection. Both are subject to the same reliability issues. So I can't see under what conditions a UL approval for an IP communicator is possible.

-Hal
From what I've been told, they are trading off overall system reliability for early notification of the circuit path interruption. For the usual POTS line setup, you could wait as long as 24 hours before realizing that there was no connection between the central station and the FACP, assuming both lines went down at the same time. When the central station fails to receive a test timer, it will notify the responsible parties.

If the central station is capable of getting information from Honeywell/FireLite's IP-DACT, for example, the receiver pings the IP-DACT every 7-15 seconds and you'll get notification in a hurry if anything goes down. This doesn't address the issue of what happens if there's a fire while everybody is trying to fix the Internet. I'm pretty sure that if the local fire official is notified (as he/she is supposed to be) that he'll require a fire watch by the premises owner.
 
We have an installation that just switched all their lines to VOIP, they did not tell us about it and normally the panels self test every day. One day the VOIP system went down and we stopped getting test signals from the 10 buildings on site, later we found out it was due to the system shutting down and not being reset. They corrected this and now we are getting test signals. We are used to using Analog phone lines where we can set up line siezure using an RJ31X block. We contacted the State Fire Marshal and we were told VOIP was ok as long as it met the rest of the codes. The issue I see is they do not have a 24 hour battery backup UPS on their VOIP system to avoid the kind of problem that occured. Analog lines would not go down if there was a power outage. Can you help me with a code reference to support this UPS backup?
Is your dialer listed as compatible with the phone line specs? If not no, the device used must be listed for the purpose.
 

MisterCMK

Member
From what I've been told, they are trading off overall system reliability for early notification of the circuit path interruption. For the usual POTS line setup, you could wait as long as 24 hours before realizing that there was no connection between the central station and the FACP, assuming both lines went down at the same time. When the central station fails to receive a test timer, it will notify the responsible parties.

If the central station is capable of getting information from Honeywell/FireLite's IP-DACT, for example, the receiver pings the IP-DACT every 7-15 seconds and you'll get notification in a hurry if anything goes down. This doesn't address the issue of what happens if there's a fire while everybody is trying to fix the Internet. I'm pretty sure that if the local fire official is notified (as he/she is supposed to be) that he'll require a fire watch by the premises owner.
You will know of telco failures long before 24 hours. The panel will set a local trouble for phone line fail and it is up to the building occupants to do something about it at that point. Otherwise yeah, the daily test fail will be an indication that phone lines are down.

With the IP communicator it will provide notification that it failed to communicate with the central station. The system will still work locally. This is why I always tell our customers to call the fire department themselves if there is a problem and not to rely solely on the communicator. More calls is better than none.
 

gadfly56

Senior Member
You will know of telco failures long before 24 hours. The panel will set a local trouble for phone line fail and it is up to the building occupants to do something about it at that point. Otherwise yeah, the daily test fail will be an indication that phone lines are down.
If, for some panels, the installation tech remembered to select "YES" for phone line monitoring. I've seen this not happen with Silent Knight IFP series panels

With the IP communicator it will provide notification that it failed to communicate with the central station. The system will still work locally. This is why I always tell our customers to call the fire department themselves if there is a problem and not to rely solely on the communicator. More calls is better than none.
Always a good idea. No question.
 
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