Smoke Alarm Nuisance Source Characterization: Experimental Results

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Download the executive summary for this report. (PDF, 167 KB)

See the related report, "Smoke Alarm Nuisance Source Characterization: Phase 1"

Fire Protection Research Foundation report: "Smoke Alarm Nuisance Source Characterization: Experimental Results" (PDF, 17 MB)
Author: Joshua B. Dinaburg and Dr. Daniel T. Gottuk, Ph.D., Jensen Hughes
Date of issue: August 2015

During the revision cycle for the 2010 edition of NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, the Technical Committee on Single- and Multiple-Station Alarms and Household Fire Alarm Systems (SIG-HOU) focused renewed attention on nuisance alarms. Based on the information in the NFPA report "Smoke Alarms in U.S. Home Fires" authored by Marty Ahrens, during the development of the 2013 edition of NFPA 72 the SIG-HOU Technical Committee added several new provisions to Chapter 29 to further reduce nuisance alarms. At present there is a lack of characterization of common nuisance sources for the development of new performance test protocols. Accordingly, the Foundation initiated a project to work toward characterizing common nuisance sources for the development of new test protocols to meet the NFPA 72 requirements. This Phase 2 project involved collecting data to characterize nuisance sources from cooking and steam/water mist and comparing the nuisance source data to existing fire test data.