Fire & Life Safety: How Many Lights Can You See?

A redundant strobe light installation caused headaches for this hotel

Then, the ADA guest room’s strobes could be wired into the fire alarm system’s NAC, so that a general alarm would cause the guest room’s two remaining strobe(s) to flash when the guest room’s fire alarm system horn sounded. For code compliance, activation of the guest room’s smoke alarm would cause the smoke alarm to sound and flash along with the supplemental bathroom strobe. After the guest(s) has fled to the outside, activation of the sprinkler head in that guest room would cause the supplemental fire alarm system to alert the fire department as well as alert the other guests/occupants.

The smoke alarm’s installation instructions would need to be consulted as to how to properly wire the strobes for this dual use. Lastly, the holes where the system strobe light(s) used to be would have to be covered over. If an addressable relay is required to activate the two remaining strobes, the bathroom’s old fire alarm system strobe electrical box could be used to mount this relay — which would mean no patching or covering unneeded boxes.

Greg Kessinger is SD&I’s fire alarm and codes expert and a regular contributor. Send him your fire & life safety questions at