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LEADING COMMUNITY RISK REDUCTION - page 18 / 75

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Another design feature involves the use of smoke doors that are held open

magnetically. Should a fire alarm be transmitted, the smoke doors close preventing

smoke from spreading to corridors or stairwells.

Northeastern University is recognized by the city of Boston as an authorized

central station that monitors its own fire detection and alarm system. Full-time

dispatchers answer calls 24 hours a day from Northeastern University’s Police Operations

Center. In addition, the operations center has direct phone lines to both Boston Police

and Fire Departments.

Like any high-rise apartment building in Boston, the West Campus Residence

Hall is fully sprinkled with a wet-pipe system. An automatic 1,000 gallon-per-minute

pump serves the facility. A smoke evacuation system is also provided to prevent smoke

and fire gases from spreading to adjacent areas of the building.

Smoke detectors that are monitored by the central station are installed in every

room with a battery back up. If smoke is detected in a single room, a fire alarm is

sounded only in the local area of the smoke detector. In other words, only a selected area

is evacuated due to selective alarm notification. Conversely, if a smoke detector or pull

station is activated in a common living area such as a lobby, a fire alarm for the entire

building will be sounded, the elevators will be recalled, and an alarm will be sent directly

to the Boston Fire Department.

In summary, three types of fire detection and alarm systems are available.

However, automatic fire sprinkler systems appear to provide the best protection from fire

in any residential occupancy. NFPA 101, the Life Safety Code provides only minimal

requirements for fire protection systems. A manual fire alarm system may be used as an

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