Fire Command Center

Did you know that the International Building Code requires high-rise buildings be provided with a Fire Command Center (FCC)?  A fire command center is a room dedicated as the Fire Department response point, and serves as the center for their emergency operations.  The FCC consolidates life safety system components and information to allow responders to efficiently evaluate and manage an emergency in the building.

Though the requirements for the FCC reside in the Fire Protection section of the Building Code (Section 911.1), there are numerous requirements which impact other disciplines and can be inadvertently missed.  Some of these include:

  • Minimum 200 sq. ft. size, with minimum 10 foot width, constructed with 1-hr separation from the rest of the building
  • FCC design review by AHJ prior to installation:
    • Location and accessibility of room
    • Layout of room and equipment
  • Elevator annunciator panel and selector switches
  • Status indicators and controls for air distribution systems
  • Controls for unlocking interior exit stairway doors
  • Dedicated telephone for fire department use
  • Schematic building plans
  • Building Information Card
  • Generator and ATS annunciators
  • Any unique local Fire and Building Department requirements

Parties having involvement in the FCC design and installation can include:

  • Architect
  • Engineer
  • Vertical transportation (elevator) consultant
  • Electrical and fire alarm contractor
  • Mechanical contractor
  • Low voltage and Security designer and contractors
  • Building owner and operator

Coordination early in a project can help avoid painful changes, costs, and delays when FCC deficiencies are found at the time of final inspections.   To view the complete list of FCC requirements, refer to IBC section 911.1.

Application of any information provided, for any use, is at the reader’s risk and without liability to Code Red Consultants. Code Red Consultants does not warrant the accuracy of any information contained in this blog as applicable codes and standards change over time. The application, enforcement and interpretation of codes and standards may vary between Authorities Having Jurisdiction and for this reason, registered design professionals should be consulted to determine the appropriate application of codes and standards to a specific scope of work.