Our emergency evacuation is tied into the fire alarm system. To initiate a lockdown, we use the fire panel in the entry vestibule. What should we do?

According to NFPA 72: National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, Chapter 24, an emergency voice communication system must have, at minimum, two locations from which emergency commands are sent.

This means that a school should have a secondary location allowing for emergency commands, such as active shooter, weather emergency, live voice announcements, and other threats to building occupants.

The fire panel is the primary source to initiate an emergency command; however, code dictates that a secondary source is required. If this is not the case in your school, it is recommended that you work with the fire marshal to ensure that the fire alarm/emergency communication system is up to code.

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