You can read all of our articles on our website. Having trouble getting our emails?   Change your spam controls and white list 

Advice on fire alarm communication options / ISC meetings
March 17, 2022
ISC meetings
Private and free consults are still available at ISC.
   To schedule a free half hour meeting please make arrangements with Stacy Spector,Esq at 516 987 8428 or
Advice on fire alarm communication options from article on March 11, 2022
            A serious issue with the VOIP for contact ID transmission for any alarm signal is that it can create a delay in the central station receiving the alarm signal from a fire or security panel. I have listened to the telco communications of a panel try to dial out and send the contact ID info to a central station receiver over VOIP only to hear the kissoff not be sent by the receiver which causes the alarm panel to hang up and re attempt to dial and send its signal again. The contact ID tones get garbled and the receiver cannot make out what was sent so it hangs up.
            This has been a problem for some time now and can add about 90 seconds or more a successful transmission. Maybe the MFVN can correct for this but, still there may be an issue with power supply at the premise with VOIP. When the dial tone comes from the VOIP module at the opposite side of a building away from the fire alarm panel and when the AC power goes out, do you still have dialtone?  Not in any of the cases I have seen.
            Go with the UL fire cellular communicator either Napco or the Honeywell/FireLite then all you have to worry about is using Verizon or AT&T with possibly an outside antenna. There are other good UL fire communicators but, I like the Napco and Honeywell/FireLite communicators.
            Also, make sure if the communicator gets power from the panel that you don't violate the FACP battery standby calculation time. With Napco fire communicators you have to worry about the NOC going down about every three months which causes the central station to get flooded with communicator failures which, by default, shows up as a code 99. This happened about three times with Napco last year. A code 99 is a panic alarm to most central stations similar to when a Vista20P keypad panic is sent in contact ID. You can change it in programming to something else from the default code of 99. They say they are working on the NOC failure issue to eliminate them. Also, with the UL fire communicator from Napco, make sure you program your panel to dial at least a ten digit number or it can cause a delay in the receiver acknowledging a transmission especially if using the older 4/2 format.
            Tech support at Napco said it has something to do with the off hook delay time before the communicator handshake occurs.
            Another bit of advice is to use the IP transmission from either Napco or Alarmnet or whatever communicator supplier you use to your central station.
 Good Luck!
Ron Baumann, NICET IV
ProAlert Security Systems, LLC
Cincinnati, Ohio 
            Thanks for that advice.  Since liability is on everyone’s mind let me assure you that a delay of 90 seconds could be enough for a fire reconstructionist to support a claim against the alarm company.  No need to risk it if there are communication options available.

To order up to date Standard Form Alarm /  Security / Fire and related Agreements click here:
CONCIERGE LAWYER SERVICE PROGRAM FOR THE ALARM INDUSTRY You can check out the program and sign up here: or contact our Program Coordinator Stacy Spector, Esq at 516 747 6700 x 304.
ALARM ARTICLES:  You can always read our Articles on our website at  updated daily             
THE ALARM EXCHANGE - the alarm industries leading classified and business exchange - updated daily
Wondering how much your alarm company is worth?  
Click here:
Getting on our Email List / Email Articles archived: 
    Many of you are forwarding these emails to friends or asking that others be added to the list.  Sign up for our daily newsletter here: Sign Up.  You can read articles and order alarm contracts on our web site

Ken Kirschenbaum,Esq
Kirschenbaum & Kirschenbaum PC
Attorneys at Law
200 Garden City Plaza
Garden City, NY 11530
516 747 6700 x 301