Every apartment house three or more stories in height or containing more than 15 apartments, every hotel three or more stories in height or containing 20 or more guest rooms, shall have installed therein an automatic or manually operated fire alarm system. Such fire alarm systems shall be so designed that all occupants of the building may be warned simultaneously and shall be in accordance with the California Fire Code. See Section 314.14 for special requirements in buildings over 75 feet (22 860 mm) in height.
Exception: A fire alarm system need not be installed provided such apartment house or hotel is separated by an unpierced wall of not less than 4-hour fire resistance in buildings of Type IA, Type IIB, Type III or Type IV construction and 2-hour fire resistance in buildings of all other types of construction provided:
- Areas do not exceed the number of apartments or guest rooms stipulated.
- The fire-resistive wall conforms to the requirements of Section 706.6 of the California Building Code.
- The wall complies with all other applicable provisions of the California Building Code.
- The wall extends to all outer edges of horizontal projecting elements, such as balconies, roof overhangs, canopies, marquees or architectural projections.
- No openings are permitted for air ducts or similar penetrations, except that openings for pipes, conduits and electrical outlets of copper, sheet steel or ferrous material shall be permitted through such wall and need not be protected, provided they do not unduly impair the required fire resistance of the assembly.
- Tolerances around such penetrations shall be filled with approved noncombustible materials.