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The assignment of class designations to signaling line circuits shall be based on their performance capabilities under abnormal (fault) conditions in accordance with the requirements for Class A, Class B, Class N, or Class X pathways specified in Chapter 12.
23.6.1* SLC Zones
A single fault on a pathway connected to the addressable devices shall not cause the loss of the devices in more than one zone.
For the purpose of this section, each floor of the building shall be considered a separate zone.
For the purpose of this section, if a floor of the building is subdivided into multiple zones by fire or smoke barriers and the fire plan for the protected premises allows relocation of occupants from the zone of origin to another zone on the same floor, each zone on the floor shall be considered a separate zone.*
The requirements in 23.6.1 shall not apply to the following:
  1. Circuits between enclosures containing transponders and control units regardless of the number of initiating devices, notification appliances, or control relays that might be connected to those control units
  2. Circuits connecting short-circuit fault isolation modules to enclosures containing transponders and control units where the conductors are installed in metallic raceway or equivalently protected against mechanical injury and where the circuit does not exceed 3 ft (0.9 m) in length
  3. *Alterations or modifications made to an existing SLC not required to comply with 23.6.1 when originally installed
The loss of more than one zone shall be permitted on a documented performance-based design approach.*
Performance-based designs submitted to the authority having jurisdiction for review and approval shall include documentation, in an approved format, of each performance objective and applicable scenario, together with technical substantiation used in establishing the proposed zone performance.
23.6.2* Class N Devices
Unless permitted in or, no area or zone shall be served solely by a single device where Class N pathways are deployed, such that a single device failure resulting from a multiple ground-fault pathway failure would render an area or zone incapable of initiating input signals or receiving output signals.
Where a risk analysis shows that only one device is required and where acceptable to the authority having jurisdiction, the requirements of 23.6.2 shall not apply.
Multiple devices shall not be required in areas served by pathways not susceptible to ground faults, such as fiber or wireless pathways.*
Where a device as referenced by 23.6.2is serviced by only a single pathway, it shall terminate that pathway with no ability to connect additional endpoint devices to the pathway.*
A single fault on a Class N pathway shall not cause the loss of more than one addressable device.
23.6.3 Class N Shared Pathways
Class N pathways shall be required to use shared pathway Level 3 as specified in 12.5.4 except as permitted by Accessibility
Class N pathways shall not be accessible to the general public or building occupants for any purpose other than specified in the network design analysis, maintenance, and deployment plans. Level 1 and Level 2
Shared pathways Levels 1 and 2 shall be permitted subject to approval of the authority having jurisdiction, based on documentation of the deployment, change control, maintenance plans, management organization, network design analysis, and a risk analysis as identified in through* Deployment Plan
All equipment connected to shared pathways shall be documented in the deployment plan.
The documentation shall include manufacturer, model, listings, and intended purpose and reason for inclusion on the shared network.*
The deployment plan shall identify how and where each piece of equipment is connected.*
All connection ports, used or spare, where any unauthorized or unintended equipment could be added to the shared network, shall be identified as for use only by equipment consistent with the deployment plan. Equipment Location
The requirements of through shall apply to all equipment rooms, equipment closets, telecommunication rooms, telecommunication enclosures, or the like, for which both Class N life safety network infrastructure and non-life safety network equipment resides.*
Equipment rooms or enclosures shall be permitted to contain both Class N life safety networking cable, equipment, and associated infrastructure provided the deployment satisfies through
Class N life safety network cabling, equipment, and infrastructure shall be clearly segregated and identified as "Life Safety Network."
Equipment rooms or enclosures shall be accessible to only authorized personnel via a locked access or via an enclosure requiring the use of tools to open, as acceptable by the authority having jurisdiction. Change Control Plan
Configuration upgrades and updates shall be governed by a change control plan that determines the policy and procedure of the change and ensures that all documentation is correspondingly updated. Management Organization*
An organization shall be established and maintained to manage the life safety network and shall perform the following:
  1. Contain members appropriately certified by each manufacturer of the equipment and devices deployed on shared pathways to maintain such a network
  2. Service and maintain all shared Class N pathways
  3. Maintain the deployment and shared pathways plan for the lifetime of the shared pathways*
Other service personnel, even when certified to service a specific system (i.e., fire alarm or MNS), shall be authorized and managed by this organization to ensure any outages of any system are planned, managed, and documented and appropriate steps are taken during outages to provide alternate protection of life and property. Network Design Analysis*
The analysis shall be performed to determine and document communications capability as follows:
  1. Calculation of minimum required bandwidth such that all life safety systems can be guaranteed to operate simultaneously and within required time limits
  2. Total bandwidth provided by the network
  3. Future bandwidth requirements
  4. Method of providing and maintaining the prioritization of life safety traffic over non-life safety traffic*
The analysis shall determine and document the power distribution capability as follows:
  1. The methods provided to maintain power to all shared pathway equipment
  2. A calculation of power requirements of all connected equipment
  3. Secondary power capacities provided to maintain all life safety equipment with minimum operational capacity in accordance with
  4. Methods to disengage any non-life safety equipment in the event of emergency operation if required to support the minimum operational capacity requirements Maintenance Plan*
The maintenance plan shall identify policy and procedures to monitor, maintain, test, and control change of the shared pathways.*
Written procedures shall be presented in maintenance plans to govern the following:
  1. Physical access to all parts of the Class N network equipment (i.e., switches, ports, server, controllers, devices, or components)
  2. Electronic access to all parts of the Class N network (i.e., passwords, addresses)
  3. *Service outage impairment process with notices of impairment and contingency plans for affected systems
  4. Upgrade procedures
  5. Change control procedures, with consideration given to require an updated risk analysis if necessary
  6. Prioritization and/or segregation configuration information for life safety traffic
  7. Maintenance and testing plans to ensure the minimum operational capacity with respect to secondary power is maintained
  8. Other service, maintenance, or reconfiguration plans for any connected equipment* Network Risk Analysis for Class N
Each application of a Class N deployment shall be specific to the nature and anticipated risks of each facility for which it is designed.
The risk analysis shall address both fire and non-fire emergencies when determining risk tolerances for the survivability of the network and the systems and devices it serves.
The detail and complexity of the risk analysis shall be commensurate with the complexity of the facility for which the network is to be installed.
The risk analysis shall be permitted to be limited in scope to address the requirements of an existing emergency response plan.
The risk analysis shall consider characteristics of the buildings, areas, spaces, campuses or regions, equipment, and operations that are not inherent in the design specifications.
Those elements that are not inherent in the design specifications, but that affect occupant behavior or the rate of hazard development, shall be explicitly identified and included in the risk analysis.
The risk analysis shall consider the following types of potential events, which are not all-inclusive but reflect the general categories that shall be considered in the risk analysis:
  1. Natural hazards — geological events
  2. Natural hazards — meteorological events
  3. Human caused — accidental events
  4. Human caused — intentional events
  5. Technological — caused events
All other identified risks as required by the authority having jurisdiction shall be discussed and addressed in the analysis and maintenance plans.

Related Code Sections* Protected Premises Alarm and Signaling Systems,
Performance-based designs submitted to the authority having jurisdiction for review and approval shall include documentation, in an approved format ...