What constitutes a "drop" on a fire alarm Class A circuit?
NFPA 72 188.8.131.52 (2016 Edition):
"The outgoing and return circuit conductors shall be permitted in the same cable assembly, enclosure, or raceway only under the following conditions:
(1) For a distance not to exceed 10 feet where the outgoing and return conductors enter or exit the initiating device, notification appliance, or control unit enclosures.
(2) Single drops installed in the raceway to individual devices or appliances.
(3) In a single room not exceeding 1000 sq ft in area, a drop installed in the raceway to multiple devices or appliances that does not include any emergency control function devices."
For this project in question an appliance is located approximately 12 feet away from a device. The circuit runs from the device, out 12 feet horizontally, down a wall a few feet, then back up and back to the first device.
In my opinion, the outgoing and return circuit exceeds 10 feet so it would not qualify as Class A wiring. However, the contractor is calling this a "single drop" to an individual appliance, so he feels it qualifies as exception (2) above.
Is this considered a single drop if it's only serving an individual appliance?
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