Omnia Mechanical Group

571 Timpson Place Bronx, NY 10455

Phone: 212-534-2500

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Fire Pumps in High-Rise Buildings: What You Need to Know as a NYC Property Owner or Manager

If you are the owner or manager of a high-rise building in New York City, you have to follow special fire suppression system requirements. Here are the answers to some common questions about fire pumps in high-rise buildings that will help you ensure you’re able to meet city requirements and create the safest possible environment for occupants.

What Is a High-Rise Building?

Definition by height

A high-rise building in New York is considered any property with an occupied floor that is more than 75 feet above the lowest level of fire department vehicle access. That means that the measurement is taken from the side of the building with the lowest level of access. If you own a property on a grade, the measurement is always taken from the lowest side of the property.

Typically, this results in eight- or nine-story buildings being considered high rises, although it can vary with floor height and rooftop occupation (such as a rooftop restaurant or pool). This criterion is based on the limits imposed by fire department aerial ladder heights.

Why Are Fire Pumps Important in High-Rise Buildings?

Life-saving systems in higher-risk properties

Ladders and hose streams can only go so high when fighting a blaze. Fire pumps enable firefighters to access the right amount of water pressure to put out a fire, no matter what floor it’s on.

High-rise buildings aren’t just problematic for firefighters because of their size. The way they’re constructed makes fires more dangerous as well. Smoke, in particular, is a greater hazard. It can spread more quickly in high-rise structures. Vertical shafts can function like chimneys, pulling smoke and heat to upper stories rapidly.

People on higher floors may not be able to get out in time when firefighters resort to manual fire control, which is slower and depends on them having access to key areas of the building.

Fire pumps are necessary to push water from the local water supply or a roof tank to the uppermost areas of high-rise buildings to power sprinklers. They give occupants and firefighters the best chance of a positive outcome when a fire breaks out. Without pumps, fire suppression systems would be fighting a losing battle against gravity in high-rise properties.

What Are the NFPA Rules for Fire Pumps in High-Rise Buildings?

Special regulations

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) developed new standards for fire pumps in high-rise buildings in 2016. This update was designed both to make pumps more reliable in dire conditions and to avoid extra hazardous work for firefighters at the scene of a fire.

With very few exceptions (see below), fire pumps that work together in a series can no longer be on separate floors. This former practice, known as vertical staging, often results in subsequent pump failure when one pump located earlier in the series fails.

Now pumps must all be located in the same pump room so there will be adequate pressure even if one pump fails. Another benefit is, firefighters won’t have to locate and evaluate different pump rooms on separate floors when checking equipment when called to a fire scene.

The only way high-rise fire pumps are allowed to be in separate locations is if:

  • All pumps in the series can be manually started and stopped from all pump rooms.
  • Suction and discharge pressures for all pumps must be clearly displayed in all pump rooms.
  • Alarms and signals for all pumps are located in all pump rooms.
  • Standard-compliant interconnected control wiring is used between controllers in various pump rooms.
  • A standard-compliant pump room communication system is in use.

When Is It Time to Perform Fire Pump Maintenance?

Staying on top of maintenance

Maintenance should be performed any time it’s necessary, as this is not a task that can be delayed for obvious safety reasons. Here are some scenarios where you should call your local pump experts for assistance:

  • When the manufacturer’s instructions dictate maintenance is required
  • If you observe something wrong during a monthly visual inspection or any other time
  • If you fail the yearly flow test
  • If the fire pump is used and encounters problems (ranging from odd noises or leaking to insufficient pressure at the time of an actual fire when sprinklers are activated)
  • When you do construction work, renovations, or repairs in the vicinity of the fire suppression system
  • If your fire suppression system and fire pumps are older and you are concerned about their proper function

Who Can Help with Fire Pumps in Your High-Rise Building?

Antler Pumps and Sanitary Plumbing

If you need help with fire pump installation, fire pump maintenance, fire suppression monthly inspection, or annual flow testing, reach out to Antler Pumps today. Together with our Omnia Mechanical Group partner Sanitary Plumbing, we’ve got you covered. Call us at 212-534-2500, or use our easy online form to schedule an appointment at your convenience.


Our Privacy Policy

Omnia Mechanical Group(the “Company”) strives to ensure the highest standards for property listings and customer information privacy. Please review the following statement to learn about our company practices and policies. Please be aware that our Privacy Policy is subject to change at any time.

1. Purpose.

This Privacy Policy (“the Policy”) provides information on how the Company uses your personal information. By agreeing to the Policy, you agree to our collection and use of your personal information as described in the Policy. This Privacy Policy is effective for all new users of Sanitaryplumbing.com.

2. Personal Information.

You can browse some areas of omniagroup.nyc (“the Website”) without being a registered user. However, certain activities do require registration. (You consent to the transfer and storage of your information by registering with omniagroup.nyc).

3. Use of Information.

Our primary purpose in collecting personal information is to provide you with a safe and user-friendly experience. For example, the Company may use your personal information to:

  • Improve our services and the Website’s content and layout;
  • Provide the services and necessary customer support you request;
  • Resolve disputes, collect fees, and troubleshoot problems;
  • Track and record customer satisfaction with our services;
  • Protect the Company against error and fraud;
  • Inform you of special promotions and announcements;
  • Enforce our agreements, terms, conditions, and policies; and
  • As otherwise described to you at the time of collection.

We may occasionally ask you to complete optional surveys. These surveys are used to improve and customize your experience with Sanitaryplumbing.com.

The Company always provides you the ability to opt-out of further communication such as promotions and surveys; see the Opt-Out section below.

The Company does not share any of your personal information with outside organizations, companies, individuals, etc. The only exception to this standard is if such a disclosure is reasonably necessary to respond to any and all legal processes.

4. Links to Other Sites.

The Website may have links to other websites that may collect personally identifiable information about you. The Company is not responsible for the privacy practices of the content of those linked websites.

5. Safety & Security Precautions.

The Website has strict security measures in place to protect you and your information from fraud. Once your information is provided to Omnia Mechanical Group, we strive to ensure the confidentiality of your identity and information.

6. Opt-Out.

The Company provides you with the opportunity to opt-out of receiving promotional and other non-essential, marketing-related communications from Omnia Mechanical Group. If you would like to opt-out of these select communications, please see any of the Company’s email communications and follow the directions indicated.

7. Account Protection.

Your password ensures the security of your account. When choosing a password, the Company suggests using various characters. It is highly recommended that you do not disclose your Sanitaryplumbing.com password to anyone. (If you do disclose your password or your personal information with others, you are responsible for all actions taken in the name of your account.) If the security of your password is compromised for any reason, please contact the Company immediately.

8. Accuracy of Information

The Company does not guarantee the accuracy of information for any and all of its properties on the Website, and is not responsible for any errors or misrepresentations (made by Renters, the Client, or otherwise).

9. Cookies

The Company may place a small cookie on your computer’s hard drive. This allows us to personalize your use on the Website. In order to maximize the functionality and usability of the Website, you must set your browser’s preferences to allow both permanent and temporary cookies.

10. Changing Your Personal Information.

Should your personal information change, please immediately update your information on the Website. This will ensure the accuracy of our records. The Company does retain personal information from closed accounts in order to comply with law and collect and disburse any fees owed.

11. Third Parties

This Privacy Policy addresses only the use of information we collect from you. Since omniagroup.nyc does not control the privacy policies of third parties, you are subject to the privacy policies of those third parties. It is advisable that you consult with the management of third parties before you disclose your personal information to others.

12. General

We may amend this Privacy Policy at any time by posting the amended terms on the Website. All amended terms are immediately effective after they are initially posted on the Website.

13. Privacy Policy Questions & Concerns

Questions and/or concerns regarding the Policy should be emailed to the following email address: info@omniagroup.nyc.