SBC Work Group Updates - December 2018

ALSO: WHY SHOULD I DO THIS? - Five Benefits of Participating in a Work Group

Posted on December 20, 2018.
Work Groups are the Vehicles for SBC Member Action - AND WE ARE GRATEFUL!

Advancement, Codes and Standards, and Education Work Groups Make Strong Contribution. Government Affairs Group to be Launched

Volunteers Sought to Provide Industry Expertise in this Critical Effort

December 20, 2018 

The work efforts of the Safer Buildings Coalition were significantly amplified in 2018 by the efforts of our Work Group Volunteers. 


WHY SHOULD I DO THIS? - Five Benefits of Participating in a Work Group:

1. Unparalleled Networking Opportunities.

You meet professional collaborators. Connect the work you're doing with others across the others - You are a member of a Community of Practice. You get answers to your questions, or establish yourself as someone others can look to for answers. Discover and create new best practices.     

2. Vital Component of Lifelong Learning

You’ll have access to continuing education, specialty resources, and discussions. These are critical to continuing competency, which in turn can lead to better systems and personal career outcomes.

3. Source of Mentors

Find experts who can help advance your knowledge and skills

4. Influence In-Building Public Safety Policy

The Safer Buildings Coalition has have comprehensive advocacy efforts, including Fire and Building Codes, UL Standards, Legislation, and Best Practices.You are a working, contributing member of a Community of Practice.

5Career and Leadership Development

Working in cross-functional teams with the leaders of other organizations requires an ability to lead and influence others without the luxury of having authority over them. Your leadership must be compelling. The ability to accomplish through the efforts of others and the ability to foster leadership in others are the signs of a true leader. 

Work Group Updates:

Codes and Standards Work Group

  • Chair - Josh Gerst, RF Connect
  • Vice-Chair - Joe Kurdas, Graybar

2018 was certainly a busy year in the Codes and Standards world as we look back. We had several new members including our first member from education and an AHJ! IFC 510 had a 2018 version published this year, while NFPA finalized the 2019 release of national model code. Several states released and updated state level Public Safety Wireless codes. SBC members held many presentations throughout the year to help educate AHJ’s on how to enforce the code on their books, what the code actually is meant to convey, and how they can partner with industry to solve their radio issues.

The Codes and Standards Workgroup has had several sessions with representatives from Firstnet and AT&T to discuss how their nascent system was going to be integrating with the current codes and standards. An LTE data channel on commercial bands does not have performance requirements or propagation characteristics of a P25 two way radio system. The current code language does not address or deal with this reality at all! Work was done with them on an ongoing basis throughout the year both to help the industry and work with the code development groups (IFC, NFPA) to address these issues in future editions.

October also brought the first release of UL 2524 Standard for In-building 2-Way Emergency Radio Communication Enhancement Systems. The workgroup has several members that have been part of that development, and we had several sessions with UL over the last year discussing the new standard. This will certainly have impact moving forward, but it does show the traction in-building public safety wireless enhancement systems are getting now.

As a result of the adoption of the UL 2524 listing / standard, the physical layer subcommittee will be retooled to help focus on those items that are still loose in the specification. Examples include alarm wiring best practices; further definition as to why passive components in a public safety system do not pose a risk of shock or when connected properly into the system.

Thank you to all the SBC members for being active with the Codes and Standards Workgroup in 2018, and I look forward to continuing to work with everyone in 2019.

Submitted by Josh Gerst

Advancement Work Group

  • Chair - Manny Gutsche, RF Industries
  • Vice-Chair - Eric Toenjes, Graybar

We have been focused on fulfilling our mission to create and maintain value for SBC members. Our team is chartered to be advocates for the members and ambassadors of SBC. Our recent activities include working with SBC management to implement value add ideas communicated from the members. Areas of focus are AHJ database, SBC communications and events. You may have noticed increased activities in these areas (this newsletter is an example). Stay tuned for further activities and improvements. Feel free to contact myself or any member of the work group with suggestions, questions or concerns. You can find our contact information on the SBC web site under the “Directories” tab.

Submitted by Manny Gutsche

Education Work Group

  • Chair - Kern Davis, CTS
  • Vice-Chair - Open

The education committee has been working on some larger projects that required some background work as to best approach. Specifically, much requested certification programs for (1) Design, (2) Installation, (3) System Commissioning & Turn-up, and (4) Monitoring, Maintenance and Annual Recertification of DAS building enhancements for today's first responders. The principle concern being the acceptance of these programs within the AHJ community, the committee turned to our Executive Director, Chief Alan Purdue, and General Manager, John Foley, for their recommendation. A meeting was established and attended by both with NICET, a organization well respected by first responders and the AHJ community, to discuss the need for these certification programs. I am happy to report that this conversation was well received, and resulted in Safer Buildings being recognized as a NICET training provider. As this effort continues, we will be reaching out to you all for assistance in developing the content for these programs. As stated earlier, this is a big request we hear at every training class we attend and see this as providing the quality and consistency required for successful DAS solutions for our first responders.

Other projects for the year include:

1. WEBINAR (COMPLETED) - introducing the new WEB site member content to the entire membership community
2. WEBINAR (COMPLETED) - providing training to membership primary points of contact on ability to update company profiles and content
3. WEBINAR (COMPLETED) - UL 2524 educational discussion on content, intent, process and opportunity within this newly established PS DAS focused chapter in the Underwriter Laboratory library.
4. AHJ TOOLKIT (UNDER WAY) - headed by John Foley, this is focused on providing the AHJ's with Process, Documents/Templates and Directions on the different tool sets required by the stakeholders throughout the process of developing, implementing and maintaining a successful PS DAS solution.

Next year should see this momentum continue to grow. Your suggestions and any feedback your are hearing from your customers on needed assistance in supporting and educating the PS community are more than welcome.

Submitted by Kern Davis

Government Affairs Work Group NEW!

  • Chair - Open
  • Vice-Chair - Open

Read article From the Chief's Corner - Government Relations/Public Policy – The Time is Now… CLICK HERE

For a Directory Listing of all Work Group Members, go to Menu -> Directories -> SBC Members and Work Groups