Drew talks with fire protection industry legend, Terry Victor. Terry is on 20, yes 20 different NFPA committees. He also has his dream job as Sr. Manager of Industry Relationships for Johnson Controls. This is his first podcast, but it won’t be his last. You’ll soon hear him everywhere. Drew already wants to book him again!

Terry shares his rich history in the fire safety industry as well as his predictions for the future, including the Internet of Things (IoT) and the connected system, as well as remote monitoring and inspection. Terry also dives into several codes, including NFPA 4 and how this code will be adopted.

NFPA website for Remote Inspection information

You can reach out to Terry on LinkedIn or via his email Terry.Victor@jci.com

You can reach out to Drew at drew@inspectpoint.com To learn more about inspect Point, talk to us at sales@inspectpoint.com

Listen to the Audio


Introductions (2:32)
Terry’s 20 Committees (4:26)
Terry’s History (5:12)
Drew’s History (8:13)
The3 Kozlowski days of Tyco (8:55)
The Value of Fire Protection (12:00)
A Noble Industry (13:27)
20 Different Standards? (14:45)
NFPA13, 14, 11, 16, and 25 (15:46)
NFPA303 – Marinas, Docks & Boat Yards (18:18)
NFPA4 – Test Agents (19:48)
Remote Testing, FDNY, COVID, and IoT (25:28)
The Cost of Freeze Ups (30:00)
Allowances for Equipment in System (34:40)
Crab Cakes or Boiled Crab? (35:55)
Quick Response Round (35:34)

Discussed in this Episode: Johnson Controls (JCI), NFPA Codes and Standards, Inspection Data Collection, Internet of Things (IoT), Remote Monitoring and Testing

Related Links

Johnson Controls Smart Connected Fire Sprinkler Monitoring
Johnson Controls Connected Fire Suppression Monitoring


Full Episode
Meet Inspect Point: Trusted Fire Inspection Software


Drew Slocum: (00:10):

This is episode 28 of the Fire Protection Podcast, powered by Inspect Point. Today, my guest is the amazing Terry Victor. Uh, Terry is the, uh, national Sprinkler Manager at jci. He’s essentially JCI’s industry, uh, liaison with N F P A, with a lot of, um, helping out with a lot of different, um, uh, political, um, pushes for fire sprinkler, for fire suppression, um, huge in the industry for N F P A. He sits on 20 different, uh, N F P A committees. Uh, we get into that a little bit. Um, he also has a, a good perspective on what’s coming next in fire protection. So, uh, I’ve known Terry for years. He’s been a mentor of mine, um, since starting in Spec Point, and even beyond that, one of our days at Tyco. So we get into his early background and how Tyco and JCI has transitioned over the years and, um, yeah, and into the N F P A codes and, and what could go better with them and, and what we have to look forward in the future.

So, really good. Uh, chat with Terry. It was only 30 to 40 minutes. We would love to do this again here soon. So, um, yeah, hope you enjoy the podcast with Terry Victor, and, uh, make sure to subscribe and, and like the podcast share with a friend. Just a quick message on Inspect Point since I do have this, uh, fire Protection Podcast platform, inspect point’s role in with a lot of new features with our inspection, testing, and maintenance, fire protection, uh, software. Uh, last year we got into the service, uh, and work order realm. So it’s kind of the full flow from inspection to proposal to service that full flow for a fire protection contractor or fire equipment distributor. Uh, we sectorize it into sprinkler fire alarm, extinguisher suppression. Each one of those has different workflows, and we really speak to that. We have the relevant N F P A codes baked into the platform, so I highly recommend, uh, checking out a demo or just chatting with us, uh, inspect point.com. Feel free, feel free to e email us at sales@inspectpoint.com. So onto the podcast. Um, yeah, welcome, welcome, Terry to the podcast today. Um, I don’t, I don’t know if you’ve, you’ve heard us before, but we got a, a pretty broad listenership. It’s weird. I, you know, we get some listeners all throughout the world and, uh, uh, everybody in fire protection, so I know, you know, there’s been a lot more people requesting some, um, topics around N F P A code and everything. So I thought, who better than Terry Victor to talk about this stuff?

Terry Victor: (03:02):

<laugh>. Well, thank you, drew. I appreciate, um, the opportunity. I’ve always, I’ve been asked several times to participate in, in different podcasts, and I’ve never done it, so this is the first for me. Good. I appreciate you, uh, appreciate you asking and setting this up.

Drew Slocum: (03:17):

Yeah, yeah. Well, well, well, let’s start off, first of all, um, Terry is the, uh, you know, according to your LinkedIn, and I’ve known you for many years now, your national sprinkler manager at, at jci. What, I guess, what, what is your, I know your role’s kind of morphed as JCI’s transitioned over the years, so yeah, I guess give, give your, what you’re doing now and kind of your background, uh, in fire protection.

Terry Victor: (03:47):

Sure. Drew, um, my title today, I mean, I, I don’t change it in LinkedIn because all of a sudden you’ve got a new job and everybody’s congratulating you. But, um, I, my current title is Senior Manager of Industry Relations for Johnson Controls. Um, and in that role, I, you know, I primarily represent Johnson Controls to different, um, associations. For instance, the National Fire Sprinkler Association. I’m one of the board of directors there, and on several of their committees and the American Fire Sprinkler Association, I’m on several of their committees as well, board of Committees. So it, um, and I’m on about 20 different N F P A,

Drew Slocum: (04:29):

<inaudible> 20. Wow.

Terry Victor: (04:31):

My, my, my full-time job really is to just represent the Johnson Controls to the industry and to do my best to, you know, promote, uh, fire protection, uh, specifically sprinklers. Although at Johnson Controls, you know, we do a little bit of everything. Right. A lot of everything. Um, but it’s just, you know, I’m very fortunate to have the job that I have. It’s, it’s, it’s a dream job in that, um, you know, I do pretty much what I believe is best for our company. Uh, I don’t have a lot of people telling me do this or that. I just, um, I keep my eyes and ears open for things that affect fire sprinklers and the in sprinkler industry and try to, you know, affect, uh, the best fire protection, uh, through whatever means is necessary. Yeah. So that’s, that’s kinda what I do.

Drew Slocum: (05:26):

Yeah. So I guess, uh, I know you were on, you know, your history goes back with Grinnell, right? And, and the contracting side,

Terry Victor: (05:34):

Well, before that, I go back to, uh, I don’t know if you remember or not, you may not have been around at that time, a company called Automatic Sprinkler Corporation of America.

Drew Slocum: (05:43):

Yep. Heard of them. Yeah.

Terry Victor: (05:46):

Yeah, that’s, I started with them, uh, as a designer trainee. Wow. Yeah, that was way that long, too long ago. Um, but that company, there were, at that time, there were two major contracting companies, nationwide, contracting companies, and that was automatic Sprinkler and Grinnell fire protection.

Drew Slocum: (06:07):


Terry Victor: (06:08):

And, um, in 1995, Tyco acquired Automatic Sprinkler. Yep. And so then we merged with Grinnell, and I was, I was very fortunate. There were a lot of locations since we were fierce competitors in the, in the market. Um, a lot of locations, the automatic sprinkler were let, they were let go, and they weren’t retained. Uh, as part of Grinnell, I was very fortunate to, uh, be in Baltimore area, and my district general manager that on the Grinnell side, was a guy named Chet Tucker. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, and he brought in everybody from the automatic side and, and, and added them to, to his, um, into his staff. Yep. And so I have to, you know, really just thank, thank Chet for that opportunity, um, that a lot of guys didn’t get with automatic

Drew Slocum: (07:05):

Oh, that, that’s now was automatic. I know. They were in, um, contracting. Were, were they, did they have a manufacturing piece too?

Terry Victor: (07:13):

Yes. Okay. Yeah. Automatic also made sprinklers. Yeah. So they, they were just like Grinnell in that they manufactured valves and sprinklers out of, uh, ransom, uh, West Virginia. Um, they had a r and d in, uh, in Broadview Heights, Ohio. And that’s where the main office was just a little bit south of Cleveland. Oh. So yeah, they did the whole thing. They did the installation service, um, manufacturing the same as Grinnell.

Drew Slocum: (07:43):


Terry Victor: (07:43):

That was brought both, both teams together. Now, before the acquisition, um, the, the manufacturing piece of automatic sprinkler was dissolved. Okay. So Grinnell did not inherit that. Um, that, that just sort of went away. I think Kitta, I think Kitta purchased whatever was left of automatic sprinkler manufacturing.

Drew Slocum: (08:12):

Interesting. Yeah. I, I, I’ve, you know, I go back, I, I mean, I got in the industry in the early, early two thousands. So, you know, you got in 1995 to the, the, I guess the Tyco Grinnell. So you were in the, the heyday of the Klowski days, um, when that Oh, yes. Buying all the company. I came in, I think right after, I think 2003, right after he got in trouble and all that. So, um, he had all these companies that were amazing companies, but how do you, how do you mold them together? And obviously JCI’s done a good, good job, or Tyco has done a good job then JCI’s obviously done, done a good job with that over the years. So,

Terry Victor: (08:55):

Well, it’s, it is been interesting. Drew, I’ve been through an acquisition and two mergers now, and, um, none of them have been smooth, let’s say. Yep. And a couple of ’em have been very, uh, very trying, but the, um, the automatic one for me, I guess that was the easiest one. Yep. Uh, as far as just, just came right in. And we got, we got assimilated into, into Tyco, and you’re right, it was during the Koslowski era. Uh, I was in a position as a, uh, what we called a total service manager in Baltimore with Grinnell. And I actually went out and acquired two companies on my own. Wow. Um, for the, for the Baltimore market. So yeah. Slosky thing was, you know, acquisitions and mergers and things like that. Um, so yeah, I was heavily involved in, in some of that activity as well, not the shady side of cost.

Drew Slocum: (09:51):

Yeah, right.

Terry Victor: (09:52):

<laugh>, um, acquired a couple of really good, uh, companies in Baltimore.

Drew Slocum: (09:58):

Yeah. Yeah. Well, I think, you know, some of the stuff he did was, um, you know, reading into a few books and documentaries on it. It’s like, you know, he was trying to do the right thing, you know, and acquire, co acquire good, good companies, make them mul, melt together. It’s just, you know, sometimes you get too big to, to overlook some of the, the minute stuff that happens. So, um, yeah. That, that’s a, yeah, we

Terry Victor: (10:25):

Won’t, we won’t get into the what, what his issues

Drew Slocum: (10:27):

Were. Yeah. That’s another podcast. <laugh>.

Terry Victor: (10:32):

There’s, there’s many things that, you know, back in the day, I don’t think there was, I wouldn’t call them shady, but there were things that the, um, certain companies did that were probably not on the, on the straight up and up, but, you know, the regulators really didn’t look at it too closely. And, but now they look at it very closely and it’s good. Oh, yeah. You know, some of those things, the, um, the Ponzi schemes and Sure. And some of the, um, you know, the companies that were out there that really didn’t have any assets, um, you know, all that stuff has gone away, and now we’re under close scrutiny Yep. As every company is. Right. And that’s, that’s good. Keeps everybody honest and keeps everybody on the up and up.

Drew Slocum: (11:16):

Yeah. Yeah. It’s definitely, it’s definitely gotten better. And, you know, you hear stories from back in the day and it’s, it’s, it’s totally different now, now that you know, that the whole merger, you know, with Automatic and Grinnell and all that, it seems, you know, since then, it’s kind of, um, been fragmented again. You know, there were a lot of big national and regional players, and it seems like the last few years at least, there’s a lot of big rate regional and national players starting to, um, conglomerate again. Um, so it’s, it’s interesting cycle to see the fire protection contractor market, and even the manufacturer market happened the last few years of, of coming back together, you know? So

Terry Victor: (12:00):

Yeah, there’s a lot of, a lot of movement, A lot of, uh, acquisitions are still very active for some, you know, some corporations, a lot of, uh, uh, you know, groups that they really don’t manage their companies. They just acquire them mm-hmm. <affirmative> and, uh, and have the, the people that manage them, continue to manage them. And that’s, there’s a lot of that going on in our industry as well.

Drew Slocum: (12:24):

Yeah. A lot of, a lot of investment outside of fire protection. What, you know, I think the big groups like, like JCI and even the API group, they’re, they’re fire protection, uh, focused. Right. So I think, uh, it’s a great model and, and, um, I think the regular, you know, investment world and just business world see that, you know, in 2020, crazy enough, it wasn’t, it wasn’t a terrible year for, for, you know, I, I, I see JCI’s reports and all that, and, and just talking to fire protection contractors and even manufacturers, it wasn’t, wasn’t a, a, a terrible year business wise, uh, because of the essential business and, um, you know, fire protection systems being essential. Um, so I think there’s, there’s a lot of eyes on it now because it is, it is a great business to be in, and, you know, we’re all in it, we’re all in this niche little industry, and, um, there’s been a, a lot of eyes on it, uh, elsewhere. So it’s really cool to be a part of.

Terry Victor: (13:27):

Well, I think the greatest part about being in this industry is, you know, what we do and, you know, some of us aren’t cut out to be firefighters. I know I’m not cut out to get up at two o’clock in the morning and, and go, uh, running to a fire call, but yet we still save lives and property. Yeah. So it’s a very noble industry and, you know, we do great things and I’m, I like to think, you know, I lay my head down at night that some of the sprinkler systems that I’ve designed, or I know, you know, some of the, the sprinkler systems I’ve designed or have, have managed and serviced that, you know, they, they operate in a fire event and they save lives and property. And I have no doubt about that. And I feel very good Yeah. About being part of this industry because of that fact.

Drew Slocum: (14:10):

Yeah. It’s, it’s pretty cool. Some of the, the projects, um, being a part of, I, I’m, I’m probably doing a, a podcast in the next few months on, I was part of the new Penn Station in Moynihan Station design. Um, and that’s, that’s gonna affect millions of people. And I, I, I didn’t think about it until the other day and when, when it, you know, the station finally opened in New York City and, uh, I don’t know. It’s, it’s, you’re right. It’s, it’s, you’re, you’re affecting the general public and keeping them safe.

Terry Victor: (14:42):


Drew Slocum: (14:43):

Yeah. So, um, absolutely. You know, I know you’re 2020 different N F P A standards. Uh, do you got a list somewhere or you, you must have something on the wall to keep track of it?

Terry Victor: (14:58):

Yeah. Um, you know, I do a lot of presentations in the industry, drew and, um, for different groups and associations and so forth. And so I do have a little, little bio that I, they asked me for, um, when they do the introductions, and it’s, it’s pretty diverse group, but everything is, is kind of ties back to the fire protection in one way or another. Right. So I’m on, you know, NFPA three and four, which is commissioning and integrated testing. Yep. And obviously the sprinkler systems are, uh, integrated with the fire alarm systems in every, in buildings where they’re the two exist. And so that standard NF P four deals with, you know, how to do that integrated testing. Sure. Most of the other standards that I’m involved with are water based fire protection standards, or they reference back into N F P A 13 and someone 13, 14, um, 11, which is phone systems.

Yeah. I was on N FPA 16, uh, 16 has now merged with 11. Right. So I’m the secretary for, um, N F P A 11 technical committee, um, N F P 15 water Spray at some one point in time in my career as a designer, I was a special hazards designer. And, and back in that day, special hazards was water spray systems, um, vessels and, and, uh, towers and Sure. Cooling towers and transformers and conveyors and things like that with open, open nozzles. Um, so I’ve been involved in, in N F P 15 from that aspect. And then there’s, and if you 25, which is probably the one that, uh, the one standard where I’m, I’m proudest of my, um, representation there. I was on the original committee that put together NFPA 25. We came together back in 1989, and the 1992 edition was the very first edition of NFP 25. So I was on the technical committee back then when we put together NFP 25, and I’ve been on it ever since.

Drew Slocum: (17:10):

Was there anybody else that, that I would know of that’s still on the standard that was on that?

Terry Victor: (17:17):

Um, I believe Top Meyer.

Drew Slocum: (17:19):


Terry Victor: (17:19):

Yeah. Top, top Meyer’s, uh, you know, top, um, I believe he was one of the original members of the committee, and I think Carrie Bell.

Drew Slocum: (17:29):


Terry Victor: (17:30):

Uh, I think there’s only three of us left. Oh. That were, you know, original members of the committee. That goes back

Drew Slocum: (17:38):

20 fives. Uh, I got some further questions on, on 25 for, you’re on 20 as well, right? For fire pumps?

Terry Victor: (17:45):

Yes. For fire pumps. I represent the, um, uh, fire Sprinkler Association on that particular committee. Most of the committees I represent jci, we have our own separate seats, but there are some committees where I represent other associations. So NF K 20 is one of those.

Drew Slocum: (18:02):

Gotcha. Uh, let’s see’s 25. What, what we got 30 N F P 30? No,

Terry Victor: (18:12):

No, I’m not on N F P 30. No, no, I’m on three. Oh. Um, 3 0 3, which is, uh, marinas and docks. Oh,

Drew Slocum: (18:20):


Terry Victor: (18:21):

Boat yards. That’s an interesting committee to be on. Yeah. It involves fire protection as well. And you know, there’s a lot of things in the news about, um, boat docks and marinas where they have huge fires and they’re trying to provide adequate fire protection in those situations.

Drew Slocum: (18:38):

Yeah. How do you, how do you protect, uh, uh, something that re repels water <laugh>?

Terry Victor: (18:43):

Yeah. Right. Well, the boat storage racks are the biggest challenge, right. How, how do you protect something that’s encapsulated? Um, and if you fill a full of water, the whole thing’s gonna collapse.

Drew Slocum: (18:54):

Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. That’s gotta be an interesting one. Uh, 72, right? You’re on 72?

Terry Victor: (19:03):

Yeah, I’m on. Um, although I’m not a fire alarm expert by any stretch of the imagination. Um, I N F P A 72 has chapter 14, which is inspecting testing and maintenance. And I, I joined that particular, uh, committee and, and 72 has a lot of different technical committees. Um, there’s, there’s more than just one, so Right. There’s one specific technic committee for Chapter 14 on inspection testing and, and, uh, maintenance. And I’m on that one for pretty much to correlate with, uh, NFPA 25, making sure that we’re on the same page with each other Yep. On our frequencies, because there’s a lot of the same devices Totally. Are, um, included in both 25 and 72,

Drew Slocum: (19:47):

And then that all go back to four Venture, or if it hasn’t gone back to four, you know, that all kind of rolls up to four.

Terry Victor: (19:55):

Yes. Right. Yeah. I think there’s gonna be a lot of, uh, we’ll see a lot of activity coming out of NFPA four in the near future. Um, there’s certain standards now and codes that are requiring NFPA four, including the 2018 edition of the I B C, so for high rise buildings and for buildings with smoke control, um, NF P four as a requirement to do the integrated testing for those particular buildings. So I think we’re gonna see more and more activity around NFPA four, uh, very soon.

Drew Slocum: (20:28):

So like fire dampers and, and smoke control systems kind of tying back to four.

Terry Victor: (20:35):

Yes. Yeah. The, the, the basis of NFPA four is you have all of these fire protection systems that kind of communicate with each other through the fire alarm control unit. And how do, how do you make sure that that all works in a fire event, that the, you know, the sprinkler, the flow switch goes off because the sprinkler went off and the elevator recalls properly, and all the door closers work properly and all the smoke dampers do their thing. Um, and then the signals go out for the, you know, the response of the fire department. But just making sure all those things work together as they’re supposed to. Um, and there’s a, a one time integrated test where everything, uh, is tested together and, uh, you know, that’s all that what NFPA four drives for is that, that one time integrated test, that test all the different systems with each other.

Drew Slocum: (21:30):

Now, does NFPA four, um, you know, you have 25 tying in, well, you know, it’ll ties to fire alarm, which then rolls into that. So, we’ll, four require, is there gonna be like a, a standardized plan per four? Or is it, who creates that, I guess?

Terry Victor: (21:50):

Well, four requires that the owner hire a test agent, what they call a test agent.

Drew Slocum: (21:56):


Terry Victor: (21:57):

And before the building is even built. But NFP four also applies to, to existing buildings, but I, I won’t describe that just yet. But for a brand new building, the owner has to, they have integrated testing as part of the requirements in the standard. So the, the owner hires a test agent, the test agent has to have knowledge of all the different systems that are being tied together right. Through the firearm control. And then that, that test agent has to develop a plan on how they’re all gonna be tested together. So it’s all, you know, there’s gotta be a lot of knowledge in this test agent and how they, um, describe the test, how it be done. N FK four has a matrix in the back in the annex that helps you understand, you know, what really has to be done. So when a pull station is initiated, um, that’s an input. And what has to happen in all the other systems when that pull station is, is activated and those, those are the outputs. So you just have to come up with a plan that describes pull station flow switch, tamper switch. Right. Um, link on a kitchen hood system.

Drew Slocum: (23:20):


Terry Victor: (23:21):

What has to happen when those events occur?

Drew Slocum: (23:24):

Interesting. So that, that independent test agent will, will that be the fire alarm contractor? Or is that somebody totally independent of, of any of those different sectors?

Terry Victor: (23:34):

They don’t have to necessarily be independent. Uh, the only thing that, that the test agent has to be, is qualified. And again, it’s, they have to demonstrate and term qualify ultimately means, uh, with the <inaudible> authority having jurisdiction.

Drew Slocum: (23:52):


Terry Victor: (23:53):

So there’s no set prescribed person that can be the test agent. It, it can be the person that, um, or it could be someone from the company that does the fire alarm system. Right. Presumably. Um, and they probably have the most knowledge, right. Of, of anybody, of all these different systems. But there are consultants out there that are specializing in, uh, integrated testing and P four. Interesting. And, um, yeah, you’ll see, you’ll see more and more people, uh, getting into that, that little, that’s gonna be a separate niche within our, our, uh, industry.

Drew Slocum: (24:30):

Yeah. I talked to somebody, uh, has kind of transitioned to another topic, but, um, and we haven’t got through all your NFPAs yet, but I was talking to somebody, um, uh, doing, I, I I, I always call it fire alarm verification that we call it within inspect point, we call it verification. So essentially it’s an integrated test. Yeah. Know that initial install, um, you know, obviously NFPA 72 has that, actually the Canadian code, U L C, which we’re heavily involved with, uh, has that as well. So, uh, obviously it’s gonna become a more thing moving forward. Um, but it, it was funny, I talked, I saw a post on LinkedIn, an old, the colleague and I might have him come on the podcast at some point too. But, um, spark, spark Fire protection, uh, Steve Vendetti, which he might have worked at J C I at some point, but, um, anyway, he just, uh, the F D N Y is now, um, allowing remote inspection for, for verification.

So they’re doing that verification test remotely now, which kind of ties in that, that that new code that we’re both on is nine 15 is Right. You know, the standard’s not out yet, but at least the, there’s something out there for the public at least for hjs to utilize for, you know, these days with remote testing being more prevalent and with, you know, the whole COVID thing. So, uh, it’s, it’s kind of tying N FPA four n FPA nine 15. Uh, it was, I want to get them on to, to chat about how that’s kind of rolling out in New York City. Cuz usually stuff in New York takes a little bit, you know, they’re usually behind a few code cycles and, uh, I don’t know, they’re, they’re pushing ahead with remote testing. It’s kind of, kind of fun.

Terry Victor: (26:26):

Well, they’ve, they have to fill that gap and there’s, you know, there’s a couple of, of gaps that have been created, not just because of covid, but just because of, of downsizing of, you know, building departments and fire departments and so forth. And there’s, there’s gotta be ways to, you know, help them do their work. And it’s, it all kind of ties together, drew, and that’s something that I’ve been heavily involved with even in the N F K 13, 14, 20, and 25. That’s the automated testing and distance monitoring piece of our industry. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, it all kind of ties together with, with nine 15. And that is, you know, the internet of things. Right. Um, there are means out there now to do remote testing and remote inspections. Right. And, you know, automated testing this, you know, at some point in time and we’re doing distance monitoring right now. Yeah. You know, our industry and you’re involved with that. Um, putting probes and, and sensors on, on systems and coming up, you know, just being able to tell what the water pressure is at any time Yep. In a system or what the air pressure is, or, you know, if there’s water in drum drips, uh, during freezing weather. Um, there’s just a whole lot of new technology that’s coming into our industry and it, and it is all gonna tie together at some point in time.

Drew Slocum: (27:48):

Yeah. I think it’s gonna be faster than, than we, you know, N F P A as, you know, take takes a while for these cold cycles to roll through and then get adopted, but I, I feel like what’s happened in the last year, they might accelerate that a little bit, in my opinion. So,

Terry Victor: (28:06):

Yeah, I mean, covid has accelerated a lot of things and, uh, the, the remote inspection piece of it is, um, NP nine 15, you know, that that’s not gonna hit the streets until 2023 as a new standard, but yet there’s a need now for it. Totally. So like you said, there’s, there are AHJs out there that at least there’s a draft document mm-hmm. <affirmative> for them to, to use as, um, some guidance. And there’s a, there’s an N F P A website dedicated to remote inspections that has some white papers and best practices and things like that. Oh, there is,

Drew Slocum: (28:43):

That could help me. What is that? I don’t even know about it.

Terry Victor: (28:48):

If you go to the N FPA website and just type in remote inspection, uh, in the, in the search feature, there is a, there’s a separate website set up for that. Okay. Just like there’s a separate website set up for, um, the antifreeze.

Drew Slocum: (29:02):


Terry Victor: (29:03):

Gotcha. Uh, DIA came out back in the day. Yeah,

Drew Slocum: (29:05):

Yeah, yeah. Yeah. I’ll, I’ll actually put that in the podcast notes for anybody listening, so I’ll find it. Um, yeah, I know, you know, we’ve, we’ve talked about, you know, internet of things and, and that whole thing and how eventually nine 15 will tie into that. But, um, I guess I know JCI’s come out with both on the water side, and I think I just saw something on the clean agent side, um, for, for cylinders being released, uh, essentially monitoring that is how, how have customers received that so far? Have they been open to it or is it, I mean, again, you have to sell it to the customer, so,

Terry Victor: (29:43):

Right. And I guess one of the drawbacks, drew of being in such a large corporation as, as Johnson Controls, I’m not privy to all the things that are going on, on the suppression side. Right. Or the h v a case side necessarily, unless I read it on the website, you know, company website. Uh, but on the fire protection side, you know, we do have, um, devices and, and, um, we use a cellular connection. Yep. And we have, uh, temperature probes and pressure sensors and, and so forth that we’re putting on systems. And, um, you know, right now there’s many customers, especially if there was a freeze up situation. Sure.

And you know, we go through that every year, uh, this time of year where wet pipes are exposed that we’re previously covered with insulation or, you know, dry pipe system gets some water trapped in it and it freezes and breaks. We, um, you know, we’re, we’re servicing those systems all the time this time of year, right. So if we could put some sensors on their, their systems to tell ’em what the pipe temperature is, what the air temperature is, um, you know, if there is water present in their drum drips, um, then that’s preventative measure that they have a dashboard, they look at it, they can see that there’s a, a condition that needs their attention and, and they get an alert and then they can address it before, you know, something happens that’s gonna take their system outta service.

Drew Slocum: (31:14):

Yeah. I, I, I feel, you know, I, I did some research on this cuz we were, we were tooling with some, still tooling with it at this point, but, uh, you know, what does a, uh, emergency freeze up for just a, you know, random wet or dry system? What does that run a, a customer, you know, it could run it, you know, it could be five to $10,000, so is it, you know, depending on what it is and where it is. So, you know, is it worth it? I I I think there’s a, you know, there’s a big avenue. There’s, there is a need for it. It’s just, you know, proving that to the customer sometimes. And, um,

Terry Victor: (31:51):

Well, all the customer has to have is one freeze up and I guarantee you they will see the value in Yeah. One of these, these, um, systems. I mean a a freeze up that you’re describing that may be the cost of repairing the sprinkler system, but that doesn’t include the cost of the damage done to the, you know, the drywall and the ceilings. Yeah. And you know, a lot of nursing homes, we’ve, you know, over the years we’ve had calls at a lot of nursing homes, you displace people, you have business interruptions. So there’s costs other than just repairing the system, they come into play. And when you add it all up, you know, these, these systems that monitor those conditions are really very inexpensive compared to the the risk and the cost of risk.

Drew Slocum: (32:39):

Yeah. No, I, I, I see that. Yeah, the whole remediation’s probably the bigger, the bigger piece of that. Um, I wonder even if, you know, uh, I’m thinking way too far ahead, but you know, insurance companies, you know, if they see these connected systems on there, I think they’d, they’d, uh, sleep a little better at night that, that, you know, you’re not gonna have an issue potentially. Um, again, the whole insurance conversation is, I mean, maybe FM gets, gets on board at some point, but, um,

Terry Victor: (33:11):

Well, it’s interesting, you know, one of our first customers came to us with that, the exact, um, scenario. Their insurance company told them, you know, we’re tired of paying for your, your losses due to freeze ups. You’ve gotta find some way to mitigate that. And so they came to us and, you know, we helped them with, with, uh, you putting sensors where they need to be and, and satisfying the insurance company. And they have not had, knock on wood, they haven’t had a freeze up in, uh, last few years.

Drew Slocum: (33:44):

Wow. Wow. Yeah. That’s amazing. I, I’m, I’m excited. I, I talked, I, I don’t live far from the, uh, Rhode Island JCI facility. So once, if, if they ever debut it up there or they get, I know it was, uh, it just recently came out in the last year or so, but I’d love to get up there and actually see it. It’s, uh, I think the market needs it and, um, again, it’s, it’s, it’s, it’s new technology. I feel like new technology in, in the sprinkler industry and even the suppression industry, it seems to be, it’s always been slow. So I think this is potentially a whole new avenue to accelerate some new technology out there. So,

Terry Victor: (34:27):

And you’re aware, you know, drew, we’ve, we’ve done presentations, uh, for N F P A at their conferences, and I’ve done several presentations to different organizations about the technology that’s out there and about the, you know, the ability to, and we included in the codes, you know, NFP 13, 14, 20, and 25, the allowance to put this equipment on the systems. Yeah. And that was, that was huge.

Drew Slocum: (34:51):

Yeah, that’s huge.

Terry Victor: (34:52):

So the allowance is there just a matter of the, you know, the customer base Yep. Wanting that, that product. And we do have a set up in, in Cranston, so sometime when you get down there, um, let me, when, when you’re gonna go down, let me know and I’ll hook you up with the right people that they can show you what’s going on.

Drew Slocum: (35:09):

Yeah. My buddy Devin up there. Oh, and, and Zach. So <laugh>.

Terry Victor: (35:14):

Yep. Exactly.

Drew Slocum: (35:15):

Well, good. Um, I know you gotta run in a few minutes, so I I could, we could do this for another hour maybe. We’ll, you know, maybe six months or, you know, when, whenever we get together again, you know, in the, in the future. Um, but I, I do something at the end of, of every podcast, and I don’t, uh, it’s called the Quick response Round. So it’s a, it’s a couple quickfire questions. I mean, we will probably get detailed into it. I try to make it a little fun. So, uh, um, not sure if you were ready for that, but I’m, I’m doing it anyway.

Terry Victor: (35:48):

<laugh>. Okay. <laugh>. I’ll try to be as short and sweet as I can be. How

Drew Slocum: (35:52):

So I, I know you’re a Maryland guy. Um, do you crab cakes or steamed crab?

Terry Victor: (36:02):

Eh, both.

Drew Slocum: (36:04):


Terry Victor: (36:05):

Both. Can’t have one without the other. And they both go together. It’s a staple. I,

Drew Slocum: (36:11):

I, I just can’t, you know, the blue crab. I, I, you know, I could eat crab legs every day or, you know, rock crab. But the steam crab, it’s, you know, you’re looking at the thing. So <laugh>

Terry Victor: (36:24):

Crabs, steam crabs in Maryland, that’s a social event.

Drew Slocum: (36:28):

Oh, I didn’t know that. It’s kind of like, oh yeah. Crawfish down in, you know, Louisiana. I guess

Terry Victor: (36:34):

You’ve gathered the family around the table at the swimming pool or whatever, and, you know, dump the box of crabs on the table and have some ice tea or something sitting there with you and go to town

Drew Slocum: (36:46):

<laugh>. That’s great. That’s great. Um, all right, back to the industry. So I, I know you’ve said, uh, kind of previously your, your favorite or, you know, you kind of gravitate toward it, but N F P A 25 is your favorite standard. Is that, is that correct?

Terry Victor: (37:06):

Um, it’s, it’s probably my favorite, but it’s also probably my most frustrating <laugh>

Drew Slocum: (37:10):

Standard. I know, I know what you feel like <laugh>,

Terry Victor: (37:14):

I think there’s a lot of good things that can be done with, with NFP 25 that, um, you know, there’s a lot of resistance from certain, uh, committee members and, you know, things just aren’t done as, um, well, I’ll just leave it at that.

Drew Slocum: (37:30):

Yeah. I, I know, I, I, I think I, when, when I first started in Spec point, um, you know, with the team, I think that was one of my first like industry. I went as a guest, I think it was down in Arizona. I went to the 25 New York, gracious enough to kind of guide me through some how things run and everything. I went as a guest and I, it was just eyeopening on on how many different, um, uh, yeah, just different people and perspectives were in the room, but I’m like, oh, we, you gotta move. We have to move quicker with this. Technology’s coming faster than the CO’s moving. So,

Terry Victor: (38:06):

Yeah. Absolutely.

Drew Slocum: (38:08):

Um, so that actually wasn’t the question. What, what is the most overlooked deficiency in NFPA 25, in your opinion?

Terry Victor: (38:17):

Wow. Um, I would say it, it’s getting better, but I would still say the, um, the sprinkler testing, the sprinklers. Hmm. You know, it’s, it’s one of those things that the owners resist doing. Yep. And then once they get the results, they resist replacing the sprinklers. Right. They need to be replaced.

Drew Slocum: (38:41):

Yeah, I can, I can see that too. I mean, um, you know, dry heads specifically cuz they’re so, uh, there’s, they’re so complicated, right. And, or even even the old sprinklers, you know, 50, 75 plus. So

Terry Victor: (38:58):

Yeah. And many, you know, the inspectors have to have the knowledge to know how to determine, you know, the age of the sprinkler, what type of sprinkler it is and what, what the age of the sprinkler is. So there’s a lot of training involved there, and I think we, we kind of fall down in that area of training for our inspectors and how, how to go about determining what sprinklers you have, you know, are they fast response that require 20 year testing, are they, you know, standard response that, you know, under the 50 year or 75 year tests. So yeah, I think we can do a better job and I, I think that’s one of the most overlooked requirements and, uh, efficiencies that’s in 25.

Drew Slocum: (39:41):

And I think there’s a lot of DA data there too. And I, I know we didn’t get into the whole N F P A foundation and all that, but you know, we’re, we’re, you know, a lot of our customers are for inspect point that they’re using it are entering a lot of that sprinkler head data in there. So I think there’s something there to really, you know, potentially dive into with the, the research foundation to, you know, look at those, those times. Whether it’s five 10, I know the dry head’s just came backward a little bit. I think it went from did something, something came, uh, or maybe got bumped up. It went out to 15 years, right? In the 20,

Terry Victor: (40:17):

Yeah, it went out to 15. It was originally, you know, at five because of the failure rate with the, uh, dry sprinklers with O-rings and then was pushed out to 10, and now we just pushed it back out to 15.

Drew Slocum: (40:28):

Interesting. Was that data driven or was it just

Terry Victor: (40:32):

Yes. Okay. Well, the, the, uh, the manufacturing of dry sprinklers with O-rings, u l changed their standard, I think it was in 2003, so that they can no longer be manufactured with O-rings. Oh. So all the ones that have been manufactured since 2003, they have the same failure rate, which is very low as standard sprinklers. It’s the ones with the O-rings that, you know, fail at, at over 50% failure rate. And, um, so those still have to be identified and they should have been identified before now. Right. But they’re still out there. And so if an inspector sees one, he’s got, he or she has to, uh, take action on that.

Drew Slocum: (41:14):

Wow. Yeah. Lot, lot of stuff. Um, well, I, I know you got a, I run in here in a couple minutes, so, uh, I, again, I know it was a, as a quick chat, I, I know we could probably go a lot longer than this, but, um, I do appreciate you coming on today and, and kind of giving your experience your, your, uh, background in the industry and then just, you know, what you’re doing with N F P A. And again, we, you know, the entire industry, uh, the entire industry looks, looks to you a lot of times too, you know, just for your knowledge and everything. And so I do appreciate you that, and thank you for, for all what you do.

Terry Victor: (41:54):

Well again, drew, thank you for having me on. This is a first for me, so, um, but any, you know, anytime you want to do this again, I’m, uh, I’m available and, and willing to do it, so thanks, thanks for having me.

Drew Slocum: (42:07):

Yeah, appreci. Uh, so anywhere, uh, where can we find you? I, I obviously you got your LinkedIn profile. I won’t put your email out there unless you want me to, but obviously jci.com. Um,

Terry Victor: (42:22):

No, I don’t, I mean, I put my email out there when I do presentations to different groups. So it’s, it’s Terry, e r r y, dot Victor, v i c t o r, at jci.com.

Drew Slocum: (42:35):

Great. Yeah, look forward to see you again here, Terry. Soon. Once, uh, once things open up a little better.

Terry Victor: (42:42):

Same here. Drew looking for some in-person meetings. Hopefully we’ll go back to those. Yeah,

Drew Slocum: (42:46):

I know, I know. Definitely. Thanks again, Terry.

Terry Victor: (42:52):

All right, drew,

Drew Slocum: (42:53):

This has been episode 28 of the Fire Protection Podcast, powered by Inspect Point. Again, I want to thank my guest, Terry Victor of jci coming on the podcast, talking everything N F P A, the future of fire protection. Um, it’s a, it’s a really cool industry to be in, obviously if you’re in it, you know that. But, um, yeah, Terry’s got a great perspective on, on the code, where it’s going, and, um, what we’re gonna see here in the future. So please subscribe to the podcast and, uh, I, I appreciate all the listenership. Make sure to share with your friends. See you again next time. Thanks.