One of my institutional customers got a grant and insisted on using a card access manufacturer I do not deal with so they hired a computer place to install 7 door system and all 7 doors fail to meet ICC- NEC70 and in addition fail to meet the PA-DPW codes for residential programs. needless to say I get a call today after they get failed and asked if i can fix it. yes I tell them whole thing needs ripped out and redone properly as they have violated all these different rules and there workman ship is terrible. So now it is going to cost them twice. Some people never learn.
I use to have that happen to me on large fire alarm & access control jobs...electrical contractor outbids me, then has the nerve to call me to clean up his mess. Yes, it does cost them at least twice the amount.
I do not know why contractors fail to call and check things out ahead of time with the AHJ and always think they can getaway with something or deal with it later attitude. I get flack from other alarm dealers all the time because i design a system and it gets passed 1st time and AHJ will not let other company do it and they get all mad because they failed to read and understand the code and they end up redoing it 2-3 times before they get it right. Then again some company's should just not be in business period.
Funny, here in Az an electrical engineer must design any "required" commercial fire alarm system, except that some AHJs will allow a basic approved panel with a simple plan for sprinkler monitoring only.
I get clients all the time who just want me to throw something together.
I would kinda like the engineer required approach if it worked. Often the electrical engineers throw in enough "contractor will specify" or "contractor will change to meet code" type language to basically make their original drawing suspect at best. One set of plans I got said something to the affect, "It is the contractors responsibility to meet all applicable codes and make changes to the plans as needed to do so." Another the engineer actually sent somebody to survey a site that had an ancient fire system that had not worked since the dawn of resistance loop meter panels. They did a nice detail drawing of the 10% of the building where there was some remodeling and new construction going on, and then there was this big cloud on the rest of the main floor, the other two floors and the basement that just said, "connect existing system." The existing system was mostly Ademco 597 radioactives strung together with lamp cord. And they had all been painted over. It made it impossible to bid legally or honestly.
These are the types of things, along with dealing with the " I don't know .... cover their ass, power flaunting " attitudes of the Fire Marshals and their lackies, that I opted out of the installation of commercial fire. I really don't have the time nor patience to deal with them. I can make much more money with less time spent ..... elsewhere.
When I think of dealing with the Fire Marshals and their buracracy, I'm reminded of something that someone who used to work as an engineer at a major military aircraft company told me. "When the weight of the paperwork equals the weight of the aircraft, it's time to ship the plane"
All in all once you learn the codes etc. its not that big of a deal to do commercail fire. most of the old lackey AHJ are now gone with the ICC in place. But one thing I always do is check with AHJ before bidding and or starting any thing it makes the job go so much easier so if you do hit a snag it can be taken care of in an easy manner. Some areas there strict and other areas there well not so strict. But knowing the code when you meet with the AHJ goes along way towards getting a job done and completed on time and cost.