Building Codes

In fall of 2018, a floor collapsed at the clubhouse for the Woodlands Apartments on Old Greenville Highway in Clemson, South Carolina. The fact that dozens of young people were injured is a tragedy of the highest order.

The evidence supporting the effectiveness of NFPA 285 is very strong and history bears out this conclusion. Since its introduction in 1988, the NFPA 285 test has remained relatively unchanged, and 30 years of use has generated no evidence of any life safety deficiencies.

The American Wood Council (AWC) and APA know very well that in the International Residential Code (IRC) resistance to lateral loads is hard to quantify exactly.

There has been recent confusion over the following section of the building code regarding “exterior wall coverings” in Types I and II construction, this article provides code references and resources to clarify the intent of the code.

The California Building Standards Commission (CBSC) is providing notice of 45-day public comment period for proposed building standards in the 2019 California Building Standards Code (Title 24).

The NASFM issued a statement this week opposing all code change proposals (G75-18, G80-18, and G84-18) aimed at allowing tall wood construction. This position is consistent with their other advocacy efforts to limit and even ban wood framing in larger buildings.

In California, owners of multi-family apartment buildings with three or more units are now required to inspect their decks, balconies, stairs, and other load-bearing structures at least once every six years, according to a law signed this week by Governor Jerry Brown. 

A question that can arise during the building design, plan review and inspection process, particularly as it relates to the use of innovative materials is; how should an authority having jurisdiction handle compliance and noncompliance where proprietary information and intellectual property (IP) is involved?

A building official’s role is to administer and enforce the adopted building code, nothing more and nothing less.

The place to begin to address key definitions, which are used all the time in building construction, is from source documents where definitions are found and adoption into law then occurs.