Question of the Day - #88 Will these options ever be used?

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Question of the Day - #88 Will these options ever be used?

Postby RDavidson » Mon Dec 01, 2014 9:13 am

2015 MN Rules section 1309.0310 provides exceptions for emergency escape and rescue openings. Exception #2 excludes emergency escape and rescue openings in basements or basement bedrooms when “the building” is protected with a sprinkler system in accordance with P2904 or NFPA 13D. Since the term “dwelling” is not used, if the “building” has as a part of it an attached garage, do you believe it is the intention of the rule that the garage have sprinkler protection? If the sprinkler requirement was not intended to apply to an attached garage, why do you suppose the term “building” was used rather than “dwelling”?

If a sprinkler system could replace an emergency escape and rescue opening in a basement, which is arguably the most difficult location to conduct a rescue, would you allow this exception for emergency escape and rescue openings to apply on other floors? Why not?

The SONAR states that this exception was placed in the code where installation of an emergency escape and rescue opening might be more expensive than a fire sprinkler system. Is anyone aware of any instances or locales where the cost to install an emergency escape and rescue opening might exceed the cost of a sprinkler system?

Exception 3 provides another alternate to installing an emergency escape and rescue opening in existing basements subject to the installation of a sprinkler system in accordance with P2904 or NFPA 13D.

The SONAR states that the exception applies to buildings constructed prior to August 1, 2008, because the code did not apply statewide prior to that date.

If there were no permits for those dwellings or basements or basement bedrooms in some locales because the code did not apply, how does one determine when they were constructed?

The exception can also be applied to dwellings or basements or basement bedrooms constructed in areas that had adopted the code. The exception says they must be “constructed prior to August 1, 2008”.

Does this mean the permit for the work must have been issued prior to August 1, 2008, or that the work must have been completed prior to August 1, 2008?

Item C of exception 3 states that in order to use the exception “the entire basement, when all portions of the means of egress to the level of exit discharge, and all areas on the level of exit discharge that are open to the means of egress is protected with an automatic sprinkler system…”

What would you interpret “open to the means of egress” to mean? Is a room with a door on the same floor as the means of egress considered “open to the means of egress”?

If a single story dwelling is under consideration, does this exception essentially require the entire dwelling to have sprinkler protection?

If a two story dwelling is under consideration, apparently the second story would not require sprinklers but would anyone actually add a sprinkler system to a part of their home to avoid installation of a window?

These exceptions would generally appear not to be cost effective. What purpose is served in providing exceptions to a rule that will likely go unused?
RDavidson
 
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