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defining fire area

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  • defining fire area

    Greetings all,

    fire area is defined per 09 IBC

    FIRE AREA. The aggregate floor area enclosed and bounded by fire walls, fire barriers, exterior walls or horizontal assemblies of a building. Areas of the building not provided with surrounding walls shall be included in the fire area if such areas are included within the horizontal projection of the roof or floor next above.


    Will be looking at a new A2. Interior of bldg has occ load of 94. Patio area increases load to well over 100 thereby kicking in sprinkle requirements. Patio is open air with ornanmental fence including plenty of ingress/egress. Roof of the patio is a continuation of the bldg structure. I know this same bldg has been built in 2 other sizeable towns and FM let them go with occ load which excludes the patio area thereby getting by without sprinklers. From a practical standpoint, I can see their point. However, the occ load under one roof is realistically propably 150-175. Seems to me the Code is clear that the bldg should be sprinkled.

    So what say you folks? BTW, I stopped in one yesterday to check it out and try a burger which is supposedly really good. I wasn't impressed with the burger but the place was nice. The occ load was posted as 94 just inside the main entrance.


    thanksabunch
    BSSTG

  • #2
    What is the sq. ftg of the building?
    903.2.1.2 Group A-2. An automatic sprinkler system shall be provided for Group A-2 occupancies where one of the following conditions exists:
    1. The fire area exceeds 5,000 square feet;
    2. Thefire area has an occupant load of 100 or more;
    or
    3. Thefire area is located on a floor other than a level of exit discharge serving such occupancies.
    4. The structure exceeds 5,000 square feet, contains more than one fire area containing a Group A-2 occupancy, and is separated into two or more buildings by fire walls of less than four hour fire resistance rating without openings.
    “Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.”― Mark Twain

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    • #3
      Definition is pretty clear cut. Tell them your interpretation and see what they come back with.

      Comment


      • #4
        From the Fire Area definition, the patio Area is not a fire area, unless bounded by Walls. A ornamental fence fence is not a wall, and you stated the diners has egress through the fence.
        “Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.”― Mark Twain

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        • #5
          Originally posted by mark handler View Post
          From the Fire Area definition, the patio Area is not a fire area, unless bounded by Walls. A ornamental fence fence is not a wall, and you stated the diners has egress through the fence.

          I agree from the definition. However, it's the last part of the def that I think is squirrely about the roof structure. The entire seating area is under 1 roof, although a lot of it is open patio.


          definition 2nd sentence "Areas of the building not provided with surrounding walls shall be included in the fire area if such areas are included within the horizontal projection of the roof or floor next above."



          BSSTG

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          • #6
            What is the Sq. Ftg, including all area under roof?
            “Never argue with stupid people, they will drag you down to their level and then beat you with experience.”― Mark Twain

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            • #7
              Does any of the patio exit back into the building?


              If not is the patio have code complying exits?? Sounds like the patio needs two exits
              http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZdEH...e_gdata_player The flag is up!

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              • #8
                Some interpret that you have 2 different fire areas. The enclosed area and the unenclosed roof area. You have an exterior wall separating the fire areas. If you want no doubts about having two different fire areas require the exterior wall to meet the 2 hour fire barrier requirement and then no sprinklers are required.

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                • #9
                  Exterior wall is where the fire area starts and stops again, regardless of whether or not the wall is rated. Rated wall is a bonus though, but not needed. As long as there are exits off the patio through the fence. FWIW

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                  • #10
                    The question still remains. What is the area outside that is under the roof?

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Glennman CBO View Post
                      Exterior wall is where the fire area starts and stops again, regardless of whether or not the wall is rated. Rated wall is a bonus though, but not needed. As long as there are exits off the patio through the fence. FWIW
                      FIRE AREA. The aggregate floor area enclosed and bounded by fire walls, fire barriers, exterior walls or horizontal assemblies of a building. Areas of the building not provided with surrounding walls shall be included in the fire area if such areas are included within the horizontal projection of the roof or floor next above.

                      I would interpret the word included to mean that the patio area would be added to the fire area of the building, not make up it's own area. I often find myself looking at plans in situations like this where I feel the code is overly restrictive from a strict reading. Most of the time if I discuss this with the developer they can provide documentation for me to see it their way. They get what they want and they keep the liability because there is documentation of their argument.

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                      • #12
                        New building? Rate the exterior wall and everyone wins......JMHO
                        Boy it's hot!.....And where are we going in this handbasket?

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                        • #13
                          The fire area definition in the 2009 edition includes roofs that are not rated which were a condition of the 2006 definition for sprinklers.

                          Have you notice the big box supply stores outdoor covered areas are sprinklered.






                          Francis
                          ACCESS TO VIRGINIA CODES: 2009& 2012 Virginia Codes

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                          • #14
                            If the exterior wall extends to the roof deck then I believe the intent of the code is meant about the exterior wall creating a fire area regardless of the walls fire rating. However if the roof trusses extend over the exterior wall to provide the covered area then no you do not have separated fire areas created by the exterior wall and a fire barrier would be required to create spate fire areas with an OL of less than 100 in each one in order to avoid sprinklers and be code compliant.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              : = : - :

                              BSSTG,

                              One other wrench to throw in to your mix is, the calculated
                              Occ. Load may not be a real world application.

                              Ex: Last year we had a Bird Fil-A Restaurant built in our AHJ.
                              The calculated Occ. Load was over 100, so they sprinkled it
                              without batting an eye........On opening day, they had
                              standing room only, with every single seat filled [ 200+ ].
                              They had an outdoor dining [ patio ] area, which DID
                              contribute to the overall Occ. Load and the plbg. fixtures
                              count.....They added additional plbg. fixtures because of
                              their anticipated Occ. Loads, and continue to do very
                              well with their business........FWIW, ...they are still not
                              open on Sundays either !......This particular restaurant
                              located right next to an interstate highway, so their
                              customer / traffic counts were & still are high !


                              : - : = :


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