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emergency escape and garage

Discussion in 'Residential Building Codes' started by T-Bird, Sep 21, 2017.

  1. T-Bird

    T-Bird Sawhorse

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    The AHJ submitted the plans to the ICC and the verdict is in. I still disagree with the conclusion and would love to discuss this directly with them.

    R: Section R310.1 of the 2015 International Residential Code

    Q. Can the emergency escape and rescue opening serving a basement be located in a garage?

    A. No. Where an emergency escape and rescue opening is required, Section R310.1 literally requires access directly into a public way or to a yard or court directly from the basement area. While not expressly indicated, the code never intended for occupants to traverse through a garage to access an emergency escape and rescue opening.


    While adequate egress from the basement is provided via the unenclosed stair, this does not negate the requirement for an emergency escape and rescue opening for the basement. Admittedly, based on the submitted sketch, the basement is essentially a mechanical, storage space bounded on three sides by a crawl space. As such, while it may be unlikely that the basement area could be converted to a sleeping area, an emergency escape and rescue opening is literally required unless alternatively approved by the code official.
     
  2. Paul Sweet

    Paul Sweet Sawhorse

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    The garage is part of the basement. The so-called "separation" between the garage and rest of the basement is "Not less than 1/2-inch gypsum board or equivalent applied to the garage side" (IRC Table R302.6). This is less than typical interior walls which usually have 1/2" gypsum board on both sides.
     
  3. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    Love it

    Required

    You provided it

    Still not good
     
  4. my250r11

    my250r11 Sawhorse

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    Correct, this is usually how they start;
    In your recent online submission, you ask the following question, as stated in my own words, with my response immediately following:
     
  5. JCraver

    JCraver Sawhorse

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    But, it's not. It's accessory to the basement/dwelling area.
     
  6. JCraver

    JCraver Sawhorse

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    How are you (or any AHJ) ever going to know if the use is changed? If TBird builds this house, and then puts a couch and a TV in that room where his stairs are, that's not anything that is going to require a permit. But, that room just became a sleeping room.
     
  7. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    Just like rooms labeled din, storage, office, etc


    A bo cannot decide what a room will be used for, except what it is labeled
     
  8. JCraver

    JCraver Sawhorse

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    T-Bird: Thanks for the thread, and the lively discussion. I'm sorry it didn't go your way.

    I'm not smart enough to write it, but it seems as if we would all benefit were someone to submit a code change for these sections. If it was written better, we wouldn't still be here after ~8 pages.
     
  9. JCraver

    JCraver Sawhorse

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    Agreed. But on the other hand, I'm still with ICC on calling it the way they did.
     
  10. fatboy

    fatboy Administrator

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    I plan on bringing it to our Code Change Committee for discussion. We've already started meeting for the upcoming cycle, which includes the IBC, which would also have to be cleaned up, in addition to the IRC, and the IFC.
     
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  11. tmurray

    tmurray Sawhorse

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    That's not a room intended for sleeping. A bedroom is a room intended for sleeping. If any room with a couch in it is a room intended for sleeping, every single room is going to require an egress window/door by that logic because I can put a couch in any of them. When a room is converted to a bedroom, a permit is required here. Does everyone pull a permit for it? No. But many do.

    How our code deals with accessory occupancies is that they are part of the major occupancy. For instance a movie theater is an assembly group 1 occupancy (A1), but contains concession areas for the purchase of food and some tables to eat at if someone wishes, which would be an assembly group 2 occupancy (A2). normally, these are required to be divided into their own suites, but understanding that the concession area is dependent on the theater, it becomes accessory to the major A1 use and the requirement of a fire separation disappears. Our code deals with attached garages in much the same way. Where a garage is attached to a single family dwelling which it serves and has a capacity of 5 vehicles or less, it may be considered part of that occupancy. Based on what Paul posted above, there is no real separation required between the garage and the remainder of the dwelling. This makes it very hard to call them two separate suites.

    So the theory from ICC is that if someone is sleeping in the basement, there is a likelihood that both the regular egress path up the stairs and the garage are impassable due to fire? If the fire has spread that much already, that person has already died from smoke inhalation.

    As a general rule, I don't usually agree with Conarb, but I can see why some builders are frustrated with requirements like this. They don't make sense to me. It's not required in Canada and we don't see a lot of people dieing in basement fires. Is society really that different in the US that there would be such a discrepancy?
     
  12. Francis Vineyard

    Francis Vineyard Sawhorse

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    I have a couch, dartboard and fridge in my garage with windows . . .
     
  13. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    How much for the couch??


    But it is labeled garage

    I guess this has been beaten enough

    Either case by case

    Or

    Someone propose a code change
     
  14. Rick18071

    Rick18071 Sawhorse

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    I already had a plan indicating a "storage room" with an overhead door, the room was large enough for a motorcycle, I made them add 5/8 drywall to the ceiling.
    I also reviewed plans that indicated a "office" in the basement with a closet told them put in a EER and a smoke alarm in that room or eliminate the closet..
    I also did not let someone install an electrical breaker panel in a small "storage" room that properly would have been used as a clothes closet.
    You can't always go by what they call it.
     
  15. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    So to keep the hits on coming

    A room without a closet is not a bedroom,,

    Now that would be perfect for my daughter, she keeps her clothes on the floor anyway.
     
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  16. Francis Vineyard

    Francis Vineyard Sawhorse

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    Is anyone requiring an EERO as applicable in a two (2) car basement garage because it's more than 200 sf?
     
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  17. jwilly3879

    jwilly3879 Sawhorse

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    SO if that were not a garage, just a room in the basement the EERO would be acceptable in that room?
     
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  18. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    Help!!!


    I need an EERO out of this thread !
     
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