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Online Learning Center Occupancy - B or E

Discussion in 'Commercial Fire Codes' started by hbriburn, Jun 7, 2019.

  1. hbriburn

    hbriburn Registered User

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    Hi Everyone,

    Based on NFPA 101 I have an AHJ telling me that an online learning center that we interpreted to be Business occupancy is actually Educational occupancy.

    Since it's a bunch of offices and computer workstations for teachers working with high school students who are not in the building--no classrooms it's online--we find this difficult to see as educational b/c the actual activities of the space are exactly like any typical office.

    I realize hearing "high school" is a typical trigger per 14.1.4.2, but wouldn't this apply only if the students were in-house?

    This is the third floor a sprinkled existing building previously permitted as business occupancy.

    thanks!
     
  2. RLGA

    RLGA Sawhorse

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    I agree with you—not an educational occupancy but a business occupancy. The intent is to classify the relative hazard of the building. Schools with children as occupants have a higher risk than adult learning institutions. Since there are no children present, there is no added risk—it isn’t any more dangerous than teachers and staff working in the administration area of a typical K-12 school, which is usually classified as a business occupancy.
     
    #2 RLGA, Jun 7, 2019
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2019
    Truck3capt likes this.
  3. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    Sounds like they need some online Ed


    Maybe see if the business will write a statement of

    What they do

    How many employees will be there

    That no students will be there

    That there will be no classrooms, which the plans should show

    Plus any other info that may help.

    Submit that to ahj for review and to put in thier file.
     
  4. mark handler

    mark handler Sawhorse

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    Ask them what administrative offices would be for a school district.

    Talk to a higher-up, in the food chain.
     
    Truck3capt likes this.
  5. hbriburn

    hbriburn Registered User

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    Thanks, all.

    Two things to confirm:

    1) What if students are in the space for administrative meetings? I wouldn't think that would trigger educational occupancy either.

    2) What if there would be a small number of students say no more than two for in person lab exercises? It would still seem excessive. It would seem to me that 2009 NFPA 101 14.1.4.1 would need us to have at least six students at a time to count as educational?
     
  6. RLGA

    RLGA Sawhorse

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    1. That would be no different than a student going to the admin office to meet with the principal, counselor, etc.

    2. Correct. Small groups of students should not trigger the educational occupancy.
     
  7. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    For got you were on hwy 101

    Will have to look and see how it reads.

    Plus you are talking adults????
     
  8. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    2009???

    adults or children?


    From 2012::
    \


    6.1.3.1 * Definition — Educational Occupancy.


    An occupancy used for educational purposes through the twelfth grade by six or more persons for 4 or more hours per day or more than 12 hours per week.






    14.1.1.4


    Educational facilities that do not meet the definition of an educational occupancy shall not be required to comply with this chapter but shall comply with the following requirements:
    1. (1)
      Instructional building — business occupancy

    2. (2)
      Classrooms under 50 persons — business occupancy

    3. (3)
      Classrooms, 50 persons and over — assembly occupancy

    4. (4)
      Laboratories, instructional — business occupancy

    5. (5)
      Laboratories, noninstructional — industrial occupancy
     
  9. hbriburn

    hbriburn Registered User

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    Thanks for the responses. The AHJ did a 180 and now sees it at as administrative offices. It is possible that one or two high school students may participate in instructional labs, but that wouldn't trigger educational use as has been pointed out above.

    (And, yes 2009...)
     
  10. cda

    cda Sawhorse

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    Yea

    The first time you talked to them, they probably had not had their second cup of coffee, to kick in the common sense brain cell.
     
  11. north star

    north star Sawhorse

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    & ~ &

    The AHJ just needed a more in-depth evaluation......One
    with the actual NFPA 101 Standard, and the various applicable
    Sections that provided more clarity.......**hbriburn** provided

    them with that clarity, ...with the help of this Forum !

    Just another successful Code Case clarified & solved by this
    Forum !
    :D


    Next...

    & ~ &
     
    ADAguy and hbriburn like this.
  12. ADAguy

    ADAguy Sawhorse

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    Good one Forum, "we" together can clarify/resolve "many" issues.
     

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