ICC Forum to Focus on Building Safety, Fire Codes Feb. 18-March 1

The Washington, D.C.-based International Code Council, a membership association dedicated to building safety and fire prevention, will convene its 2008 Codes Forum in Palm Springs, Calif., Feb. 18-March 1. ICC develops the codes used to construct residential and commercial buildings, including homes and schools, and these codes will be front and center when ICC officials, architects, engineers, and other building industry professionals meet to debate more than 2,200 proposed changes for inclusion into the 2009 International Codes. ICC updates the I-Codes every three years through a governmental consensus process. The hearings are open and inclusive, allowing input from anyone and everyone in a public setting.

"Participating in the code development hearings is a great opportunity to make a significant contribution to public safety," said ICC CEO Rick Weiland. "The codes are used to guide construction so as to improve building safety and reduce risk in thousands of communities in all 50 states to safeguard the public and protect property."

ICC Board President Steve Shapiro added, "I especially want to encourage code officials from around the country to attend this year's Codes Forum and participate in the code development hearings. It's the best code education you can receive. The knowledge you gain by participating in code hearings will help you improve building safety when you return to your daily work."

ICC will host a Feb. 17 pre-Codes Forum event, the Wildland Urban Interface Institute, offering an in-depth look at the U.S. problem with wildland urban interface and its impact on local communities. Attendees will discuss elements of the International Wildland Urban Interface Code, Community Wildfire Protection Planning, and other tools to minimize the impact of wildland fires. "Given the recent devastation caused by wildfires in Southern California, the Wildland Urban Interface Institute is particularly timely," said Weiland. "The Code Council has experts and tools available both to help communities rebuild and to better protect themselves from wildfire threats."

As part of Codes Forum ICC also will administer inspector exams Feb. 22-25. The residential and commercial exams cover building, electrical, plumbing, and mechanical inspections. Other exams offered are Fire Inspector I, Fire Inspector II, and Fire Plans Examiner.

All Codes Forum events are being held at the Palm Springs Convention Center. For more information on the event and certification examinations, and to register for these programs, visit www.iccsafe.org/codesforum, call 1-888-ICC-SAFE (422-7233), ext. 4229 or e-mail jcanter@iccsafe.org.

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