residential fire sprinkler

ICC Board Denies Home Fire Sprinkler Appeal

The International Code Council took final action Friday on the recent addition of residential fire sprinkler requirements to its 2009 International Residential Code, with the full ICC board of directors denying an appeal filed by the National Association of Home Builders. NAHB claimed there were procedural irregularities in the vote in Minneapolis last September that approved the requirement, but the ICC Appeals Board unanimously rejected the appeal Dec. 11 after a public hearing in Rosemont, Ill. The Appeals Board also sent a recommendation to the full board to reject the appeal, and the full board agreed.

The International Association of Fire Chiefs and other members of the IRC Fire Sprinkler Coalition celebrated the Dec. 11 victory. NAHB said in its appeal that firefighters should not have been allowed to vote, although the ICC had credentialed them as voting members. The coalition was founded in 2007 and includes more than 100 organizations that promote the use of residential fire sprinklers.

"The requirements will enhance the safety of Americans faced with residential fires," Alan W. Perdue, international director of the IAFC's Fire & Life Safety Section, said prior to Friday's decision. The requirements are contained in Proposals RB64 and RB66; they will require fire sprinklers in all new one- and two-family dwellings and townhouses. Forty-eight states plus the District of Columbia adhere to the International Residential Code in guiding new home construction.

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