Code hearings featured major issues, dramatic moments

The effectiveness of the International Code Council’s open Code Development Process played out in the concluding sessions of the Final Action Hearings in Minneapolis as major changes dominated the proceedings.


  • The 2009 International Residential Code will require sprinklers in new one- and two-family residences as of Jan. 1, 2011, a change approved by more than 73% of the voting members. Another code change will require sprinklers in townhouses to take effect when a jurisdiction adopts the 2009 IRC.
  • An additional stairway will be required in new skyscrapers unless an elevator that can operate during a fire emergency is usable by occupants
  • Elevators, properly constructed for such use, will be authorized for occupant evacuation
  • A comprehensive energy package of code changes (EC14) that required 67 percent to pass, failed by a small margin, receiving 64 percent.
  • Regulations under the IBC and IRC for pools will now reference a new standard for entrapment designed to be consistent with the Virginia Graeme Baker Federal Pool and Spa Safety Act
  • Carbon monoxide alarms will be required in homes where there is fuel-fired equipment or an attached garage

Earlier in the week, Adolf Zubia, Fire Chief for the City of Las Cruces, N.M., was elected by participants at the Annual Conference to serve as the new President of the International Code Council.Read a statement from newly elected President Zubia, sent from the floor of the Final Hearings.