Existing building code essentials: Standpipes
The 2018 Code Essentials series are available as valuable companions to the 2018 International Building, Residential, Fire, Energy Conservation, Existing Building and Plumbing Codes. Aimed at all user levels — including first-time users, veteran code users and other professionals such as architects, designers and contractors — these guides use a straight-forward, focused approach to explore code requirements with non-code language, allowing readers to gain confidence in their understanding of the material and build a solid foundation for learning and applying the code’s requirements.
2018 Existing Building Code Essentials
Level 2 Alterations work areas involving exits or corridors shared by multiple tenants and located on a building story more than 50 feet (15.24 m) above or below the lowest level of fire department vehicular access require a standpipe system. Though the class of the standpipe system is not specified by the International Existing Building Code (IEBC), the system intended is a Class III standpipe system. The exception in International Building Code Section 905.3.1 allowing a Class I standpipe system instead of a Class III system is also allowed by the IEBC, though not specifically stated. The standpipe system must have hose connections from the highest story containing a work area down to the lowest level of fire department access [conversely, for work areas on building stories more than 50 feet (15.24 m) below the lowest level of fire department access (below ground), the standpipe system must have hose connections from the lowest story containing a work area up to the lowest level of fire department access].
No fire pump is required as part of the standpipe system, provided the system is capable of delivering via fire department apparatus a minimum of 250 gpm at 65 psi (946 l/min at 448 kPa) at the topmost floor in a completely sprinkler-protected building or a minimum of 500 gpm at 65 psi (1,892 l/min at 448 kPa) in a building without complete sprinkler protection. When the standpipe system does not extend to the topmost floor of the building, the standpipe system must still be designed to meet these performance criteria for possible future extension to the topmost floor in order to avoid installation of a fire pump.
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