Short Term Accommodations Fire Code Requirements

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1 Short Term Accommodations Fire Code Requirements 1

2 Foreward The following is a comprehensive reference to Retrofit 9.3 of Division B of the Ontario Fire Code (OFC). Retrofit provisions were developed to apply a set of minimum requirements to a building that was built prior to the Ontario building code. The 1986 Ontario Building Code (OBC) is referred throughout the Ontario Fire Code Division B 9.3. The referenced articles in the 1986 building code are included and boxed throughout this document. Buildings that were built under a (OBC) regulation and are being used as boarding, lodging and rooming houses will have Fire Protection and Prevention Act (F.P.P.A.) Inspection Orders issued for fire hazard deficiencies under the authority of: F.P.P.A. 21. (1) An inspector who has carried out an inspection of land or premises under section 19 or 20 may order the owner or occupant of the land or premises to take any measure necessary to ensure fire safety on the land and premise and may for that purpose order the owner or occupant, (f) to do anything respecting fire safety including anything relating to the containment of a possible fire, means of egress, fire alarm and detection, fire suppression and the preparation of a fire safety plan. 2

3 Buildings that were built prior to the Ontario Building Code (pre 1975) and are being used as boarding, lodging and rooming houses will have Fire Protection and Prevention Act (F.P.P.A.) Inspection Orders issued for fire code deficiencies under the authority of: F.P.P.A. 21. (1) An inspector who has carried out an inspection of land or premises under section 19 or 20 may order the owner or occupant of the land or premises to take any measure necessary to ensure fire safety on the land and premise and may for that purpose order the owner or occupant, (g) to remedy any contravention of the fire code. The Hawkins / Ginac bill has become law in Ontario; this law stipulates a dwelling is required to have a Carbon Monoxide alarm outside sleeping areas. (This regulation is currently being printed for insertion into the OBC and OFC) Questions on Fire Code requirements shall be addressed to: Duncan Rydall Chief Fire Prevention Officer # 105 or Cell 3

4 OntarioFire Code(OFC) Ontario Building Code(OBC) References are Boxed OFC DIV B For the purpose of applying this Code, a building or part thereof shall be classified according to its major occupancy by the Chief Fire Official in conformance with the Building Code. OFC DIV B Activities that create a hazard and that are not allowed for in the original design shall not be carried out in a building unless approved provisions are made to control the hazard. OBC Occupant Load 1) The occupant load of a floor area or part of a floor area, or a building or part of a building not having a floor area, shall be based on, a) 2 persons per sleeping room or sleeping area in a dwelling unit or suite, and b) For occupancies other than described in Clause (a), the number of persons i) for which the area is designed, or ii) determined from Table Defined Terms Dwelling Unit means a suite operated as a housekeeping unit, used or intended to be used as a domicile by one or more persons and usually containing a cooking, eating, living, sleeping and sanitary facilities. Suite means a single room or series of rooms of complementary use, operated under a single tenancy, and includes, (a) dwelling units (b) individual guest rooms in motels, hotels, boarding houses, rooming houses, and dormitories, and (c) individual stores and individual or complementary rooms for business and personal occupancies. 4

5 Ontario Fire Code Application OFC DIV B (1) This Section applies to boarding houses, lodging houses, rooming houses and private rest homes in which residents do not require care or treatment because of age, mental or physical limitations, where (a) the building height does not exceed three storeys and the building area does not exceed 600 m2, (6458 sq ft) (b) lodging is provided for more than four persons in return for remuneration or the provision of services or both, and (c) lodging rooms do not have both bathrooms and kitchen facilities for the exclusive use of individual occupants. Floor assemblies OFC DIV B (1) Floor assemblies shall (a) be constructed as fire separations, and (b) have a fire-resistance rating of not less than 30 min. (2) Existing floor assemblies with ceilings consisting of lath and plaster, gypsum board or noncombustible materials shall be deemed to be in compliance with Sentence (1). Basement fire separations OFC DIV B Where a basement does not contain a bedroom, recreation room, meeting room or hobby room, a fire separation having no fire-resistance rating between the basement and first storey shall be deemed to be in compliance with Clause (1)(b). Walls separating bedrooms OFC DIV B (1) Each guest room or suite of rooms shall have interior walls having a fireresistance rating of not less than 30 min. (2) Existing wall assemblies consisting of membranes of lath and plaster or gypsum wallboard shall be deemed to be in compliance with Sentence (1). 5

6 Furnace room separations OFC DIV B (1) In a building where the building height is greater than two storeys or the building area is greater than 400 m2, a furnace room that is located on a floor area that contains a bedroom, recreation room, meeting room or hobby room shall be separated from the remainder of the building by a fire separation having a fireresistance rating of not less than 45 min. (2) Existing fire separations consisting of membranes of lath and plaster or gypsum board shall be deemed to be in compliance with Sentence (1). (3) Where the required vertical fire separation in a furnace room is maintained and it is not practical in the circumstances to construct the ceiling as a fire separation having a fire resistance rating of not less than 45 min, the furnace room area shall be sprinklered with a spacing that does not exceed 9.5 m2 per sprinkler head. (4) Closures in fire separations for a furnace room shall have a fire-protection rating of not less than 45 min. (5) A hollow metal or kalamein door and frame shall be deemed to be in compliance with Sentence (4). (6) Closures referred to in Sentences (4) and (5) shall be equipped with latches and self closing devices. (7) Despite Sentence (1), fire dampers or fire-stop flaps are not required in ducts at penetrations of a fire separation. Number of exits OFC DIV B (1) Each floor area shall be served by at least two exits. (2) Where sleeping accommodation is not provided for more than ten persons, one exit from each of the first and second floor floor areas shall be deemed to be in compliance with Sentence (1). (3) Where sleeping accommodation is not provided in the basement or cellar, one exit from the basement or cellar shall be deemed to be in compliance with Sentence (1) 6

7 Acceptable exits OFC DIV B (1) Exits required by Article shall comply with the requirements of Articles and of the 1986 Building Code. (2) Despite Sentence (1), not more than one required exit from the basement or cellar may lead through the first floor floor area. (3) Where sleeping accommodation is not provided for more than ten persons, corridors that are contiguous to a stairway may form part of the stairway enclosure. (4) Only one stairway enclosure described in Sentence (3) shall be permitted as an exit. (5) Where a fire escape of the type referred to in Article is used as an exit, it shall be deemed to comply with the requirements of Articles and of the 1986 Building Code. Article OBC Types of Exits (1) An exit from any floor area shall be one of the following used singly or in combination: (a) an exterior doorway, (b) an exterior passageway, (c) an exterior ramp, (d) an exterior stairway, (e) a fire escape (as described in Subsection ), (f) a horizontal exit, (g) an interior passageway, (h) an interior ramp, or (i) an interior stairway Fire Escapes OBC (1) Fire escapes are permitted to be used as exits on existing buildings provided they are designed and installed in conformance with Part 3. (2) Fire escapes shall not be installed on any new building OFC DIV B Despite Articles and , alternative measures may be approved where, in the opinion of the Chief Fire Official, they will provide protection for life safety similar to the protection provided by compliance with Articles and

8 Fire escapes OFC DIV B (1) Each fire escape used as an exit shall be constructed in compliance with Article , excluding Sentences (4) and (5), of the 1986 Building Code. (2) Despite Sentence (1), existing fire escapes may be approved. (3) Access to fire escapes shall be from corridors OBC (1) Except as provided in Sentence (2), fire escapes shall not be erected on buildings. (2) Where it is impractical to provide 1 or more of the exit facilities in Article , fire escapes conforming to Sentences (3) to (13) may serve floor areas in existing buildings provided the floor areas served are not more than (a) 2 storeys above ground level in Group B occupancies, and (b) 5 storeys above ground level in other occupancies. (3) Fire escapes shall be of metal or concrete, of the stair type extending to ground level, constructed throughout in a strong substantial manner and securely fixed to the building, except that wooden fire escapes may be used on buildings of combustible construction if all posts and brackets are at least 89 mm in their least dimension and all other woodwork is at least 38 mm in its least dimension. (4) Access to fire escapes shall be from corridors through doors at floor level, except that access from a dwelling unit may be through a casement window having an unobstructed opening of not less than 1100 mm high, by 550 mm wide with a sill height of not more than 900 mm above the inside floor. (5) Where a fire escape serves any storey above the second, openings, including access doorways in the exterior walls of the building to which the fire escape is attached, shall be protected by closures conforming to Subsection where they are located within 3 m horizontally of, 3 storeys or 10 m below, or 1.8 m above any balcony, platform or stairway of a fire escape. (6) Stairs shall be inclined at an angle of not more than 45o with the horizontal, and shall have risers of not more than 210 mm in height and treads of not less than 220 mm in width exclusive of nosing. (7) Stairway headroom shall be not less than 1950 mm plus the height of 1 riser measured vertically above the nosing of any tread or platform (8) Where doors open onto fire escape balconies, such balconies shall have a clear area of not less than 1.0 m2. 8

9 OBC continued (9) The width of a fire escape shall conform to Sentence (1), except that the fire escape shall be at least 550 mm wide when serving (a) not more than 3 storeys, and (b) not more than 15 persons. (10) The open sides of every platform, balcony and stairway shall be protected by guards at least 920 mm in height measured vertically above the nosing of any tread or platform. (11) Two equally spaced rails not more than 460 mm apart, parallel to stair stringers and to platform edges, shall be the minimum protection provided, and the top rail may serve as a handrail if free from obstructions which could break a hand hold. (12) A wall handrail shall be installed where the fire escape is more than 550 mm in width. (13) Where the flight of stairs leading to the ground at the foot of a fire escape is not fixed in position, it shall be held in the "up" position without a latch or locking device, and shall be fitted with a counterbalancing device that will permit it to be easily and quickly brought into position for use. Protection of exits OFC DIV B (1) Each exit other than a doorway opening directly onto a fire escape or to the outdoors at ground level shall be separated from the remainder of the building or from another exit by a fire separation having a fire-resistance rating of not less than 30 min. (2) Existing exit stairways separated from the remainder of the building by walls consisting of lath and plaster or gypsum wallboard shall be deemed to be in compliance with Sentence (1). (3) Despite Sentence (1), an existing separation of noncombustible material may be approved. Interior stairways OFC DIV B (1) Floor separations shall be maintained at interior stairways that are not required exits. (2) The floor separation shall be maintained at an exit permitted in Sentence (2). 9

10 OFC DIV B Floor separations required in Article shall be rated in accordance with Articles OFC DIV B and OFC DIV B Protection of openings in fire separations OFC DIV B (1) Closures in fire separations required in Articles and shall be constructed in accordance with Article of the 1986 Building Code with a minimum 20-min fire protection rating. (2) Closures located along contiguous corridors permitted in Sentence (3) shall comply with Sentence (1). OFC DIV B Where a fire-resistance rating or a fire-protection rating is required in this Section for an element of a building, such rating shall be determined in conformance with Tables A. and B., Chapter 2 of the Supplement to the NBC 1985, or in conformance with the test methods described in Part 3 (See Articles and for details.) OBC (1) Except as provided in Sentences (2) and (3), where a material, assembly of materials or a structural member is required to have a fireresistance rating, the rating shall be determined on the basis of the results of tests conducted in conformance with CAN4-S101, "Standard Methods of Fire Endurance Tests of Building Construction and Materials". (2) A material, assembly of materials or a structural member may be assigned a fire-resistance rating on the basis of Chapter 2, "Fire Performance Ratings" of the Supplement to the NBC (3) Not relevant to Fire Code reference. (4) Where a ceiling construction has a suspended membrane ceiling with lay-in panels or tiles which contribute to the required fire-resistance rating of the assembly, hold down clips or other means shall be provided to prevent the lifting of such panels or tiles in the event of a fire. 10

11 OBC (1) Except as provided in Sentences (2) and (2), where an opening in a fire separation is required to be protected with a closure having a fire-protection rating, the fire-protection rating shall be determined on the basis of the results of tests conducted in conformance with the appropriate provisions in CAN4-S106, "Standard Method for Fire Tests of Window and Glass Block Assemblies", CAN4-S104, "Standard Method for Fire Tests of Door Assemblies", or CAN4-S1 12, "Standard Method of Fire Test of Fire Damper Assemblies". (2) Except as provided in Sentence (1), the fire-protection rating of closures shall conform to Table A. for the required grade of fire separation. Doors and screens (3) A 45 mm solid core wood, hollow metal or kalamein door, equipped with a self-closing device and a latching device, shall be deemed to be in compliance with Sentences (1) and (2). (4) Despite Sentences (1) and (2), frames for doors described in Sentence (3) may be of wood, hollow metal or kalamein construction. Existing wired glass closures set in fixed steel frames in a fire separation shall (5) Despite be deemed Sentences (1) and (2), fire dampers or fire-stop flaps are to not be required in compliance in ducts with at penetrations Article of a fire separation. Exit signs OFC DIV B (1) Exit signs shall be located along a means of egress so that directions of exit travel are apparent to the occupants. (2) Exit signs required by Sentence (1) shall have the word "EXIT" in block letters and such letters shall be (a) internally or externally illuminated, (b) coloured red on an opaque or contrasting field, and (c) at least 115 mm high with a 19 mm stroke. 11

12 Interior finishes OFC DIV B The flame-spread rating of interior finishes on walls and ceilings within a means of egress shall not exceed 200. Illumination of egress OFC DIV B Corridors and stairways shall be lighted to the intensity of 50 lx measured at the floor level, or 5 watts per square metre of floor area. Emergency lighting OFC DIV B Where sleeping accommodation is provided for more than ten persons, emergency lighting shall be provided to corridors and stairways in accordance with Articles and of the 1986 Building Code OBC Emergency lighting required in Article shall be provided from a source of energy separate from the electric supply for the building. Such lighting shall be designed to be automatically actuated when the electric lighting in the affected area is interrupted. Illumination from such lighting shall be at least 10 Ix for a period of at least 1/2 h. Where incandescent lighting is provided, lighting equal to 1 W/m2 of floor area shall be considered to meet this requirement OBC Where self-contained emergency lighting units are used, they shall conform to CSA C22.2 No.141, "Unit Equipment for Emergency Lighting." Fire alarm requirements OFC DIV B (1) A building to which this Section applies that does not have floor assemblies having a minimum ¾-hr fire-resistance rating and public corridors or corridors serving sleeping rooms not within a dwelling unit that are not fire separated from the remainder of the building by a minimum ½-hr fire-resistance rating shall have a fire alarm system that complies with Articles and of the 1986 Building Code, and shall have (a) smoke alarms that comply with Sentence (2) and that are installed and interconnected so that the activation of any smoke alarm will sound a similar signal in each of the interconnected devices, or 12

13 (b) fire alarm system smoke detectors installed on the ceiling of each floor adjacent to each stairway, and on the ceiling in the basement adjacent to each stairway. (2) Smoke alarms referred to in Clause (1)(a) shall (a) be installed on the ceiling in the corridor of each floor adjacent to each stairway and on the ceiling in the basement adjacent to each stairway, (b) be on a separate circuit with no disconnect switch between the overcurrent device and the smoke alarms, and (c) employ devices and an interconnected installation that are listed OFC DIV B (1) A fire alarm system complying with Articles , , and Subsection of the 1986 Building Code shall be installed where (a) sleeping accommodation is provided for more than ten persons, and (b) the floor assemblies have a minimum ¾-hr fire-resistance rating and public corridors or corridors serving sleeping rooms not within a dwelling unit are fire separated from the remainder of the building by a minimum ½-hr fire-resistance rating OBC Where a fire alarm system is required, every public corridor in buildings of residential occupancy and every exit stair shaft shall be provided with smoke detectors OBC Except as provided in Article , buildings required to have a fire alarm system shall be equipped with heat detectors or smoke detectors in storage rooms, service rooms, elevator shafts, chutes, janitors' closets and any other rooms where hazardous substances are intended to be used or stored OBC Fire alarm, fire detection and smoke detection devices and systems, and their installation, shall conform to Part 3 (see Section ) OBC See Articles , and for smoke alarm installation requirements 13

14 OBC (1) Smoke alarms conforming to ULC-S531, "Standard for Smoke Alarms" shall be installed in each dwelling unit and, except for institutional occupancies required to have a fire alarm system, in each sleeping room not within a dwelling unit. (2) Smoke alarms within dwelling units shall be installed between each sleeping area and the remainder of the dwelling unit, and where the sleeping rooms are served by hallways, the smoke alarms shall be installed in the hallways. (3) Smoke alarms shall be installed on the ceiling or on the walls between 150 mm and 300mm below the ceiling in conformance with manufacturer's installation instructions. (4) Smoke alarms shall be installed with permanent connections to an electrical circuit and shall have no disconnect switches between the overcurrent device and the smoke alarm. (5) Where more than 1 smoke alarm is required in a dwelling unit, they shall be wired so that the activation of 1 alarm will cause all alarms within the dwelling unit to sound OBC Smoke alarms shall be installed by permanent connections to an electrical circuit and shall have no disconnect switch between the overcurrent circuit device and the smoke alarm. Where the building is not supplied with electrical power, smoke alarms may be battery operated OBC Where instructions are necessary to describe the maintenance and care required for smoke alarms to ensure continuing satisfactory performance, they shall be posted in a location where they will be readily available to the occupants for reference. OFC DIV B Where a fire alarm system is required and sleeping accommodation is not provided for more than 14 persons, an interconnected smoke alarm system in accordance with Clause (1)(a) shall be deemed to be in compliance with Article

15 OFC DIV B Despite Articles and , existing fire alarm systems may be approved where the system reliability and performance will not increase the risk of life safety. OFC DIV B (1) Despite the provisions of Articles , , and , at least one 2A rated portable extinguisher shall be provided on each floor. (2) At least one 5BC rated portable extinguisher shall be installed in each kitchen where shared cooking facilities exist. 15

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