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  1. #1
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    Default IBC egress question

    Hi guys, I need some technical help.
    Under the 2003 IBC, I need to know what the maximum allowable apartment sq. ft. is for only one egress per unit.
    2 story frame, 6 units
    I'd really appreciate it if someone with that book can look it up for me. I need to code section # and basically what it says. I don't expect anyone to type the whole thing in.
    Thanks a lot, Markus

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  2. #2
    daniel nantell's Avatar
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    the ibc is posted on this web sitehttp://www2.iccsafe.org/states/Seattle/index_main.htm


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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    I really don't understand the question; 'only one egress per unit'.

    Generally:
    Means of egress requirements for an apartment is based on 1 occupant per 200 (gross) square feet.
    Number of exits required is based on the number of occupants (or total square footage).
    Two or more exits will be required if number of occupants exceeds 10.

    More info is needed to accurately determine requirements.

    Is your question about exits from each unit or from the building?

    Darren www.aboutthehouseinspections.com
    'Whizzing & pasting & pooting through the day (Ronnie helping Kenny helping burn his poots away!) (FZ)

  4. #4
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    To clarify the question.
    Our city code allows one exit per apartment, in multi-unit buildings, if the apt is under 800 sq ft in size. Such as studio's and small 1 bedrooms. There are other requirements, etc but that's the meat of it. I know the code section, etc. for the city.
    I have a case in the burbs where an insurer wants a client to add second exits to studio apts. Client of course does not want to.
    The suburb in question uses the 2003 IBC, so therefore I need to know how the 03 IBC treats the subject.
    Thanks

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  5. #5
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Quote Originally Posted by Markus Keller View Post
    To clarify the question.
    Our city code allows one exit per apartment, in multi-unit buildings, if the apt is under 800 sq ft in size. Such as studio's and small 1 bedrooms. There are other requirements, etc but that's the meat of it. I know the code section, etc. for the city.
    I have a case in the burbs where an insurer wants a client to add second exits to studio apts. Client of course does not want to.
    The suburb in question uses the 2003 IBC, so therefore I need to know how the 03 IBC treats the subject.
    Thanks
    I would contact the AHJ in the town that the home is in. Let them tell you what their requirements are. Then if they go against the insurance requirement you might be able to get them to issue a letter.

    Fighting an insurance company over something like this will be like stopping a train with a Yugo.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Daniel, Thanks for the great link.
    As for fighting the ins company, I told to client to shop around for another carrier, it would probably be much easier. They would rather try to fight it though at this point.

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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Quote Originally Posted by Markus Keller View Post
    Daniel, Thanks for the great link.
    As for fighting the ins company, I told to client to shop around for another carrier, it would probably be much easier. They would rather try to fight it though at this point.
    The problem with that is that is has most likely already been put into the CLUE database so other insurance providers will be able to find out.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Scott, what is the CLUE database? Another corp. spy machine?

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  9. #9
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Quote Originally Posted by Markus Keller View Post
    Scott, what is the CLUE database? Another corp. spy machine?
    Yep! Anything to do with insurance claims, cancellations, etc can be found in a CLUE report. Wisconsin has a good FAQ about CLUE reports
    Frequently Asked Questions About C.L.U.E.

    I have used them on several EW cases against homeowners who have not disclosed fires, water/flood damages, etc. The insurance company that represents defendants/plaintiffs get them and then provide them to the attorney/EW. The insurance company is the only that can get them.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    The other problem is that of "definition", i.e., "define" "egress" ... as in that "one exit" or "two exits".

    There will be the required egress exit (the main door to the common corridor) and there will typically be 'other' egress exits, such as doors to balconies, etc.

    In South Florida Building Code, two main egress exits were required to the common corridor or other common egress exit, thus there was a 'main door' and a 'kitchen door' (typically the second exit would be from the kitchen).

    The two 26 story towers I inspected in Daytona Beach have 10 units per floor, with each unit having one main exit to the corridor and the second exit to the balconies.

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  11. #11
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Jerry, these are studio and 1 bedroom units exiting into a small corridor and a common staircase.
    The ins comp wants a second path of egress. Essentially calling for a 'kitchen' door to stairs.
    Almost impossilbe to comply with due to the layout of the building.

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  12. #12
    Michael Greenwalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    2003 IBC 1018.2 Only one exit shall be required in buildings as described below:

    from table 1018.2 Occupancy R-2, Maximum height of building above grade (2 stories) Maximum occupants or dwelling units per floor and travel distance: (4 dwelling units and 50 feet travel distance).

    Last edited by Michael Greenwalt; 04-11-2008 at 05:47 AM. Reason: spell

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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Quote Originally Posted by Markus Keller View Post
    Jerry, these are studio and 1 bedroom units exiting into a small corridor and a common staircase.
    Markus,

    How "small" is "small"? The minimum width is 44".

    How many stories high is the building?

    Are there any other exits from the units (balconies, windows, etc.)?

    Is the building "fully sprinklered"? If the building is fully sprinklered, there are exceptions for which no additional exits are required.

    Sounds like the AHJ *may* (too many unknowns here - missing information - to actually say they did) have allowed something which is not allowed ... or it may be covered by exceptions?

    I would have the client's in$urance company meet with the in$urance company which insures the building to find out why there is a difference in one being able to insure the condo building and the other not being able to insure a given unit within that building. The condo building in$urance is to protect all members of the association (i.e., each condo owner) from each other and others. If there is a death in a unit from not being able to get out, the condo association would be sued as they (collectively) own the building.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Greenwalt View Post
    2003 IBC 1018.2 Only one exit shall be required in buildings as described below:

    from table 1018.2 Occupancy R-2, Maximum height of building above grade (2 stories) Maximum occupants or dwelling units per floor and travel distance: (4 dwelling units and 50 feet travel distance).
    Michael,

    Make sure to read the indicated note, note c, "c. Buildings classified as Group R-2 equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2 and provided with emergency escape and rescue openings in accordance with Section 1025 shall have a maximum height of three stories above grade."

    From the 2003 IBC.
    - 1018.2 Buildings with one exit. Only one exit shall be required in buildings as described below:
    - - 1. Buildings described in Table 1018.2, provided that the building has not more than one level below the first story above grade plane.
    - - 2. Buildings of Group R-3 occupancy.
    - - 3. Single-level buildings with the occupied space at the level of exit discharge provided that the story or space complies with Section 1014.1 as a space with one means of egress.

    Michael gave the allowances for R-2 in Table 1018.2 - "R-2 2 Stories c 4 dwelling units and 50 feet travel distance" (the stand alone c is in superscript indicating to read not c).

    From the 2006 IBC.
    - 1019.2 Buildings with one exit. Only one exit shall be required in buildings as described below:
    - - 1. Buildings described in Table 1019.2, provided that the building has not more than one level below the first story above grade plane.
    - - 2. Buildings of Group R-3 occupancy.
    - - 3. Single-level buildings with the occupied space at the level of exit discharge provided that the story or space complies with Section 1015.1 as a space with one means of egress.

    From Table 1019.2
    - R-2 2 Stories c 4 dwelling units and 50 feet travel distance (Jerry's note: there's that note c again)
    - - note c. Buildings classified as Group R-2 equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2 and provided with emergency escape and rescue openings in accordance with Section 1026 shall have a maximum height of three stories above grade plane.

    Thus, as I asked in my post just before this post "Is the building "fully sprinklered"? If the building is fully sprinklered, there are exceptions for which no additional exits are required."


    Last edited by Jerry Peck; 04-11-2008 at 06:34 AM. Reason: trying to get the formatting right
    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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  15. #15
    Michael Greenwalt's Avatar
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Jerry I agree and maybe I am missing something. Doesn't note C increase the maximum height above grade from 2 stories to 3 when adding the said sprinkler system? I read the term "shall" have a maximum height but I am missing where this applies to the 2 story limit in the table?

    Thanks


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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Greenwalt View Post
    Jerry I agree and maybe I am missing something. Doesn't note C increase the maximum height above grade from 2 stories to 3 when adding the said sprinkler system? I read the term "shall" have a maximum height but I am missing where this applies to the 2 story limit in the table?

    Thanks
    Michael,

    You are correct. Installing a sprinkler system which meets NFPA 13 allows for a one story increase on most types of buildings, and that is the intent here too. I read through it too quickly looking for the fully sprinklered note without paying attention to what it actually covered.

    Thus, the key here (for Marcus' question) would be the "2 story frame, 6 units" ... is that 6 units total, or 6 units per floor? If 6 units total, and not more than 4 per floor, then a single exit is allowed ... provided that the farthest door is less than 50 feet from the stair.

    Assuming each unit is 25 feet wide, it is very probable that the 50 foot limitation is met. Measuring farthest side of the unit door to the farthest side of the stair door.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Peck View Post
    The two 26 story towers I inspected in Daytona Beach have 10 units per floor, with each unit having one main exit to the corridor and the second exit to the balconies.
    Jerry,

    If you would be so kind, please explain to me how a balcony, 26 stories high, is a means of egress?

    Do all these balconies have a stairwell to a 'public way'?

    Darren www.aboutthehouseinspections.com
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  18. #18
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Hey guys sorry for the absence from my own thread, had inspections.
    The building in more detail is a 2 story frame plus basement. There are 3 units on each floor. Basement is utility only. No sprinklers. This is an old piece of ...
    From the exterior the building looks like an extra long traditional 2 flat. Front entry stairs for 2 front apts. Center staircase for middle and rear units. Each unit is +/- 500 sq.ft.
    The building was originally a 4 flat, 2 front, 2 rear. It was converted decades ago. The village has no problem with the current set-up. I've spoken with the muni insp already.
    From what you guys have shown me, I don't see any cause for a 2nd egress. I appreciate all the help.
    The client is shopping for a new ins carrier. Current carrier won't provide specific reasoning for the demand.

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  19. #19
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Quote Originally Posted by Darren Miller View Post
    If you would be so kind, please explain to me how a balcony, 26 stories high, is a means of egress?
    Darren,

    With what is allowed today in most, if not all codes, with buildings fully protected with an automatic sprinkler system which meets the specified requirements, each unit is required to have two means of egress - once you leave the unit, i.e., you have the main door from the unit to the corridor, and there must be two paths for you to take.

    The units themselves are only required to have one means of egress when fully protected by the applicable sprinkler system, no EERO, no anything, so, providing a balcony as a secondary means of escape is a plus ... not required with the proper sprinkler system.

    When fully sprinklered, no secondary means of egress is required.

    Being able to escape to a balcony is better than not being able to ... should the need arise.

    High rise fires are no anything enjoyable for anyone, and I do not necessarily agree with what is allowed (one egress from the unit), but, many people a lot smarter than I have deemed that, when fully protected by an approved sprinkler system, it meets "minimum" life safety criteria.

    Myself - I'd rather see two separate and distinct exits from each unit, only that is not required.

    Hope that helps answer your question.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    So basically, the balconies are used as an 'area of refuge'

    How do you assist someone 26 stories high?

    Darren www.aboutthehouseinspections.com
    'Whizzing & pasting & pooting through the day (Ronnie helping Kenny helping burn his poots away!) (FZ)

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    Default Re: IBC egress question

    Quote Originally Posted by Darren Miller View Post
    So basically, the balconies are used as an 'area of refuge'
    I would not go so far as to say that, because they do not meet the requirements for an area of refuge. Then again, no other means of egress (other than the one) is even required. It does, however, give them a 'place to go' for 'some' relief and protection.

    How do you assist someone 26 stories high?
    Hopefully, at 26 stories up, the sprinklers will be going off and putting out the fire and smoke, making it such that simply 'time' is of assistance ... 'time' to allow the fire to be brought under control, the smoke to be evacuated by the required exhaust fans, 'time' to allow the building to become 'more normal' again. 'Time' is of most importance at that point, allowing the occupants 'time' and 'fresh air' are of considerable 'assistance'. If the smoke and fire are outside, i.e., they go out to the balcony and are in the smoke and fire, then 'inside' is where they should be.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
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