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453.1 Scope
The provisions of this section shall apply to buildings or structures, or portions thereof, containing one or more Group L laboratory suites as defined in Section 453.2.
453.2 Definitions
The following terms are defined in Chapter 2:
453.3 Laboratory Suite Requirements
453.3.1
The gross square footage of an individual laboratory suite shall not exceed 10,000 sq ft (929 m2).
453.3.2
An individual laboratory suite shall not serve more than a single tenant.
Exception: A laboratory suite controlled by a single responsible party.
453.4 Construction
453.4.1 Separation of Laboratory Suites
453.4.1.1
Laboratory suites shall be separated from other occupancies in accordance with Table 508.4.
453.4.1.2
Laboratory suites shall be separated from other laboratory suites by a fire barrier having a fire-resistance rating of not less than 1-hour.
453.4.1.3
Laboratory suites shall be separated from control areas by a minimum 2-hour fire-resistance rating in accordance with Sections 707 and 711.
Exception: Laboratory suites shall be separated from control areas by a minimum 1-hour fire-resistance rating on floor levels below the 4th story.
453.4.1.4 Horizontal Separation
The floor construction of the laboratory suite and the construction supporting the floor of the laboratory suite shall have a minimum 2-hour fire-resistance rating in accordance with Section 711.
Exceptions:
  1. The floor construction of the laboratory suite and the construction supporting the floor of the laboratory suite are allowed to be 1-hour fire-resistance rated in buildings of Type IIA, IIIA and VA construction.
  2. When an individual laboratory suite occupies more than one story, the intermediate floors contained within the suite shall comply with the requirements of Table 601.
453.4.2 Structural Design Occupancy Category
453.4.2.1
Buildings containing Group L occupancies with an occupant load greater than 500 for colleges or adult education facilities, or other buildings with an occupant load greater than 5,000 shall be classified as Occupancy Category III in accordance with Chapters 16 and 16A.
453.4.2.2
Other buildings containing Group L occupancies shall be classified as Occupancy Category II in accordance with Chapters 16 and 16A.
453.4.3 Fire Barrier and Fire-Smoke Barrier
453.4.3.1 Fire Barrier
A fire barrier having a fire resistance rating of not less than 2-hours shall divide any story containing more than one laboratory suite above the 4th story.
453.4.3.1.1
Fire barriers shall be continuous from exterior wall to exterior wall,
453.4.3.1.2
The fire barrier shall divide the floor so that the square footage on each side of the 2-hour fire barrier is not less than 30 percent of the total floor area, and
453.4.3.1.3
The number of laboratory suites on each side of the 2-hour fire barrier shall not be less than 25 percent of the total number of laboratory suites on the floor.
453.4.3.2 Fire-Smoke Barrier
Any story containing a Group L occupancy above the 10th story shall be subdivided by a fire-smoke barrier constructed as a fire barrier having a fire resistance rating of not less than 2-hours and shall also comply with the smoke barrier requirements of Section 709.
The 2-hour fire- smoke barrier shall be in accordance with Sections 453.4.3 through 453.4.3.2.3.
453.4.3.2.1
A minimum of one door opening shall be provided in the 2-hour fire-smoke barrier for emergency access.
453.4.3.2.2
Each side of the 2-hour fire- smoke barrier shall be designed as a separate smoke zone designed in accordance with Section 909.6.
453.4.3.2.3
The area on each side of the 2-hour fire-smoke barrier shall be served by a minimum of one exit enclosure in accordance with Section 1022.
453.4.4 Emergency Response Equipment Area
An area for emergency response equipment shall be provided on each floor in an approved location. The area shall be a minimum of 50 square feet (4.6 m2), accessed from outside the laboratory suite and identified with signage
453.4.5 Liquid Tight Floor
All portions of the laboratory suite where hazardous materials may be present shall be provided with a liquid tight floor. Where the floor is designed to provide spill control or secondary containment the floor shall be designed in accordance with California Fire Code Section 5004.2.
453.4.6 Emergency Power
An emergency power system shall be provided in accordance with Chapter 27.
453.4.6.1 Required Systems
Emergency power shall be provided for all electrically operated equipment, systems and connected control circuits including:
  1. Mechanical ventilation systems. See Section 453.4.7.2.
  2. Emergency alarm and monitoring systems.
  3. Temperature control systems required to prevent unsafe process excursions or chemical reactions.
  4. Treatment systems and scrubbers.
  5. Egress lighting.
  6. Electrically operated systems required elsewhere in this code and the California Fire Code.
453.4.7 Ventilation
453.4.7.1 Compatibility
Incompatible materials shall not be conveyed in the same duct system. Combined products in mechanical exhaust ducts shall not create a physical hazard or reaction that could degrade the duct material. The building official may require a technical report in accordance with Section 453.7.1.
453.4.7.2 Fire Dampers, Smoke Dampers and Combination Fire/Smoke Dampers
Fire dampers, smoke dampers or fire/smoke dampers shall not be permitted in product conveying and other mechanical exhaust duct systems used to maintain a safe laboratory environment. When the exhaust duct penetrates the laboratory suite boundary the exhaust duct shall be located within a horizontal assembly having a fire resistance rating equal to the fire barrier.
453.4.7.3 Duct Materials
Product conveying and other mechanical exhaust duct systems used to maintain a safe laboratory environment shall be constructed in accordance with Chapters 5 and 6 of the California Mechanical Code.
453.4.7.4 Laboratory Suite Exhaust Air
453.4.7.4.1
Exhaust air from laboratory suites shall not be recirculated.
453.4.7.4.2
Laboratory suite exhaust air shall be independently ducted to a point outside the building or a roof top structure.
Exceptions:
  1. Exhaust ducts serving a single laboratory suite.
  2. Exhaust ducts serving separate laboratory suites on the same story may be connected to a common duct within a fire rated vertical shaft when the sub-duct extends vertically upward at least 22 inches.
  3. Exhaust ducts serving separate laboratory suites on the basement through the 4th story may be connected to a common duct within a fire rated vertical shaft when the sub-duct extends vertically upward at least 22 inches.
  4. Exhaust ducts serving separate laboratory suites on the 5th story and above may be connected to a common duct that does not exceed 100 vertical feet within a fire rated vertical shaft when the subducts extends vertically upward at least 22 inches. Ducts serving the 5th story and above shall be separate from the duct serving the 4th story and below, but may be within the same fire rated shaft.
453.4.7.4.3
Laboratory suite exhaust ducts shall not penetrate the 2-hour fire barrier required by Section 453.4.3.
Exception: Where the exhaust duct is enclosed in a 2-hour shaft in accordance with Section 708.
453.4.7.5 Ventilation Rates
Mechanical exhaust ventilation systems shall provide a minimum ventilation rate not less than 1 cubic feet per minute per square foot [0.00508 m3/(s•m2)] of floor area, or 6 air exchanges per hour, whichever is greater. Systems shall operate continuously at the designed ventilation rate.
453.4.7.6 Mechanical Ventilation Systems on Emergency Power
When operating on emergency power, the ventilation rate may be reduced to a level sufficient to maintain a differential pressure negative to the surrounding area.
453.4.7.7 Mechanical Ventilation System Balancing
Mechanical ventilation systems shall be designed and balanced such that during normal and emergency conditions the door opening forces comply with the requirements of Sections 1008.1.3 and Chapter 11B as applicable. Emergency conditions shall include: supply fan shutdown or failure, closing of smoke dampers or combination fire/smoke dampers, or emergency power.
453.5 Fire Protection Systems
453.6 Means of Egress
453.6.1 Access to Exits
Every portion of a laboratory suite containing hazardous materials and having a floor area of 500 square feet (19 m2) or more shall have access to not less than two separate exits or exit-access doorways in accordance with Section 1015.2.
453.6.2 Door Swing
All exit and exit-access doors serving areas with hazardous materials shall swing in the direction of exit travel, regardless of the occupant load served.
453.6.3 Panic Hardware
Exit and exit access doors from areas with hazardous materials shall not be provided with a latch or lock unless it is panic hardware or fire exit hardware.
453.6.4 Buildings More Than Four Stories
A minimum of one exit shall be provided to serve the floor on each side of the 2-hour fire barrier and shall comply with the provisions of Chapter 10.
453.6.5 Corridors
Corridors shall comply with Section 1018 and shall have opening protection in accordance with Tables 716.5 and 716.6.
453.7 Hazardous Materials
453.7.1 Technical Report
The enforcing agency may require a technical opinion and report to identify and develop methods of protection from the hazards presented by the hazardous materials. A qualified person, firm or corporation, approved by the enforcing agency, shall prepare the opinion and report, and shall be provided without charge to the enforcing agency. The opinion and report may include, but is not limited to, the preparation of a hazardous material management plan (HMMP); chemical analysis; recommendations for methods of isolation, separation, containment or protection of hazardous materials or processes, including appropriate engineering controls to be applied; the extent of changes in the hazardous behavior to be anticipated under conditions of exposure to fire or from hazard control procedures; and the limitations or conditions of use necessary to achieve and maintain control of the hazardous materials or operations. The report shall be entered into the files of the code enforcement agencies. Proprietary and trade secret information shall be protected under the laws of the state or jurisdiction having authority.
453.7.2 Multiple Hazards
When a hazardous material has multiple hazards, all hazards shall be addressed and controlled in accordance with the provisions of this code.
453.7.3 Percentage of Maximum Allowable Quantities
The percentage of the maximum allowable quantity of hazardous materials per laboratory suite permitted for each story level within a building shall be in accordance with Table 453.7.3.1.

TABLE 453.7.3.1
HAZARDOUS MATERIALS QUANTITY PER LABORATORY SUITE
STORYPERCENTAGE OF MAXIMUM ALLOWABLE QUANTITY PER LABORATORY SUITEa, bNUMBER OF LAB SUITES PER FLOOR BASED ON CONSTRUCTION TYPE
Type IAType IBType IIA, IIIA, IVType IIB, IIIB, VAType VB
Above grade planeAbove 200NPNPNPNPNP
15 to 20254NPNPNPNP
11, 12, 13, 14508NPNPNPNP
7, 8, 9, 105016NPNPNPNP
6752020NPNPNP
4, 575202020NPNP
3100ULULULULNP
1, 2100ULULULULUL
Below grade plane175c1010101010
250d55555
3 and below0NPNPNPNPNP
UL = Unlimited, NP= Not permitted
  1. Percentages shall be of the maximum allowable quantity per laboratory suite shown in Tables 307.1(1) and 307.1(2). Allowable hazardous material increases for buildings equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system shall not be applicable to Group L occupancies.
  2. When an individual laboratory suite occupies more than one story, the more restrictive percentage of the maximum allowable quantity per laboratory suite shall apply.
  3. The total aggregate quantity of flammable liquids on the first story below grade shall be limited to the maximum total aggregate quantity for Group B occupancy control areas.
  4. The total aggregate quantity of flammable liquids on the second story level below grade shall be limited to a maximum total aggregate quantity for Group B occupancy control areas.
453.7.4 Handling and Transportation
The handling and transportation of hazardous materials shall be in accordance with Section 5003 of the California Fire Code.
453.7.5 Transportation of Hazardous Materials Above the 10th Story
Transportation of hazardous materials above the 10th story shall be limited to 5 percent of the maximum allowable quantities of Tables 307.1 (1) and 307.1(2.) Quantities are permitted to be increased 100 percent in buildings with an approved automatic sprinkler system in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1. Materials where footnote g of Table 307.1(1) applies shall not be increased.
453.8 Elevators and Elevator Lobbies Above the 10th Story
Any story containing a Group L occupancy above the 10th story shall be provided with elevators and elevator lobbies in accordance with Sections 453.8.1 through 453.8.3.
453.8.1
An elevator that serves every story of the building shall be provided on each side of the 2-hour fire-smoke barrier.
453.8.2
An elevator lobby shall be provided on each side of the 2-hour fire-smoke barrier at each floor in accordance with Section 3006.
453.8.3
The elevator and its associated elevator lobbies and elevator machine rooms shall be pressurized in accordance with Section 909.6.

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