The following word and term shall, for the purpose of this chapter and as used elsewhere in this code, have the meaning shown herein.
EXISTING. Buildings, facilities or conditions that are already in existence, constructed or officially authorized prior to the adoption of this code.
Existing buildings shall comply with not less than the minimum provisions specified in Table 4603.1 and as further enumerated in Sections 4603.2 through 4603.7.3. The provisions of this chapter shall not be construed to allow the elimination of fire protection systems or a reduction in the level of fire safety provided in buildings constructed in accordance with previously adopted codes.
|HIgh rise||Atrium and
In other than Group I occupancies, interior vertical openings in a covered mall building or a building with an atrium shall be protected by either 1-hour fire-resistance-rated construction or an automatic sprinkler system shall be installed throughout the building in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2.
- Vertical opening protection is not required for Group R-3 occupancies.
- Vertical opening protection is not required for open parking garages and ramps.
An approved fire alarm system shall be installed in existing buildings and structures in accordance with Sections 4603.6.1 through 4603.6.7 and provide occupant notification in accordance with Section 907.6 unless other requirements are provided by other sections of this code.
- A manual fire alarm system is not required in a building with a maximum area of 1,000 square feet (93 m2) that contains a single classroom and is located no closer than 50 feet (15 240 mm) from another building.
- A manual fire alarm system is not required in Group E occupancies with an occupant load less than 50.
- Manual fire alarm boxes in resident or patient sleeping areas shall not be required at exits if located at all nurses' control stations or other constantly attended staff locations, provided such stations are visible and continuously accessible and that travel distances required in Section 907.5.2 are not exceeded.
- Where each sleeping room has a means of egress door opening directly to an exterior egress balcony that leads directly to the exits in accordance with Section 1019, and the building is not more than three stories in height.
Exception: Manual fire alarm boxes in resident or patient sleeping areas shall not be required at exits if located at all nurses' control stations or other constantly attended staff locations, provided such stations are visible and continuously accessible and that travel distances required in Section 907.5.2.1 are not exceeded.
- Buildings less than two stories in height where all sleeping units, attics and crawl spaces are separated by 1-hour fire-resistance-rated construction and each sleeping unit has direct access to a public way, exit court or yard.
- Manual fire alarm boxes are not required throughout the building when the following conditions are met:
An automatic smoke detection system that activates the occupant notification system in accordance with Section 907.6 shall be installed in existing Group R-1 hotels and motels throughout all interior corridors serving sleeping rooms not equipped with an approved, supervised sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.
An automatic smoke detection system that activates the occupant notification system in accordance with Section 907.6 shall be installed in existing Group R-1 boarding and rooming houses throughout all interior corridors serving sleeping units not equipped with an approved, supervised sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.
An automatic or manual fire alarm system that activates the occupant notification system in accordance with Section 907.6 shall be installed in existing Group R-2 occupancies more than three stories in height or with more than 16 dwelling or sleeping units.
- Where each living unit is separated from other contiguous living units by fire barriers having a fire-resistance rating of not less than 0.75 hour, and where each living unit has either its own independent exit or its own independent stairway or ramp discharging at grade.
- A separate fire alarm system is not required in buildings that are equipped throughout with an approved supervised automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2 and having a local alarm to notify all occupants.
- A fire alarm system is not required in buildings that do not have interior corridors serving dwelling units and are protected by an approved automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2, provided that dwelling units either have a means of egress door opening directly to an exterior exit access that leads directly to the exits or are served by open-ended corridors designed in accordance with Section 1023.6, Exception 4.
An automatic or manual fire alarm system that activates the occupant notification system in accordance with Section 907.6 shall be installed in existing Group R-4 residential care/assisted living facilities in accordance with Section 907.2.10.
Where more than one smoke alarm is required to be installed within an individual dwelling or sleeping unit, the smoke alarms shall be interconnected in such a manner that the activation of one alarm will activate all of the alarms in the individual unit. The alarm shall be clearly audible in all bedrooms over background noise levels with all intervening doors closed.
- Interconnection is not required in buildings that are not undergoing alterations, repairs or construction of any kind.
- Smoke alarms in existing areas are not required to be interconnected where alterations or repairs do not result in the removal of interior wall or ceiling finishes exposing the structure, unless there is an attic, crawl space or basement available which could provide access for interconnection without the removal of interior finishes.
Single-station smoke alarms shall receive their primary power from the building wiring provided that such wiring is served from a commercial source and shall be equipped with a battery backup. Smoke alarms with integral strobes that are not equipped with battery backup shall be connected to an emergency electrical system. Smoke alarms shall emit a signal when the batteries are low. Wiring shall be permanent and without a disconnecting switch other than as required for overcurrent protection.
- Smoke alarms are permitted to be solely battery operated in existing buildings where no construction is taking place.
- Smoke alarms are permitted to be solely battery operated in buildings that are not served from a commercial power source.
- Smoke alarms are permitted to be solely battery operated in existing areas of buildings undergoing alterations or repairs that do not result in the removal of interior walls or ceiling finishes exposing the structure, unless there is an attic, crawl space or basement available which could provide access for building wiring without the removal of interior finishes.
Elevators, escalators and moving walks shall not be used as a component of a required means of egress.
- Elevators used as an accessible means of egress where allowed by Section 1007.4.
- Previously approved escalators and moving walks in existing buildings.
Exit signs shall be internally or externally illuminated. The face of an exit sign illuminated from an external source shall have an intensity of not less than 5 foot-candles (54 lux). Internally illuminated signs shall provide equivalent luminance and be listed for the purpose.
Where emergency illumination is required in Section 4604.5, exit signs shall be visible under emergency illumination conditions.
- Group A having 50 or more occupants.
Exception: Assembly occupancies used exclusively as a place of worship and having an occupant load of less than 300.
- Group B buildings three or more stories in height, buildings with 100 or more occupants above or below a level of exit discharge serving the occupants or buildings with 1,000 or more total occupants.
- Group E in interior stairs, corridors, windowless areas with student occupancy, shops and laboratories.
- Group F having more than 100 occupants.
Exception: Buildings used only during daylight hours which are provided with windows for natural light in accordance with the International Building Code.
- Group I.
- Group M.
- Group R-1.
Exception: Where each sleeping unit has direct access to the outside of the building at grade.
- Group R-2.
Exception: Where each dwelling unit or sleeping unit has direct access to the outside of the building at grade.
- Group R-4.
Exception: Where each sleeping unit has direct access to the outside of the building at ground level.
Guards shall form a protective barrier not less than 42 inches (1067 mm) high.
- Existing guards on the open side of stairs shall be not less than 30 inches (760 mm) high.
- Existing guards within dwelling units shall be not less than 36 inches (910 mm) high.
- Existing guards in assembly seating areas.
Open guards shall have balusters or ornamental patterns such that a 6-inch-diameter (152 mm) sphere cannot pass through any opening up to a height of 34 inches (864 mm).
- At elevated walking surfaces for access to, and use of, electrical, mechanical or plumbing systems or equipment, guards shall have balusters or be of solid materials such that a sphere with a diameter of 21 inches (533 mm) cannot pass through any opening.
- In occupancies in Group I-3, F, H or S, the clear distance between intermediate rails measured at right angles to the rails shall not exceed 21 inches (533 mm).
- Approved existing open guards.
The means of egress width shall not be less than as required by the code under which constructed but not less than as required by this section. The total width of means of egress in inches (mm) shall not be less than the total occupant load served by the means of egress multiplied by the factors in Table 4604.7 and not less than specified elsewhere in this section. Multiple means of egress shall be sized such that the loss of any one means of egress shall not reduce the available capacity to less than 50 percent of the required capacity. The maximum capacity required from any story of a building shall be maintained to the termination of the means of egress.
|OCCUPANCY||WITHOUT SPRINKLER SYSTEM||WITH SPRINKLER SYSTEMa|
(inches per occupant)
|Other egress components (inches per occupant)||
(inches per occupant)
|Other egress components (inches per occupant)|
|Occupancies other than those listed below||0.3||0.2||0.2||0.15|
|Hazardous: H-1, H-2, H-3 and H-4||Not permitted||Not permitted||0.3||0.2|
|Institutional: I-2||Not permitted||Not permitted||0.3||0.2|
The minimum width of each door opening shall be sufficient for the occupant load thereof and shall provide a clear width of not less than 28 inches (711 mm). Where this section requires a minimum clear width of 28 inches (711 mm) and a door opening includes two door leaves without a mullion, one leaf shall provide a clear opening width of 28 inches (711 mm). The maximum width of a swinging door leaf shall be 48 inches (1219 mm) nominal. Means of egress doors in an occupancy in Group I-2 used for the movement of beds shall provide a clear width not less than 41.5 inches (1054 mm). The height of doors shall not be less than 80 inches (2032 mm).
- The minimum and maximum width shall not apply to door openings that are not part of the required means of egress in occupancies in Groups R-2 and R-3.
- Door openings to storage closets less than 10 square feet (0.93 m2) in area shall not be limited by the minimum width.
- Width of door leafs in revolving doors that comply with Section 1008.1.4.1 shall not be limited.
- Door openings within a dwelling unit shall not be less than 78 inches (1981 mm) in height.
- Exterior door openings in dwelling units, other than the required exit door, shall not be less than 76 inches (1930 mm) in height.
- Exit access doors serving a room not larger than 70 square feet (6.5 m2) shall be not less than 24 inches (610 mm) in door width.
Revolving doors shall comply with the following:
- A revolving door shall not be located within 10 feet (3048 mm) of the foot or top of stairs or escalators. A dispersal area shall be provided between the stairs or escalators and the revolving doors.
- The revolutions per minute for a revolving door shall not exceed those shown in Table 4604.10.
- Each revolving door shall have a conforming side- hinged swinging door in the same wall as the revolving door and within 10 feet (3048 mm).
- A revolving door is permitted to be used without an adjacent swinging door for street-floor elevator lobbies provided a stairway, escalator or door from other parts of the building does not discharge through the lobby and the lobby does not have any occupancy or use other than as a means of travel between elevators and a street.
- Existing revolving doors where the number of revolving doors does not exceed the number of swinging doors within 20 feet (6096 mm).
|INSIDE DIAMETER||POWER-DRIVEN-TYPE SPEED CONTROL(RPM)||MANUAL-TYPE SPEED CONTROL (RPM)|
A revolving door used as a component of a means of egress shall comply with Section 4604.10 and all of the following conditions:
- Revolving doors shall not be given credit for more than 50 percent of the required egress capacity.
- Each revolving door shall be credited with not more than a 50-person capacity.
- Revolving doors shall be capable of being collapsed when a force of not more than 130 pounds (578 N) is applied within 3 inches (76 mm) of the outer edge of a wing.
Existing stairs in buildings shall be permitted to remain if the rise does not exceed 81/4 inches (210 mm) and the run is not less than 9 inches (229 mm). Existing stairs can be rebuilt.
Stairways shall have handrails on at least one side. Handrails shall be located so that all portions of the stairway width required for egress capacity are within 44 inches (1118 mm) of a handrail.
The lowest balcony shall not be more than 18 feet (5486 mm) from the ground. Fire escape stairs shall extend to the ground or be provided with counterbalanced stairs reaching the ground.
Corridors serving an occupant load greater than 30 and the openings therein shall provide an effective barrier to resist the movement of smoke. Transoms, louvers, doors and other openings shall be kept closed or self- closing.
- Corridors in occupancies other than in Group H, which are equipped throughout with an approved automatic sprinkler system.
- Patient room doors in corridors in occupancies in Group I-2 where smoke barriers are provided in accordance with the International Building Code.
- Corridors in occupancies in Group E where each room utilized for instruction or assembly has at least one-half of the required means of egress doors opening directly to the exterior of the building at ground level.
- Corridors that are in accordance with the International Building Code.
Openings in corridor walls shall comply with the requirements of the International Building Code.
- Where 20-minute fire door assemblies are required, solid wood doors at least 1.75 inches (44 mm) thick or insulated steel doors are allowed.
- Openings protected with fixed wire glass set in steel frames.
- Openings covered with 0.5-inch (12.7 mm) gypsum wallboard or 0.75-inch (19.1 mm) plywood on the room side.
- Opening protection is not required when the building is equipped throughout with an approved automatic sprinkler system.
|OCCUPANCY||COMMON PATH LIMIT||DEAD-END LIMIT||TRAVEL DISTANCE LIMIT|
|Group F-1, S-1d||75||100||50||50||200||250|
|Group F-2, S-2d||75||100||50||50||300||400|
|Group I-2 (Health Care)||NRe||NRe||NR||NR||150||200c|
(Detention and Correctional—
Use Conditions II, III, IV, V)
|Group I-4 (Day Care Centers)||NR||NR||20||20||200||250|
|Group M (Covered Mall)||75||100||50||50||200||400|
|Group M (Mercantile)||75||100||50||50||200||250|
|Group R-1 (Hotels)||75||75||50||50||200||250|
|Group R-2 (Apartments)||75||75||50||50||200||250|
|Group R-3 (One- and Two- Family)||NR||NR||NR||NR||NR||NR|
|Group R-4 (Residential Care/Assisted Living)||NR||NR||NR||NR||NR||NR|
- 20 feet for common path serving 50 or more persons; 75 feet for common path serving less than 50 persons.
- See Section 1028.9.5 for dead-end aisles in Group A occupancies.
- This dimension is for the total travel distance, assuming incremental portions have fully utilized their allowable maximums. For travel distance within the room, and from the room exit access door to the exit, see the appropriate occupancy chapter.
- See the International Building Code for special requirements on spacing of doors in aircraft hangars.
- Any patient sleeping room, or any suite that includes patient sleeping rooms, of more than 1,000 square feet (93 m2) shall have at least two exit access doors placed a distance apart equal to not less than one-third of the length of the maximum overall diagonal dimension of the patient sleeping room or suite to be served, measured in a straight line between exit access doors.
A stairway in an exit enclosure which continues below its level of exit discharge shall be arranged and marked to make the direction of egress to a public way readily identifiable.
Exception: Stairs that continue one-half story beyond their levels of exit discharge need not be provided with barriers where the exit discharge is obvious.
- Separation from the interior of the building is not required for buildings that are two stories or less above grade where the level of exit discharge serving such occupancies is the first story above grade.
- Separation from the interior of the building is not required where the exterior stairway is served by an exterior balcony that connects two remote exterior stairways or other approved exits, with a perimeter that is not less than 50 percent open. To be considered open, the opening shall be a minimum of 50 percent of the height of the enclosing wall, with the top of the opening not less than 7 feet (2134 mm) above the top of the balcony.
- Separation from the interior of the building is not required for an exterior stairway located in a building or structure that is permitted to have unenclosed interior stairways in accordance with Section 1022.
- Separation from the interior of the building is not required for exterior stairways connected to open-ended corridors, provided that:
- The building, including corridors and stairs, is equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1 or 903.3.1.2.
- The open-ended corridors comply with Section 1018.
- The open-ended corridors are connected on each end to an exterior exit stairway complying with Section 1026.
- At any location in an open-ended corridor where a change of direction exceeding 45 degrees occurs, a clear opening of not less than 35 square feet (3 m2) or an exterior stairway shall be provided. Where clear openings are provided, they shall be located so as to minimize the accumulation of smoke or toxic gases.
- Forty-two inches (1067 mm) for aisle stairs having seating on each side.
Exception: Thirty-six inches (914 mm) where the aisle serves less than 50 seats.
- Thirty-six inches (914 mm) for stepped aisles having seating on only one side.
Exception: Thirty inches (760 mm) for catchment areas serving not more than 60 seats.
- Twenty inches (508 mm) between a stepped aisle handrail or guard and seating when the aisle is subdivided by the handrail.
- Forty-two inches (1067 mm) for level or ramped aisles having seating on both sides.
Exception: Thirty-six inches (914 mm) where the aisle serves less than 50 seats.
- Thirty-six inches (914 mm) for level or ramped aisles having seating on only one side.
Exception: Thirty inches (760 mm) for catchment areas serving not more than 60 seats.
- Twenty-three inches (584 mm) between a stepped stair handrail and seating where an aisle does not serve more than five rows on one side.
Existing buildings of Groups A, B, E, I, M and R-1 having occupied floors located more than 75 feet (22 860 mm) above the lowest level of fire department vehicle access shall be provided with luminous egress path markings in accordance with Section 1024.