ADOPTS WITH AMENDMENTS:

International Fire Code 2018 (IFC 2018)

Part I — Administrative

Part II — General Safety Provisions

Part III — Building and Equipment Design Features

Part IV — Special Occupancies and Operations

Part V — Hazardous Materials

Part VI — Referenced Standards

Part VII — Appendices

Heads up: There are no amended sections in this chapter.

User note:

About this chapter: Chapter 59 addresses general requirements for storage and handling of flammable solids, especially magnesium; however, it is important to note that several other solid materials, including such metals as titanium, zirconium, hafnium, calcium, zinc, sodium, lithium, potassium, sodium/potassium alloys, uranium, thorium and plutonium, can be explosion hazards under the right conditions. Some of these metals are almost exclusively laboratory materials but because of where they are used, fire service personnel must be trained to handle emergency situations. Because uranium, thorium and plutonium are also radioactive materials, they pose more specialized problems for fire service personnel.

The storage and use of flammable solids shall be in accordance with this chapter.

F- 5901.2 Permits Licenses

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
A license shall be required as set forth in Section F-105.6.1.

The following terms are defined in Chapter 2:

FLAMMABLE SOLID.

MAGNESIUM.

The storage and use of flammable solids in amounts not exceeding the maximum allowable quantity per control area as indicated in Section 5003.1 shall be in accordance with Sections 5001, 5003 and 5901.
Indoor storage of flammable solids in amounts exceeding the maximum allowable quantity per control area indicated in Table 5003.1.1(1) shall be in accordance with Sections 5001, 5003, 5004 and this chapter.
Flammable solids stored in quantities greater than 1,000 cubic feet (28 m3) shall be separated into piles each not larger than 1,000 cubic feet (28 m3).
Aisle widths between piles shall be not less than the height of the piles or 4 feet (1219 mm), whichever is greater.
Outdoor storage of flammable solids in amounts exceeding the maximum allowable quantities per control area indicated in Table 5003.1.1(1) shall be in accordance with Sections 5001, 5003, 5004 and this chapter. Outdoor storage of magnesium shall be in accordance with Section 5906.
Outdoor storage of flammable solids shall not be located within 20 feet (6096 mm) of a building, lot line, public street, public alley, public way or means of egress. A 2-hour fire barrier without openings or penetrations and extending 30 inches (762 mm) above and to the sides of the storage area is allowed in lieu of such distance. The wall shall either be an independent structure, or the exterior wall of the building adjacent to the storage area.
Outdoor storage of flammable solids shall be separated into piles not larger than 5,000 cubic feet (141 m3) each. Piles shall be separated by aisles with a minimum width of not less than one-half the pile height or 10 feet (3048 mm), whichever is greater.
The use of flammable solids in amounts exceeding the maximum allowable quantity per control area indicated in Table 5003.1.1(1) or 5003.1.1(3) shall be in accordance with Sections 5001, 5003, 5005 and this chapter. The use of magnesium shall be in accordance with Section 5906.
Storage, use, handling and processing of magnesium, including the pure metal and alloys of which the major part is magnesium, shall be in accordance with Chapter 50 and Sections 5906.2 through 5906.5.8.
The storage of magnesium shall comply with Sections 5906.2.1 through 5906.4.3.
Magnesium storage in quantities greater than 50 cubic feet (1.4 m3) shall be separated from storage of other materials that are either combustible or in combustible containers by aisles. Piles shall be separated by aisles with a minimum width of not less than the pile height.
Magnesium storage in quantities greater than 1,000 cubic feet (28 m3) shall be separated into piles not larger than 1,000 cubic feet (28 m3) each. Piles shall be separated by aisles with a minimum width of not less than the pile height. Such storage shall not be located in nonsprinklered buildings of Type III, IV or V construction, as defined in the International Building Code.
Where in nonsprinklered buildings of Type III, IV or V construction, as defined in the International Building Code, magnesium shall not be stored in combustible containers or within 30 feet (9144 mm) of other combustibles.
The size of storage piles of magnesium articles in foundries and processing plants shall not exceed 1,250 cubic feet (25 m3). Piles shall be separated by aisles with a minimum width of not less than one-half the pile height.
The storage of magnesium pigs, ingots and billets shall comply with Sections 5906.3.1 and 5906.3.2.
Indoor storage of pigs, ingots and billets shall only be on floors of noncombustible construction. Piles shall not be larger than 500,000 pounds (226.8 metric tons) each. Piles shall be separated by aisles with a minimum width of not less than one-half the pile height.
Outdoor storage of magnesium pigs, ingots and billets shall be in piles not exceeding 1,000,000 pounds (453.6 metric tons) each. Piles shall be separated by aisles with a minimum width of not less than one-half the pile height. Piles shall be separated from combustible materials or buildings on the same or adjoining property by a distance of not less than the height of the nearest pile.
The storage of scrap magnesium shall comply with Sections 5906.4.1 through 5906.4.3.
Magnesium fines shall be kept separate from other combustible materials.
Storage of fine magnesium scrap in quantities greater than 50 cubic feet (1.4 m3) [six 55-gallon (208 L) steel drums] shall be separated from other occupancies by an open space of not less than 50 feet (15 240 mm) or by a fire barrier constructed in accordance with Section 707 of the International Building Code.
Storage of fine magnesium scrap in quantities greater than 1,000 cubic feet (28 m3) shall be separated from all buildings other than those used for magnesium scrap recovery operations by a distance of not less than 100 feet (30 480 mm).
The use of magnesium shall comply with Sections 5906.5.1 through 5906.5.8.
Floors under and around melting pots shall be of noncombustible construction.
Approved means shall be provided for control of magnesium fires in heat-treating ovens.
Magnesium grinding, buffing and wire-brushing operations, other than rough finishing of castings, shall be provided with approved hoods or enclosures for dust collection that are connected to a liquid-precipitation type of separator that converts dust to sludge without contact (in a dry state) with any high-speed moving parts.
Connecting ducts or suction tubes shall be completely grounded, as short as possible, and without bends. Ducts shall be fabricated and assembled with a smooth interior, with internal lap joints pointing in the direction of airflow and without unused capped side outlets, pockets or other dead-end spaces that allow an accumulation of dust.

Each machine shall be equipped with an individual dust-separating unit.

Exceptions:

  1. One separator is allowed to serve two dust-producing units on multiunit machines.
  2. One separator is allowed to serve not more than four portable dust-producing units in a single enclosure or stand.
Power supply to machines shall be interlocked with exhaust airflow, and liquid pressure level or flow. The interlock shall be designed to shut down the machine it serves when the dust removal or separator system is not operating properly.
Electric wiring, fixtures and equipment in the immediate vicinity of and attached to dust-producing machines, including those used in connection with separator equipment, shall be of approved types and shall be approved for use in Class II, Division 1 hazardous locations in accordance with NFPA 70.
Equipment shall be securely grounded by permanent ground wires in accordance with NFPA 70.

Fire-extinguishing materials shall be provided for every operator performing machining, grinding or other processing operation on magnesium in accordance with either of the folowing:

  1. Within 30 feet (9144 mm), a supply of extinguishing materials in an approved container with a hand scoop or shovel for applying the material.
  2. Within 75 feet (22 860 mm), a portable fire extinguisher complying with Section 906.

All extinguishing materials shall be approved for use on magnesium fires. Where extinguishing materials are stored in cabinets or other enclosed areas, the enclosures shall be openable without the use of a key or special knowledge.

Chips, turnings and other fine magnesium scrap shall be collected from the pans or spaces under machines and from other places where they collect not less than once each working day. Such material shall be placed in a covered, vented steel container and removed to an approved location.
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