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User note:
About this chapter: Inevitably, various emergencies, including medical emergencies, occur at buildings and facilities. Chapter 20 deals with notifying appropriate individuals that an emergency exists and providing suitable access and facilities for emergency operations and responders. This chapter is intended to address the need for some manual action to preserve the safety of people, and limit damage to a building or structure and its contents.
To provide and maintain means of notification, access and facilities for emergency operations and responders.
To provide notification of the need to take some manual action to preserve the safety of occupants or to limit property damage.
As appropriate to the design performance level in Chapter 3, the following shall be addressed:
  1. Provide and maintain appropriate access for emergency vehicles.
  2. Provide and maintain appropriate access for emergency responders.
  3. Provide and maintain necessary staging, command and control areas, support facilities and equipment for emergency operations.
  4. Provide sufficient, reliable water for fire-fighting operations.
  5. Provide and maintain appropriate means of promptly notifying emergency responders.
  6. Where required, provide and maintain adequate means of occupant notification to warn of the presence of a fire or other emergency in sufficient time to enable occupants to take the contemplated action without being exposed to unreasonable risk of injury or death.
Vertical and horizontal clearance shall permit the unimpeded access of fire department apparatus inclusive of the capability for one apparatus to pass another apparatus set up and in operation.
Protrusions and appurtenances from structures shall not impede access, including vertical access, to the height of fire department aerial apparatus.
Fire department access shall be on surfaces permitting year-round, all-weather travel at a grade appropriate for the fire apparatus.
Access to structures shall afford the fire department the ability to deploy and operate hose lines without the need to extend the standard hose line utilized by the fire department having jurisdiction.
Within structures, means for the deployment and operation of hose lines by emergency responders shall be provided such that control valves for lines shall be no further from potential fire sources than the length of hose packs employed by a single engine company of the fire department having jurisdiction.
Water supply for fire department operations shall be from a reliable, readily accessible source acceptable to the fire department and capable of supporting fire-fighting operations.
Means of horizontal or vertical conveyance shall be provided where necessary to support fire-fighting and emergency support functions.
Where interior operations may be necessary, areas to stage equipment and from which to safely conduct and to control suppression operations shall be provided.
Exterior and interior egress and emergency access shall be arranged and maintained so that building occupants and emergency responders are unimpeded as each accomplishes its objectives of egress of occupants and access by emergency responders.
Where necessary to ensure timely and effective emergency operations, interior or exterior areas shall be provided for the staging of equipment and apparatus.
Where necessary to ensure timely and effective emergency operations, fire-fighting equipment or other equipment to support such operations shall be provided and maintained readily available for use by emergency responders.
Where systems are designed to notify the emergency-response agency of the need to respond to an emergency, such system shall indicate the type of emergency and the location of the building, premises or facility. Where such buildings, premises or facilities are large enough that difficulty is expected in promptly locating the emergency, identification of the area or zone of the emergency shall be provided at the building, premises or facilities.
Notification of occupants shall be by means appropriate to the needs of the occupants, the use of the building and the emergency egress strategy employed.