ADOPTS WITH AMENDMENTS:

International Fire Code 2015 (IFC 2015)

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.

3201.1 Scope

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Maintenance and operational aspects of high-piled combustible storage shall be in accordance with this chapter. In addition to the requirements of this chapter, the following material-specific requirements shall apply:
  1. Aerosols shall be in accordance with Chapter 51.
  2. Flammable and combustible liquids shall be in accordance with Chapter 57.
  3. Hazardous materials shall be in accordance with Chapter 50.
  4. Storage of combustible paper records shall be in accordance with the applicable NFPA 13 standard.
  5. Storage of combustible fibers shall be in accordance with Chapter 37.
  6. General storage of combustible material shall be in accordance with Chapter 3.

3201.2 Permits

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
A permit shall be required as set forth in Section 107.2.

3201.3 Construction Documents

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Where required by the fire code official, an evacuation plan for public accessible areas and a separate set of plans indicating location and width of aisles, location of exits, exit access doors, exit signs, height of storage, and locations of hazardous materials shall be submitted at the time of permit application for review and approval. Following approval of the plans, a copy of the approved plans shall be maintained on the premises in an approved location.
Commodities shall be classified as Class I, II, III, IV or high hazard in accordance with this section. Materials listed within each commodity classification are assumed to be unmodified for improved combustibility characteristics. Use of flame-retarding modifiers or the physical form of the material could change the classification. See Section 3203.7 for classification of Group A, B and C plastics.
Class I commodities are essentially noncombustible products on wooden pallets, in ordinary corrugated cartons with or without single-thickness dividers, or in ordinary paper wrappings with or without pallets. Class I commodities are allowed to contain a limited amount of Group A plastics in accordance with Section 3203.7.4. Examples of Class I commodities include, but are not limited to, the following:

Alcoholic beverages not exceeding 20-percent alcohol

Appliances noncombustible, electrical

Cement in bags

Ceramics

Dairy products in nonwax-coated containers (excluding bottles)

Dry insecticides

Foods in noncombustible containers

Fresh fruits and vegetables in nonplastic trays or containers

Frozen foods

Glass

Glycol in metal cans

Gypsum board

Inert materials, bagged

Insulation, noncombustible

Noncombustible liquids in plastic containers having less than a 5-gallon (19 L) capacity

Noncombustible metal products
Class II commodities are Class I products in slatted wooden crates, solid wooden boxes, multiple-thickness paperboard cartons or equivalent combustible packaging material with or without pallets. Class II commodities are allowed to contain a limited amount of Group A plastics in accordance with Section 3203.7.4. Examples of Class II commodities include, but are not limited to, the following:

Alcoholic beverages not exceeding 20-percent alcohol, in combustible containers

Foods in combustible containers

Incandescent or fluorescent light bulbs in cartons

Thinly coated fine wire on reels or in cartons
Class III commodities are commodities of wood, paper, natural fiber cloth, or Group C plastics or products thereof, with or without pallets. Products are allowed to contain limited amounts of Group A or B plastics, such as metal bicycles with plastic handles, pedals, seats and tires. Group A plastics shall be limited in accordance with Section 3203.7.4. Examples of Class III commodities include, but are not limited to, the following:

Aerosol, Level 1 (see Chapter 51)

Biomass briquettes, bagged, and static piles

Biomass pellets, bagged, and static piles

Charcoal

Combustible fiberboard

Cork, baled

Corn cobs, static piles

Corn stover, baled and chopped

Feed, bagged

Fertilizers, bagged

Firewood

Food in plastic containers

Forest residue, round wood or chipped (branches, bark, cross-cut ends, edgings and treetops)

Furniture: wood, natural fiber, upholstered, nonplastic, wood or metal with plastic-padded and covered armrests

Glycol in combustible containers not exceeding 25 percent

Lubricating or hydraulic fluid in metal cans

Lumber

Mattresses, excluding foam rubber and foam plastics

Noncombustible liquids in plastic containers having a capacity of more than 5 gallons (19 L)

Paints, oil base, in metal cans

Paper, waste, baled

Paper and pulp, horizontal storage, or vertical storage that is banded or protected with approved wrap

Paper in cardboard boxes

Peanut hulls, bagged, and static piles

Pillows, excluding foam rubber and foam plastics

Plastic-coated paper food containers

Plywood

Rags, baled

Recovered construction wood

Rice hulls, bagged, and static piles

Rugs, without foam backing

Seasonal grasses, baled and chopped

Straw, baled

Sugar, bagged

Wood, baled

Wood chips, bagged, and static piles

Woody biomass, round wood or chipped (vase-shaped stubby bushes, bamboo, willows; branches, bark and stem wood)

Wood doors, frames and cabinets

Wood pellets, bagged, and static piles

Yarns of natural fiber and viscose
Class IV commodities are Class I, II or III products containing Group A plastics in ordinary corrugated cartons and Class I, II and III products with Group A plastic packaging, with or without pallets. Group B plastics and free-flowing Group A plastics are also included in this class. The total amount of nonfree-flowing Group A plastics shall be in accordance with Section 3203.7.4. Examples of Class IV commodities include, but are not limited to, the following:

Aerosol, Level 2 (see Chapter 51)

Alcoholic beverages, exceeding 20-percent but less than 80-percent alcohol, in cans or bottles in cartons

Clothing, synthetic or nonviscose

Combustible metal products (solid)

Furniture, plastic upholstered

Furniture, wood or metal with plastic covering and padding

Glycol in combustible containers (greater than 25 percent and less than 50 percent)

Linoleum products

Paints, oil base in combustible containers

Pharmaceutical, alcoholic elixirs, tonics, etc.

Rugs, foam back

Shingles, asphalt

Thread or yarn, synthetic or nonviscose
High-hazard commodities are high-hazard products presenting special fire hazards beyond those of Class I, II, III or IV. Group A plastics not otherwise classified are included in this class. Examples of high-hazard commodities include, but are not limited to, the following:

Aerosol, Level 3 (see Chapter 51)

Alcoholic beverages, exceeding 80-percent alcohol, in bottles or cartons

Commodities of any class in plastic containers in carousel storage

Flammable solids (except solid combustible metals)

Glycol in combustible containers (50 percent or greater)

Lacquers that dry by solvent evaporation, in metal cans or cartons

Lubricating or hydraulic fluid in plastic containers

Mattresses, foam rubber or foam plastics

Pallets and flats that are idle combustible

Paper and pulp, rolled, in vertical storage that is unbanded or not protected with an approved wrap

Paper, asphalt, rolled, horizontal storage

Paper, asphalt, rolled, vertical storage

Pillows, foam rubber and foam plastics

Pyroxylin

Rubber tires

Vegetable oil and butter in plastic containers
Plastics shall be designated as Group A, B or C in accordance with Sections 3203.7.1 through 3203.7.4.
Group A plastics are plastic materials having a heat of combustion that is much higher than that of ordinary combustibles, and a burning rate higher than that of Group B plastics. Examples of Group A plastics include, but are not limited to, the following:

ABS (acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene copolymer)

Acetal (polyformaldehyde)

Acrylic (polymethyl methacrylate)

Butyl rubber

EPDM (ethylene propylene rubber)

FRP (fiberglass-reinforced polyester)

Natural rubber (expanded)

Nitrile rubber (acrylonitrile butadiene rubber)

PET or PETE (polyethylene terephthalate)

Polybutadiene

Polycarbonate

Polyester elastomer

Polyethylene

Polypropylene

Polystyrene (expanded and unexpanded)

Polyurethane (expanded and unexpanded)

PVC (polyvinyl chloride greater than 15-percent plasticized, e.g., coated fabric unsupported film)

SAN (styrene acrylonitrile)

SBR (styrene butadiene rubber)
Group B plastics are plastic materials having a heat of combustion and a burning rate higher than that of ordinary combustibles, but not as high as those of Group A plastics. Examples of Group B plastics include, but are not limited to, the following:

Cellulosics (cellulose acetate, cellulose acetate butyrate, ethyl cellulose)

Chloroprene rubber

Fluoroplastics (ECTFE, ethylene-chlorotrifluoroethylene copolymer; ETFE, ethylene-tetrafluoroethylene copolymer; FEP, fluorinated ethylene-propylene copolymer)

Natural rubber (nonexpanded)

Nylon (Nylon 6, Nylon 6/6)

PVC (polyvinyl chloride greater than 5-percent, but not exceeding 15-percent plasticized)

Silicone rubber
Group C plastics are plastic materials having a heat of combustion and a burning rate similar to those of ordinary combustibles. Examples of Group C plastics include, but are not limited to, the following:

Fluoroplastics (PCTFE, polychlorotrifluoroethylene; PTFE, polytetrafluoroethylene)

Melamine (melamine formaldehyde)

Phenol

PVC (polyvinyl chloride, rigid or plasticized less than 5 percent, e.g., pipe, pipe fittings)

PVDC (polyvinylidene chloride)

PVDF (polyvinylidene fluoride)

PVF (polyvinyl fluoride)

Urea (urea formaldehyde)
Figure 3203.7.4 shall be used to determine the quantity of Group A plastics allowed to be stored in a package or carton or on a pallet without increasing the commodity classification.


FIGURE 3203.7.4
MIXED COMMODITIESa, b


  1. This figure is intended to determine the commodity classification of a mixed commodity in a package, carton or on a pallet where plastics are involved.
  2. The following is an example of how to apply the figure: A package containing a Class III commodity has 12-percent Group A expanded plastic by volume. The weight of the unexpanded Group A plastic is 10 percent. This commodity is classified as a Class IV commodity. If the weight of the unexpanded plastic is increased to 14 percent, the classification changes to a high-hazard commodity.

3204.1 General

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
The operational and maintenance of high-piled storage areas, and portions of high-piled storage areas intended for storage, shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3204.2 Designation Based on Engineering Analysis

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
The structural integrity of racks shall be maintained.
Clearance from ignition sources shall be provided in accordance with Section 305.
Smoking shall be prohibited. Approved "No Smoking" signs shall be conspicuously posted in accordance with Section 310.
When restocking is not being conducted, aisles shall be kept clear of storage, waste material and debris. Fire department access doors, aisles and exit doors shall not be obstructed. During restocking operations using manual stocking methods, a minimum unobstructed aisle width of 24 inches (610 mm) shall be maintained in 48-inch (1219 mm) or smaller aisles, and a minimum unobstructed aisle width of one-half of the required aisle width shall be maintained in aisles greater than 48 inches (1219 mm). During mechanical stocking operations, a minimum unobstructed aisle width of 44 inches (1118 mm) shall be maintained in accordance with Section 3206.9.
Pile dimensions and height limitations shall comply with Section 3207.3.
Where required by the fire code official, a visual method of indicating the maximum allowable storage height shall be provided.
Arrays shall comply with Section 3207.4.

3206.1 General

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Fire protection and life safety features for high-piled storage areas shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.2 Extent and Type of Protection

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.

3206.3 Separation of High-Piled Storage Areas

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.

3206.3.1 Separation From Other Uses

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.

3206.3.2 Multiple High-Piled Storage Areas

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.

3206.3.2.1 Aggregate Area

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.

3206.3.2.2 Multiclass High-Piled Storage Areas

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.

3206.4 Automatic Sprinklers

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Automatic sprinkler systems shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.4.1 Pallets

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
The requirements based on the presence of pallets shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.4.1.1 Plastic Pallets

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Plastic pallets listed and labeled in accordance with UL 2335 or FM 4996 shall be treated as wood pallets.

3206.5 Fire Detection

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Fire detection provided for high-piled storage areas shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.6 Building Access

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Where building access is required, it shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.6.1 Access Doors

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Access doors shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.6.1.1 Number of Doors Required

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
The minimum number of doors shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.6.1.2 Door Size and Type

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Access doors shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code. Roll-up doors shall not be used unless approved.
Only approved locking devices shall be used.

3206.7 Smoke and Heat Removal

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Where smoke and heat removal is required, it shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.8 Fire Department Hose Connections

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Where a standpipe system is required for exit passageways, it shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.9 Aisles

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Aisles separating storage piles or racks shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.9.1 Width

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Aisle width shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.9.1.1 Sprinklered Buildings

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Aisles in sprinklered buildings shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.9.1.2 Nonsprinklered Buildings

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Aisles in nonsprinklered buildings shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3206.9.2 Clear Height

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
The required aisle width shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code. Rack structural supports and catwalks are allowed to cross aisles at a minimum height of 6 feet 8 inches (2032 mm) above the finished floor level, provided that such supports do not interfere with fire department hose stream trajectory.

3206.9.3 Dead-End Aisles

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Portable fire extinguishers shall be provided in accordance with Section 906.
Shelf storage and storage in solid piles, solid piles on pallets and bin box storage in bin boxes not exceeding 5 feet (1524 mm) in any dimension, shall be in accordance with Sections 3206 and this section.

3207.2 Fire Protection

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Where automatic sprinklers are provided, they shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3207.2.1 Shelf Storage

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Shelf storage greater than 12 feet (3658 mm) but less than 15 feet (4572 mm) in height shall be in accordance with the fire protection requirements set forth in the applicable building code. Shelf storage 15 feet (4572 mm) or more in height shall be protected in an approved manner as required by this code and the applicable building code.

3207.3 Pile Dimension and Height Limitations

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Pile dimensions, the maximum permissible storage height and pile volume shall be in accordance with the applicable building code.

3207.4 Array

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Where an automatic sprinkler system design utilizes protection based on a closed array, array clearances shall be maintained as specified by the standard used.
Rack storage shall be in accordance with Section 3206 and this section. Bin boxes exceeding 5 feet (1524 mm) in any dimension shall be regulated as rack storage.

3208.2 Fire Protection

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Where automatic sprinklers are provided, they shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.
Storage on plastic shelves shall be protected by approved specially engineered fire protection systems.

3208.2.2 Racks With Solid Shelving

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Racks with solid shelving having an area greater than 20 square feet (1.9 m2), measured between approved flue spaces at all four edges of the shelf, shall be in accordance with this section.

Exceptions:
  1. Racks with mesh, grated, slatted or similar shelves having uniform openings not more than 6 inches (152 mm) apart, comprising not less than 50% of the overall shelf area, and with approved flue spaces are allowed to be treated as racks without solid shelves.
  2. Racks used for the storage of combustible paper records with solid shelving shall be in accordance with the applicable building code.

3208.2.2.1 Fire Protection

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Fire protection for racks with solid shelving shall be in accordance with the applicable building code.

3208.3 Flue Spaces

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.

3208.3.1 Flue Space Protection

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Where required by the fire code official, flue spaces required by the applicable building code, in single-row, double-row, or multiple-row rack storage installations shall be equipped with approved devices to protect the required flue spaces. Such devices shall not be removed or modified.

3208.4 Column Protection

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Protection for steel building columns shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3208.5 Extra-High-Rack Storage Systems

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Approval shall be obtained prior to installing extra high rack combustible storage.

3208.5.1 Fire Protection

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Fire protection provided for buildings with extra high rack combustible storage shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.
Automated storage shall be in accordance with this section.

3209.2 Automatic Sprinklers

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Where automatic sprinklers are provided, they shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3209.3 Carousel Storage

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
High-piled storage areas having greater than 500 square feet (46 m2) of carousel storage shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code.

3209.4 Automated Rack Storage

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
High-piled storage areas with automated rack storage shall be maintained in accordance with the applicable building code. The switch shall be clearly identified and shall be in a location approved.

3210.1 General

AMENDMENT
This section has been amended at the state or city level.
Records storage facilities used for the rack or shelf storage of combustible paper records shall be in accordance with the applicable building code. Palletized storage of records shall be in accordance with the applicable building code.
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