BCAB #1224 - Emergency Access to Floor Areas - Sentence 3.4.7.12.(17)

November 22, 1990

BCAB #1224

Re: Emergency Access to Floor Areas - Sentence 3.4.7.12.(17)

Project Description

High-rise apartment building with two suites per floor.

Reason for Appeal

Sentence 3.4.7.12.(17) permits some exit doors in building more than six stories high to be locked provided it is not necessary to travel up or down more than two storeys to find an unlocked door providing access to a floor area.

Appellant's Position

The appellant interprets this Sentence to mean every fifth floor must be unlocked.

Building Official's Position

The building official considers this Sentence less than clear and feels it requires every third floor to be unlocked.

Appeal Board Decision #1224

It is the determination of the Board that the intent of Sentence 3.4.7.12.(17) is to ensure that there is an unlocked door to permit entry from the exit back into a floor area on at least every fifth storey. The Board would like to emphasize that the location of unlocked doors is the choice of the designer and should not be looked at from the viewpoint of a building occupant. It is only necessary to be able to go up or down not more than two storeys to reach an unlocked door, not both up and down. It should also be noted that "cross-over" floors are not required in buildings up to six storeys which provides guidance as to the vertical travel distance considered acceptable.

11 unlocked

10

9

8

7

6 unlocked

5

4

3

2

1 unlocked

Example 11 Storey Building

George R. Humphrey, Chair