BCAB #1408m - Guard Design, Article 9.8.8.5

November 15, 1995

BCAB #1408

Re: Guard Design, Article 9.8.8.5

Project Description

This appeal concerns the design of a guard on the sundeck of a single family dwelling. The guard is 900 mm high as permitted by Sentence 9.8.8.2.(2) and built into the guard is a bench about 457 mm high with a seat depth of about 400 mm.

Reason for Appeal

Sentence 9.8.8.1.(1) requires "every exterior landing, porch and every balcony be protected by guards on all open sides where the difference in elevation between adjacent levels exceeds 600 mm". Article 9.8.8.2. requires guards to be 1070 mm high except where the walking levels are less than 1.8 m above finished ground and the deck serves not more than one dwelling unit. Article 9.8.8.5. requires that guards for decks serving residential occupancies "shall be designed so that no member, attachment or opening located between 100 mm and 900 mm above the balcony floor will facilitate climbing."

Appellant's Position

The appellant contends that is unrealistic to prohibit a built-in feature such as the bench when there is no restriction on the location of a moveable bench or other item that might facilitate climbing. Any number of items can be placed adjacent to the guard and provide the same facility for climbing as a bench constructed as part of the guard.

Building Official's Position

The building official maintains that the bench is an attachment as intended by Article 9.8.8.5.. facilitates climbing and is, therefore, not permitted.

Appeal Board Decision #1408

It is the determination of the Board that the seat built into the guard in question constitutes an attachment that will facilitate climbing. Therefore the guard does not conform to Article 9.8.8.5.

George R. Humphrey, Chair