BCAB #1651 - Required Guards, Article 9.8.8.1., Height of Guard Adjacent to a Raised Hot Tub

September 17, 2008

BCAB #1651

Re: Required Guards, Article 9.8.8.1., Height of Guard Adjacent to a Raised Hot Tub

Project Description

The subject is an exterior balcony with a guard constructed around its exterior perimeter. Prior to the placement of a hot tub on the balcony, the balcony guard construction is Code compliant with a height of 1070 mm.

A hot tub has been placed in an exterior corner of the deck about 600 mm from the edges and guard of the deck. The height of the outer edge of the hot tub is about 1000 mm above the deck’s floor surface. There are provisions for seating around outer edge of the tub. When not in use, the tub is provided with a rigid cover.

Reason for Appeal

Sentence 9.8.8.1.(1) requires every surface to which access is provided for other than maintenance purposes shall be protected by a guard on each side that is not protected by a wall for the length.

Appellant’s Position

The appellant considers it unrealistic to have a guard of 1070 mm above the top surface of the hot tub’s outer edge.

Building Official's Position

 The Building Official contends that due to hot tub’s proximity to the balcony guard and the height of the hot tub outer edge with respect to the height of the balcony guard, that a slip or fall that may occur in or on the tub, would render the existing balcony guard ineffective. The Building Official is requesting the guard be at least 1070 mm above the top surface of the tub’s outer edge.

Appeal Board Decision #1651

The Board acknowledges that in this specific case, the Building Official’s concerns “that a slip or fall that may occur in or on the tub, would render the existing balcony guard ineffective”. However it is the determination of the Board that Sentence 9.8.8.1.(1) does not require this deck guard to be 1070 mm above the top surface of the hot

George Humphrey, Chair