BCAB #1742 - Turnaround Facility for Fire Vehicle Access Route, Clause 3.2.5.6.(1)(f)

February 27, 2014

BCAB #1742

Re: Turnaround Facility for Fire Vehicle Access Route, Clause 3.2.5.6.(1)(f)

Project Description

The project in question is a new 8000 m2 multi-tenant warehouse classified as a Group F Division 2 industrial occupancy. It is designed to be subdivided into several suites without an interior corridor such that each suite is cut off from the remainder of the building. Fire department vehicle access is being provided by a private roadway which is the drive aisle for the parking lot and runs across the front of the building and down one long side of the building. The portion of the roadway across the front of the building has access to the street at each end. The roadway along the side of the building dead-ends adjacent the rear of the building approximately 180 metres from the street. Access into the suite farthest from the street is approximately 150 metres from the street.

Reason for Appeal

Sentence 3.2.5.5.(4) requires that if a portion of a building is completely cut off from the remainder of the building so that there is no access to the remainder of the building then the required access routes shall be located so that the unobstructed path of travel from the vehicle to one entrance of each portion of the building is not more than 45 metres. Also, Clause 3.2.5.6.(1)(f) says that a portion of a roadway or yard provided as a required access route for fire department use shall have turnaround facilities for any dead-end portion of the access route more than 90 m long.

Appellant's Position

It is the appellants position that the provisions of Sentence 3.2.5.6.(1) only apply to the portion of the roadway that is required to provide the access specified in Article 3.2.5.5. and the remainder of the roadway need not be considered as an access route for fire department use.

The appellant has measured the 90 metres from the point where the dead-end roadway down the long side of the building adjoins the through roadway across the front. The required turnaround facility is the intersection with the through roadway across the front of the building.

Building Official's Position

The building official contends that with the access door into the rearmost suite being approximately 150 metres from the street the required length of the access route would be about 106 metres to reach within 45 metres of its access door. With the dead-end portion exceeding 90 metres long a turnaround facility is needed. Also, the building official questions how the fire department personnel will know where the 90 metre portion ends.

The building official also contends that the dead-end roadway should be measured starting at the street not where it intersects with the roadway across the front of the building.  

Appeal Board Decision #1742

The Board considers that only the 90 metre portion of the private roadway required for compliance with Sentence 3.2.5.6.(1) needs to be constructed as a fire vehicle access route. The Board suggests that the limits of the fire vehicle access route be identified.

The Board considers that the intersection of the front and dead-end portion of the access roadway is a turnaround facility. This turnaround is within 90 metres of the point on the dead-end access roadway that is within 45 metres of the entrance to the most remote suite in the building.

Therefore, it is the determination of the Board that the proposed design of the fire vehicle access route conforms with Sentence 3.2.5.6.(1).

Lyle Kuhnert, Chair