The Fire Code Action Committee (F-CAC) of the International Code Council (ICC) convened in late May in Chicago in the first of three meetings scheduled for 2017 to begin the 2021 code revision cycle for Group A. IFAI Tent Rental Division (TRD) Steering Committee members Linc Aldershof of Verseidag Seemee U.S., Randolph, N.J., and Tom Markel of Bravo Events, Buffalo, N.Y., attended to help ensure that as code revisions are developed, the interests of public safety and the tent and event industry are kept at the forefront of discussions.
Most codes governing tents fall under the International Fire Code (IFC). The IFC was moved into Group A for this cycle, resulting in the ICC and TRD beginning their work a year earlier than the last code cycle. The deadline to submit code change proposals to the ICC for the 2021 code cycle is Jan. 8, 2018.
F-CAC is considering revisions to the structural code changes made in the last code cycle, as some code officials have already tried to use the language and found that it’s not workable, says Markel, who serves as TRD’s Code Committee chair. TRD is working to revamp its structural proposal from the 2018 cycle along with other proposals that it pulled in the last cycle, including a proposal to allow inspections by third-party inspectors and a proposal relating to flame propagation, labeling and certification.
Aldershof and Markel met with Marcelo Hirschler of GBH International, a recognized expert in flame propagation, to work toward agreement to modernize Chapter 31’s code concerning flame retardancy, labeling and certification.
The TRD Code Committee is also continuing to participate in F-CAC’s Special Event Work Group. This group will consider additional code changes for evacuation and emergency planning and fire suppression requirements in A-2 occupancies in a tent (300 or more people where alcohol is served) in addition to the issues named above.