ARCHIVED - Public Review on Proposed Changes to the National Model Construction Codes — Fall 2011

The Canadian Commission on Building and Fire Codes (CCBFC) invites Code users and stakeholders to participate in the review of proposed changes to the following National Model Construction Codes:

This national public review took place from October 24 to December 16, 2011.

The purpose of this public review is to:

  • provide Code users and stakeholders with a detailed look at proposed technical changes, and
  • seek comment on each proposed technical change as to whether it should be approved, altered, or rejected.

The public review closed at 4:00 p.m. EDT on December 16, 2011, after which comments will no longer be accepted. The relevant committees of the CCBFC will review every comment that was received up to that date. The committees will then either withdraw the proposed change, recommend that it be reviewed further for future consideration as a proposed change, or recommend that it be approved by the CCBFC, with or without modification.

Proposed Changes

  • Code Section
    • National Building Code
    • National Fire Code
    • National Plumbing Code
  • Subject
    • National Building Code
    • National Fire Code
    • National Plumbing Code

Summary of Significant Proposed Changes

National Building Code of Canada (NBC)

Division A

Licensing of Contractors and Installers
Provisions contained in documents referenced in the National Model Construction Codes that relate to licensing of contractors and installers will no longer be applicable as they are not relevant to determining code compliance at the permit approval stage.

Division B

Part 3

Locking Devices on Doors in Care and Treatment Occupancies
Incidents where persons with cognitive limitations were placed at risk because they inadvertently wandered from care and treatment facilities have resulted in a series of proposed changes to limit unrestricted access to the outside. The proposed changes allow doors to be locked from the inside under controlled conditions while limiting patient movement to supervised areas. These proposed changes will continue to provide the necessary egress in an emergency.

Part 5

Double Referencing of Standards
Some standards are currently referenced in Table 5.10.1.1. as well as in Sentences in Part 5. The proposed changes eliminate duplicate referencing.

Glass Mat Gypsum Panels
Glass mat gypsum panels have been used in Canada and are gaining acceptance, but no direct means of compliance with the NBC is provided. The proposed change therefore references an ASTM standard that makes it easier for designers, specification writers and building code inspectors to determine building code compliance for these products.

Gypsum Board
The proposed change involves deleting a reference to an outdated CSA gypsum board standard, as the information it contains is already referenced in an ASTM standard on the same topic.

Particleboard and Treated Wood Products
Changes are being proposed to delete references to ANSI and AWPA standards dealing with particleboard and treated wood products, respectively. The ANSI particleboard standard is irrelevant to Part 5 because particleboards are not used as materials or components of assemblies separating dissimilar environments that are addressed in this Part. In addition, information contained in the AWPA standard on treated wood products is already contained in the referenced CSA 080 series.

Clay Tiles and Autoclaved Cellular Units
Clay tiles and autoclaved cellular units are not manufactured or used anymore in Canada. As a result, it is proposed that reference to the standards dealing with these products be deleted.

Burned and Hollow Clay Brick
The proposed change replaces the standards on burned and hollow clay bricks with one standard covering both materials, as this standard was found to be equivalent to the ones it replaces.

Part 6

Air Washers/Evaporative Cooling and Towers/Evaporative Condensers
Air washers and evaporative cooling sections have different design considerations to that of towers and evaporative condensers. It is therefore proposed that Article 6.2.3.14., Air Washers and Evaporative Cooling Sections or Towers, be separated into two articles to better define the requirements of two different design applications as well as to address the health risks associated with biological contaminants such as legionella. This would minimize the probability of poor indoor air quality caused by legionella being entrained by the ventilation system as well as protect potable water from contamination. It is further proposed that misters and humidifiers be added because of direct water contact with the indoor occupied space, which could cause an amplification of legionella in direct water-to-air systems.

Minimum Separation Distances of Exhausts and Outdoor Air Intakes
Code requirements are being proposed to address the location of exhausts where exposure to contaminated air may cause adverse health effects. This exposure may occur, for example, if combustion products are drawn into air intakes. As such, specifying the minimum separation distance to vented combustion products would prevent air contamination and reduce health problems associated with exposure. In addition, minimum separation distances for outdoor air intakes are also being proposed to prevent the entrainment of outdoor air contaminants. This would minimize the probability of poor outdoor air quality being entrained by the ventilation system. It is acknowledged by cross-referencing that these minimum distances do not override those in referenced installation standards, should these documents specify distances.

National Fire Code of Canada (NFC)

Division B

Clarification of requirements (Parts 3, 4 and 5)
The proposed changes submitted for public review clarify the applicable requirements. For instance, two provisions (one in each of Part 3 and 4) clarify and define performance criteria for the storage arrangement of dangerous goods, and one provision corrects the discrepancy between the individual capacity limit of aboveground storage tanks at fuel-dispensing stations and the clearance requirements in Subsection 4.3.7. The latter proposed change also gives credit for clearances to secondary containment walls at aboveground protected storage tanks.

Combined PCFs are available in PDF file format

Combined file containing all Proposed Changes to the NBC (PDF - 1 MB)

Combined file containing all Proposed Changes to the NFC (PDF - 507 KB)

To receive the proposed changes for this public review, please contact Codes Canada.

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