The SBCC recently passed an emergency amendment to the 2018 Fire Code to bring forward additional provisions available in the 2021 code related to requirements for battery energy storage systems. This amendment provides local AHJs additional safety provisions at time of permitting and installation -- provisions that are included in the 2021 codes but not available under the 2018 code.
These changes (shown in underline below) will take effect following the publication by the State’s Code Reviser’s office (early February):
1201.1 Scope. The provisions of this chapter shall apply to the installation, operation and maintenance of energy systems used for generating or storing energy. It shall not apply to equipment associated with the generation, control, transformation, transmission, or distribution of energy installations that is under the exclusive control of an electric utility or lawfully designated agency. Energy storage systems regulated by Section 1206 shall comply with this chapter as appropriate and NFPA 855.
Chapter 80 REFERENCED STANDARDS
NFPA 855-23 Standard for the Installation of Stationary Energy Storage Systems
On Friday 11/18/2022, the SBCC passed the first Washington WUI Code! The new WUI Code will go into effect along with the other State codes on July 1, 2023. The code is based on the International WUI Code and is amended by the State to require all jurisdictions to implement all of the requirements of RCW 19.27.560 within the framework of the model code published by ICC.
As adopted by the state, the minimum requirements are those found in RCW 19.27.560 and findings of fact are per the DNR wildland interface map. Additional amendments allow local jurisdictions to refine findings of fact in addition to the DNR map. Furthermore, other ignition resistant construction classifications may be proposed by applicants based on an assessment of risk presented by applicants and reviewed by local jurisdictions. The code amendments approved by the SBCC were largely developed by the WASFM / WABO working group. This is a good example of the fire marshals and building officials collaborating to move an important new code forward in Washington State. For more information about the amendments and steps to take to implement the new code please see: Washington State Association of Fire Marshals - State Codes (wsafm.com)
Thank you to Traci Harvey (Spokane Valley), Dave Kokot (Spokane), Mark Jung (Kirkland), and many others who contributed to this important fire prevention work in Washington.
Throughout the summer there have been proposals submitted to the State Building Code Council asking to defer the effective date of the 2021 Building Codes including the Fire Code in Washington State. Most recently on 10/21/2022 the SBCC considered two proposals that would have moved the effective date to November 2023 or December 2023. However, those proposals were not approved. The effective date for the 2021 Building Codes including the Fire Code remains 7/1/2023.
The Washington State Fire Marshal’s Office is inviting WSAFM members to provide comment on proposed amendments to WSR 22-19-071 (CR-102) on fire protection sprinkler system contractors and fitting.
PUBLIC COMMENT: Please send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org by October 21, 2022.
PUBLIC HEARING: October 25, 2022 at 9:30am
Join Zoom Meeting (no physical location for this meeting):
Call-in 1-253-215-8782 Meeting ID: 936 8503 7858 Passcode: 552488
The Washington Surveying and Rating Bureau (WSRB) is sponsoring a registration for the 2022 Fire Prevention Institute to be held October 17th through October 21st. This does not include the costs for the room or transportation.
The intent of the sponsorship is to help with the costs for participation by an individual who is not able to participate due to financial limitations.
To submit for this registration, please provide a letter of interest with supportive reasoning for the need to participate in the FPI. Send the letter to email@example.com no later than September 16th. Submissions will be reviewed and the successful recipient will be notified by September 20th to allow sufficient time to obtain a room reservation.
If there are any questions, please contact Dave Kokot at firstname.lastname@example.org.
WSAFM greatly appreciates the generosity of WSRB with this sponsorship.
The State Building Code Council (SBCC) currently has a Technical Advisory Group (TAG) working on amendments to the WUI code for the 2021 code cycle. Among other things, the amendments offer more flexible framework based on site and construction specifics as an alternative to the straight requirements in RCW 19.27.560. WSAFM has been represented in this work.
What should I do to get ready to implement WUI?
WSAFM recommends that fire marshals and their staff become familiar the provisions in RCW 19.27.560 and the anticipated amendments to the WUI code being worked on by the SBCC.
Section 319 of the 2018 Washington State Fire Code establishes new provisions for mobile food preparation vehicles or “food trucks”. Section 105.6 provides for permits for these vehicles.
To respond to these new code sections, several jurisdictions have created a standard food truck inspection checklist and agreed to recognize inspections conducted by other participating jurisdictions. Some participating jurisdictions are also offering a discount on the food truck permit if another agency performs the required inspection. Local jurisdictions retain the sole right to permit and revoke food truck permits within their boundaries, and to conduct additional inspections within their boundaries. The program’s intent is to streamline the inspection requirements as a customer service to food trucks that operate in multiple locations, and to provide a best practice checklist and opportunity for efficiencies to local Fire Marshals and fire agencies.
To join the group of participating jurisdictions and accept valid inspections conducted by another participating jurisdiction, please contact past WSAFM Board Member Anjela Barton at email@example.com , or current WSAFM Board Member Karen Grove at firstname.lastname@example.org . Any fire agency in Washington is welcome to join. Whether or not you accept reciprocal inspections, you are welcome to download and use the checklist, which has also been translated into top tier languages.
Materials for download:
The 2018 Fire Code establishes permitting for “on demand mobile fueling”, a newer service where cars are refueled at their parking location. Section 5707 of the 2018 Fire Code sets out a permitting structure that includes: an “operator” permit for the company offering the service, a “vehicle” permit for each truck dispensing gas, and a “site” permit for locations where mobile fueling is allowed to occur.
If your agency intends to permit mobile fueling, you may be interested in downloading WSAFM’s standard permit conditions for mobile on demand fueling operators, vehicles, and sites. WSAFM created these in conjunction with industry stakeholders, partner agencies, and the Fire Code TAG. AHJs may download and use these templates in their permitting program. The conditions align with the 2018 Washington State code including SBCC amendments that took effect July 10, 2021.
Effective July 10, 2021, the 2018 Washington State Fire Code now allows fire departments to accept “operator” and “truck” permits issued by other Washington State fire departments who meet the code standards, instead of issuing their own permit. To date, WSAFM has learned that the Seattle Fire Department is issuing operator and vehicle permits and performing truck inspections that other AHJs may opt to recognize. As required under the new 2018 code, Seattle is maintaining a list of current mobile fueling permit holders for your reference. We will continue to update this post with additional issuing jurisdictions for reference.
Local jurisdictions continue to have sole authority for mobile fueling site permits.
Washington State Association of Fire Marshals
Address: 605 11th Ave SE, Suite 211, Olympia WA, 98501
(360) 352-0161 email: email@example.com
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