Topic: NFPA Codes & Standards Process Updates

NFPA Electrical Section Honors Members at Conference & Expo Reception

Against the backdrop of a late spring evening, the Electrical Section gathered for a reception at the NFPA Conference & Expo in Boston on Tuesday to recognize its members, and their dedication and shared commitment to the creation of standards that help guide and protect our workforce and the people who depend on them for their safety. One of the highlights of the evening was the presentation of the Richard G. Biermann Award to Michael J. Johnston, Executive Director of Codes, Standards, and Safety at the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA). Mike Johnston (center) with John Kovacik (left) and Mark Earley (right).  The highly regarded award, created in honor of Richard G. Biermann former chair of the National Electrical Code® (NEC®) Correlating Committee, recognizes an outstanding volunteer who has demonstrated a commitment to actively contributing to the advancement of the NEC by furthering its development and/or promoting its implementation. Johnston is responsible for managing the codes, standards, and safety functions for NECA and is secretary of the NECA Codes and Standards Committee. He is immediate past chair and currently principal member of the NEC Correlating Committee while continuing to serve as an active member of the NFPA Standards Council. He is also a member of and immediate past chair of the NFPA Electrical Section. Johnson received recognition for his work at the NFPA “Stars at Night” Awards Gala on Sunday, which celebrated the brightest starts in fire and life safety.  “Mike has shown incredible dedication and leadership around the NEC project for many years and is a valuable member of the NEC Correlating Committee and NFPA Standards Council in addition to being a former Code-Making Panel member and chair,” said Jeff Sargent, Principal Specialist and Executive Secretary for the NFPA Electrical Section. It is an honor for the NFPA Electrical Section to present him with this esteemed award in support of his continued work to advance safety.” Another highlight of the evening was the recognition of 17 members of the NEC Quarter Century Club. Each was honored for their 25 years of service on an NEC Code-Making Panel (CMP). The awardees are: Steve Campolo, CMP 2 Donald R. Cook, CMP 17 Paul Dobrowsky, CMP 5 Gerald Lee Dorna, CMP 16 Mark Goodman, CMP 14 David H. Kendall, CMP 8 Gerald W. Kent, CMP 6 Edwin S. Kramer, CMP 15 William G. Lawrence, Jr., CMP 14 David A. Pace, CMP 3 William J. McCoy, CMP 16 James J. Rogers, CMP 4 Gregory J. Steinman, CMP 5 Robert C. Turner, CMP 12 Walter N. Vernon, IV, CMP 15 David B. Wechsler, CMP 14 Robert H. Wills, CMP 4 Standards Council Committee Service Awardees, also in attendance, were acknowledged for their hard work, passion, and dedication to activities related to the standards development process. These awards were handed out at the Technical Meeting earlier this morning. They are: Donald W. Ankele – CMP 14 Ernest J. Gallo – CMP 16 Palmer L. Hickman – CMP 1 David L. Hittinger – CMP 1 Richard A. Holub – CMP 14 Randall J. Ivans – CMP 16 David H. Kendall – CMP 8 Robert D. Osborne – CMP 9 Nathan Philips – CMP 5 The Electrical Section also made note of the contributions and commitment of three outgoing CMP chairs. They are: Kenneth Boyce – CMP 1 Keith Lofland – CMP 7 Linda Little – CMP 13 “After the last two years of not being able to see each other in person, we’re extremely pleased that this year members of the Electrical Section could come together to celebrate and recognize our achievements, including completing the First and Second Draft phases of the revisions process using virtual meeting technology,” said Sargent. “We know there is still more to do because the electrical industry is constantly changing, but it’s the collaboration and our shared commitment to safety that makes us feel proud of all that we can accomplish together, and we look forward to meeting future challenges with the energy and passion that our volunteer committee members have always brought to this process.” For more information about the NEC and committee membership, visit the NEC webpage on our site. Top photo: The new members of the NEC Quarter Century Club. From left to right – Steve Campolo, Donald Cook, Paul Dobrowsky, Gerald Kent, Edwin Kramer, James Rogers, and Gregory Steinman.

NFPA Technical Meeting results

Below are the results of NFPA's Technical Meeting in Boston, which took place on June 8-9. During NFPA's Technical Meeting in Boston, the following action has taken place on NFPA 86, Standard for Ovens and Furnaces 86-6 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7 failed. NFPA 86 was passed with 0 amending motions. NFPA 86 COMPLETED. During NFPA's Technical Meeting in Boston, the following action has taken place on NFPA 130, Standard for Fixed Guideway Transit and Passenger Rail Systems  130-9 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 16 was not pursued. 130-3 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 19 and any Related Portions of First Revisions failed. 130-5 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 11 failed. 130-2 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 6 failed. NFPA 130 was passed with 0 amending motions. NFPA 130 COMPLETED. During NFPA's Technical Meeting in Boston, the following action has taken place on NFPA 285, Standard Fire Test Method for Evaluation of Fire Propagation Characteristics of Exterior Wall Assemblies Containing Combustible Components 285-7 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 7 and any Related Portion of First Revision No. 15 was not pursued. 285-12 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7 and any Related Portion of First Revision No. 15 failed. 285-13 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 7 and any Related Portion of First Revision No. 15 failed. NFPA 285 was passed with 0 amending motions. NFPA 285 COMPLETED. During NFPA's Technical Meeting in Boston, the following action has taken place on NFPA 502, Standard for Road Tunnels, Bridges, and Other Limited Access Highways   502-2 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 12 passed. 502-4 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 13 passed. 502-9 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 13 passed. 502-7 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 18 passed. 502-5 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 17 passed. NFPA 502 was passed with 5 amending motions. NFPA 502 COMPLETED. During NFPA's Technical Meeting in Boston, the following action has taken place on NFPA 855, Standard for the Installation of Stationary Energy Storage Systems   855-3 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 71 failed. 855-4 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 72 not pursued. 855-5 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 177 failed. NFPA 855 was passed with 0 amending motions. NFPA 855 COMPLETED. During NFPA's Technical Meeting in Boston, the following action has taken place on NFPA 25, Standard for the Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems  25-10 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 4 passed. 25-2 Motion to Accept Committee Comment No. 3 was not pursued. 25-3 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Committee Comment No. 3 passed. 25-17 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 13 passed. 25-16 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 2 passed. 25-15 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 60 was not pursued. 25-18 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 61 was not pursued. Follow up motion on 25-16 passed. NFPA 25 was passed with 5 amending motions. NFPA 25 COMPLETED. During NFPA's Technical Meeting in Boston, the following action has taken place on NFPA 70®, National Electrical Code® 70-33 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1036 failed. 70-38 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1783 failed. 70-94 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7956 failed. 70-39 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1797 failed. 70-95 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 7966 failed. 70-91 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 1425 was not pursued. 70-69 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 2038 failed. 70-84 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 1438 failed. 70-119 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 1461 was not pursued. 70-101 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1425 failed. 70-105 Motion to Accept Committee Comment No. 8204 passed. 70-70 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 1765 failed. 70-11 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Correlating Revision No. 27 failed. 70-89 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 582 and 70-109 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1918 (grouped) failed. 70-88 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 583 failed. 70-90 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 522 failed. 70-116 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 2161 was not pursued. 70-65 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8101 failed. 70-123 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Correlating Revision No. 36 and any Related Portions of First Revisions and First Correlating Revisions was not pursued. 70-124 Motion to Reject Second Correlating Revision No. 35 was not pursued. 70-126 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Committee Comment (FR No. 8371 that failed re-balloting at Second Draft stage) failed.  70-128 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Committee Comment (FR No. 8427 that failed re-balloting at Second Draft stage) passed.  70-129 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Committee Comment (FR No. 8420 that failed re-balloting at Second Draft stage) was not pursued.  70-127 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Committee Comment (FR No. 8435 that failed re-balloting at Second Draft stage) was not pursued.  70-60 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Correlating Revision No. 43 was not pursued.  70-61 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 490 failed.  70-63 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 2028 passed.  70-83 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8298 and any Related Portions of First Revisions and First Correlating Revisions passed.  70-82 Motion to Reject Second Correlating Revision No. 46 passed.  70-85 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8133 and any Related Portions of First Revisions and First Correlating Revisions passed.  70-120 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 2198 passed.  70-115 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 1824 passed.  70-66 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 2020 failed.  70-64 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7731 failed.  70-117 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 2058 passed.  70-118 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 7952 failed.  70-72 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 351 failed.  70-107 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8036 passed.  70-121 Motion to Reject Second Revision No. 8041 was not pursued.  70-73 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 350 failed.  70-49 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Correlating Revision No. 160 passed.  70-51 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Correlating Revision No. 126 passed.  70-24 Motion to Accept Public Comment No. 111 failed.  70-53 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 8466 passed.  70-55 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Correlation Revision No. 109 passed.  70-56 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Correlating Revision No. 136 passed.  70-48 Motion to Reject Second Correlating Revision No. 110 passed.  70-57 Motion to Reject Second Correlating Revision No. 135 passed.  70-58 Motion to Reject Second Correlating Revision No. 111 passed.  70-74 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 8070 was not pursued.  70-75 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 8070 was not pursued.  70-76 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 8070 was not pursued.  70-77 Motion to Accept an Identifiable Part of Public Comment No. 2024 was not pursued.  70-78 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 8070 failed.  70-96 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 8070 was not pursued.  70-97 Motion to Reject an Identifiable Part of Second Revision No. 8070 was not pursued.  NFPA 70® was passed with 18 amending motions. NFPA 70® COMPLETED.  
Sign at the NFPA C&E in Boston

Powering Through the 2023 NEC: Changes Session

Many people may not know that the evolution of NFPA 70®, National Electrical Code® (NEC®), has taken place uninterrupted since the code was introduced in 1897! The 2023 edition of the NEC is no exception. During an early Monday morning session here at NFPA’s Conference & Expo, attendees got a glimpse at some of the major proposed changes to the 2023 NEC as outlined in the second draft. Did you know there were 4,006 public inputs submitted during the first draft stage of the process? That’s nearly 300 more than were submitted during the 2020 cycle! And all aimed at paving the way to a safe and efficient electrical future. Some of the key areas of focus for these inputs include: Systems and equipment over 1,000 volts Worker safety Minimum size branch circuits GFCI requirements for specific appliances Kitchen island receptacles Cannabis production facilities Cybersecurity During the presentation, David Williams, an electrical inspector for Delta Township in Lansing, Michigan, and Thomas Domitrovich, electrical engineer and vice president at Eaton, provided a broader look at each of these topics that they say, are likely to have a positive impact on electrical safety and installations. The NEC continues to make strides to increase electrical safety and at the 2022 Technical Meeting on Thursday, we will learn about any further recommendations for amendments to the 2023 edition through previously submitted and Certified Amending Motions (CAMs). Then they’ll be voted on by eligible NFPA members. If there are any unsuccessful motions, they may be appealed to the Standards Council, which will convene in early August. As part of this August meeting, the Standards Council will hear the appeals on CAMs and once those decisions are rendered, the Standards Council will consider and make final determination of issuance of the 2023 edition. Stay tuned for daily reports and get the latest news and information about the 2023 NEC from the Thursday NEC Technical Meeting by visiting the website.
Buildings

Do all buildings have to comply with the latest code?

When constructing a new building it is imperative architects, engineers, contractors, and owners follow the most current codes and standards to provide what is considered the current minimum level of safety for a building. This minimum level of safety is established most often by consensus codes and standards which have been adopted by the jurisdiction where the building is being constructed. These codes and standards are constantly evolving, adapting to new technology and addressing gaps in safety. But what about existing buildings? Do they need to be brought up to the adopted code? The answer is often complicated and depends on the local codes in place as well as the type of occupancy. An example of this complexity occurs when you examine requirements for existing buildings in NFPA 5000, Building Construction and Safety Code as compared to NFPA 101, Life Safety Code. Both codes define an existing building as “A building erected or officially authorized prior to the effective date of the adoption of this edition of the Code by the agency or jurisdiction” however, the two codes treat them very differently. Looking in Chapter 1 of both codes the scope and purpose statements provide direction as to where codes apply and their overall intent. NFPA 5000 would not apply to existing buildings unless they undergo a change in use, some level of building rehabilitation, an addition or if the building is relocated or damaged. NFPA 101 has no such clause and applies to both new and existing buildings. Thus, where NFPA 5000 focuses on the design and construction of new buildings, NFPA 101 applies to both new and existing buildings with a focus on safety during the entire lifecycle of the building not just the initial design and construction. Under NFPA 5000, Building Construction and Safety Code, buildings which have “been officially authorized” meaning they were designed and permitted in accordance with earlier editions of the building code, can remain in their original state. If they undergo the items mentioned earlier, they would be required to comply with the most current version of the building code. For example, the 2021 edition of NFPA 5000 requires all newly constructed one- and two-family dwellings to be protected with an automatic fire sprinkler system. This was first introduced in the 2006 edition; and earlier editions did not contain this requirement.  In areas were NFPA 5000 is adopted, existing homes authorized for use prior to the adoption of the 2006 edition are not required to be retrofitted with automatic fire sprinkler systems. This concept of “officially authorized” or existing buildings, is one of the reasons we continue to see fires with a significant number of injuries and deaths. It’s not that the current level of safety expected in new buildings isn’t enough, it’s that the vast majority of the buildings in the U.S. and many other countries around the world were constructed under what was considered the minimum level of safety at the time.  That level of safety has evolved but requiring all buildings to be retroactively improved to meet the current codes and standards may be costly and could impose a significant hardship on building owners. However, there are times where the risk will outweigh cost, for example, anywhere the 2021 edition of NFPA 101 has been adopted. In these jurisdictions, an automatic fire sprinkler system is required in all nursing homes, both new and existing, with very few exceptions. The code development process determined the risk to the occupants of these facilities is significant enough that providing automatic fire sprinklers in nursing home facilities is required to meet what is now considered the minimum level of safety for both new and existing buildings. As you can see, the answer to the question of whether an existing building must be improved to meet what is now considered the minimum level of safety can be found in that jurisdictions adopted code. The adopted code is often a suite of different codes and standards, which may include, building, fire, and life safety codes. It is important that these codes work together to set the minimum level of safety for all buildings in the jurisdiction. For more information on the importance of how code development and adoption improve safety while balancing risk check out the NFPA Fire And Life Safety Ecosystem.
Two workers in hardhats

Standards are Evolving – Here’s How You Can Join the Movement

This spring, as we continued celebrating ANSI’s belated 2021 World Standards Week and gear up for further 2022 celebrations in October, we are reflecting on the history of how our codes and standards came to be and how they continue to evolve in our digital world. With over 125 years under our belt at NFPA, we have evolved the way we disseminate codes and standards. From our nineteenth century start to 2022 where we are leading the industry with an accessible, digital codes and standards platform, I would argue our organization has always been at the forefront of innovation. But where did we start? And why is joining the digital transformation valuable? Keep reading to learn more about where we were and where we are going. March 1896 – After a group of organization leaders representing sprinkler and fire insurance interests noticed inconsistencies in the installation of sprinkler devices, the group came together to create a set of sprinkler installation rules titled “Report of Committee on Automatic Sprinkler Protection.” That set of rules is now known as NFPA 13, “Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems.” November 1896 – After the first standard was declared in March 1896, a subsequent meeting was held where articles for a new association were created. Thus, the National Fire Protection Association was born. From there, the organization began introducing new members and standards for different devices. This core group committed themselves to building an organization that’s devoted to eliminating death, injury, property, and economic loss due to fire, electrical and related hazards. As codes and standards became, and continues to be, the backbone of what NFPA does, the organization became the leading information and knowledge resource on fire, electrical and related hazards. Throughout the 1900s – Organizations in the stock fire insurance, fire departments, and sprinkler manufacturing and installation fields became members of NFPA and vowed to live by the standards set forth to reduce the burden of fire and related hazards. These codes and standards united multiple organizations to begin working with safety at the forefront of their daily operations. Since then, NFPA has continuously worked with the brightest minds to create standards that provide safety professionals with the guidelines needed to do their jobs safely and efficiently. Over the years, this organization has developed dozens of physical book editions, constantly publishing the newest information for our standards. As the years went on, NFPA sought out ways to ensure the information in these books were actively being optimized to share the latest information in the most accessible format. Redefining standards in a digital landscape September 2020 - NFPA is now redefining what it means to work together and access the codes and standards that have been crafted over the years. As part of a commitment to always provide our stakeholders with the best fire and life safety information and knowledge, NFPA’s next step was to modernize the way our codes and standards are accessed. While our world is evolving to welcome more digital accessibility, codes and standards are one of the best ways to unify our industry and join the digital transformation journey so many professions are experiencing. With NFPA LiNK®, a digital platform where users can easily access all the current NFPA codes and standards they need from their favorite electronic device, NFPA is redefining how we use and access these documents every day. As the pioneers in our industry, NFPA is at the forefront of digitizing our industry while continuing to deliver the guidance that make our world safer. Learn more about how your team can join the digital transformation at nfpa.org/link.
Capitol building

NFPA praises the introduction of bipartisan bill to reinforce copyright protection of safety codes

NFPA, a self-funded nonprofit that develops over 300 fire, life and electrical safety codes and standards, praised the recent introduction of the bipartisan Pro Codes Act, introduced by Reps. Ted Deutch (D-FL) and Darrell Issa (R-CA). NFPA President and CEO Jim Pauley said, “The safety codes and standards protected by this legislation help protect the lives and property of every American and people around the world. For 125 years, our standards have been developed through an independent, consensus-based process that doesn’t cost taxpayers a penny. We’re grateful for Reps. Deutch and Issa’s leadership in helping ensure that we can continue our critical work, which has resulted in one of the longest-standing, most successful partnerships between the public and private sector in U.S. history. Their efforts will help reduce loss of life and foster economic growth, and we encourage their fellow members of Congress to join them in swiftly passing this bill.” Rigorous national safety standards protect citizens from the tragedies of fires and electrical hazards. For more than a century, NFPA has developed these standards independently, transparently, and affordably. But this critical, well-functioning model is under threat from special interests who want to end the protection that NFPA believes copyright law provides for the development of public safety standards. NFPA derives its funding by publishing, selling and licensing standards. “We don’t depend on subsidies or contributions from government or those affected by our standards. This ensures we can be independent and put safety first. However, the continued assault by special interests on copyright protection threatens the ability of NFPA and organizations like us to fund our important work. That will lead to a disjointed and expensive patchwork of safety standards in the U.S. and around the world,” said Pauley. “Ensuring copyright protections for safety standards isn’t for the sake of any one organization. It safeguards a public-private partnership model that truly works to advance safety and save lives.” More information on the value of Standards Development Organizations can be found on the NFPA website.
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