Biodiesel _amp; the Fire Code

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Biodiesel _amp; the Fire Code Powered By Docstoc
     Fire Permits
Presented by the Seattle Fire Department
                 for the
         Department of Ecology
     Biodiesel Permitting Workshop

           Seattle, Washington
            February 9, 2006
      Today’s Objective
• Become familiar with construction and fire codes that
  may be applicable to biodiesel manufacturing and

• Gain awareness of some materials and operations
  associated with biodiesel manufacturing that require
  fire permits.

• Better understand the typical plan review and
  permitting process.

• Identify possible pitfalls and how to avoid them.
         Applicable WA State Laws,
           Rules and Regulations
•   2003 International Fire Code (IFC) with Washington State Amendments
    WAC 51-54
•   2003 International Building Code (IBC) with Washington State
    Amendments WAC 51-50
•   2003 International Mechanical Code (IMC) with Washington State
    Amendments WAC 51-52
•   2002 National Electrical Code (NEC) as adopted by RCW 19.28 and
    WAC 296-46B
•   2003 Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC) Appendix A, B, and I with
    Washington State Amendments WAC 51-56 & WAC 51-57
•   2004 Washington State Energy Code, Chapter 51-11
•   2003 Washington State Ventilation and Indoor Air Quality Code,
    Chapter 51-13 WAC only
       Applicable WA State Laws,
         Rules and Regulations

• The State Building Code Council (SBCC) was
  established in 1974 to advise the Legislature on
  building code issues and review, develop and adopt
  the state building codes.

• The State Building Code Council (SBCC) makes
  statewide amendments to the model codes.

• Some cities and jurisdictions are authorized to make
  additional “local” amendments.
   State and Local Amendments

• Download Washington State code
  amendments at:

• Contact local fire or building code official to
  determine if local amendments are in effect.

• New codes published and adopted in
  Washington State every three years…
         2006 IFC effective July 2007
         Fire Code Permits

• 2003 IFC Section 105.6 sets forth the type
  and quantities of hazardous materials and
  hazardous operations that require permits.

• 2003 IFC Section 105.7 identifies systems
  and equipment that may require separate
  installation permits (i.e. to install combustible
  liquid tanks).
    Materials likely to need a fire
       permit (see 2003 IFC Section 105.6)
       Material               IFC Hazard           Quantity requiring a
                             Classification            fire permit
Methanol                 Flammable liquid           5 gallons inside
                                                    25 gallons outside
Lye, caustic soda,       Corrosive solid            1,000 pounds
sodium hydroxide
Sodium methylate in      Flammable liquid             5 gallons inside
methanol                                              25 gallons outside
Liquid nitrogen          Inert cryogenic fluid        60 gallons inside
                                                      500 gal. outside
LPG (propane)            Liquefied flammable            Any quantity
Soybean oil, vegetable   Class III-B Combustible    No IFC requirement
oil, etc.                Liquid (fp > 200F)        In Seattle > 1,000 gal
 Flammable and combustible liquids and
   other hazardous material storage

• In addition to quantities requiring a permit (the “permit
  threshold”) the Fire Code establishes a separate
  threshold for each hazard class called the maximum
  allowable quantity or MAQ.

• If quantities exceeding the MAQ are stored or used
  inside a building then special engineering controls,
  fire protection systems and construction features will
    MAQ’s for some materials
                      (2003 IFC Table 2703.1.1)

       Material          Quantity requiring a     MAQ for storage
                             fire permit
Methanol                  5 gallons inside        120 gallons –
                          25 gallons outside       no sprinklers
Lye, caustic soda,        1,000 pounds            5,000 pounds –
sodium hydroxide                                     no sprinklers
Sodium methylate in         5 gallons inside      120 gallons –
methanol                    25 gallons outside     no sprinklers
Liquid nitrogen             60 gallons inside     No limit
                            500 gal. outside
LPG (propane)                 Any quantity         30 gallons

Soybean oil, vegetable    No IFC requirement       13,200 gallons –
oil, etc.                In Seattle > 1,000 gal     no sprinklers

There are some ways to increase these MAQ quantities
by adding approved cabinets and sprinklering the
             Tank installations
• Tanks must be designed and approved for the intended use. No
  water heaters or abandoned home heating oil tanks!

• Aboveground flammable liquid tanks must be listed to UL 142
  (steel aboveground) or UL 2085 (fire protected).

• New fire code requirement that all tanks be equipped with
  automatic overfill protection to shut down filling operations at
  90% of tank capacity.

• For inside tanks - normal and emergency tank vents required to
  extend to the outside of the building.

• Tank fill openings required to be located outside the building at
  least 5 feet from building openings.
              Fire Code Permits
                 & Compliance

• 2003 IFC authorizes the fire code official to issue
  permits but does not mandate it. Permits may be
  consolidated, so if multiple materials or activities
  require permits you may still only receive one. It’s up
  to the jursidiction.

• Regardless of whether the jurisdiction issues permits
  or not compliance with the Fire Code is mandated.
            Fire Code Permits
               & Compliance
• 2003 IFC Chapter 34 sets forth regulations for
  flammable and combustible liquid storage and use
  and tank installations.

• 2003 IFC Chapter 27 identifies regulations for
  hazardous materials in general.

• Other relative chapters: compressed gases, LPG, hot
  work, and hazard class specific (i.e. corrosive
  materials) chapters.
             Getting started
• Identify hazard classes and quantities of all
  hazardous materials that will be stored or used.

• Compare materials with permit quantities and also
  with maximum allowable quantities (MAQ)
  established by the Fire Code.

• Materials over permit quantities will need a permit.

• Materials inside buildings that exceed the MAQ must
  be confined to Group H (Hazardous) Occupancy.
    The Plan Review Process
• Plans should show adequate details of process
  so the plan reviewer can establish and verify
  hazards such as:
      • heat of reactions
      • pressures of reaction
      • potential for flammable atmosphere in vicinity of electrical

• One difficulty for the jurisdiction is that no
  nationally recognized industry standard is
  available to compare or review plans to.
    The Plan Review Process
• Another difficulty is lack of technically qualified
  fire department staff to conduct the plan review
  and ask appropriate questions.

• 2003 IFC 104.7.2 “authorizes the fire code official to
  require the owner or agent to provide, without charge
  to the jurisdiction, a technical opinion and report” to
  determine the acceptability of technologies,
  processes, products, facilities and uses attending the
  design, operation or use of a building or premises.
    The Plan Review Process

• Typically the building and fire code official work in
  conjunction with one another to review plans for
  buildings that will contain hazardous materials and
  hazardous operations. However, each jurisdiction
  should be consulted to determine their needs.

• In Seattle – submit plans to Dept. of Planning and
  Development (DPD). DPD routes plans to other City
  Departments (land use, mechanical, electrical, fire,
  etc.) for review and comment.
       Avoiding pitfalls and delays
• Identify applicable codes (i.e. find out if there are any
  local amendments to the fire and building codes).

• Request a “pre-design conference” with the local
  building and fire official before you submit plans. In
  this meeting determine:
   – level of detail necessary on the plans,
   – required submittal documents (HMIS, HMMP, process plan)
   – permits and inspections that will required,
   – potential land use and SEPA issues,
   – whether a 3rd party technical review be required by fire code
   – whether a written hazard analysis will be required.
       Avoiding pitfalls and delays
• If a third party review is required agree upon who this
  will be with the jursidiction early in the process.

• If certain aspects of the process are proprietary and
  will not be revealed to the jurisdiction, prepare a
  hazard analysis of the process that is complete
  enough to answer the safety concerns of the

• Design and plan for the future. Allow enough flexibility
  so that you can increase quantities of the hazardous
  materials used and stored without being out of
  compliance with the Fire and Building Code within the

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