GUIDELINES FOR APPROVAL OF ALTERNATE MATERIALS, DESIGN AND METHODS OF CONSTRUCTION OR OPERATIONS
Basis for Approval
For the Fire Code Official or their designated agent to approve a request for modification or a request for alternate material or method of construction, he/she
must determine that special individual reasons exist that make compliance with the strict letter of the Code impractical and that equivalency is provided. The
resulting condition must be in conformance with the spirit and purpose of the code provisions involved and that such modification does not lessen fire protection,
structural integrity or occupant safety. The applicant must provide sufficient information with this application to allow the above evaluation to be made (CFC Chapter
104.10 & .11). Incomplete applications and/or insufficient information may result in denial of the request.
The applicant design professional shall prepare a Written Report that describes the alternate proposal along with the applicable data listed below:
State specific code provisions for which alternative is requested and why request is being submitted.
Describe by code section those provisions for which alternative is desired.
Compare the proposed alternative versus the code requirements in terms of structural strength, suitability, effectiveness, fire resistance, safety
and health impacts affecting the building or user(s) of the building.
Demonstrate that the proposed alternative is compatible with balance of code requirements. When applicable, specify how authoritative
consensus document(s) are used to substantiate proposal.
Provide assumptions, references, and documentation of evaluation methods utilized. This includes intended use, input data, anticipated outputs,
and limitations of computer models and other analytical tools or methods.
Specify when and where special inspection and testing are required and the standards of acceptance for demonstrating compliance.
Show how the proposed alternate, if accepted, will be identified on the job site.
Where land use restrictions and building setbacks are required. Deed restrictions may be an appropriate method to ensure continued compliance.
State how and where the alternate proposal is incorporated within construction plans and how plan amendments will be prepared as necessary. The
design professional has the responsibility to coordinate all construction documents and ensure compatibility between documents.
The report and design documents shall be dated, signed and stamped by the design professional according to the plan submittal procedure.
For alternate methods of design requests, the applicant shall set performance criteria for the proposed design. Performance criteria shall be
reviewed, amended and approved by both the Fire Code and Building Officials prior to start of design.
The Fire Code Official has the responsibility to review design submittals for compliance with the adopted codes and procedures. I f the Fire Code Official does not
have the expertise on staff to make a thorough and competent review, the Fire Code Official shall select a consultant that possesses the necessary
qualifications to perform a third-party or peer review.
Verify that all applicable information and justifications listed above as requirements for requests is received and verify that evaluation and design methods
used by the design professional are appropriate to the alternative proposed.
Verify products are being used in accordance with their listing conditions as required by recognized listing agencies. If not available, require
documentation and/or testing to demonstrate compliance with intent of code and intended use.
Evaluate performance of material and possible flaws that could affect performance of material in its installed state.
The reviewer shall document that the request has been reviewed and accepted as meeting the alternative materials, design and methods of
construction provisions of the code. If the Fire Code Official is not satisfied that the applicant has met conditions, the request shall be denied in
writing with the applicable reason(s).
The alternate proposal as approved in the construction documents must be verified by inspection, and, where necessary, testing as follows:
To verify that alternate materials, systems and fabricated products comply with accepted design criteria and the manufacturer’s and engineer’s
installation procedures. Inspectors should check product labeling, certification, quality assurance processes, and testing, as applicable.
When appropriate, an approved third party quality assurance inspection and testing service may be required for continuous and complex inspection
and testing activities. This is intended to verify that construction complies with the code and the approved alternate plans.
PFD P -033 APPLICATION FOR ALTERNATE MATERIALS, METHODS OF CONSTRUCTION OR OPERATIONS (2/1/16)