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BCC Ruling No. 94-33-411

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IN THE MATTER OF Subsection 24(1) of the Building Code Act, 1992.

AND IN THE MATTER OF Sentences of the Revised Regulation of Ontario 1990, Regulation 61, as amended by O.Regs. 400/91, 158/93 and 160/93 (the "Building Code").

AND IN THE MATTER OF an application by by Memorial Gardens Canada Limited for the resolution of a dispute with Mr. Antonio Chow, Chief Building Official, City of Etobicoke.


Memorial Gardens Canada Limited
2 Jane Street
Toronto, Ontario


Mr. Antonio Chow
Chief Building Official
City of Etobicoke


Sarah Maman, Chair
Rick Florio
Remus Tsang


Toronto, Ontario


September 19, 1994


Mr. Demir Delen
Fire Protection Manager
Morrison Hershfield Limited
for the Applicant

Mr. Robert Webb
Chief, Fire Prevention
City of Etobicoke
for the Respondent


  1. The Applicant

Memorial Gardens Canada Limited is the holder of a permit under the Building Code Act, 1992 to provide an Emergency Generator for water supply for fire fighting at the Glendale Memorial Gardens Mausoleum, 1810 Albion Road, Etobicoke, Ontario.

  1. Description of Constrution

The applicant is proposing to construct a two storey addition on top of an existing mausoleum. This will increase the building height to four storeys. The building is of noncombustible construction.

The new addition will be separated from the existing building by a 2 hour fire separation. The first and second storeys are interconnected floor spaces. The new third and fourth storeys will also be interconnected.

  1. Dispute

The dispute between the Applicant and Respondent concerns sufficiency of compliance with Sentence of the Building Code. At issue is the need to provide an Emergency Generator for water supply for fire fighting.

  1. Provision of the Building Code

Sentence Emergency Power for Building Services

(4) An emergency power supply capable of operating under a full load for not less than 30 min shall be provided by emergency generator for water supply for fire fighting in conformance with Article when the supply is dependent on electrical power supplied to the building and the building is not within the scope of Subsection 3.2.6.

  1. Applicant's Position

The applicant stated that the design and the fire protection systems of the Mausoleum at the Glendale Memorial Gardens provide a performance level intended by the Building Code. The applicant respectfully requested the Building Code Commission rule on the sufficiency of compliance with the technical requirements of the Building Code for the following reasons:

  1. The Mausoleum is a special use not envisioned by the Code, has a supervised intermittent occupancy and has a low hazard classification under NFPA-101 Life Safety Code. This classification suggests that lesser requirements than the Code, may be applicable.

  1. The discharge pressure available at the topmost outlet of the standpipe and hose system without a booster pump is 50 psi, which is sufficient for such an occupancy of low hazard classification and contents of negligible fuel load and heat release rate. However, a fire pump is provided to boost the pressure so that a residual pressure of 65.3 psi is available at the required flow in the highest and most remote outlet. A fire department connection is also provided, although not required by the Code, to deliver the demand flow rate at the residual pressure of 65.3 psi if for any reason the power supply to the fire pump is not available during fire fighting operations. The static pressure available at the hydrant in front of the building is 68 psi. The City of Etobicoke has a reliable power supply and the fire department apparatus has a pumping capability to the topmost outlet of the standpipe system which is located 12 metres above ground.

Hence, the water supply is not dependent on electrical power. Therefore, an emergency generator to supply emergency power to the fire pump is not required by NFPA-20 and the Building Code since the Code only requires emergency power when "the supply is dependent on electrical power supplied to the building".

  1. The grid of smoke detectors which are above and beyond the Code requirements provide an excellent early warning and detection system for evacuation and early start of fire fighting operations.

  1. Chief Building Officials Position

The respondent stated that the building requires a sprinkler system (per subsection 3.2.8.) and a stand pipe and hose system (per subsection 3.2.9.).

Due to the uniqueness of the building occupancy, the Chief Building Official has waived the requirement for sprinklers subject to the installation of a standpipe and hose system that conform to the Building Code.

The standpipe and hose system is required to be equipped with a water pump. In order to ensure an adequate water supply for fire fighting, Sentence of the Building Code requires an emergency power supply for the fire pump servicing the stand pipe and hose system.

The Fire Department provided information that unsatisfactory water pressure occurs frequently in the water mains within this area.

  1. Commission Ruling:

n favour of the Applicant. It is the decision of the Building Code Commission that not providing emergency power for the standpipe fire pump shows sufficiency of compliance with the Building Code provided that the flame spread rating of the carpeting is not more than 25.

  1. Reasons:

  1. The Mausoleum has a low combustible loading.

  1. A fire department siamese pumper connection has been installed on the standpipe system.

  1. The fire alarm system which includes smoke detectors is supervised.

  1. The fire safety plan will be designed to take into account that the standpipe system is not connected to an emergency power supply.

Dated at Toronto, this 19th day, in the month of September, in the year 1994, for application number 1994-33.

Sarah Maman

Rick Florio

Remus Tsang