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September - October 2002

Codes, Certification& Standards

New Standards for Exit Locks Raises the Bar

The Builders Hardware Manufacturers Association (BHMA) has announced a new standard for exit locks, exit locks with exit alarms, exit alarms and alarms for exit devices. 

Developed by the BHMA and approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) late last year, A156.5 comes from the recognition of the increased importance of locks, alarms and other devices that control egress from a building. The building hardware products described in the new standard directly affect building security and the safety of building occupants.

Revisions include increased performance requirements in recommended tests, and a slam test has been added. Testing in accordance with this standard allows for certification to the ANSI/BHMA standard to be established by third-party testing laboratories. 

“The existence of this standard should facilitate the development of sophisticated security systems and accelerate the adoption of hardware standards in building codes,” said Mike Tierney, BHMA standards coordinator. “As concerns about building security come into focus, this standard becomes an essential part of the security picture.”

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IFCI and ICBO Offer Historical Fire Code CD-ROM
The International Fire Code Institute (IFCI) and the International Conference of Building Officials (ICBO) recently released the Historic UFC CD-ROM. It contains all editions of the Uniform Fire Code™ dating from 1971 to 1997 and the 1999 accumulative supplement.

NFRC Becomes an Independent Organization
At its spring meeting in Snowbird, Utah, the National Fenestration Rating Council’s (NFRC) board of directors decided to end its relationship with D&R International and emerge as an independent organization.

NFRC members and participants should notice very little change as a result of the move, other than a few small disruptions during the transition to new office space, said chairman Tony Rygg.

“We’re very grateful to D&R for its years of service, especially in the early days when the firm played such an important role in bringing NFRC into existence,” Rygg said. “The board determined that after 13 years we’re ready to stand on our own two feet, and that we can continue to provide the same high quality of service to all of our stakeholders—including a rating and labeling system of the highest integrity—as an independent organization.”

NFRC’s staff will now report to the board directly, and Susan Douglass will remain as administrator of the organization.

NAHB Advises Members to Use NFRC-Certified Products
The construction, codes and standards staff at the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) has advised the organization’s members to use National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC)-certified products in their new home projects.

According to an article in the January 21, 2002 edition of NAHB’s Nation’s Building News, the organization decided to endorse the use of NFRC products because they tell builders and their customers how well windows, doors and skylights will perform and “help builders know whether or not they are complying with energy code.” 

“We’re very excited that NAHB has recognized the benefits that fair, accurate and credible energy-performance ratings from NFRC can provide to their members, and ultimately, to their members’ customers,” said Susan Douglas, NFRC administrator. “We look forward to working with NAHB to continue to raise awareness of NFRC-certified ratings with its members.”

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