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  1. #1
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    Default Wooden I beam ordinance?

    Is anyone aware of a municipal or city ordinance which requires solid wood floor joists rather than manufactured wooden I beams? We'd like to see our Village pass such an ordinance for all new construction and my Chief has asked me to find a sample ordinance. Thanks in advance.


  2. #2
    Forum Member DeputyMarshal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gillgrabber View Post
    Is anyone aware of a municipal or city ordinance which requires solid wood floor joists rather than manufactured wooden I beams? We'd like to see our Village pass such an ordinance for all new construction and my Chief has asked me to find a sample ordinance. Thanks in advance.
    That's going to be a rather difficult ordinance to justify.

    May I suggest that you'd all be better served by pursuing strong sprinkler ordinances (including residential sprinklers) than in trying to prohibit construction methods/materials that are widely used, very well accepted by the industry, highly desirable to buyers, engineered to rigorous standards, and "green" to boot...
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

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    I figured as much, but I'm still gonna try. I was hoping to justify it through a firefighter safety approach. We've all heard of the horrible incidents where cheap I beams fail and the firefighters fell through the floor. I think the only reason it's "accepted" is because cheap. As for being green, I can only accept so much of that. If we're not careful we'll be driving toyota sized engines and going back to the days of horse drawn apparatus. But I understand what you're getting at...thanks for the reply.

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    Forum Member FWDbuff's Avatar
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    I agree with DM. Thats going to be a hard one to swallow- especially if you have any code/ordinance savvy builders in your area- they will have so many lobbyists in your town hall screaming for blood that you guys wont have room to breathe.

    There are too many "engineered lumber" product manufacturers out there that make more money in one day in interest on their accounts, than your village has in it's yearly operating budget- hence they also have more lawyers, lobbyists, and expert witnesses to testify to your town council why this should not pass as an ordinance. Georgia-Pacific, Trus-Joist and Jager alone would probably send no less than 5 lawyers each (making no less than 300 bucks an hour) to take your village council out to dinner......

    Again, like DM said, your time would be better spent pursuing a residential sprinkler ordinance. But if your Chief really has a bug up his ***** about engineered I-joists, why not look into an ordinance requiring them to be encapsulated on both top and bottom (ie- basement ceilings must be rocked)??? Also, why dont you work on an ordinance requiring identification of all properties using I-joist floors and/or truss roof construction? This can be accomplished through the use of signs/placards at the entrances of developments, on properties themselves, or even by placing a message in the "notes" sections of CAD programs at your dispatching center. They can also be identified in your mapbooks and property books.
    Last edited by FWDbuff; 12-05-2007 at 10:13 PM.
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    If you outlaw just I-beams, you'll still be left with open web floor trusses and whatever else comes along in a few years.

    Sprinklers are the best option, but politically it might not be workable.

    How about lobbying for external signage on structures with truss assemblies for floors AND roofs? Without outlawing structurally efficient building techniques you can alert responding firefighters to a building's hazards at a negligible cost - which makes it a harder point for builders to argue against.
    ullrichk
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    New Jersey has had a law in place to identify wood and metal truss building construction for about 8 years, perhaps more. See this web site from the NJ Division of Fire Safety for what the signs must look like

    http://www.state.nj.us/dca/dfs/truss.pdf
    Last edited by InsuranceLCRep; 01-06-2008 at 04:31 PM.
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