Ramtech praises San Francisco Fire Code update requiring fire alarms for wood-frame buildings in construction

A new San Francisco Fire Code update, which requires the use of an approved temporary wireless fire detection and notification system during the construction of wood-frame buildings, has been hailed as a ‘pioneering moment in US construction history’ by fire safety experts from Ramtech and distribution partner, Space Age Electronics.

The new Fire Code – also documented in the San Francisco Building Department Information Sheet FS-04 – has made significant changes from its 2019 version.Ramtech-SpaceAge-SanFranFireCode-23Among the changes is a safety requirement for temporary fire alarms during construction of wood-frame buildings. Now, wood-frame buildings “shall be provided with an approved temporary wireless detection and notification system”. The code, which went into force 1 January 2023, now forms part of the planning process and is a condition that must be met in order to obtain a new building permit.Another change is that sprinklers are now required for existing high-rise buildings above 120 feet (10+ storeys), or for any between 75-120 feet that do not already contain two rated interior stairwells and a fire alarm system with smoke detection in specific areas, such as doors at stairwells.

“A pioneering moment for US construction” Wireless emergency and evacuation system solutions provider, Ramtech, and North American distribution partner, Space Age Electronics, have praised the San Francisco Fire Department following its decision.Now, thanks to the use of 24/7 detection and notification system technology, both businesses predict that more lives will be saved and millions of dollars in damage caused by fire will be reduced.

Joseph Cervantes, Western Region Business Development Manager at Space Age Electronics, said: “This truly is a pioneering moment for US construction and for San Francisco, which will revolutionise the fire safety of this city. For too long, construction sites in the area have been left vulnerable and it has taken a number of years and hard lessons learned to reach this point, including historical and recent devastating fires in Berkeley, California and others in the United States.

“In a city as densely populated as San Francisco, the damage potential from a fire is catastrophic if it is left to spread, so any measures that can be taken to improve response times is important. I am therefore very proud that a temporary wireless fire detection and notification system during the construction of wood-frame building is now a code requirement. I hope in future this will be adopted all over the US and extended to all types of buildings, not just wood-frame, as no construction site is immune to the impact of fire and its harmful consequences.”



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