NFPA Journal - May/June 2020 - 68

THE CLASS OF

The new Chapter 46 separates
3D printing into two subcategories:
industrial additive manufacturing and
nonindustrial. The industrial section
includes the 3D printers "that use some
of the more hazardous materials, so
there are additional restrictions to make
sure everything is safe," Ziavras said.
The section does not yet include guidance on 3D-printed construction, a topic
that was featured in the cover story of
the March/April 2020 NFPA Journal, but
"I wouldn't be surprised if it's part of the
conversation next cycle," Ziavras said.
New cannabis guidance
A growing industry across North America is the production of cannabis, or
marijuana. Chapter 38, "Marijuana
Growing, Processing, or Extraction
Facilities," debuted in the 2018 edition
of the code, and for the 2021 cycle the
committee changed the chapter name
from marijuana to cannabis to reflect
the preferred nomenclature used
across the industry. The committee also
added new sections on CO2 enrichment
rooms and indoor horticulture structures, and changed language to reflect
listing advancements in processing
equipment.

Cannabis growers typically pump
additional CO2 into rooms to promote
plant growth, but this could present a
hazard to occupants if there is a leak.
Too much CO2 can cause disorientation,
asphyxiation, and death. Chapter 38
added language about gas monitoring,
alarms, signage, and equipment to
minimize the chances of a problem,
and to ensure that leaks are caught
quickly and occupants and responders
are alerted.
The chapter also provides guidance
for the first time on spaces that are
erected within the same building
to create different growing zones-
essentially indoor greenhouses. These
spaces can create problems with egress
and sprinklers and add to the fuel load
inside the building, depending on the
materials used in their construction,
which are typically fabric or plastic.
"The big focus is on the materials of
the structure itself. It has to be either
noncombustible or it has to meet
specific fire tests in order to be used,"
Ziavras said.
All of the cannabis-related changes
came from public inputs received by
the committee, Ziavras added. "It's
really the public's knowledge of this

expanding technology that is driving
the code," she said.
New warning required for
nonsprinklered high-rises
NFPA 1 requires existing high-rise buildings to be sprinklered within 12 years of
the adoption of the code. "Unfortunately,
what you see time and time again are
jurisdictions changing that requirement
and allowing high-rises to not be retrofitted with sprinklers," Ziavras said. "We've
been trying for years to encourage fire
sprinkler retrofit with code provisions,
but there's been extreme pushback."
After several fires in nonsprinklered
residential high-rises during the NFPA
1 revision process-including a blaze
in a Honolulu tower that killed four
residents in 2017-committee members
felt compelled to take additional action.
The committee has proposed that all
high-rise buildings that aren't protected
throughout by an approved automatic
sprinkler system must display warning
signs at all main building entrances. The
signs would say "WARNING: This highrise building is not protected throughout
with an automatic fire sprinkler system,"
with further requirements on the size of
the lettering and the design of the sign.

GETT Y IMAGES

A July 2017 high-rise fire
in Honolulu, Hawaii, which
killed four residents, is one
of several blazes that has
led to a proposed change
to the 2021 edition of NFPA
101 requiring warning signs
outside of nonsprinklered
high-rise buildings.

68 | NFPA JOURNAL * M A Y / J U N E 2 0 2 0

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5/4/20 1:33 PM



NFPA Journal - May/June 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of NFPA Journal - May/June 2020

Contents
NFPA Journal - May/June 2020 - Cover1
NFPA Journal - May/June 2020 - Cover2
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NFPA Journal - May/June 2020 - Contents
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NFPA Journal - May/June 2020 - Cover3
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