IBC 2-Way Communications:
The 2009 International Building Code (IBC) now requires a two-way communication system on ALL NEW CONSTRUCTION for all Areas of Refuge regardless if they have a sprinkler system or not. Also significant remodels or change of use of a building may require Areas of Refuge.1007.6.3 Two-Way Communication. Areas of Refuge shall be provided with a two-way communication system complying with Sections 1007.8.1 and 1007.8.2.1007.8 Two-Way Communication. A two-way communication system shall be provided at the elevator landing on each accessible floor that is one or more stories above or below the story of exit discharge complying with Sections 1007.8.1 and 1007.8.2.
1.) Two-way communication systems are not required at the elevator landing where the two-way communication system is provided within areas of refuge in accordance with section 1007.6.3 (Stairwell Areas of Refuges)1007.8.1 System Requirements. Two-way communications shall provide communication between each required location (Rath Call Boxes) and the fire command center or central control point location
(Rath Base Stations) approved by the fire department. Where the central control point is not constantly attended, a two-way communication system shall have a timed automatic telephone dial-out capability to a monitoring location or 911. The two-way communication system shall include both audible and visible signals. Note: Most local Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) require two way off-site person to person voice communications.1007.8.2 Directions. Directions (Part #7049) for the use of the two-way communication system, instructions for summoning assistance via the two-way communication system and written identification of the location shall be posted adjacent to the two-way communication system.1007.9 Signage. Signage indicating special accessibility provisions shall be provided as shown:
1) Each door providing access to an area of refuge from the adjacent floor shall be identified by a sign stating: AREA OF REFUGE (Part #7044)
Signage shall comply with the ICC A117.1 requirements for visual characters and include the International Symbol of Accessibility. Where exit sign illumination is required by Section 1011.2, the signs shall be illuminated. (Part #7050) Additionally, tactile signage complying with ICC A117.1 shall be located at each door to an Area of Refuge. (Part #7044)
- 1007.10 Directional Signage.
Direction signage indicating the location of the other means of egress and which are accessible means of egress shall be provided at the following: (Part # 7047L-Left or #7047R-Right)
1. At exits serving a required accessible space but not providing an approved accessible means of egress
2. At Elevator Landings
3. Within Areas of Refuge
1007.11 Instructions. In areas of refuge and exterior areas for assisted rescue, instructions on the use of the area under emergency conditions shall be posted. The instructions shall include all of the following: (Part #7049)
1) Persons able to use the exit stairway do so as soon as possible, unless they are assisting others.
2) Information on planned availability of assistance in the use of stairs or supervised operation of elevators and how to summon such assistance.
3) Directions for use of the two-way communications system where provided.
Additional Codes (NFPA & ADDAG)
- There were no significant changes to the 2-way communication requirements from the IBC 2009 to
the IBC 2012
- Section 1007.7 was added to the IBC 2012 to better define Exterior Areas for Assisted Rescue which was very vague in the IBC 2009