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Virginia Administrative Code
Title 13. Housing
Agency 5. Department Of Housing And Community Development
Chapter 51. Virginia Statewide Fire Prevention Code
9/28/2021

13VAC5-51-144.91. IFC Chapter 38 - Higher education labs.

The following changes shall be made to Chapter 38 - Higher education laboratories.

1. Change Sections 3801.1 and 3801.2 to read:

3801.1 Scope. Higher education laboratories and laboratory suites complying with the requirements of this chapter and the applicable building code shall be permitted to exceed the maximum allowable quantities of hazardous materials in control areas without requiring classification as a Group H occupancy.

3801.2 Application. The provisions of this chapter shall be applied as exceptions or additions to applicable requirements of this code. Unless specifically modified by this chapter, the storage, use and handling of hazardous materials shall comply with the provisions in Chapters 50 through 67 and the applicable building code for quantities not exceeding the maximum allowable quantity.

2. Change Sections 3803.1, 3803.1.7, and 3803.2.1 to read:

3803.1 Scope. Higher education laboratories and laboratory suites shall be in accordance with the general safety provisions in Sections 3803.1.1 through 3803.2.2.

3803.1.7 Automatic fire-extinguishing systems. Where provided, an automatic sprinkler system shall be maintained in accordance with Chapter 9.

3803.2.1 Container size. The maximum container size for all hazardous materials shall be 5.3 gallons (20 L) for liquids, 50 pounds (22.7 kg) for solids, 100 cubic feet (2.83 m3) for health-hazard gases per the applicable building code, and 500 cubic feet (14.15 m3) for all other gases in accordance with the applicable building code.

Exception: Hazardous waste collection containers, for other than Class I flammable liquids and Class II combustible liquids, are permitted to exceed 5.3 gallons (20 L) where approved.

3. Delete Section 3804.1.1.3 and Table 3804.1.1 and change Sections 3804.1 through 3804.1.1.2, 3804.1.1.4, and 3804.1.1.6 through 3804.1.2 to read:

3804.1 General. Where laboratory suites are provided, they shall be constructed in accordance with the applicable building code and approved by the Building Official.

3804.1.1 Laboratory suites. The number of laboratory suites and percentage of maximum allowable quantities of hazardous materials in laboratory suites shall be in accordance with the applicable building code.

3804.1.1.1 Separation from other non-laboratory areas. Laboratory suites shall maintain separation from other portions of the building in accordance with Chapter 7 and the applicable building code.

3804.1.1.2 Separation from other laboratory suites. Laboratory suites shall be separated from other laboratory suites in accordance with Chapter 7 and the applicable building code.

3804.1.1.4 Maximum number. The maximum number of laboratory suites shall be in accordance with the applicable building code. Where a building contains both laboratory suites and control areas, the total number of laboratory suites and control areas within a building shall not exceed the maximum number of laboratory suites in accordance with the applicable building code.

3804.1.1.6 Standby or emergency power. Emergency or standby power for higher education laboratory suites shall be maintained in accordance with Section 1203.2.13.

3804.1.1.7 Ventilation. Ventilation shall be maintained in accordance with Chapter 7 of NFPA 45, and the applicable building code.

3804.1.1.8 Liquid-tight floor. Portions of laboratory suites where hazardous materials are present shall be maintained with a liquid-tight floor in accordance with the applicable building code.

3804.1.1.9 Automatic fire-extinguishing systems. Buildings containing laboratory suites shall be maintained throughout with an approved automatic sprinkler system in accordance with Chapter 9.

3804.1.2 Percentage of maximum allowable quantity in each laboratory suite. The percentage of maximum allowable quantities of hazardous materials in each laboratory suite shall be in accordance with the applicable building code.

4. Delete Table 3805.4 and change Sections 3805.1 through 3805.4 to read:

3805.1 Scope. Storage and use of hazardous materials in existing higher education laboratories located within existing buildings not equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system is permitted where such use complies with the applicable building code, Section 3803, Chapters 50 through 67, as applicable, and Sections 3805.2 through 3805.4.

3805.2 Nonsprinklered laboratories. The maximum allowable quantities of hazardous materials in storage and use in control areas in higher education laboratories located in buildings not equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system in accordance with the applicable NFPA 13 standard, shall be in accordance with the applicable building code and Sections 3805.2.1 and 3805.2.2.

3805.2.1 Restricted materials storage. Where approved in accordance with the applicable building code, storage of the following hazardous materials in buildings not equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system to the applicable NFPA 13 standard are allowed within a higher education laboratory control area where maintained in accordance with this section:

1. Pyrophorics.

2. Class 4 Oxidizers.

Additional quantity increases shall be prohibited, and such materials shall be stored in accordance with all of the following:

1. Containers shall be completely sealed and stored in accordance with the manufacturers' recommendations.

2. Storage shall be within approved hazardous material storage cabinets in accordance with Section 5003.8.7 or shall be located in an inert atmosphere glove box in accordance with NFPA 45, Section 7.11.

3. The storage cabinet or glove box shall not contain any storage of incompatible materials.

3805.2.2 Restricted materials use. Where approved by the applicable building code, the use of the following hazardous materials in buildings not equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system in accordance with the applicable NFPA 13 standard, shall be allowed within a higher education laboratory control area where maintained in accordance with this section:

1. Pyrophorics.

2. Class 4 Oxidizers.

Additional quantity increases shall be prohibited, and such materials shall only be used in accordance with all of the following:

1. Use shall be within an approved chemical fume hood listed in accordance with UL 1805 or in an inert atmosphere glove box in accordance with NFPA 45, Section 7.11, or other approved equipment designed for the specific hazard of the material.

2. Combustible materials shall be kept not less than 2 feet (610 mm) away from the work area, except for those items directly related to the research.

3. A portable fire extinguisher appropriate for the specific material shall be provided within 20 feet (6096 mm) of the use in accordance with Section 906.

3805.3 Restricted materials automatic fire detection. Where provided in higher education laboratories in nonsprinklered buildings, an automatic fire detection system shall be maintained in accordance with Chapter 9.

3805.3.1 System supervision and monitoring. Where required or provided, automatic fire detection systems shall be electronically supervised and monitored by an approved supervising station or, where approved, shall initiate an audible and visual signal at a constantly attended, onsite location.

3805.4 Percentage of maximum allowable quantity per control area. The percentage of maximum allowable quantities per control area of hazardous materials in higher education laboratories in existing nonsprinklered buildings shall be permitted to be increased only in accordance with the applicable building code and approval from the Building Official.

5. Delete Table 3806.2.1 and change Sections 3806.1 through 3806.2.1 to read:

3806.1 Scope. Storage and use of hazardous materials in existing higher education laboratories within buildings equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler system in accordance with the applicable NFPA 13 standard, shall be in accordance with Section 3803 and with Chapters 50 through 67, as applicable, except as modified by this section.

3806.2 Hazardous materials storage and use. Storage and use of hazardous materials within control areas in higher education laboratories equipped with an automatic sprinkler system shall be in accordance with this section and Chapters 50 through 67, as applicable.

Exception: Existing laboratories in buildings equipped throughout with an automatic sprinkler constructed and approved as laboratory suites in accordance the applicable building code are permitted to comply with Section 3804.

3806.2.1 Percentage of maximum allowable quantities per control area. The percentage of maximum allowable quantities per control area of hazardous materials in higher education laboratories equipped with an automatic sprinkler system shall be in accordance with the applicable building code.

Statutory Authority

§ 27-97 of the Code of Virginia.

Historical Notes

Derived from Virginia Register Volume 37, Issue 14, eff. July 1, 2021.

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