CHAPTER 55. DIVISION C-2
HOTELS, MOTELS, APARTMENT BUILDINGS, ETC.

OCCUPANCY GROUP

Sec.


55.1.    Division C-2 occupancies.
55.2.    Separation and mixed occupancy.
55.3.    Hazards.

CONSTRUCTION TYPE—MAXIMUM STORY HEIGHT


55.11.    Story height.

MEANS OF EGRESS


55.21.    Minimum exits.
55.22.    Travel distance to exits.
55.23.    Means of egress capacity.
55.24.    Exit doors.
55.25.    Stair towers.
55.26.    Intercommunicating stairways.
55.27.    Ramps.
55.28.    Horizontal exits.
55.29.    Escalators.

VERTICAL OPENINGS


55.31.    Vertical openings.

INTERIOR FINISH


55.41.    Interior finishes.

MANUAL AND AUTOMATIC FIRE ALARM SYSTEMS


55.51.    Manual systems.
55.52.    Automatic systems.
55.53.    Automatic fire detection devices for the hearing-impaired.

EMERGENCY LIGHTING SYSTEMS


55.61.    General requirements.
55.62.    More than two stories in height.
55.63.    Required areas.

EXTINGUISHERS AND SPRINKLER SYSTEMS


55.71.    Fire extinguishers.
55.72.    Automatic sprinkler systems.

SPECIAL CONDITIONS


55.81.    Hazardous areas.
55.82.    Large personal care homes.

Authority

   The provisions of this Chapter 55 issued under act of April 27, 1927 (P. L. 465, No. 299) (35 P. S. § §  1221—1235), unless otherwise noted.

Source

   The provisions of this Chapter 55 adopted May 18, 1984, effective May 19, 1984, 14 Pa.B. 1765, unless otherwise noted.

Cross References

   This chapter cited in 6 Pa. Code §  21.30 (relating to special program and recertification standards for domiciliary care homes with four or more clients); 7 Pa. Code §  82.17 (relating to safety—fire prevention and egress); 7 Pa. Code §  139.42 (relating to structures); 12 Pa. Code §  145.35 (relating to applicability of Fire and Panic Act); 22 Pa. Code §  31.43 (relating to buildings and equipment); 34 Pa. Code §  11.85 (relating to applicable provisions of other regulations); 34 Pa. Code §  47.125 (relating to stairs); 34 Pa. Code §  49.1 (relating to definitions); 34 Pa. Code §  49.2 (relating to jurisdiction and effective dates); 34 Pa. Code §  49.3 (relating to submission of plans); 34 Pa. Code §  49.5 (relating to certification of plans); 34 Pa. Code §  49.8 (relating to fees for building-plan examinations); 34 Pa. Code §  49.9 (relating to field inspection); 34 Pa. Code §  49.12 (relating to notice of violation and order to correct); 34 Pa. Code §  50.1 (relating to occupancy groups); 34 Pa. Code §  50.21 (relating to definitions); 34 Pa. Code §  50.24 (relating to exit doors and exit access doors); 34 Pa. Code §  50.92 (relating to historic building); 34 Pa. Code §  60.8 (relating to field inspection); 34 Pa. Code §  60.33 (relating to buildings); 55 Pa. Code §  5200.47 (relating to other applicable regulations); 55 Pa. Code §  5210.56 (relating to other applicable regulations); and 55 Pa. Code §  5320.54 (relating to seclusion and restraints).

OCCUPANCY GROUP


§ 55.1. Division C-2 occupancies.

 This Division shall apply to a building, or part thereof, where the occupants are in group habitation and are not included under Division C-1, C-3, C-4 or C-5. Hotels, apartment buildings, multiple dwellings, dormitories, lodging houses, orphanages, children’s residential institutions, large personal care homes, group homes, group foster homes and the like shall be in this classification.

§ 55.2. Separation and mixed occupancy.

 When a C-2 occupancy shares a structure with one or more occupancies, the structure shall be governed in one of the following manners:

   (1)  Separation. When each occupancy is separated from other occupancies by fire walls, each portion thus separated shall be considered a separate building and limitations for separate buildings shall govern.

   (2)  Mixed occupancy. Structures with multiple occupancies which are not separated shall be considered mixed occupancies and shall be governed by the most restrictive of the various limitations of the occupancies.

§ 55.3. Hazards.

 D-H, hazardous occupancies shall not be permitted in the same structure housing a Group C-2 occupancy.

CONSTRUCTION TYPE—MAXIMUM STORY HEIGHT


§ 55.11. Story height.

 (a)  C-2 occupancy shall be governed by the story height limitations in the following table:


Construction
Type
Maximum
Story Height
FireresistiveNo Limit
Noncombustible3 Stories*
Protected Heavy Timber3 Stories*
Ordinary3 Stories*
Wood Frame2 Stories*

 (b)  *An additional story shall be permitted in noncombustible, protected heavy timber, ordinary or wood frame construction when the building is 1-hour rated construction or totally protected by an automatic sprinkler system. The maximum story height may be increased two stories when 1-hour rated construction and total automatic sprinkler protection are provided.

 (c)  Noncombustible, protected heavy timber, ordinary and wood frame construction types shall be considered 1-hour rated construction when bearing walls, columns, beams, other supporting members, ceiling/roof assemblies, floor/ceiling assemblies, stairways and other openings through floors are of 1-hour rated construction.

 (d)  Apartment units shall be separated from each other and all other portions of the building by a minimum of 1-hour rated construction.

MEANS OF EGRESS


§ 55.21. Minimum exits.

 (a)  There shall be a minimum of two exits reasonably remote from each other. At least 50% of required exits shall be exit discharge doors, stair towers or ramps.

 (b)  Basements used only for storage or mechanical equipment without any permanent occupancy shall have a minimum of two exit access paths except that the Department may permit a single exit access for basements used only for storage or mechanical equipment without any permanent occupancy of less than 1,000 square feet.

 (c)  Mezzanine levels shall have a minimum of two exit access paths except that the Department may permit a single exit access from mezzanines less than 1,000 square feet or mezzanines used exclusively for storage or mechanical equipment without a permanent occupancy.

 (d)  An individual apartment which occupies more than one floor level shall only be required to have an exit from one floor level.

§ 55.22. Travel distance to exits.

 (a)  Exits shall be arranged so that the total length of travel from any point to reach an exit shall not exceed 200 feet. Exits shall be so arranged that one exit is not more than 200 feet from another exit. Dead ends and occupancy areas with a single path of egress travel should be eliminated where possible, but in no case shall any of these occupancy areas be more than 75 feet from an exit.

 (b)  Travel distance may be increased to the following in buildings totally protected by an automatic sprinkler system.

   (1)  Two hundred feet from any point to an exit.

   (2)  Three hundred feet between exits.

   (3)  One hundred feet for dead ends and areas with a single path of egress.

§ 55.23. Means of egress capacity.

 Units of width shall comply with §  50.23 (relating to means of egress capacity).

§ 55.24. Exit doors.

 Exit discharge doors leading to the outside shall comply with §  50.24 (relating to exit doors and exit access doors) except that exit and exit discharge doors which serve nine or less rooms or four or less apartments shall not be required to have panic hardware or fire exit hardware, and exit discharge doors serving one apartment need not swing with exit travel.

§ 55.25. Stair towers.

 Stair towers shall comply with §  50.25 (relating to stair towers). Class A or Class B stairs may be used as a required means of egress.

§ 55.26. Intercommunicating stairways.

 Intercommunicating stairways shall comply with §  50.26 (relating to intercommunicating stairway).

§ 55.27. Ramps.

 Ramps shall comply with §  50.27 (relating to ramps).

§ 55.28. Horizontal exits.

 Horizontal exits shall comply with §  50.28 (relating to horizontal exits).

§ 55.29. Escalators.

 Escalators shall be permitted for communication from one story to another but shall not be counted as exits.

VERTICAL OPENINGS


§ 55.31. Vertical openings.

 Vertical openings shall comply with § §  50.31—50.34 (relating to vertical openings).

INTERIOR FINISH


§ 55.41. Interior finishes.

 (a)  Interior finishes for exits and exit corridors shall be Class A or Class B.

 (b)  Interior finish requirements may be reduced by one class in buildings totally protected by an automatic sprinkler system.

MANUAL AND AUTOMATIC FIRE ALARM SYSTEMS


§ 55.51. Manual systems.

 Manual fire alarm systems shall be provided as follows:

   (1)  Facilities more than two stories in height shall have a manual fire alarm system.

   (2)  Buildings with more than 10,000 square feet of gross building area, exterior dimensions, shall have a manual fire alarm system. Areas of basements without permanent occupancy may not be included in the gross building calculation.

§ 55.52. Automatic systems.

 (a)  An automatic fire alarm system shall be provided for C-2 occupancies, except for buildings totally protected by an automatic sprinkler system. Smoke detectors shall be located in the corridors, stairs and rooms of the building except as follows: rooms of individual apartment units, hotel or motel sleeping rooms, or dormitory rooms with sleeping accommodations for five or less persons. Heat detectors may be used in kitchens, restrooms, boiler rooms, furnace rooms and other special rooms as approved by the Department. Other detection devices may be approved by the Department for special conditions. The automatic fire alarm system shall comply with §  50.52 (relating to automatic system), except that buildings with 12 or less apartments may comply with the following:

   (1)  Smoke detectors listed as meeting U. L. 217, 1980 Edition, shall be provided in common areas, such as halls, corridors, stair towers, basements or similar areas.

   (2)  Smoke detectors shall be interconnected so that all devices shall sound an alarm conditioned upon activation of an individual detector. The smoke detectors may be ceiling or sidewall mounted, with a minimum of a 4-inch clearance from a ceiling to wall jointure, measured from the jointure to the top of the detector. Sidewall mountings may not exceed 12 inches measured from the ceiling and sidewall jointure to the top of the detector.

 (b)  In addition to the automatic fire alarm system required in subsection (a), each apartment shall have a minimum of one smoke-detection device located in a common area between the apartment exit and the bedrooms. This device may be a single-station detection device which is not interconnected with the automatic fire alarm system. Single-station detection devices shall be listed as meeting U. L. 217, 1980 Edition.

Source

   The provisions of this §  55.52 adopted May 18, 1984, effective May 19, 1984, 14 Pa.B. 1765; amended August 7, 1992, effective August 8, 1992, 22 Pa.B. 4091. Immediately preceding text appears at serial page (89114).

Cross References

   This section cited in 34 Pa. Code §  49.2 (relating to jurisdiction and effective dates).

§ 55.53. Automatic fire detection devices for the hearing-impaired.

 (a)  This section applies to hotels, motels, lodging houses, boarding homes or similar facilities in which there are overnight accommodations for hire for more than eight persons and which are primarily, but not necessarily exclusively, used by transients who are lodged with or without meals.

 (b)  Operators of these facilities and businesses shall have automatic fire detection devices for the hearing-impaired available for the use of these guests upon request as follows:

   (1)  Each hotel, motel, lodging house, boarding home or similar type of business shall have a minimum of two automatic fire detection devices for the hearing-impaired available. Additional devices are required as listed in the following table:


Number of Guest RoomsMinimum Number of Devices
Up to 502
51 to 753
76 to 1004
101 to 1505
151 to 2006
201 to 3007
301 to 4008
401 to 5009
Over 50010

   (2)  Automatic fire detection devices for the hearing-impaired may be portable devices that are available at the registration desk. Guest rooms with permanently mounted automatic fire detection devices for the hearing-impaired, or with visual or other signaling devices approved by the Department tied into a building fire alarm system, may be provided instead of portable devices. The number of guest rooms with permanently mounted devices shall be in accordance with the table in paragraph (1).

 (c)  Notice of the availability of portable automatic fire detection devices for the hearing-impaired, or the availability of guest rooms with special signaling devices for the hearing-impaired, shall be posted in the area of guest registration.

 (d)  A guest may not be charged for the use of the special alarms for the hearing-impaired. The hotel, motel, lodging home, boarding home or similar business may require a refundable deposit, not to exceed $50, for the use of portable automatic fire detection devices for the hearing-impaired. The deposit shall be returned upon the return of the device.

Source

   The provisions of this §  55.53 adopted August 7, 1992, effective August 8, 1992, 22 Pa.B. 4091.

Cross References

   This section cited in 34 Pa. Code §  49.2 (relating to jurisdiction and effective dates).

EMERGENCY LIGHTING SYSTEMS


§ 55.61. General requirements.

 Emergency lighting shall be required in buildings with more than 10,000 square feet of floor area. Areas of basements without permanent occupancy may not be included in the floor area.

§ 55.62. More than two stories in height.

 Emergency lighting shall be required for buildings more than two stories in height.

§ 55.63. Required areas.

 Emergency lighting shall be provided as follows:

   (1)  Exitways, corridors, stairways, passageways, halls, landings of stairs, exit doors, including angles and intersections, and other means of egress.

   (2)  Rooms used for assembly purposes in excess of 750 square feet.

   (3)  To illuminate exit or directional exit signs.

   (4)  Rooms in which emergency lighting equipment is located.

   (5)  Exterior light over required exit discharge.

EXTINGUISHERS AND SPRINKLER SYSTEMS


§ 55.71. Fire extinguishers.

 (a)  Fire extinguishers with a minimum 2-A rating shall be provided as follows:

   (1)  Apartment units—one per unit.

   (2)  Other C-2 occupancies—one for each 3,000 square feet or fraction thereof.

 (b)  There shall be a minimum of one fire extinguisher per floor including basement.

 (c)  Fire extinguishers shall be located so that it shall not be necessary to travel more than 100 feet in any direction to reach the nearest unit.

 (d)  A fire extinguisher with a minimum 10-B rating shall be provided in each kitchen.

 (e)  Where fire extinguishers are installed in a closet or recessed in a wall or obscured from view, there shall be provided adjacent thereto a constant blue light of not less than 25 watt capacity. Fire extinguishers in individual apartments need not comply with this subsection.

§ 55.72. Automatic sprinkler systems.

 Automatic sprinkler systems required by this chapter shall comply with §  50.72 (relating to automatic sprinkler systems).

SPECIAL CONDITIONS


§ 55.81. Hazardous areas.

 (a)  Boiler or furnace rooms, repair or maintenance rooms, trash rooms, and rooms or spaces used for the storage of combustible materials in quantities deemed hazardous by the Department, shall be separated from other areas of the building by 1-hour partitions, floors, and ceilings. Openings shall be protected C label door assemblies. Combustion and ventilation air for boiler, incinerator or heater rooms shall be taken directly from and discharged directly to the outside air.

 (b)  American Gas Association approved gas fired forced air furnaces and space heaters; U. L. approved electrical resistive coil heating furnaces and U. L. approved oil fired forced air furnaces and space heaters need not be enclosed.

§ 55.82. Large personal care homes.

 (a)  Large personal care homes are approved and licensed by the Department of Public Welfare of the Commonwealth.

 (b)  Automatic fire alarm systems shall be required.

   (1)  Smoke detectors shall be required in all corridors and rooms of the buildings except that heat detectors may be used in kitchens, bathrooms, boiler rooms, furnace rooms and other special rooms as approved by the Department. Other detection devices may be approved by the Department for special conditions.

   (2)  All other provisions for automatic fire alarm systems in §  50.52 (relating to automatic system) shall apply.

 (c)  Fire drills and evacuation plans shall be required.

   (1)  Fire drills shall be conducted monthly. A written log shall be kept listing the time and date of all fire drills.

   (2)  Employes shall be trained in the use of fire extinguishers and evacuation methods.

   (3)  Facilities shall have an evacuation plan, and residents and employes shall be made aware of this plan by the owner.



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