International Fire Code Agrees to Defer Ammonia Problems to IIAR


IFC is the last of the mechanical and fire model codes to do so.

The International Fire Code (IFC) tentatively approved a proposal for the 2024 edition of its model code – still subject to public comment – to defer all issues related to ammonia refrigeration, including safety, at IIAR (International Institute of Ammonia Refrigeration), according to Jeffrey Shapiro, model code consultant at IIAR and president of International Code Consultants.

Shapiro shared this news at the IIAR annual conference, held online last week.

The IFC was the last of the fire codes and mechanical models to make the decision to defer to the IIAR when it comes to ammonia.

“It’s a huge victory,” Shapiro said. “This allows us to achieve our goal of being master of our regulatory destiny. ”

Over the past five years, The IIAR has strived to make the IIAR the source of code regulations for the ammonia refrigeration industry among the model code bodies. Starting with the 2021 model codes, the International Mechanical Code (IMC), ASHRAE-15, the Uniform Mechanical Code (UMC) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), all agreed to rely on the ‘IIAR-2 and other IIAR standards. as the entire basis of ammonia regulation, ”Shapiro said.

IPC was the most difficult to convince, Shapiro noted. “It was beneficial to have a track record of others approving the change before asking the International Fire Code to approve it.”

Shapiro warned that the proposal, although approved provisionally, is still subject to public comment that could change the outcome. “We have to be diligent,” he said.

In addition, building codes still apply to the safety of ammonia refrigeration, he noted.

It is a huge victory. This allows us to achieve our goal of being master of our regulatory destiny.
– Jeffrey Shapiro, international code consultants


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