Alternative Solutions & Technical Code Reviews

SCO-Fire has qualified Safety Codes Officers to assist in finding technical and performance based solutions including technical reviews of fire & explosion incidents for compliance to the National Fire Code.

Acceptable and Alternative Solutions

The National Fire Code (NFC) contains provisions regarding fire safety and fire protection features that must be added to existing buildings when certain hazardous activities or processes are introduced in these buildings.

However, code provisions do not necessarily address all the characteristics of buildings and facilities that might be considered to have a bearing on the Code’s objectives.

The NFC is not a textbook on the operation, maintenance, protection, design or construction of buildings and facilities. Executing these activities in a technically sound manner depends upon many factors beyond simple compliance with fire regulations.

Compliance with the NFC shall be achieved by:

  • complying with the applicable Acceptable Solutions in Division B of the NFC that includes compliance with applicable provisions of a referenced standard, it is deemed to have satisfied the objectives and functional statements linked to those provisions and thus to have complied with that part of the Code, or
  • using Alternative Solutions that will achieve at least the minimum level of performance required by Division B in the areas defined by the objectives and functional statements attributed to the applicable acceptable solutions. A “variance”, or “alternative solution” is a means to authorize an installation, process, equipment, or action that is not strictly consistent with existing code rules, but that provides approximately equal or greater level of safety than what is required by the code.

Technical Code Reviews

SCO-Fire team works to assist owners, architects, developers, insurance adjusters, and authorities with understanding code objectives for proper application during the planning, development, or building permit stages including review of existing buildings.  The proper application of codes and standards including the intent behind them ensures a level of fire safety while remaining cost-effective.

Fire & Explosion Hazard Analysis

Proactive analysis of a business practice can provide valuable information for making necessary changes to prevent or reduce the likelihood of an incident.

SCO-Fire provides services for evaluating fire & explosion risks that includes reviews of incidents for compliance to applicable standards. Review of fire incidents can provide valuable information on causes with code solutions to prevent future incidents.

STANDATAs & NFPA Standards

SCO-Fire will assist our clients in the interpretation of STANDATAs and NFPA Standards.

Municipal Affairs and the Safety Codes Council develop National Fire and Building Code (Alberta Edition) STANDATAs. Some are issued under the authority of the code or the Safety Codes Act as province wide variances or interpretations. Others are information bulletins that provide general advice on related matters.

National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standards are referenced by the codes where Canadian standards development organizations have not developed standards on subject areas. These standards are developed using processes that may differ from those used by the Canadian standards development organizations; nevertheless, these standards have been reviewed by the relevant standing committees and found to be acceptable.