Residential Sprinkler Mandate Under Renewed Scrutiny in PA

March 2011Newsletters In the Zone

The Pennsylvania Builders Association reports that Pennsylvania State Representative Everett’s newly introduced House Bill 377 would help new home purchasers by eliminating the residential sprinkler mandate from the statewide building code.

Effective Jan. 1, 2011, all new one- and two-family dwellings are required to contain fire sprinklers under Pennsylvania law.

HB 377 intends to remove that sprinkler mandate from the Uniform Construction Code. It would not impact the similar requirement for town homes. The legislation would be retroactive and protect from the mandate those new home purchasers who already have contracts and building permits.

The bill requires that prior to entering into a purchase contract, the home builder offers the consumer the option to install an automatic sprinkler system as well as provide them with information about sprinkler systems. Additionally, it includes building code provisions that enhance safety for firefighters by creating new fire floor protection standards in the event the consumer does not choose sprinklers as an option.

For more information, please contact Kimberly A. Freimuth at 215.918.3627 or [email protected].