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Section 8.6.6 Communicating Space 2009 Life-Safety Code

Question asked by Alan Berkowsky on Oct 3, 2016

Can anyone provide some perceptive as to why this section limits communicating space to not more than three (3) contiguous stories?  I have a new high school with a 4-story atrium that meets all the requirements (i.e. sprinklers, smoke evacuation, fire alarm, required separation) but it cannot be used as an egress.  It is definitely, wide enough and able to handle the egress capacity, yet we are directing the students to more traditional distant stairwells to exit the building causing increased congestion in those areas. I am not sure what the difference is in a 3-story versus a 4-story other than to just draw a "line in sand" as to when it can and cannot be used.  Thoughts?

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