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Fire Safety

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Design Guidance

Overall Strategies

Fire suppression systems must be appropriate for the type of fire (electrical, grease, etc.) expected in the interior space. Many chemicals in fire suppression systems are now being replaced by newer alternatives. Consult the Significant New Alternatives (SNAP) program for additional information.

Best Practices

  • Promote safety by installing emergency power down switches.
  • Fire suppression systems specified by GSA include water based sprinkler systems. This type of system works well for computer/LAN rooms that are backed up off-site.
  • Ceiling-mounted sprinkler systems should be incorporated into the ceiling layout, but the locations should be carefully coordinated with non-water suppression systems required over the cooking line.
  • Keep a Class K fire extinguisher close to the deep fryer and all appliances that may ignite grease.
  • Use fire suppression systems that use a SNAP-approved (non-ozone depleting) substance to extinguish fires.

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EB = Existing BuildingsNC = New Construction and Major Renovation

Federal Requirements

Guiding Principles

  • Material Content and Performance ( Guiding Principles [EB])
    Section: V. Reduce the Environmental Impact of Materials

    From the Guiding Principles for EB: Procure construction materials, products, and supplies that have a “lesser or reduced effect on human health and the environment over their life cycle when compared with competing products or services that serve the same purpose”, including:
    (i) “Use Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) section 6002 compliant products that meet or exceed EPA’s recycled content recommendations for building construction, modifications, operations, and maintenance.”
    (ii) “Per section 9002 of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act (FSRIA), for USDA-designated products, use products with the highest content level per USDA’s biobased content recommendations.”
    (iii) “Purchase products that meet Federally Recommended Specifications, Standards and Ecolabels or are on the Federal Green Procurement Compilation.”
    (iv) Eliminate, to the maximum extent practicable, “ozone depleting compounds and high global warming potential (GWP) chemicals where EPA’s SNAP has identified acceptable substitutes or where other environmentally preferable products are available” during construction, repair, or replacement at the end of life.
    Determining Compliance: “Procure products that meet the following requirements where applicable: (A) RCRA section 6002, and (B) FSRIA section 9002, and (C) Federally Recommended Specifications, Standards and Ecolabels or are on the Federal Green Procurement Compilation for other green products, as appropriate, and (D) Avoid ozone depleting compounds and high GWP chemicals.”