On Tuesday, March 19th, there will be two opportunities to earn AIA continuing education credits and learn about an important code-related topic.
If you have seen more projects incorporating storm shelters lately, this is likely due to changes in the International Building Code (IBC).
Last year I wrote a couple of blog posts about tornado doors - one called Tornado Safety in Schools, which included articles and other information about tornadoes that had recently occurred in Oklahoma and Texas. The other post was Shelter from the Storm, which described changes to the 2015 International Building Code...
When tragedy strikes, a common reaction is to examine what went wrong...what could have been done to affect a better outcome? In many cases throughout history, codes were changed because of tragic events. For the door and hardware industry, fires at the Iroquios Theater, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, Cocoanut Grove Nightclub, Our Lady of Angels School, and the Station Nightclub come to mind as catalysts for code change.
Thankfully, we don't experience many tornadoes here in the Northeast - I actually only remember one tornado scare in my lifetime - on June 1st, 2011. The weatherman was telling the residents of the towns in the tornado's path when to go into the basement and when the danger had passed. I was grateful that we had a basement to go to, that my family was all here together, and that ultimately the tornado didn't make it as far as our town. But what if we didn't have a relatively safe place to go - especially in an area where tornadoes are more common? When I think about our elementary school, I have no idea where the safest location would be...I wonder if the school staff knows?