Do I Need to Comply with the IFC 510 Building Code Before Occupancy?

Almost all newly-erected commercial buildings in major cities and many rural areas across the country must adhere to the International Fire Code (IFC) 510 building code. This involves a test carried out by qualified technicians. Before the local government issues you a “Certificate of Occupancy,” a “Letter of Certification” must be submitted by these professional testers, proving that your building passed such a test.

To avoid embarrassing project delays, penalties, and possible future business losses, your contractors must be updated on the IFC compliance requirements.

What is IFC 510 Building Code?

IFC Chapter 5, Section 10 states, “All new buildings must have radio coverage for emergency responders within the building.” This requirement allows first response personnel to have reliable, more efficient communications within the buildings.

So, how can you check if your structure meets the IFC 510 requirements?

New requirements for multi-resident residential and commercial buildings must provide radio coverage for effective communication during emergency situations within the building. To inspect your building, certified technicians will use specialized equipment to measure Radio Frequency (RF) signals that are being transmitted from the local Digital Trunked Radio System.

If your building fails this mandatory radio signal test, your local authorities may require you to set up an Emergency Responder Radio System (ERRS). This independent, public-safety booster system ensures that signals reach all affected areas within your building. Moreover, it must have a secondary source of power that can run the ERRS for 24 hours.

Who Certifies and Tests the IFC 510 buildings?

Any skilled and certified professionals, like Diversified Electronics in Greenville, can perform the IFC 510 test using the latest industry-standard equipment. These individuals will work closely with your local fire officials to ensure that their testing services meet the government’s current requirements. They then provide a “Letter of Certification” to the local fire department, stating that your building has passed the IFC 510 testing to enable you to receive a “Certification of Occupancy.”

Diversified Electronics offers a wide range of services and solutions to many building owners in Greenville, including some parts of Georgia. They are also famous for school bus 2 way radios, and other public safety solutions.

Maintaining an ERRS

Building owners’ responsibility on the day they occupy their building after passing the test. The building code requires that emergency responder radio systems be inspected and tested each year. This includes any structural changes such as additions or modifications that could significantly alter the original field performance test.

In short, experts should still inspect your facility annually to ensure that your equipment operates correctly in accordance with IFC 510. 

Who Pays for the IFC 510 Building Code Test?

As the building owner, you are responsible for all aspects of the process, including the arrangements and costs associated with performing the tests. Thus, it’s important to find a company that will help you adhere to the IFC 510 Building Code. Most companies will assist you in planning to install an ERRS so that all the necessary equipment, including access panels, conduit, as well as rooftop access for an antenna system, will be included in your construction budget and planning. Additionally, they can even help you in pre-installing components during the construction of your building for an easier installation of ERRS.