Entries by BKeyes

Lockers in Corridors

Q: We have a behavioral health unit and our administration would like to install lockers for visitors. However, there is only one location for these lockers and that is in the egress corridor outside of the unit. I am telling them this not permitted. Am I correct? A: Without looking at the situation myself, I more »

Illuminated Pumpkin

Here’s a strange observation (on a Tuesday?) that I saw recently at a nurse station… An electric pumpkin powered by an extension cord. Even though the electric pumpkin was UL listed and presumably okay, NFPA 70-2011, Article 400.8 (1) says flexible electrical cords cannot be used as a substitute for fixed wiring. That means extension more »

Aluminum Astragals

Q: We used our recently updated Life Safety drawings to have our fire doors inspected. The inspector cited us for aluminum astragals on 13 doors. His report stated that they should be changed to steel. My boss asked me to confirm that this is fact. What are your thoughts? A: The inspector may know something… more »

Fire Drills in a High-Rise Hospital

Q: A question was brought up today about whether or not what we are doing for fire drills meets code. Currently, as a high-rise hospital (12 floors), we are conducting drills 1 per shift per quarter, so 3 drills per quarter. Each drill affects 3 floors, the floor of activation, the floor above, and the more »

Strange Observations – Part 48

Continuing in a series of strange things that I have seen while consulting at hospitals… I apologize for the photo being out of focus. I only had my new smart phone for a few days when I took this and I was having difficulty adjusting to the technology (okay… so I’m an old guy… deal more »

Fixed Seating vs. Seating Open to the Corridor

Q: I have a CEO that wants furnishings (seating) in the corridor. I informed her that would be acceptable if we maintained five feet and the furnishings are bolted to floor and follow the 2012 Life Safety Code. Well, this action would not make the furnishings aesthetically appealing, according to her. So, if the required more »

Christmas Decorations – Part 2

Q: I enjoyed your recent post regarding Christmas decorations. However, can you please simplify for me the rules on Christmas decorations in hospitals? The percentages are a little confusing, I think. Thank you very much. A: Not to be a smarty-pants, but here is a simple interpretation: DON’T ALLOW ANY DECORATIONS! I know that would more »

Staff Sleep Room

Q: Within our X-ray department we have a room (7 1/2 ft. by10 ft.) that was our dark room for film reading years ago. We would like to make this a sleep room for staff that get called in. It has a sprinkler head; if we install a sounder base detector can we make this more »

Mechanical Room Fire Extinguishers

Q: What are your thoughts on using CO2 extinguishers in an HVAC mechanical room, instead of an ABC type? A: It likely would be a situation where you would be non-compliant with NFPA 10-2010, and therefore you would not be compliant with the 2012 LSC. A CO2 extinguisher carries a BC rating, meaning it is more »

Strange Observations – Part 47

Continuing in a series of strange things that I have seen while consulting at hospitals… Clearance to all electrical equipment (i.e. panels and disconnect switches) must be maintained for 36 inches in front of the panels from the floor to a point 6-feet 6-inches above the panels, or to the top of the panels whichever more »