Newsletter September 16, 2004


  • ASTM E 2307 Group Meets
  • UL's "W" Rating Feedback from FCIA
  • FCIA Firestop Industry Conference
  • Canadian FCIA Members at CSC Toronto Chapter Meeting
  • Call for FCIA Board Nominees

ASTM E 2307 Task Group Meets - FCIA Member Jim Shriver, Thermafiber, LLC, ASTM E2307-04, task group chair of the Standard Test Method for Determining Fire Resistance of Perimeter Fire Barrier Systems Using Intermediate-Scale, Multi-story Test Apparatus, met with industry representatives at UL's Headquarters in Northbrook, IL Thursday & Friday, August 26 and 27, 2004. Discussion was mainly about adding a "leapfrog" portion to the ASTM Standard for Perimeter Fire Barrier Systems, and how that might take place. Currently, the standard only addresses the "slot" area for interior fire spread at the building perimeter.

FCIA supports that ASTM E 2307 should offer an option to protect both the slot and leapfrog fire protection issues, making it consistent with UL's test standard that already tests for exterior fire spread from floor to floor. Additionally, FCIA suggests that the ASTM task group consider adding an "L" Rating to the perimeter test, to protect against smoke spread from floor to floor at the perimeter of the building.

UL Standards Technical Panel (STP) Seeks comments on "W" Ratings - FCIA's Technical Committee teleconferenced September 2nd to discuss UL's new "W" Rating. UL's Steve Hoffman & Rich Walke joined FCIA Members Mike Dominguez, Firestop Specialties, Inc., Houston Jones, Atlantic Insulation, Richard Keeney, Firestop International, LLC, Roger McKenzie, McKenzie Insulation, Tom Thoreson, Superl, Inc., plus IFC Members John Valiulis (HILTI) and Hugh Dudley and filled us in about the "W" Rating addition to UL 1479 for water resistance.

After the teleconference, the FCIA's Technical Committee comments were sent through UL's Standards Technical Panel Process (STP). In general, FCIA agrees that the "W" Rating is a good way to assign a suitability for use of products in applications where water exposure will occur. Also, the "W" Rating gives Professional Specialty Firestop Contractors a new tool to set themselves apart from less professional firms.

Additionally, FCIA believes that some adjustments should to be made to the UL 1479 "W" Rating testing to reflect actual conditions experienced by contractors everyday in the field. These conditions include washout of uncured material, pipe / joint movement and aging the products before water testing. Additional discussion took place about water resistance warranties that firestopping manufacturers could offer based on the new rating. UL published the "W" Rating August, 23, 2004 and it is now available for manufacturers to test to the new rating. Check with FCIA Manufacturer members for verification that they've tested to the "W" Standard. (www.fcia.org , then "Member Lists, Manufacturers")

To view the press release from UL and the brief description of the new rating online.

"FCIA Members" Part of FCIA Specification - FCIA's suggested specification includes "FCIA Member in good standing" as a requirement to meet in Contractor Requirements for firestopping work. FCIA Accreditation Chair Aedan Gleeson, Gleeson Powers, Inc. reports that specifications have appeared with an FCIA Contractor Member in Good Standing requirement. The "Specialty Firestop Contractor Concept" has value as savings in firestopping contract administration result due to only one submittal, one point of contact and one inspection contact an projects. This means a huge cost and savings over the "he or she who pokes the hole fills it" method of contracting firestopping that occurs on projects worldwide.

FM 4991 Approved Contractors - Last year at this time, there were about 2 - 10 Projects out for bid (according to an FW Dodge search) that had FM 4991 Approved Firestop Contractors as part of the specification. Today there are 67 according to Jim Park, RectorSeal, Inc., who monitors FW Dodge activity on FM 4991. "FM 4991 Contractors, coupled with ASTM E 2174 Inspection is a Quality Protocol, much like ISO 9000 used in the manufacturing industry", states Aedan Gleeson, Accreditation Chair. Reviewing your policies and procedures for firestopping quality and efficiency is a good idea. Consider becoming FM 4991 Approved because a documented quality program is good for your business as well as fire and life safety.

FCIA Firestop Industry Conference - Bring your spouse and don't miss this event that celebrates FCIA's 5 Year Anniversary! Seminars are planned on Perimeter Fire Containment Systems, FM 4991 Approval Procedures, Fire Walls / Floors and Effective Compartmentation Components, FCIA's AIA CEU Presentations and how you can qualify to present AIA CEU Programs, and how firestopping fits into the big picture. And, the FCIA Program Committee has scheduled some free time for touring, a golf & fishing tournament, and fun to round out the experience. Call CTMG for Travel Info and ask for Dianne, (800) 323-3800 x523).

FCIA Members fill need for Maintenance - Effective Compartmentation, like other building products, perform when properly Installed (FCIA Member, FM 4991 Contractor), Inspected (Fire/Code Official or inspector following ASTM E 2174) and Maintained. FCIA supported the National Association of State Fire Marshals, International Fire Code Change Proposal to require maintenance of Effective Compartmentation elements during Code Hearings in Kansas City this May.

Firestopping, Fire Dampers, Fire Walls/Floors, Fire Doors all need inspection and maintenance during the building's life cycle to be effective when needed. Additionally, education of building occupants about the need to keep fire doors from obstructions, etc., are also part of maintaining effective compartmentation. FCIA Member Contractors have been providing effective compartmentation maintenance services to customers for years and are well qualified to fill this maintenance need that may have been overlooked in the past.

FCIA Call for Directors - Each year, three directors rotate off the FCIA Board. FCIA Thanks Tom Hottenroth, Firestop Solutions, Inc., Richard Keeney, Firestop International, Inc., and Roger McKenzie, McKenzie Insulation, Inc., for their FCIA service on the 2004 Board of Directors. FCIA Voting Contractor Members who want to give back to the industry through volunteering for the FCIA Board of Directors can email the Nomination Committee. Bob Patton (Chair), rpatton@firesafe-systems.com, Bob LeClair, at rleclair@afunderhill.com , or Scott Rankin at srankin@pyro-stop.com are the 2004 Nominating Committee for 2005's FCIA Board. FCIA Board of Directors volunteers serve terms of two years. Board members attend 3 board meetings yearly; 2 at FCIA Conferences, and one at another time and place at their own expense. Responsiveness to Email and phone calls are important requirements for the position .... plus member recruiting and a willingness to give back to the industry. To view the current board, their bios and qualifications, visit www.fcia.org/board.php Voting by Contractor Members will take place in October through the FCIA Conference in November. Watch for your ballot in early October.

FCIA to display at Texas Society of Architects - FCIA will promote the Specialty Firestop Contractor Concept with the FCIA Display Booth at the Texas Society of Architects Conference, Oct. 22 (11:30 - 3:15 pm), and Oct. 23 (9:00am - 1:30 pm). Texas area FCIA Member Contractors, please reply to this email to schedule time to work the FCIA Booth at the George R. Brown Convention Ctr., Houston, TX. Thanks to FCIA Board Member Don Sabrsula, FireSafe of Houston, Inc., for finding this regional opportunity.

If any FCIA Contractor Member wants to use the FCIA Booth at your local event, reply to this email to get on the schedule.

FCIA Members at CSC Toronto Chapter Meeting - FCIA Members Barclay Meyers, Nexlevel Construction Solutions, Allen and Max Rams plus Bruce Mallory of Beverly Firestop, LLC, and Keith Brebner, Global Firestop Services, Inc., Don Falconer and Alan Saunders from AD Fire Protection Products, plus Mike McClure, ThermoFire Systems, Inc., all attended a CSC (Construction Specifications Canada), Toronto Chapter Meeting on Firestopping. CSC is the Specifications Writers Association with Chapters across Canada. According to Barclay, the presentation from Tony Crimi, AC Consulting Services (IFC's Code Consultant) and Steve Dodd, Tremco, Inc., focused on testing and listing directory definitions and classifications, plus what's going on in the Firestopping Industry. FM 4991, Standard for the Approval of Firestop Contractors and ASTM E 2174, Standard for the Inspection of Installed Through Penetration Firestops, both were mentioned as a way to deliver high level Firestopping Quality to projects. Additionally, Tony mentioned all the new industry resources in Firestopping...and that it's happening eveywhere. FCIA was mentioned during the presentation, as well as the International Firestop Council, ASME, ULc, UL, (and the new "W" Rating) Omega Point Laboratoires (lab recently certified in Canada...cOPL), and other industry resources. Thanks to the FCIA Members for such a strong FCIA showing at CSC from our industry.

FCIA Salutes Lifetime Member - FCIA Board Member, Richard Keeney, Firestop International, Inc. (left picture, left person) saluted Lifetime Member, VJ Bella, Louisiana State Fire Marshal, at the Louisiana State Fire Marshal's Centennial Celebration (right picture). They were celebrating the dedication of Louisiana's new State Fire Marshal's Building Grand Opening and their State Fire Marshal's Office 100th anniversary August 27, 2004. Thanks, Richard, for congratulating VJ and representing FCIA at this important event.

Bill McHugh, FCIA Executive Director - 630.690.0682

'You can't grow long-term if you can't eat short-term. Anybody can manage short. Anybody can manage long. Balancing those two things is what management is." - Jack Welch, Retired CEO, General Electric.

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