[First Reprint]







Sponsored by:


District 32 (Bergen and Hudson)

Assemblyman  TIM EUSTACE

District 38 (Bergen and Passaic)

Assemblyman  JOSEPH A. LAGANA

District 38 (Bergen and Passaic)

Assemblywoman  ANGELICA M. JIMENEZ

District 32 (Bergen and Hudson)


District 37 (Bergen)


District 19 (Middlesex)






     Amends State construction code to increase fire safety in large residential projects.



     As reported by the Assembly Regulated Professions Committee on November 30, 2017, with amendments.


An Act concerning fire safety for certain types of construction and supplementing P.L.1975, c.217 (C.52:27D-119 et seq.).


     Be It Enacted by the Senate and General Assembly of the State of New Jersey:


     1.    The adoption of the International Building Code, 2015, by the Commissioner of Community Affairs is modified as follows:

     a.     Notwithstanding the provisions of section 510 of the International Building Code, 2015, or any other provision of the code allowing for a horizontal building separation allowance, a building shall not be considered as separate and distinct buildings for the purpose of determining the maximum building height in feet or the number of stories of the building if the building, or a portion of the building, is Residential Group R-1 or R-2; and involves the use of Type III, Type IV, or Type V construction.  The number of stories to be used in determining the minimum type of construction for such buildings shall be measured from the grade plane.  Automatic sprinkler systems may be installed in such buildings in accordance with NFPA 13R, however, the sprinkler systems shall protect concealed combustible spaces consistent with NFPA 13.

     b.    Whenever an automatic sprinkler system is installed in accordance with NFPA 13R in a building comprised, in whole or in part, of lightweight wood frame construction:

     (1)   unprotected and unheated wood-framed attic areas shall be protected by a dry type sprinkler system; and

     (2)   if the building is a multiple dwelling, the sprinkler system or  systems shall be monitored for both supervisory and alarm conditions that result in notification of the fire department.

     c.     A building, all or a portion of which is of Type V construction, and equipped with an automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with NFPA 13R, which results in the omission of sprinklers from concealed combustible spaces where sprinklers are required under NFPA 13:

     (1)   shall not exceed two stories measured from the grade plane; and

     (2)   shall not exceed a per-story floor area of 10,000 square feet, except as provided in subsection d. of this section.

     1The provisions of this subsection shall not apply to a townhouse.  For purposes of this subsection, “townhouse” means a single-family dwelling unit constructed in a group of three or more attached units in which each unit extends from the foundation to roof and with open space on at least two sides.1

      d.   Square footage beyond that authorized under subsection c. of this section may be permitted by constructing a minimum two-hour masonry or concrete fire wall between each attached building.


     2.    The Commissioner of Community Affairs shall take whatever administrative actions as are necessary to correct code adoptions to conform them with section 1 of P.L.    , c.    (C.    ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).  Whenever the commissioner adopts a code or subcode pursuant to section 5 of P.L.1975, c.217 (C.52:27D-123), the commissioner shall modify the adoption to conform it with the provisions of section 1 of P.L.    , c.    (C.    ) (pending before the Legislature as this bill).


     3.    This act shall take effect immediately.