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Outdoor Pallet Storage - Fire Code
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Pallet Proposal Very Near to Completion

      
 

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NWPCA has been working with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) since 2015 on new safety code language for outdoor pallet storage. An NFPA committee met in Milwaukee, Wisconsin late 2016, where NWPCA’s proposed language was reviewed and approved. Assuming continued support, it is expected the language would officially get adopted into the code in 2017.

The previous NFPA requirement for outdoor pallet storage had a maximum storage limit of 400 square feet for all facilities storing pallets. The new code language distinguishes between pallet manufacturers and recyclers and other facilities, and prioritizes best operating practices. In doing so, storage limits will be expanded- the width (but not length) of a pallet array to 60’ or 100’, depending on spacing provided from the pallet array (8’ or 20’ respectively).

On a separate track, the International Code Council (ICC) considered outdoor pallet storage code proposals. Late last year an ICC committee approved our proposal that similarly focuses on best operating practices. After a period of open public comment, no contrary public comments were submitted against our proposal. The ICC membership in the end accepted our language, and NWPCA provided a summary of their action, along with that of the NFPA, at the NWPCA 2017 Annual Leadership Conference in Tucson, Arizona.

A number of companies and organizations continue their hard and intensive work through this long and involved process and deserve our appreciation. NWPCA’s Fire Code Task Force, chaired by Jordan Piland, Atlas Pallets, along with our consultant Bill Koffel, and CHEP, and their consultant Bob Davidson, have all done an outstanding job helping the industry effectively communicate and advocate for code language that advances best practices, improves fire safety, and better protects first responders.

NWPCA’s work with consultants on fire codes and safety concerns achieved great success in 2016, and will expand in 2017. A series of OSHA webinars, along with fire code educational resources, are on the docket for 2017. NWPCA has plans to work with both code organizations in 2017 and beyond, and is developing code compliance resource materials for 2017 as part of our continued vigilance on fire safety.

 

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