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Looking Ahead: Smoke Detector and Alarm Locations

Posted on August 14, 2018

Local Law 113 of 2018 went into effect on June 9th of this year.

The law modifies the location requirements of smoke alarms/detectors in R Occupancy buildings in relation to cooking appliances.  These requirements don’t go into effect until 2021, but will apply to replacements of such alarms/detectors and may be beneficial to the owners of such properties to plan to move such devices now.

Generally, the requirement is that within a dwelling or sleeping unit, the smoke detector/alarm shall not be installed within a 20 foot radius along a horizontal flow path from a fixed cooking appliance. The distance can be reduced to a 10 foot radius if the alarm/detector is equipped with a means of alarm-silencing or uses photoelectric detection.  The distance can be further reduced for photoelectric alarms/detectors to a 6 foot radius where the kitchen or cooking area and adjacent spaces are not clearly separated partitions or headers and where placing the alarm/detector 10 feet away would be prohibited by other parts of the code.
Below are the sections modified by LL 113 of 2018:
  • Administrative Code:
§ 28-312.8 Location of smoke alarms and smoke detectors.
On or after January 1, 2021, smoke alarms and smoke detectors installed or replaced in group R occupancies shall be installed in accordance with section 907.2.11.5 of the New York City building code.
  • 2014 Building Code:
On and after January 1, 2021, smoke alarms and smoke detectors shall not be installed or replaced in an individual dwelling or sleeping unit, including dwellings or units in prior  code  buildings, within an area of exclusion determined by a 20 foot (6.0 m) radial distance along a horizontal flow path  from  a  stationary or fixed cooking appliance, unless listed in accordance with the 8th edition of UL 217 for smoke alarms or the 7th edition of UL 268 for smoke detectors.
  • Appendix Q of the 2014 Building Code:
Q107.1 General.
Fire alarms, where required by this code, shall be installed in accordance with NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm and Signaling Code, 2010 edition, modified for New York City as set forth below. Refer to the rules of the department for any subsequent additions, modifications or deletions that may have been made to this standard in accordance with Section 28-103.19 of the Administrative Code.
  • Appendix Q Modification of NFPA 72-2010
29.8.3.4(4)
Delete and replace with the following: Smoke alarms and smoke detectors shall not be installed within an area of exclusion  determined  by a 10 ft (3.0 m) radial distance  along a horizontal flow path from a stationary  or fixed cooking appliance, unless listed for installation in close proximity to cooking appliances. Smoke alarms and smoke detectors installed between 10 ft (3.0 m) and 20 ft (6.1 m) along a horizontal flow path from a stationary  or fixed cooking appliance  shall be equipped with an alarm-silencing means or use photoelectric detection. On and after January 1, 2021, the requirements of this section shall apply only to occupancy groups other than group R.
    Exception:
Smoke alarms or smoke detectors that use photoelectric detection shall be permitted for  installation at a radial distance greater than 6 ft (1.8 m) from any stationary or fixed cooking appliance when the following conditions are met:
(a) The kitchen or cooking area and adjacent spaces have no clear interior partitions or headers; and
(b) The 10ft (3.0 m) area of exclusion would prohibit the placement of a smoke alarm or smoke detector required by other sections of this code.
For more information the text of LL 113 of 2018 can be found here.
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