This query will need to ultimately go to MBIE but I thought it would be a good idea to canvas the opinions of the SFPE Forum.
C/AS1 make many references to “sprinklers”:
NZS 4515:2009 Fire sprinkler systems for life safety in sleeping occupancies (up to 2000 m²)
NZS 4517:2010 Fire Sprinkler Systems for Houses
NZS4541:2013 Automatic fire sprinkler systems.
My question is about the intent and the legal interpretation of C/AS1 5.1.1
5.1.1 Where the building is protected with a sprinkler system, external walls do not need a FRR.
Is a NZS 4517 sprinkler system a “sprinkler system” for the purpose of C/AS1 5.1.1?
Here is a code lawyers argument that suggests a NZS 4517 sprinkler system is a “sprinkler system” for the purposes of C/AS1 5.1.1.
There are 8 references to a sprinkler system in the C/AS1 text if you ignore the references section and comments:
- Table 2.1 - Type 6 and Type 7 Automatic fire sprinkler systems. Note that there is no use of the term “Type 6” or “Type 7” anywhere else in C/AS1.
- Table 3.2 refers to NZS 4515 and NZS 4517 sprinkler systems in the context of escape route travel distances.
- 5.1.1 refers to a sprinkler system of an undetermined standard in the context of fire rated external walls.
- 5.3.2 refers to a NZS 4515 sprinkler system in the context of fire rated lower roofs.
- Table 5.1 refers to NZS 4515 sprinkler systems in the context of external wall claddings.
- 6.1.1 refers to a NZS 4515 sprinkler system in the context of FENZ vehicle access.
- A1.1.1 requires sprinkler systems, except where specified, to comply with Appendix B.
- Appendix B places constraints on NZS 4541 and NZS 4515 sprinkler systems. Note that NZS 4541 sprinkler systems are not even mentioned in the text of C/AS1 so I’m not sure why it is included in Appendix B.
All references in the text specify the pertinent standard except for 5.1.1 which suggests that either NZS 4515 or NZS 4517 can be applied for the relief from fire rating external walls. Is this deliberate or unintended?
It could be a deliberate incentive for sprinkler protection of houses.
I reiterate that there are no references that requires type 6 or type 7 fire safety systems (so why are they in table 2.1?)
I would be grateful for some feedback before I fire this off to MBIE.