The Florida Building Code: How We Got Here and What You Need to Know in 2018/2019

Building Codes in Florida: 1970s to Hurricane Andrew

In 1974, Florida adopted a state minimum building code law requiring all local governments to adopt and enforce a building code that would ensure minimum standards for the public’s health and safety. But when Hurricane Andrew hit South Florida in 1992, it revealed the deficiencies of the state’s existing building code compliance and enforcement processes.

Andrew broke all records for insurance losses, and was the direct cause of Florida’s worst insurance crisis in history. It became obvious that building codes and their administration and enforcement was a statewide issue with statewide implications. Poor compliance or enforcement in a single county could wreak havoc with homeowners, developers and commercial interests in every corner of the state.

Creation of a Statewide Florida Building Code

As of March 1, 2002, the Florida Building Code — developed and maintained by the Florida Building Commission —superseded all local building codes. The Florida Building Code is now updated every three years and is often amended annually to incorporate interpretations and clarifications. The Code governs the design, construction, erection, alteration, modification, repair, and demolition of public and private buildings, structures, and facilities in the state.

The 6th Edition of the Florida Building Code went into effect on December 31, 2017 and incorporates the latest version of the I-Codes (2015). The next edition of the I-Codes will be the 2018 I-Codes.

Are You Up to Date? Know the Significant Changes Made to Structural Provisions of the FL Building Code

RedVector’s new course, 2017 Florida Building Code Advanced 6th Edition: Summary of Structural Provisions, reviews significant changes to other structural loads of the Florida Building Code (FBC) and summarizes the wind design and opening protection provisions. The intended audience are those familiar with and desiring to refresh and update their knowledge base of changes to the code that affects structural design. All individuals involved with building will benefit from being current with the regulations that govern their profession such as:

– Designers

– Contractors

– Suppliers

– Inspectors

At the end of the course, you will be able to:

– Recall the changes to the structural provisions of the Florida Building Code

– Identify the changes related to design for seismic loads

– Outline the evolution of the changes to the code related to adopted standards addressing wind resistance

– Compare and contrast the various risk categories and their impact on design

– Select the correct design provisions in regard to wind resistance

– Describe how wind loads are determined

– Analyze wind speed maps and the wind’s impact on the actual safety of a structure

– Differentiate between ultimate wind speeds and nominal wind speeds

– Explain surface roughness and exposure category as they relate to design

– Determine the correct opening protection provisions of the code

– Explain the consequences of the loss of windows during a high wind event

Sources

https://codes.iccsafe.org/content/FBC2017/chapter-16-structural-design

http://www.floridahousing.org/docs/default-source/aboutflorida/august2017/august2017/tab4.pdf

https://floridabuilding.org/c/default.aspx

Sign up for our Newsletter
and get articles like this sent straight to your inbox