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NRC unveils new 2010 National Building, Fire and Plumbing Codes


The National Research Council Canada (NRC) has launched the 2010 editions of the National Model Construction Codes. Published by NRC and prepared under the direction of the Canadian Commission on Building and Fire Codes (CCBFC), they comprise the National Building Code of Canada, the National Fire Code of Canada and the National Plumbing Code of Canada. The 2010 editions incorporate nearly 800 technical changes that address technological advances as well as health and safety concern.

“Canadians have a right to be safe and secure in their homes and workplaces. The 2010 National Model Construction Codes position Canada as a world leader in building safety and performance,” said NRC president John McDougall. “Strong national construction codes are an important tool for industry and provincial/territorial authorities.”

The National Model Construction Codes were updated using an extensive, consensus-based national code development process involving stakeholders from all segments of the Canadian construction community.  Canada has one of the most extensive code review procedures in the world, with the public also being given the opportunity to comment.

The 2010 Codes use an objective-based approach outlining the intent behind each Code requirement. This approach makes it easier for local authorities to permit the use of new and innovative construction techniques and products.

“Our ongoing partnership with the provinces and territories through the Provincial Territorial Policy Advisory Committee on Codes has been of great benefit to Canada,” stated Chris Fillingham, Chair of the CCBFC. “Provincial and territorial participation at every stage of code development is crucial, as a coordinated code development process encourages harmonization of building and fire regulations across the country.”

The National Model Construction Codes provide minimum requirements for the design, construction and use of buildings and are intended as models for provincial and territorial government building and fire regulations. Some key changes include:

  • – Green ‘running man’ exit pictogram instead of traditional red EXIT/SORTIE sign
  • – Stricter radon limits; radon protection now needs to be considered in the design of a building
  • – Safer spatial separation requirements between buildings through additional fire protection requirements
  • – Protection against falls from residential windows through use of a guard
  • – Updates to earthquake design and seismic values



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