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Safety and Buildings Division, August 2002 Wisconsin Construction Codes Report articles You may select the number of a title that interests you, or you may scroll down:
1. A good shower is a safe shower (Safing for site-built showers);
2. Program has money for local home remodeling;
3. CBI exam based on new code;
4. Upgrading cross connection devices for existing fire protection systems;
5. Program Manager Mattsson takes ERS position;
6. Electrical Code Seminar;
7. Employment Opportunity, Elevator Safety Inspector;
8. Part of Plumbing Code revision discussion was spout height - Hands high or rinsing dishes?;
9. Saving water and saving energy go together!;
10. Get the "Enrolled Commercial Building Code" with the recent replacement pages, or get the replacement pages by themselves;
11. Plan submittals using Comm 70, Historic Buildings Code, should show how design works;
12. Certified Municipalities;
13. Credential Questions;
14. Safety and Buildings administered codes are on the Internet,;
15. Contact info for plan submittals;
16. Email technical questions to . . .
17. Wisconsin Contruction Codes Report
  1. A good shower is a safe shower
Safing for site-built showers depends on quality of work and correct materials
by Don Hough, Safety and Buildings Division Plumbing Consultant
If you asked the average Joe or Jill on the street what shower safing is, you might get a variety of responses.
Some may say; "It's the little round dots or lines on the shower floor that provide slip resistance." Or maybe, they might say, "It's a device that prevents extreme changes in water temperature, so when your taking a shower and someone flushes a toilet, you won't end up getting fried!" But if you asked a plumbing or tile contractor, they'd tell you, "Shower safing is a waterproof barrier that ensures a site built shower from leaking through the shower floor, directing that water and moisture to the shower drain." Safing a site-built shower is critical. We have moisture and temperature changes, and expansion and contraction of materials. Also, movement will occur in key areas where the shower walls and floor meet, at wall joints, and the shower base (a cement base will develop hair line cracks). Once a crack develops and water penetrates the corners or base, the safing material is our backup to preventing structural water and moisture damage and mold. Comm 84.20(4)9 a-e and Comm 84.30(6)(f) give the code parameters to work in when installing shower safing. Safing Material
Today we have new materials on the market such as plastic and vinyl sheet goods, and also brush-on membranes to select from.
Plasticized polyvinyl chloride (PVC) sheets, chlorinated polyethylene (CPE) sheets, and brush-on membranes all have distinct advantages and disadvantages in their use. Lead pig eared corners are competing with glue and resin joints, and sometimes with no joints with the brush-on safing materials. Be careful to follow the manufacturer's installation instructions for some of the resins and glue applications. It is essential for proper bonding and sealing to occur. Type of Construction Material
Selecting a safing material could be dependent upon the type of construction materials used. Some safing material will not accept a bond with tile adhesive. This presents a problem when working on a block wall shower and the safing pan must be extended up the walls and corners. Some brush-on membranes work well with tile adhesives, but the application process can often lead to thickness variations of the membrane.
Are the concrete block walls interlocked, or butt jointed? If cement board is used, the safing material can be installed behind the board and perhaps you may want to select a sheet good instead of a brush-on membrane. Along with the increase of materials available, we are also seeing changes in the tools an installer uses. It would not be unusual to find in the tool box a shave hook, hacking knife, flat and round dressers, and a wood mallet for lead safing installations, a can of glue or manufacturer's adhesive resin, set of snips and shears for sheet vinyl work, and a paint brush for membrane applications. No matter the tool or the material selected, a "safe" shower is dependent upon the installer and their workmanship. Shower Drains
There are a variety of drains available for installing showers, but when it comes to a site-built shower, a drain with the capability to drain down the safing pan is needed. Stationary scupper and floor drains do not meet the code requirements.
If you have any questions on safing, please contact one of the plumbing consultants. Have a nice safe shower! For a expanded version of this article, including diagrams, visit the S&B WebSite Library, Choose this image to go back to the top.   2. Program has money for local home remodeling Nineteen local organizations through Wisconsin will share $4.1 million in grants to help low-income families make needed upgrades to their homes. About $1 million of the total will be set aside for aid to homeowners who need accessibility modifications to their home. This federal money is being distributed through the Homeowner Rehabilitation and Accessibility Program to 19 state weatherization agencies and two independent living centers. The organizations then make the money available to income-qualified owners of affordable housing in the form of loans or grants for eligible activities, such as removing lead paint or bringing the home up to local or state building codes. The agencies receiving awards are:
ADVOCAP, Fond du Lac, 920-922-7760, $296,793
Ashland County Housing Authority, Mellen 715-274-8311, $206,271
CAP Services, Stevens Point, 715-345-5200, $237,434
Central Wisconsin CAA, Lake Delton, 608-266-6739, $207,755
Community Action Rock/Walworth, Janesville, 608-755-2463, $131,688
Hartford Community Development Authority, 262-673-8217, $89,038
Indianhead CAA, Ladysmith, 715-532-5594, $327,957
NEWCAP, Oconto, 920-834-4621, $356,150
North Central CAP, Wisconsin Rapids, 715-424-2581, $356,150
Options for Independent Living , Green Bay, 920490-0500, $100,106
Outagamie County Housing Authority, Appleton, 920- 731-7566, $178,076
Partners for Community Development, Sheboygan, 920-459-2780, $207,755
Project Home, Madison, 608-246-3733, $76,573
Racine/Kenosha CAA, Racine, 262-552-7249, $89,038
Society's Assets, Racine, 262-637-9128, $93,432
Southwest Wisconsin CAP, Dodgeville, $178,076
City of Superior, 715-394-0278, $89,038
West Central Wisconsin CAA , Glenwood City, 715-265-4271, $474,869
Western Dairyland EOC, Independence, 715-985-2391, $178,076
Wisconsin Coulee Region CAP, Westby, 608-634-3104, $207,755
Women's Employment Project, Sturgeon Bay, 920-743-7273, $59,359
Each agency is responsible for selecting how the money may be used. Funds may be distributed in the form of non-interest-bearing loans, interest-bearing loans, deferred-payment loans, grants, or other forms of assistance. For information about the statewide program, the contact
Division of Housing and Intergovernmental Relations, 608- 266-9185,
fax 608-267-6917, TTY 608-267-9629.
Choose this image to go back to the top.   3. CBI exam based on new code
Effective July 2002, Safety and Buildings Division exam for commercial building inspector certification is based on the new Wisconsin Commercial Building Code. That code adopts provisions of some of the International Code Council (ICC) suite of codes.
Examinees will need to take to the exam the proper Wisconsin and ICC codebooks, as listed in their exam confirmation letters. There is a code version called the "Enrolled Code", which is a combination of the Wisconsin Code and relevant ICC provisions. Info on the "Enrolled Code" is on the S&B WebSite, There is also info on that WebSite page about purchasing paper copies of the Wisconsin code and the ICC codes, S&B decided to offer its own building inspector exam after reviewing the time and costs involved in taking the available series of national certification exams. At this time, there will continue to be a single state exam for plan review and inspection of both building and HVAC code requirements. State certification is required for code officials who review or inspect commercial or multi-family dwellings under construction in certified municipalities, in lieu of state enforcement. The new exam was developed with the assistance of the group listed below. S&B thanks them for valuable assistance. CBI Exam Team Members:
Dan Curran, Code Official, Superior
John Dahl, Inspector, S&B
Randy Dahmen, HVAC Consultant, S&B
John Hetzer, Code Official, Milwaukee
Tom Kasper, Plan Review Chief, S&B
Henry Kosarzycki, Agent Monitor, S&B
Larry Stilen, Plan Reviewer, S&B
  4. Upgrading cross connection devices for existing fire protection systems
When is an existing fire protection system required to be upgraded to the most current cross connection control assemblies or devices?
Comm 82.41(3)(e) provides two situations when an existing fire protection system must be brought into compliance with the `current code for cross connection control:
1. When the water supply to the existing sprinkler system, including service or distribution piping, is increased in diameter; and
2. When the device or assembly is being removed or replaced.
There is another situation to consider. What happens when the owner, maintenance staff, or a fire protection specialist alters the degree of hazard by adding a substance downstream of existing backflow protection? When there is such an additive, Comm 82.41(3) is relevant, and code compliant cross connection control must be installed. This must be a device which meets Table 82.41-2 and is listed by ASSE, CSA, IAPMO, ITS, NSF, or UL. The addition of any device or assembly could alter the fire protection system's effectiveness. If you have questions or comments on this topic, contact Safety and Buildings Division Plumbing Program Manager Lynita Docken, 608-785-9349, Choose this image to go back to the top.   5. Program Manager Mattsson takes ERS position
Bernie Mattsson has accepted a position with the Department of Safety and Professional Services Environmental and Regulatory Services Division's Bureau of Petroleum Products and Tanks. She previously was program manager for a number of facets of the Safety and Buildings Division.
(Program Managers do planning, policy evaluation, procedure development, and code development for several programs on a division-wide basis.) Three current S&B program managers will take over Mattsson's responsibilities. Jim Quast will work with the Energy Efficiency Program and the HVAC Systems Program. Quast is also manager for the Multifamily Dwellings and Credentialing Programs. (608-266-9292, Lynita Docken now will work with the Rental Unit Energy Efficiency Program. Docken is also manager for the Plumbing and Public Swimming Pools Programs. (608-785-9349, Joe Hertel will now work with the Gas Systems Program, the Boilers Program, and the Refrigeration Systems Program. Hertel is also the manager for the Electrical and Lighting Systems Program. (608-266-5649,   6. Electrical Code Seminar
November 6-7, 2002 - Madison, Wisconsin
The Safety and Buildings Division Elevator Safety Program presents a 2-day seminar
Ø ASME 2000 A17.1 Elevators
Ø ASME A18.1 Platform Lifts
Ø International Building Code
Ø and more…
For information contact:
David Holmes, 715-828-5901,
George Poblocki, 715-340-0109,
Fee: $125 per person - Pre-Registration Required Registration forms available on the S&B WebSite, Seminar approved for S&B Elevator Inspector continuing education Choose this image to go back to the top.   7. Employment Opportunity, Elevator Safety Inspector - 1, 2, 3, Dane County
Department of Safety and Professional Services; Division of Safety and Buildings; Bureau of Field Operations
Salary: Starting Pay for Inspector 1: $13.988 / hr. ( $29,206 / yr.)
Starting Pay for Inspector 2: $15.138 / hr. ($31,608 / yr.)
Starting Pay for Inspector 3: $16.383 / hr. ($34,207 / yr.)
Excellent benefits are included. Salary increase upon completion of 6-month probationary period. This classification is included in the Security and Public Safety Bargaining Unit.
Job Duties: Inspect new and existing elevators and related lift equipment within a geographical area to ensure safe operation and compliance with state and national safety codes. Write orders to require correction of code and safety violations, shut down unsafe equipment, and provide additional enforcement action as necessary. Prepare detailed inspection reports, make recommendations to owners, and participate in prosecution activities. Oversee safety testing of newly installed elevators and related equipment and evaluate results to determine compliance with safety codes. Inspector 3 level positions also review contract documents, drawings, specifications, engineering plans, and applications for installation to determine compliance with codes and approve or deny. Provide expert consultation to owners, engineers, and other professionals regarding technical applications, codes interpretations, etc. Well-Qualified Applicants: The individual hired must become certified as an elevator inspector according to the provisions of Comm 5, Wis. Admin. Codes, within the first six months of employment. To be considered at the Inspector 3 level, the applicant must currently possess such certification and must have extensive background and experience in the field. This position requires possession of or eligibility to obtain a valid Wisconsin driver's license. Substantial travel, including overnight, will be required. This position requires the ability to bend, stoop, and climb for the inspection of elevators. Knowledge and skills required: Knowledge of structural and mechanical construction of elevators and related lift equipment; elevator installation and maintenance; elevator safety testing procedures, such as testing car safety devices, overspeed governors, oil buffers, hydraulic bypass valves, capacity loading, smoke detectors, and fire control features; inspection methods; principles of hydraulics; electrical wiring methods; blueprint reading. Application Information: Apply with the Application for State Employment form (DER-MRS-38) and a letter of application which details your education, training, and work experience in each of the following areas: (1) installing, designing, or maintaining hydraulic, mechanical and electrical systems of elevators and other lift equipment; (2) familiarity / experience working with Chapt. 18 of the Wis. Admin. Codes as they relate to the inspection of elevators and related lift equipment. Be sure to include duration of such experiences. Also cite any certifications or other relevant credentials you possess. Please describe all equipment and devices worked with. Send application materials to: Dale Bartz ; Department of Safety and Professional Services; Bureau of Human Resources; 201 West Washington Avenue, 6th Floor; PO Box 7970; Madison, WI 53707-7970.; email: ; FAX (608) 266-0182 Deadline: Applications will be accepted until the needs of the department are met. Choose this image to go back to the top.   8. Part of Plumbing Code revision discussion was spout height - Hands high or rinsing dishes?
by S&B Plumbing Program Manager Lynita Docken, 608-785-9349,
In the current Plumbing Code revision proposal, prepared with the cooperation of the state's Plumbing Code Advisory Council, all of the health care and related facility section (clinic, nursing homes, hospitals, etc) was considered. Among the discussions, the requirements for spout heights were questioned. The result was that the majority of current spout requirements remain unchanged in the proposal draft. Recently, I received a call from a designer who asked the rational behind the requirement in Comm 82.50(12)(b): "Lavatories and sinks required in patient care areas shall have the water supply spout mounted so that its discharge point is a minimum distance of 5 inches above the rim of the fixture." I did some research and found some interesting facts and interpretations. Throughout apprenticeship, we were taught that the spout height requirement was at 5 inches so that someone could wash their hands without a risk of being contaminated in wastewater. If that's true, then the width of someone's hand should be able to be placed beneath a spout and there would still be an air gap between the bottom of the person's hand and the rim of the fixture. I grew up in the country. I know that for many years horses have been measured in "hands high" or "hh." The accepted equivalent measure for a "hand" is 4 inches. If the width of a palm is 4 inches and we expect a one-inch air gap, the distance from the rim of the fixture to the spout should be approximately 5 inches. It isn't necessarily what the original standard was, but it does make sense (horse sense?). Another area of spout height research was in the American Institute of Architects Guidelines for hospitals and health care facilities. In those guidelines there is not a distance stated for spout heights. However, the document does require that "Water spouts used in lavatories and sinks shall have clearances adequate to avoid contaminating utensils and the contents of carafes, etc." The exact distance is left up to interpretation. Most kitchen sink faucet manufacturers' design their faucets with a 5-inch spout height above the rim of the fixture. Is this design preferred to allow the homeowner the ability to clean dishes and rinse them without the risk of contamination? Many of our plumbing requirements have been developed because of discussions in code councils, where experts in the field reach a consensus on the issue being discussed or feel that a standard should be required. Perhaps that's how the spout heights in health care and related facilities were determined. The draft code change proposal was taken to public hearing in February of this year. Currently, the proposal and comments are being considered by Department of Safety and Professional Services managers. If you wish to see the draft, it is on the S&B WebSite, If you have inputs on code revisions, contact me, Lynita Docken, 608-785-9309,   9. Saving water and saving energy go together! Take a look at the amount of water, energy, and money that can be saved with simple actions around the home! Select this image to enlage the table. Select this image to enlarge it Choose this image to go back to the top.   10. Get the "Enrolled Commercial Building Code" with the recent replacement pages, or get the replacement pages by themselves
*The "Enrolled Commercial Building Code" is a two-volume set of Wisconsin's recently adopted new Comm 61 - 65, with relevant provisions of the International Code Council model codes. Since the Enrolled Codes' first printing and sale, there have been changes to Comm 61-65 to clean up language and renumber references to other codes. A number of those separate changes went into effect at the same time as the main new Comm 61-65 package, on July 1, 2002.
*A package of pages has been developed to be inserted into already-purchased copies of the Enrolled Code. Printed copies of this latest code package are now available for purchase, for $10, see the order form below. Or, the changes may be downloaded free of charge from the Safety and Buildings Division WebSite, http://www. You may download a free copy of the new replacement pages from the S&B WebSite, see immediately above. *You may purchase the Wisconsin Commercial Building Code, without the model code provisions, from state Document Sales, 800-362-7253. Then, you would also need to purchase the national version of the International Codes from some model code organizations. Total costs in that instance may be greater than the Enrolled Code. *Wisconsin S&B administrative codes are on the Internet, http://www.commerce. 2002.html. (Note the Wisconsin codes online refer to International Codes, but do not provide ICC provisions.) *If you wish to purchase a new copy of the Enrolled Code, including the newest change packages, the complete new Enrolled Code costs $200, including shipping and handling. See the order form below. I want to order _____ sets of replacement pages ($10 x number = check amount _______) I want to order _____ sets of the new Enrolled Code ($200 x number = amount ______) S&B cannot process credit or debit card purchases. Company or individual name: _________________________________________ Shipping street address: _____________________________________________ Special instructions?: _______________________________________________ City, state, zip: ____________________________________________________ Telephone number _________________________________________________ Fiscal code 8035 / Personal information you provide may be used for secondary purposes [Privacy Law, s. 1504(1)(m)] Send a copy of this form and a check to the "Safety and Buildings Division,"
Attn: Diane Magill, PO Box 2689, Madison WI 53701
  11. Plan submittals using Comm 70, Historic Buildings Code, should show how design works
The Historic Building Code, Comm 70, has new model code provisions as part of its "prevailing code," as of the July 1, 2002 revision of the Commercial Building Code.
These prevailing code provisions in the revised Commercial Building Code are the base for considering the 17 parameters in Comm 70 plan review. It is now especially important for designers to provide enough review information about how a historic building fits with the prevailing code provisions. It will help S&B plan reviewers if they can see how the parameters apply to specific projects. S&B staff have created plan submittal worksheets that can assist designers who wish to use them. Use of the worksheets is not mandatory, yet does expedite plan reviews, with both designer and reviewer seeing the same computations. If designers don't use the worksheets, they should make a point to expressly provide their evaluations for the reviewers. The worksheets are available on the S&B WebSite, Plan Submittal Kits, with the worksheets, may be purchased at S&B plan review offices for $10. COMM 70 reviews are scheduled with S&B historic building plan reviewers: Lynne LeCount, Green Bay office, 920-492- 7727; Dale Mitchell, Madison office, 608-266-0669; Jon Molzahn, La Crosse office, 608- 785-9344; Jack Wotruba, Green Bay office, 920-492-6500 Very limited preliminary design consultation is available for $60 per hour. A request for a preliminary design consultation should be made directly with the reviewer. (*The four relevant year 2000 International Code Council codes are the International Building Code, the International Energy Conservation Code, the International Mechanical Code, and the International Fuel Gas Code.) Choose this image to go back to the top.   12. Certified Municipalities
Some municipalities in Wisconsin have authority to do plan review, inspections, and otherwise carry out code-related functions as delegates of the Department of Safety and Professional Services.
  13. Credential Questions
If you have questions concerning the status of licenses, certifications, or registrations administered by the Safety and Buildings Division, information is on the S&B WebSite, You may also contact the Credentialing Unit, 608-261-8500,
14. Safety and Buildings administered codes are on the Internet, Not all codes are available electronically. Paper copies may be purchased from Document Sales, 800-362-7253, for credit card purchases, or 608-266-3358.   15. Contact info for plan submittals
To schedule an appointment (commercial/multifamily buildings):
- S&B WebSite (currently only for plan reviews using pre-July 1, 2002 codes, not for scheduling post-July 1 code reviews): /SB-DivScheduling.html
- FAX: 24 hr. toll-free number for appointment scheduling, 877-840-9172
- E-mail:
 For application forms:
- On the S&B WebSite (choose "Forms" on left of screen):
- Call any of the offices.
 Info about next available review appointment:
  16. Email technical code questions to:
- Commercial buildings, Comm 50-64, 66, 69,
- Fire protection systems,
- Plumbing, cross connection,
- Private onsite wastewater treatment,
- Public swimming pools,
- Building and plumbings products,
- Licenses, certifications, registrations,
Choose this image to go back to the top. 17. Wisconsin Construction Codes Report
The WCCR is a monthly publication of the Safety and Buildings Division, Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services, delivered to about 13,000 readers - people who hold S&B plumbing, POWTS, and fire sprinkler credentials, to local inspectors, and to fire departments. For a year's subscription, send $20 to S&B Material Orders, PO Box 2509, Madison, 53701. Be sure to provide return mail info and note what you are ordering. WCCR on the WebSite, http://www.
Email this page's manager, Todd Taylor, The Department of Safety and Professional Services Safety and Buildings Division is an equal opportunity service provider and employer. If you need assistance to access services or need material in an alternate format, please contact us, 608-266-3151, TTY 608-264-8777, or