The Fire and Building Code inspectors, or AHJ’S, have model code guidelines that have been sanctioned by the International Code Committee. However, each state or municipality can introduce their own version to fulfill a requirement or satisfy a regional environmental restriction.
The Tent Rental and Special Events industry has an opportunity, nationally and locally, to submit solutions to the AHJ’S, but we need data to back up our proposals. Stating that our industry has been installing tents or producing events for 30 years with minimal complications is not data. So, what can we do to prove to the AHJ that this declaration is accurate? We need to generate procedures, documentation, and corresponding data that back up our claim that our deductions are correct.
Before starting to compile information, there is one constant and one variable to consider. The law of gravity is constant and the wind is the variable. When these two elements are combined, there is a prerequisite to ponder during the installation process because we are defying the law of gravity – what goes up must come down.
The Beauford Wind Scale (Click Arrow and select play on YouTube) has become the current measurement of wind speed to observe conditions at sea or on land. Combining the Beauford Wind Scale with the law of gravity becomes the basis for our data collection model. The objective is to find the answer as to what circumstances will cause the tent, membrane structure or decor to possibly fail. Once we have this information, we can present the data to the AHJ and, with confidence, express how and why our construction documents, egress, and evacuation plan is the optimal solution.
We have a big job ahead of us and it will not happen overnight, but if we work together producing documentation designed by professionals who use science, mathematical equations, and logic we will become one of the owners of the rule book.