Risk Category

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The online application submittal form for commercial buildings will require information be provided on the building’s risk category.

Risk Category is defined as “A categorization of buildings and other structures for determination of flood, wind, snow, ice and earthquake loads based on the risk associated with unacceptable performance.” Each building and structure is assigned a risk category per IBC 1604.5.

Risk Category I

Buildings and other structures that represent a low hazard to human life in the event of failure, including but not limited to:

  • Agricultural facilities.
  • Certain temporary facilities.
  • Minor storage facilities.

 

Risk Category II

Buildings and other structures except those listed in Risk Categories I, III and IV.

Risk Category III

Buildings and other structures that represent a substantial hazard to human life in the event of failure, including but not limited to:

  • Buildings and other structures whose primary occupancy is public assembly with an occupant load greater than 300.
  • Buildings and other structures containing Group E occupancies with an occupant load greater than 250.
  • Buildings and other structures containing educational occupancies for students above the 12th grade with an occupant load greater than 500.
  • Group I-2 occupancies with an occupant load of 50 or more resident care recipients but not having surgery or emergency treatment facilities.
  • Group I-3 occupancies.
  • Any other occupancy with an occupant load greater than 5,000.
  • Power-generating stations, water treatment facilities for potable water, wastewater treatment facilities and other public utility facilities not included in Risk Category IV.
  • Buildings and other structures not included in Risk Category IV containing quantities of toxic or explosive materials that:
  • Exceed maximum allowable quantities per control area as given in Table 307.1(1) or 307.1(2) or per outdoor control area in accordance with the International Fire Code; and
  • Are sufficient to pose a threat to the public if released.

Risk Category IV

Buildings and other structures designated as essential facilities, including but not limited to:

  • Group I-2 occupancies having surgery or emergency treatment facilities.
  • Fire, rescue, ambulance and police stations and emergency vehicle garages.
  • Designated earthquake, hurricane or other emergency shelters.
  • Designated emergency preparedness, communications and operations centers and other facilities required for emergency response.
  • Power-generating stations and other public utility facilities required as emergency backup facilities for Risk Category
  • IV structures.
  • Buildings and other structures containing quantities of highly toxic materials that:
    • Exceed maximum allowable quantities per control area as given in Table 307.1(2) or per outdoor control area in accordance with the International Fire Code; and
    • Are sufficient to pose a threat to the public if released.
  • Aviation control towers, air traffic control centers and emergency aircraft hangars.
  • Buildings and other structures having critical national defense functions.
  • Water storage facilities and pump structures required to maintain water pressure for fire suppression.

Resources

  • 2015 International Building Code (IBC)