Corridor Walls and Doors
by Brad Keyes, CHSP, on Nov 18, 2020 12:00:19 AM
Q: We have an existing healthcare occupancy hospital that is fully sprinklered. My questions are: 1) Are the corridor walls required to be smoke tight? 2) Are the corridor doors required to have smoke gaskets and closers?
A: According to section 22.214.171.124.2.4 and 126.96.36.199.3 of the 2012 Life Safety Code, in a healthcare occupancy of a hospital that is fully protected with sprinklers, the corridor walls are only required to be non-rated, resist the passage of smoke, and extend from the floor to the ceiling, provided the ceiling also resists the passage of smoke.
NOTE: Where the Life Safety Code recognizes that a suspended grid and lay-in ceiling tile arrangement has the capability to resist the passage of smoke (see A.188.8.131.52.4), the International Building Code (IBC) does not agree. Therefore, for IBC purposes, the corridor wall must extend to the deck. To answer your second question: No, there is no requirement for corridor doors to have smoke gaskets in healthcare occupancies. There is no requirement for closers on corridor doors, unless the door serves some other purpose that would require a closer (i.e. smoke barrier, hazardous room, fire barrier, etc.).