Newsletter December 15, 2007
- FCIA Thanks Volunteers, Board
- FCIA at NFPA, ASTM, ICC
- FM & UL Updates,
FCIA / UL Total Fire Protection Systems Symposium
FCIA Thanks Past Presidents - Only a pastpresident
of an association really knows how
much work it really is . from FCIA's
Membership, thanks for volunteering.
FCIA 2007 President, Mike Dominguez &
2008 President-Elect, Tom Hottenroth
FCIA Thanks 2007 Board - The FCIA 2007
Board had a great year continuing programs
started by past boards, and getting creative on
New FCIA Board - FCIA announced the new
2008 Board of Directors at the Firestop Industry
Conference & Trade Show. New Board
Members Randy Bosscawen, Multicon Fire
Containment, Columbus, OH, Gary Hamilton,
Hamilton-Benchmark, Inc., Milwaukee, WI and
Bob Hasting, Seattle, WA, were welcomed by
the remaining board.
FCIA Firestop Industry Conference & Trade Show - What a venue by the beach, with
great educational speakers, and lots of fun.
FCIA's 2007 Conference was outstanding..the
largest crowd ever, with many relationships
started and renewed, great education sessions
and learning opportunities. The Ray Usher
Memorial Golf Tournament had its largest
turnout, with Dennis Cohan, PREVENT, Inc.,
taking the prized 'Silver Caulk Gun' Trophy
home with honors.
FM 4991 Gaining Ground - Jeff Gould,
reported that FM has beefed up its FM 4991
program recently. With 16 direct employee
auditors, FM Contractors in the FM Approval
Guide, and on FCIA Website, FM is on a roll. In
2001, there were zero FM 4991 contractors, and
15 Designated Responsible Individuals (DRI's).
FM expects between 44 and 51 FM 4991
Approved Contractors, with around 60 DRI's by
UL's Qualified Firestop Contractor Program
Betsy Titus reported that to date, several news
releases have been published and auditors have
been educated by FCIA's Accreditation
Committee and UL. Contractor personnel who
have passed the UL Designated Responsible
Individual Exam in 2007 - 39. She predicts first
Qualified Firestop Contractor Firms to be in
place early 2008. UL also announced a
Canadian version of the program to receive the
"cUL" mark. Better yet, Betsy told the FCIA
crowd that as an investment in the industry, UL
has dropped the cost from $6000 for the initial
contractor firm and jobsite audit to $3000.
Yearly contractor firm and jobsite audits remain
UL & FM DRI Test Prep & QMS Education - The FCIA DRI Firestop Test Prep Program
helped test takers get ready for the exam.
FCIA's Quality Management System (QMS)
Education Tuesday helped 30+ firms learn UL's
requirements. Watch for another Quality Manual
Development seminar at FCIA Education and
Committee Action Conference in Seattle.
FCIA Member Starts SAC - FCIA's Bob
Hasting established the first State Apprenticeship
Committee (SAC) through the State of
Washington. The first Firestop/Containment
Worker Joint Apprenticeship Committee is now
operating. The existing workforce is being
tested to FM & UL Designated Responsible
Individual Exams. One-on-one hands on firestop
application and systems documentation exams
are conducted to establish base knowledge to
grandfather those with several years experience
as Firestop/Containment Workers. This process
provides real world evaluation of worker skills in
the firestop systems selection and installation
Business Legal Issues - FCIA's Firestop
Industry Conference attendees heard from
Stephen Phillips, Esq., a seasoned attorney who
also represents the National Roofing Contractors
Association. He shared expertise with FCIA
members of all types, took the group on a legal
ride for fire and life safety! Contractors were
warned about guaranteeing materials they do not
manufacture and recommended to only warrant
the labor they provide. Distributors and
manufacturers were told to check their liability
as well. Architects have been and continue to be
exposed to liability. Most important, Stephen
recommended that the business relationship from
contractor to supplier to manufacturer, building
official, architect, fire marshal be established
early, rather than in court later.
Safety & Scaffolding - Jeff Stachowiak,
Scaffolding Industry Association Member,
brought safety tips to FCIA Members.
Building Information Modeling (BIM) helps
Compartmentation - BIM brings design
capabilities to head off conflicts in placement of
structural, mechanical, electrical, plumbing,
HVAC and other services. By alerting the
design and building team to conflicts before they
occur, strategic placement of these items can be
discussed long before crews argue in the field.
~Graco has new capabilities - Graco's Mark
McGowan brought years of expertise and a new
"Pump Handbook" for contractors to FCIA's
Firestop Industry Conference & Trade Show.
"Spraying firestop systems and intumescent
fireproofing can be a challenge. We're
reorganizing to meet these challenges, and are
here to help", stated McGowan.
International Firestop Council at FCIA -
Sean DeCrane, IFC Executive Director, updated
FCIA on IFC's goals. "Strengthen codes, provide
better education, and better inspections". In
addition to IFC Executive Director duties, Sean
serves as the International Association of Fire
Fighters Local #93 Representative to the ICC
Code Development Process.
Fireblock v. Firestop Issues Solved - FCIA's
Randy Bosscawen worked with FCIA - IFC
Manufacturer Members to clarify a fireblocking
vs. firestopping issue for an Ohio Building
Officials Group. The application dealt with
UL's new position about plastic pipes enclosed
in chase walls in wood frame construction, or
'caulk and walk', and remained a firestop
FCIA at ASTM - FCIA Member Bill Weber,
Multicon Fire Containment, Inc., joined with Bill
McHugh, FCIA Executive Director, at ASTM E-
06 Meetings in Tampa, FL. A discussion about
firestop inspector qualifications took place with
John Nicholas, Intertek / Omega Point
Laboratories, leader of ASTM task teams and
committees. FCIA now chairs the ASTM E
2174 & ASTM E 2393 Standards Task Groups,
as well as the Inspector Qualification Standard.
With inspector qualifications, debate continues
about how 'qualified' an inspector should be.
>From the contractor perspective, the inspection
person should be able to select, analyze, and
dissect a firestop system for assurance that the
system was installed to the classified system or
ICC Committees Meeting - ICC has
organized the Code Technology Committee
(CTC) to study topics that keep coming up at the
Code Development Hearings. There are Study
Groups working under the CTC for Height and
Area (Chapter 5 of IBC), Vertical Openings
(Chapter 7, IBC), and 'Balanced Fire Protection'.
FCIA attended the ICC "Features Meeting" in
Dallas, Nov. 27 & 28 to prepare for Palm
Springs ICC Committee Hearings.
In Chicago December 5 & 6, the full Code
Technology Committee met and decided about
supporting/opposing code proposals. The
Vertical Openings Study Group was reactivated,
and height and area table proposals discussed.
Height and area determines how many
compartments are in buildings, vs. open space.
Height and area of a building was being tied to
water fire flow, with between 1500 and 2000
gallons per minute the acceptable flow before
compartments get smaller. There will be
significant discussion on this, as water is needed
to feed sprinkler and firefighter systems while
supply issues are plentiful in the US.
FCIA at NFPA Committee Meetings -
FCIA's Bill McHugh attended Fire Protection
Features Committee Meetings to deliver the
message that qualified and approved firestop
contractors, inspected by professionals, means
fire and life safety. As a member of the
committee, FCIA submitted several comments
for discussion, including FM 4991 & UL
Qualified Firestop Contractors, in addition to
adding the ASTM E 2174 & ASTM E 2393
Standards to NFPA 5000 & NFPA 101. FCIA
thanks Past President, Kathy Taraba of Rolling
Plains Construction / One Source Firestop, Inc.
for her 7 years of participation at NFPA. Bob
LeClair, FCIA past president will replace her on
FCIA Life Safety Digest - FCIA's Life Safety
Digest Committee Chair, Scott Rankin seeks
technical articles and project profiles for this
renowned publication. Submit an abstract for
consideration by the editorial committee for the
next issue by January 28, 2008 to srankin@pyrostop.
com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
FCIA / UL Total Fire Protection Systems
Symposium - Another FCIA Symposium is set
for January 31, February 1, 2008 in Los Angeles,
CA Area. The seminar is open to architects,
building officials, fire marshals, building owners,
to present a total view of fire protection.
FCIA Committees Make Things Happen -
There is a lot going on at any given time by
various committees. Here are just a few
- Accreditation - Led by Aedan Gleeson, this
committee worked with FM & UL to
develop the credible contractor qualification
programs now available.
- Technical - FCIA's Firestop Manual of
Practice (MOP) is continuously updated.
Watch for new perimeter fire containment,
inspection, and glossary info in 2008. Mike
Dominguez continues to work with Rob
Hlady, Pat Tesche, Lance Simms, Mike
Pautsch, Jim Shriver, and others on the
committee who have traveled to meet, write
and review all that goes into the MOP.
- Code - FCIA's Code Consultant, Bill
Koffel, and Bill McHugh continue to
promote the specialty firestop contractor
concept, inspection, and compartmentation
at ICC and NFPA Hearings. FCIA's Bob
LeClair heads this committee that is focused
on proper "Design, Installation, Inspection
and Maintenance" requirements to improve
installed reliability for Firestop systems and
- Membership - FCIA has grown from 140
members to over 170 in 2008, thanks to a
very active committee led by Bill Hoos.
- Program - FCIA's Education and
Committee Action Conference and Firestop
Industry Conference & Trade Show continue
to grow and serve the membership. Thanks
to Scott Rankin, Bob LeClair, Chris
Downey, Tom Hottenroth for a great 2007.
- Marketing - Chaired by Don Murphy and
Mike Wellons, FCIA was active in the
outside world in 2007 appearing at the CSI
National Convention, articles in various
publications and liaison relationships with
influential organizations. FCIA's Life Safety
Digest is led by Scott Rankin, the magazine
of effective compartmentation is gaining
credibility wherever it is read. And, the
FCIA Manual of Practice has been promoted
to architects, building officials and fire
marshals as a tool for understanding our
industry as well.
- Standards - Led by Randy Bosscawen,
FCIA has been active at both ASTM and
NFPA providing input to and developing
standards for firestopping that reflect field
- Apprenticeship - To create a true 'trade'
for firestopping, a career for workers with
true education and training is needed.
FCIA's Bob Hasting has been leading a
charge to put Firestopping on the radar
joined by Don Donnelly, Gary Hamilton and
- Education - FCIA continues to provide
education to audiences nationwide, with
members' active teaching about the Firestop
and compartmentation industry. FCIA's Bob
Hasting and Dan Flynn have worked
together on this important task.
All that takes place at FCIA is sometimes
looked at like "The Magic of FCIA". However,
the magic really is that people get together and
provide work for the good of the industry,
cutting new ground in many cases. With
everyone giving what they can give, FCIA has
developed, implemented and grown great ideas
for our industry that result in better fire and life
On behalf of the FCIA Board and Committees,
thanks for a great 2007, and get ready for 2008!
FCIA Member Discount for On-Center
Software - FCIA Specialty Firestop Contractor
Members can purchase estimating software for a
discount. Contact On-Center Software by
visiting the link at http://www.fcia.org , to
receive the discount. On-Center Software, Inc.,
Firestop Estimating Software for productivity.
FCIA Thanks Manufacturer Members:
- 3M Fire Protection Products
- HILTI, Thermafiber
- W.R. Grace & Co.
- Bronze Level
- BOSS Products, Inc.
- No-Fire, Inc.
- Roxul, Inc.
- Tremco, Inc.
As we reflect on 2007 during the
holidays, we are very thankful for the
relationships we've made, renewed, and
maintained all year long.
With the hard work of Volunteers and
Staff, FCIA had a great year. Here's to
2008, with all the challenges and
successes that the year brings.
However you celebrate the holiday
season, remember those who really need
our support of time, finances, either, or
both. Give, and encourage others to
Best wishes for the holidays, and a
FCIA Executive Director
© Copyright FCIA 12/15/07 - Permission is hereby granted to forward, print, circulate, quote with credit to FCIA. FCIA is a non profit organization of Firestop Contractors, Contractor Branch Offices, Manufacturers and Associate Members interested in furthering life safety through the Specialty Firestop Contractor Concept. For more information, contact the
Bill McHugh, Executive Director
4415 W. Harrison St.
Hillside, IL 60162
Phone: (708) 202-1108
Fax: (708) 449-0837
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