Hey Karl,

 

I am a building inspector and noticed a second story bedroom window where the sill is only 10 inches from the floor.  I thought there was a requirement to provide a guard on this window to prevent children from falling out.

Question: Is a guard required for windows where the sill is close to the interior floor?

 

Answer: No.  The 2012 IRC requires Fall Protection in Section 312 but the Georgia State Amendments have deleted this section.  The builder can always choose to provide a safe environment for their client if they are aware of the issues.

 

R312.2 Window Fall Protection

Window fall protection shall be provided in accordance with Sections R312.2.1 and R312.2.2.

R312.2.1 Window Sills

In dwelling units, where the opening of an operable window is located more than 72 inches (1829 mm) above the finished grade or surface below, the lowest part of the clear opening of the window shall be a minimum of 24 inches (610 mm) above the fininshed floor of the room in which the window is located. Operable sections of windows shall not permit openings that allow passage of a 4-inch-diameter (102 mm) sphere where such openings are located within 24 inches (610 mm) of the finished floor.

Exceptions:

  1. Windows whose openings will not allow a 4-inch-diameter (102 mm) sphere to pass through the opening when the opening is in its largest opened position.
  2. Openings that are provided with window fall prevention devices that comply with ASTM F 2090.
  3. Windows that are provided with window opening control devices that comply with Section R312.2.2.

 

GEORGIA INTERNATIONAL RESIDENTIAL CODE AMENDMENTS 2014

SECTION R312

GUARDS AND WINDOW FALL PROTECTION

*Revise the heading of Section R312 ‘Guards and Window Fall Protection’ to read as follows:

 

SECTION R312

GUARDS

(Effective January 1, 2014)

*Delete Section R312.2 ‘Window fall protection’ without substitution.

(Effective January 1, 2014)