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Building Trusses

New law requires sign for building truss issues

By Jason C. Mattox

Building owners of new construction or existing structures could soon need a new sign in their properties.

According to Batesville Fire Inspector Brett Childs, a state law passed in January requires buildings with lightweight truss construction to have a sign designating it as such. Such structures have the potential to incur quick and severe damage in case of a fire.

“The lightweight trusses are usually held together with aluminum plates,” Childs said. “The screws on those plates don’t go deep into the lumber or aluminum trusses, and if they melt, the trusses will give out under fire in approximately three to five minutes.”

The building in such a case might quickly collapse.

Lightweight truss construction is defined as using lightweight timber or other materials like aluminum to form the truss of a home or building.

According to the scope of Senate Bill 2487, “(The Bill) applies to any building with the exception of detached one or two-family residential structures that has a floor or roof constructed with truss construction. Senate Bill 2487 applies to both existing and new construction.”

Buildings with lightweight truss construction are required to have an emblem designating them as such.

•The emblem must be permanently affixed to the left of the main entrance door at a height of between four and six feet above the ground.

•The emblem must be of a bright and reflective color or made of a reflective material.

•The emblem must be in the shape of an isosceles triangle measuring six inches horizontally and three inches vertically.

Childs said if the city did not comply to the new state law, they would be ineligible for grant or fire rebate funds.

“Just in fire rebate funds that would mean losing approximately $60,000 per year,” he said.

The first new construction in the City of Batesville since the law became effective is the Zaxby’s restaurant. For more information contact Childs at Batesville Fire Department Station #2 at 563-4703.