[Noisebridge-discuss] Who do we want to exclude? [Drama]

Ken M. Haggerty kenmhaggerty at gmail.com
Fri Apr 12 22:29:47 UTC 2013

>From what I understand, the law does not explicitly prohibit loitering on
fire escapes, and so it is up to landlords to decide and enforce their
procedures (and if not landlords then occupants). What are explicitly
prohibited on fire escapes are obstructions large enough to prevent proper
use in the event of an emergency (e.g., putting potted plants at the top of
the ladder).

Nevertheless, I think Noisebridge has its own policy against loitering on
the fire escape, and certainly no smoking on the fire escape.

Also, this email thread has digressed tremendously.


On Fri, Apr 12, 2013 at 3:18 PM, Andrew Byrne <andrew at pachakutech.com>wrote:

> " people standing on the fire escape are obstructions" <-- are those your
> words, or the law? If the latter, then I would point out a seemingly
> glaring confound in the law, if the former, your confusion; it would seem
> the quoted law even makes an example of cases (not ours) where people are
> often to be found. The only way I can see that line making a lick of sense
> is if one can legally occupy /only/ Useable Open Spaces, which is not
> really the domain of the fire code. It's not like it's a designated smoking
> area or something. -dru
>  On Apr 12, 2013 2:24 PM, "Mitchel McAllister" <xonimmortal at yahoo.com>
> wrote:
>> --- On Fri, 4/12/13, Aly Kaplan <alykaplan at gmail.com> wrote:
>> > I'd like to see the law that says this is illegal -- it certainly isn't
>> > according to SF Fire Code.
>> >
>> > However, it is always good to be excellent to your neighbors.It may also
>> > be prohibited on your lease.
>> Retrieved from
>> http://www.amlegal.com/nxt/gateway.dll?f=templates&fn=default.htm&vid=amlegal:sanfrancisco_ca
>> San Francisco Fire Code 1030.2.1 [Chapter 10 "Means of Egress"]
>>    Fire escapes and related balconies, ladders, landings, and operating
>> devices shall not be obstructed in any manner. No object shall be stored on
>> or attached to a fire escape without the approval of the fire code official.
>> San Francisco Building Inspection Commission (BIC) Codes Sec. 908
>>    All safety devices or equipment provided for in this chapter shall be
>> maintained in good repair at all times. Fire escapes shall be kept clear
>> and unobstructed and be readily accessible at all times. Upon inspection,
>> the property owner, or authorized agent, shall demonstrate to the Director
>> or designated personnel, that all existing fire escapes are fully
>> operational and properly maintained. Upon completion of the inspection, all
>> existing fire escapes shall be secured pursuant to Section 1110.3.1. of the
>> San Francisco Fire Code.
>> San Francisco Planning code Article 1.2 SEC. 135.  USABLE OPEN SPACE FOR
>>  (f)(3)     Fire Escapes as Usable Open Space. Normal fire escape grating
>> shall not be considered suitable surfacing for usable open space. The steps
>> of a fire escape stairway or ladder, and any space less than six feet deep
>> between such steps and a wall of the building, shall not be credited as
>> usable open space. But the mere potential use of a balcony area for an
>> emergency fire exit by occupants of other dwelling units (or bedrooms in
>> group housing) shall not prevent it from being credited as usable open
>> space on grounds of lack of privacy or usability.
>> People standing on the fire escape are obstructions. Fire escapes are not
>> open space.
>> However, I also noticed that we are in violation because the fire escape
>> door is not locked against people entering from outside, which seems to be
>> the focus of a lot more codes, ordinances, and case law.
>> - Reverend Mik McAllister
>> "You can see the summit but you can't reach it
>> Its the last piece of the puzzle but you just can't make it fit
>> Doctor says you're cured but you still feel the pain
>> Aspirations in the clouds but your hopes go down the drain"
>>  - Howard Jones, "No One Is To Blame"
>> Purveyor of Subversive Fiction
>> http://www.prismandink.com
>> http://www.lunatextpublications.com
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