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Firefighters group concerned over Alberta's decision to allow 12-storey wood-framed buildings
EDMONTON -- A change to the Alberta Building Code will bring the limit to new wood-framed building from six to 12 storeys — a change one firefighter group is concerned about.
The provincial government included the decision in last year's Red Tape Reduction Act to match the incoming changes to the National Building Code.
But the Alberta Fire Fighters Association says it was not consulted before the decision, and while it isn't opposed to the move, it says the province is not ready.
"We're just not sure what the rush is," AFFA president Brad Readman told CTV News Edmonton. "We just want to make sure that the safety measures are put into place."
The AFFA wants the province to provide specific training and have emergency response plans for municipalities that allow 12-storey wood-framed buildings.
"We believe that very few Alberta municipalities have the frontline resources available to protect these structures and adjacent buildings, in the event of fire, and that’s a huge concern," Readman said.
Readman says these buildings burn "much quicker, faster and hotter," and that they're most vulnerable while under construction.
A government spokesperson told CTV News Edmonton fire organizations were consulted, but did not specify which.
AFFA wants the province to press pause on its decision at least until the National Building Code completes its review later this year.
With files from CTV News Edmonton's Bill Fortier