Governor Rick Snyder has proclaimed May 2013 as Building Safety Month in Michigan. This year’s theme “Code Officials Keep You Safe” highlights four weekly themes: Fire Safety and Awareness; Disaster Safety and Mitigation; Backyard and Pool Safety; and Energy and Green Building. The month-long observance aims to increase public understanding of the importance of building safety and the resources available for protecting lives and property.
“We are recognizing the code officials who work diligently to ensure that buildings are structurally sound and safe, and comply with state and local building codes during and after construction,” said Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) Director Steve Arwood. “Code enforcement for safety is our highest priority in the construction of our homes, schools, offices, commercial buildings, retail and restaurant establishments, and industrial facilities throughout Michigan.”
Safe buildings are the result of active participation by code officials, fire inspectors, architects, builders, professional engineers, contractors, and others in the construction industry, as well as property owners. Michigan building codes address all aspects of construction including structural integrity, electrical, mechanical, and plumbing systems; fire prevention, as well as manufactured home construction.
“Ensuring public safety is what we do every day,” said Bureau of Construction Codes Director Irvin J. Poke. “Building code regulations along with a strong and efficient system of code compliance helps to ensure a safer built environment in Michigan.”
Poke also emphasized that as more people are becoming do-it-yourselfers on home improvement projects, it is extremely important for homeowners to work with local building officials to make sure their residence fully complies with Michigan’s construction codes.
First observed in 1980 as Building Safety Week, Building Safety Month is sponsored by the International Code Council, a membership association dedicated to building safety, fire prevention, and energy efficiency. The International Code Council develops the codes used to construct residential and commercial buildings, including homes and schools. Most U.S. cities, counties, and states use the International Codes, building safety codes developed by the International Code Council.
LARA’s Bureau of Construction Codes and Bureau of Fire Services work as a team to ensure that the built environment and the systems within are sound, safe, and sanitary; the public’s health, safety, and welfare is protected; and that, through a coordinated program of code compliance, investigation and training, there is consistent application of standards. For more information, go to www.michigan.gov/bcc.