Occupancy group



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    David Kaplan


    You need to be able to use Chapter 3 in the building code and, if given a certain building type, be able to classify that type into the correct use group.  However, the type of the building should be pretty obvious.  Just as an example, if they were to tell you the building includes a restaurant, you need to be able to go into Chapter 3 and see that this falls under "A-2 Assembly" classification. 

    I see no need for memorization here, but read through Chapter 3 and familiarize yourself with the different uses so that you should at least be able to say to yourself, "they've told me it's a restaurant, I know that falls under Assembly."  Then, you can use the code to determine that it's A-2 and not A-1, A-3, etc. 

    This absolutely is a part of the tests though.  And yes, you might even have to determine how many occupants, or perhaps how many plumbing fixtures are required.  Again though, no need to memorize anything.  They will give you the code excerpts that you need on the test.  Just go into the exam knowing how to use them.

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    Jaleela Rubab

    Thanks for your detailed reply,that would really help me.

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    Derek Mason (Edited )

    I have taken the PA twice so far and am planning to take it again soon. The bigest problem I had was the time management. I realized that I was spending time on the questions and the clock was ticking away. If you know before hand what the ocupancy use of the space is and what you would need to calculate (5sf/net or 7sf/net or is it 60sf or 100 gross) will help you in the long run. This is something that I already knew from work experince, but lost time in wanting to double check. The loading of the sheets on the case study costed me. Especially the first time around. Another one that got me was mixed-use. Need to know which ones and to add them together. 

    I've been watching some nice YouTube videos.

    I will be relieved when I finally pass it. 

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    Tasanee Durrett (Edited )

    Derek, thank you for your advice! Were there any videos in specific that you felt helped you during your studies? If so, do you mind sharing the vidoes? I am currently in my last week of studying for PA. Thank you in advance!

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    Derek Mason (Edited )

    Tasanee - Not really sure the name. I did a search for ARE 5.0 programming and analysis and looking through other videos I saw one about occupancy from the NSF. They discussed some fire issues which I felt were relevant. 

    Edit: there is a YouTube video titled Emerggency Egress Standards. It's a couple of years old but it covers the material well and good to review. 

    Big thing to remember is if you are having trouble with a question or if it catches you off guard, mark it and move on. Then go back to them. Sometimes a question will ask about a subject that you were recently asked about.

    Others have mentioned about doing the case studies first.

    Good luck

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