In the U.S. , a lot of folks that are in rural areas may think that they don’t have any building codes where they live. Well, the truth is, that there certainly is code everywhere in the country. What they are really lacking is regulation.
While this may seem great, it can really be a disadvantage, and something to be wary of.
Why , How, & Where are building and fire codes
The U.S. constitution has several provisions enforcing states to protect the health, welfare, & safety of its citizens in a myriad of different ways. From food safety, to transportation safety, to building safety, states are required to enforce the safety of its citizens.
All 50 states enforce this safety. Some states adopt and enforce from a state level, where as some states enforce upon their local jurisdictions (cities, counties) etc to adopt some sort of code to a minimum standard. Usually this is seen as the model International (IBC, IFC, etc…) codes
Some rural counties may have model building code adopted, but may lack the enforcement. This is not always necessarily intended, but often due to a lack of staffing, and a large area to cover.
Implications of not following codes
Insurance requires businesses to be built and operated to codes & laws. If there is any incident (i.e. a fire), you may be held responsible and not be able to claim your insurance.
Regardless of insurance, nobody wants their building to burn down or have some sort of accident. As a building and/or business owner, you must always be mitigating your risks. Designing a code compliant building is one of the most important factors.
There’s also the possibility that your jurisdiction may have plan review / permitting systems in place, but may lack the knowledge to properly review and understand the complexities of the code. Especially when it comes to distilleries. If an incident/ accident happens, and it was built to permitted drawings, but the design was not compliant with codes…you are still responsible. Building & planning departments have disclaimers on all their permits releasing them from their responsibility. It is still up to you to build a legal building!