For the month of May, the Inspectional Services Department will celebrate the 39th annual Building Safety Month with an informational table regarding building codes.
Building codes and the officials who enforce them ensure Boston residents and visitors are safe. Homes and buildings built in compliance with building safety codes result in resilient structures that minimize the risks of death, injury, and property damage. Building safety affects everyone, and modern, updated building codes save lives.
First observed in 1980, Building Safety Month raises awareness about critical safety issues, from structural to fire prevention, plumbing and mechanical systems, and energy efficiency. Building codes have protected the public for thousands of years. The earliest known code of law — the Code of Hammurabi, King of the Babylonian Empire, written circa 2200 B.C. — assessed severe penalties, including death, if a building was not constructed safely. The regulation of building construction in the United States dates back to the 1700s. In the early 1900s, the insurance industry and others with similar concerns developed the first model building code.
Today, the International Codes are the most widely used and adopted set of building safety codes in the U.S. and around the world.