Maximum allowable storage quantities and storage requirements depend on both the flammability classes of each bottle and the building’s construction. The ultimate objective is to give people time to evacuate the building. It also gives the fire suppression system a shot at containing the fire. Flammable cabinets are designed to delay ignition of the cabinet’s contents by at least 10 minutes. So, they are really a tool to increase the available evacuation time.
Since building construction needs to be taken into consideration, the insurance company may be a good resource for your relative. A reputable builder could also help make a determination. In the meantime, your relative should ensure there’s a good fire alarm system installed in the home.
Being a bit of a mixed drink enthusiast, I know how quickly you can collect lots of half-full bottles of different liquors. I also know how quickly you can approach the limit for home brewing when you want to age your brew. So your question got me thinking…
Home brews are about 10% alcohol and that makes them Class II combustibles. The cap for home brewing varies by state, but the gal/yr max does hover right about the NFPA max for Class II combustibles. I doubt this to be a coincidence. Whiskeys are Class IC flammables. The NFPA max for Class IC is roughly half that of the Class II combustibles.
So I wonder… Is there a cap for home ownership of distilled spirits without a license? And does the cap coincide with the max for Class IC of 340L(90gal)?
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A family member contacted me recently because upon moving into a new home, discovered he had, according to his calculations, approximately 275-375 liters of whiskey and similar spirits in his basement. Its not stored in anything special, just normal wood cabinetry. He is was reaching out to see if he needs to have that amount in any kind of proper flammable storage containers. Thoughts?
Thanks in advance,
Joe Bennett-Paris, Ph.D.
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