TMS 602-16 Masonry code

New Special Inspections Table 4

TMS 602-16 introduces a NEW Table 4 – “Minimum Special Inspection Requirements” which, as the table title suggests, stipulates minimum masonry special inspections to those of us who provide masonry special inspections on construction project work.This new Table 4 COMBINES all of the required masonry special inspections listed in previous masonry code tables (tables 3, 4 and 5), most of which had been enforceable items for over 25 years.

The (condensed) TMS 602-16 Table 4, featured above, displays three new levels (Levels 1, 2 and 3) of special inspections which replaced Tables 3, 4 and 5 in the old masonry code(s). Level 1 is for projects designed according to prescriptive design methods (brick veneer) and generally requires no field special inspections. Level 2 replaces the old Level B QA special inspections for engineered masonry on nonessential structures. Level 3 replaces the old Level C QA special inspections for essential structures according to Risk Category IV as set forth in Table 1604.5 of chapter 16 of the IBC code and (like Level 2) is engineered or load-bearing masonry construction.

Missing from the new Table 4 is the requirement for the special inspector to verify the f’m (specified compressive strength) prior to the start of construction phases. Even though this verification of f’m is not listed in Table 4, the masonry code (TMS 602-16) still requires that the special inspector do this and this requirement can be found in a new Table 3 which stipulates several minimum verification requirements.

The next edition of the “Speaking in Code” (SIC) newsletter will address other significant masonry code changes and points of interest in April  2020.  The code changes are too numerous to mention in this one-page (SIC) BLAST.


TMS 402, Section 3.1 and Table 3.1 The quality assurance (QA) program shall comply with the Level defined in Table 3.1 depending on how the masonry was designed and the Risk Category as defined in (IBC Table 1604.5) or the legally adopted building code. The level of required QA depends on whether the masonry was designed according to Part 3, Appendix B or C (engineered masonry) or according to Part 4 or Appendix A (empirical or prescriptive).

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