In the 18th century B.C., the Babylonian
King Hammurabi adopted a
building code that was direct and easy
to understand: If a house fell down and
killed its occupant, the builder would
be put to death.
Modern codes are less severe, but
they are also more difficult to decipher.
In most states and localities, codes are
lengthy documents, covering in minute
detail materials and practices for construction,
plumbing, fire safety, and in some cases
Despite many efforts over the years to
consolidate them, the codes throughout
the country's states, counties, and
municipalities are still far from uniform.
A product or practice that is
"code approved" in one jurisdiction is
not necessarily acceptable somewhere
Who Writes the Codes?