Happy 4/20, everyone!!

We decided to have a little fun with the latest episode of the Fire Protection Podcast. April 20th is recognized as International Cannabis Day for millions around the globe. The fire protection industry is in quite a “sticky” situation concerning cannabis growing and processing facilities. Something needs to be developed for the stakeholders so that buildings don’t go “up in smoke.”

With all kidding aside, the cannabis industry has exploded over the last ten years in the US, Canada, and many countries worldwide. As laws have expanded from medical applications to industrial products (hemp) and, more recently, to recreational uses, the market and complexities within it have grown.

NFPA 420 is the proposed Standard for Fire Protection of Cannabis Growing and Processing Facilities. It is being developed to look at the large industry around cannabis and solve the ever-growing fire protection problems that owners, insurance authorities, fire officials, engineers, and contractors have to deal with protecting buildings associated with cannabis from fire. I credit the National Fire Protection Association for designating the standard 420 and leaning into the terminology. The more eyes we have on this problem in fire protection, the quicker it will get solved.

Melinda Amador, chair of NFPA 420 & FPE at CodeNext in Toronto, sits down with me for a fun, informative chat about the standard and problems they see within the industry. She comes with a ton of experience in code consulting and fire protection engineering, specifically in the cannabis space.

Please make sure to “pass” this podcast along to others in fire protection and beyond.




0:01 – 3:15      – Show Intro and Melinda’s Background
3:20 – 4:48     – Legalization in Canada vs. the U.S.
:30 – 8:20     – NFPA 420 and Classifying Growing Facilities 
9:05 – 10:02   – Craft Cannabis? 
10:52 – 12:37 – How Melinda Became Chair of NFPA 420
12:50 – 14:40 – CodeNext in the Cannabis Sector
14:45 – 16:50 – Solvents in Use Today
17:15 – 18:40 – More on the 420 Committee 
18:50 – 21:40 – The Standard’s Timeline / In-Person Committees
21:55 – 25:15 – Detection Systems in Cannabis
25:55 – 27:50 – Craziest Deficiency Melinda Has Seen
28:00 – 29:20 – Foam Mattress Fires
29:25 – end – Closing Thoughts 


Drew Slocum
Melinda Amador