At a tire store we currently have 25.2K ESFR at the roof, and they have some open grated flooring down at about 10-ft above finished floor where their tire areas are. We are currently protecting the areas that are wider than 4ft.
There are some other runs that are just under 4-ft wide and the AHJ is saying we need to protect those. They're 86% open grates, deeper than 1/4". I'm fine with adding the heads under these, however the AHJ is stating that we must protect below them with ESFR's instead of an intermediate level/rack style sprinkler. I've never seen this approach in 20 years nor can find any justification in the code to support this.
The AHJs comments suggest the water shields are necessary to prevent cold soldering from ESFR sprinklers above.
Is there a code basis to use intermediate level/rack style sprinklers under obstructions with ESFR at the deck?
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