The purpose of fire inspections is to evaluate and minimize the risk of fires. In general, routine inspections are conducted on commercial, industrial, and apartment buildings to ensure that the appropriate fire safety requirements are being met. These inspections are vital for public safety. Fire inspectors usually inspect for some of the following:
- Alarm systems
- Sprinkler systems
- Fire extinguishers
- Building design and construction
- Fire emergency procedures and evacuation plans
Exterior Building Fire Inspection Requirements
A few requirements must be met in order to move smoothly through this part of the fire inspection:
- The address of the building must be sized properly for the building structure and visible from the street.
- Grounds should be free of trash and debris
- The gas meter must be in a protected area
Interior Building Fire Inspection Requirements
General fire inspection requirements for the interior of the building include the following:
- Main entrances must display capacity signs
- All aisles should be free from obstructions
- All exit pathways should be lighted at all times
- Buildings must have the proper type of fire extinguisher for their potential hazards
- Occupants must assure that all extinguishers are inspected, certified, and tagged
- Smoke detectors should be tested and working correctly
If you have a fire sprinkler and alarm system, they must be inspected, certified, and tagged annually by a licensed contractor, and all systems must operate properly.
Preparation is Important to Pass Your Fire Inspection
Using a general checklist can help you prepare for your annual fire inspection. Meet with the fire inspector before the actual inspection and ask what items they will be looking for. Provide the inspector with copies of your equipment inspection, testing, and maintenance reports. Go over these reports with the inspector before their walkthrough. Tell the inspector that any issues noted in the reports have been corrected. Make sure someone responsible goes with the inspector and has keys to all the areas that the inspector will need access to. Take notes, even if the inspector will be giving you a written report once the inspection is complete.
Maintenance is Key for Fire Safety
Maintenance is critical to providing proper fire safety in your building. All exit doors should always be accessible and open properly. Make sure stairways and corridors have features like fire doors, self-closing devises, releasing mechanisms, and latches that have been properly installed. Nothing can obstruct or reduce the required width of the exits or block them.
Maintaining fire-protection features is important for fire safety within your building. Fire protection system reports are required by all the national codes and standards, and by your insurance carrier.
If you are unsure about whether or not your building is fire code compliant, contact AIE for a fire code compliance review. We will provide you with a code consultation to help you pass your fire inspection.
Contact us today, or call 800-892-9863 for more information.