Archive for November, 2020

Is Your Apartment Fire Safety Plan Up To Code?

Posted: November 15th, 2020

According to Ontario’s Ministry of the Solicitor General, of the 113,111 fires between 2009 to 2018, 47 percent of them occurred in residential dwellings. Apartment building fires can be costly in terms of lives and property, so it’s incumbent upon the apartment’s owner or administrator to make sure that his building’s fire safety plan is up to code.

If you’re not familiar with the Ontario code for apartment building fire safety plans, you may wish to consult an expert. The All Protect Systems team has years of training and experience with Ontario’s regulations and is on a first-name basis with many local inspectors. If you don’t have the time or energy to learn everything about local fire codes and keep up to date your building’s fire safety plan, then give them a call to find out how they can help you with all of your fire safety needs.

What Is the Ontario Code for Apartment Building Fire Safety Plans?

Established by the Ministry of the Solicitor General under the Fire Protection and Prevention Act of 1997, the Ontario Fire Code regulates the minimum requirements for fire safety within and around existing apartment buildings. Unless otherwise specified, it’s the building owner’s responsibility to adhere to these regulations.

The code requires a fire safety plan for any building that houses more than ten people. It must include provisions for fire prevention, evacuation, and emergency response.

Do Fire Safety Plans Require Adjustment?

Yes, the fire code is a dynamic set of regulations that is continually evolving. Even if the code hasn’t changed, your building probably has. Astute building owners and property managers take the time to monitor any code or building changes that might apply to the fire code. 

Various personnel, mechanical, electrical, and structural changes can affect your apartment building’s fire preparedness. Some of the things that may occur to your property that require adjusting your fire safety plan include:

  • Personnel changes. Your fire safety plan includes a list of supervisory staff that is responsible for documentation and fire instruction. They are also usually on the call list for fire emergencies. You need to update your fire safety plan when staff changes.
  • New fire protection equipment. Suppose you’ve made changes to your fire protection equipment, such as replacing smoke detectors, adding heat detectors, or replacing fire extinguishers. In that case, you must update the description of these devices in your fire safety plan.
  • Building facility maintenance. Apartment buildings require regular maintenance to serve the needs of its inhabitants and stay up to code. You must document any building changes that affect the building’s fire alarm, passive fire protection, or emergency exit lighting. Don’t forget to inspect and note firewall penetrations.
  • Schematic drawings. Cosmetic and structural building changes often require changing the location of fire protection devices, such as fire extinguishers and hoses. Even if the location change is entirely up to code, you still need to update those locations in your fire safety plan.
  • Changes to fire drills. Fire safety plans must include the details of your fire building’s fire drills. You must document any changes to them. 

Your apartment building’s fire safety plan must be reviewed once every 12 months to remain up to code, so it can remain up to date with any changes that have taken place. If this seems like a lot of work for a busy administrator or building owner, then delegate this task to the experts at All Protect Systems, Inc. They can keep your fire safety plan up to code and help you avoid any unnecessary fines or bureaucratic nuisance. Call them today!