Apartment & Condominium Fire Safety

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Apartments and condominiums present special fire safety concerns. When adhered to, local fire and construction codes can ensure that high-rises are designed to minimize the likelihood of a major fire.

High-rise fires often result from the same causes as fires in single dwelling homes – cooking and heating equipment, smoking, children playing with matches and lighters, electrical systems and arson. The following lists some of the basic fire regulations governing the operation of high-rise apartment and condominium occupancies.
 

If you answer 'NO' to any of the questions below, maintenance, servicing, or inspection is required to ensure your building meets current safety standards.

Source: The City of Red Deer Emergency Services
Apartment & Condominium Fire Safety

Means of Egress/Exiting

  • Are the access to exits and exit doors clear of obstructions?
  • Snow or ice has not accumulated to block exit doors or create a slip hazard?
  • Have all exit doors been checked for proper operation?
  • All exit hardware complies with the building code?

The principal entry door and every exit door shall have latching hardware that permit the door to be readily opened from the inside with not more than one releasing operation and without requiring keys, special devices or specialized knowledge of the door opening mechanism.

Every door leading to an exit lobby from an exit stair shaft, and every exterior door leading from an exit stair shaft in a building having an occupant load more than 100 persons shall be equipped only with panic hardware.

Portable Fire Extinguishers

  • Are fire extinguishers secured on the wall, easily accessible and charged?
  • Are inspection tags and tamper seals attached to extinguisher?
  • Has the fire extinguisher been serviced annually by a qualified service technician?
  • Are all fire extinguishers at least 2A10BC rated?

Emergency Lights/Exit Signs

  • Are exit signs visible, undamaged and illuminated?
  • Have the emergency lights been tested monthly?
  • Power disconnected to emergency lighting once annually and they remain lit for 30 minutes?

Fire Separations

  • Do all fire separation doors self-close and positively-latch as required?
  • Are all fire separation doors kept closed and not wedged open? (check daily)
  • All holes or penetrations in fire separations are repaired to original design?
  • Fire separations are a construction assembly that acts as a barrier against the spread of fire.
  • Examples of fire separation doors:
    • Stairwell doors
    • Mechanical and service room doors
    • Storage room doors
    • Suite doors leading to common corridor
    • Laundry room doors

Fire Alarm System

  • Is there a fire department lockbox installed and are the keys current?
  • Is the fire alarm panel accessible?
  • Is the power to the fire alarm panel on?
  • Is the fire alarm system clear of trouble signals?
  • Is a zone map posted?
  • Are the fire alarm pull stations visible and accessible?
  • Has the fire alarm system been inspected and serviced within the last 12 months?
  • Is a fire safety plan posted?

Sprinkler Systems

  • Distance of storage to sprinkler heads is less than 147mm (18”)?
  • Has the sprinkler system been inspected and serviced annually?
  • There are no large openings that impede the sprinkler heads from activating?
  • Is the sprinkler tree accessible?
  • Any keys required to access controls in lock box?

 

In-Suite Smoke Alarms

  • Checked for proper function with each new tenant and proper paperwork completed and given to tenant?

 

Retention of Records

  • All records for required tests, inspections, maintenance or procedures are kept on site for fire inspector to review?