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December 2016 Bulletin 213

Posted by Firepoint on 2016-12-20 13:31:40 EST

Keeping Fire Safety Plans Current

Ensuring the contents of a fire safety plan (FSP) are up to date is an absolutely must, and the FSP is required by the fire code to be reviewed at intervals of no greater than twelve months. This undoubtedly may seem like a huge task as the FSP can easily run over some sixty plus pages, and a building manager can feel overwhelmed with the update process.

It is even more of a challenge since one of the aims is to update only the applicable text as required. Being in possession of an electronic copy of the FSP certainly is of benefit as it allows the building manager to make revisions and print pages on demand. Simple changes may include updating the buildings emergency contact information, identifying those individuals with special needs, and any other minor revisions. Should the electronic version not be available or easily located, a hardcopy is normally found within the FSP box by the buildings main entrance. Once an FSP copy has been obtained, it should be verified as to when it was accepted and/or approved by the City. The date can be found on a letter from the City, or an approval stamp located on the front cover of the FSP.

Unfortunately, if an electronic version of the FSP is not available, re-typing portions of the document may be necessary for insertion into the FSP. In some cases, building operators issue the modified pages to the City as going on record. For more extensive alterations, such as fire alarm and sprinkler system retrofits, structural add-ons, or a building ownership change, the publisher of the original FSP may be contacted and a site assessment performed. Their comprehensive audit would also include verifying the placement of the fire and life safety equipment on the floor layout drawings, along with confirming the sequence of operation for magnetic door-locking devices, elevator homing functions, smoke control features and advance evacuation procedures. Once this level of FSP updates has been completed, a re-submission to the City would be considered.

It is to be noted that although an FSP bears the stamp of acceptance and/or letter to the effect that it meets requirements, a building managers responsibility is far from over when it comes to implementation. Regardless of whether the building has a newly-approved FSP or one which is already in place, building managers are responsible for ensuring that all applicable requirements are followed at all times.

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