LBFD to Conduct Business Inspections
From Issue: Volume XXI - Number 2
The Long Beach Fire Department is responsible for many aspects of the community’s health and safety. Much of this depends on an active fire prevention inspection program. This year there will be changes in how the inspections are administered for some businesses. Inspections that were previously seen by the Fire Prevention Bureau will now be done by your local fire station.
LBFD believes this will add efficiencies to the procedure and give you, the business owner, an opportunity to meet and speak with those who provide the protection for your local community. This also assures you that the criteria evaluated are based on fire code and not a potential ploy by a private concern as was reported last year.
The focus for this inspection cycle will be on the category “assemblies.” These are defined in the California Fire Code as “the use of a building or structure for the gathering of persons for purposes such as civic, social, or religious functions, recreation, food or drink consumption, or awaiting transportation... ,” when in excess of 50 persons. The code is state law and was developed not only using reasonable assumptions on parameters such as evacuation time but also on the experience gained from unfortunate incidents where there was significant loss of life.
This inspection cycle will be started mid January and should be completed by May 2013. In preparation for the process, refer to the general guidelines noted below.
* Assure that certifications for protection systems such as cooking hood extinguisher, fire sprinklers, fire alarms and portable fire extinguishers are up to date.
* Decorative wall coverings and materials such as drapes and even Christmas trees are to be fire resistive.
* Emergency exits are to have “panic hardware,” an open and clear pathway as well as identified with a lighted sign. All are to have at least two code compliant exits.
All of the elements described in the inspection form may not apply to your business; however it does provide a good reference. Awareness of the standards and attending to discrepancies before the inspection will make this process easier for all.
Feel free to call LBFD Fire Prevention with any questions. They can be reached at (562) 570-2560.
Submitted by LBFD