Effective this April, New York City has a new fire code in place that changes a variety of regulations related to buildings and renovations. Staying compliant with the fire code is not just important for legal purposes, but also because it protects you and the people you care about from harm. So how do you know if your home or workplace is compliant with the fire code, and what should you do if it is not?
What is the Fire Code?
The Fire Code is a series of regulations put into place by state and local governments to regulate how buildings are constructed and renovated, with the purpose of preventing and mitigating fires. Anyone who constructs a new building, or performs renovations on an existing building, must be compliant with the fire code. Municipalities may, at any time, inspect a building to ensure it is up to code, and can penalize property owners for any violations they discover.
What Changes Were Made to the Fire Code?
The changes made to New York City’s Fire Code are fairly extensive. Some of the most pertinent changes include:
- Changes to permitting and certification processes for certain types of installations.
- Reorganizing and modifying maintenance and inspection requirements.
- Instituting new requirements for certain devices that involve open flames.
- Making allowances for construction to allow for the installation of solar panels.
- New requirements for charging and storing e-bikes, scooters, and other powered mobility devices.
- Adding new requirements for certain buildings to have Fire Emergency Preparedness (FEP) plans.
- Instituting new requirements for basement and rooftop access to enable escape from fires.
What Happens if You Are Not Compliant With the Fire Code?
If your building is not compliant with the fire code, there is a potential risk that you could face fines from your municipality, and be forced to repair any violations they discover. The more immediate issue, however, is that it means your property has potential problems that make the risk of a deadly fire more likely. Addressing these issues as quickly as possible will not only keep you out of trouble, it could literally save your life.
What Should You Do?
If you are concerned about whether your home, office building, or other property has any fire code violations, you should speak to an inspector about renovations you may need to make to get it up to code. You should also speak to a construction contractor with experience handling these sorts of renovations. That way, you can be sure that you and the people you care about will be as safe as possible in the event of a fire.
If you are interested in getting your building up to code, or have any other construction or renovation issues, please give Clearview Construction a call at 631-913-8441.