Inspection Check-List



The following is a self-checklist to prepare your business for a Fire Inspection. These are the items and concerns that will be addressed by the Fire Department prior to approval for you to receive your Certificate of Occupancy.

A no response to any of these questions indicates the presence of a fire code violation.

Access and Premises:

  1. Are address numbers for the building clearly visible from the street? (front and rear doors).
  2. Is combustible vegetation removed so as not to create a fire hazard?
  3. Is the exterior fire department access unobstructed?
  4. Is there a minimum 3 feet clearance around fire hydrants?


Egress (Exiting):

  1. Are doors with self-closing hinges maintained in the closed position (not blocked open)?
  2. Are exit ways and doors easily recognizable, unobstructed and maintained functional?
  3. Are the exits and exit enclosures free from the storage of combustible materials?
  4. If the main exit door is provided with key-locking hardware as allowed by code, is there a sign above the door that states "This door must remain unlocked when building is occupied" and are other exit doors openable from the inside without the use of a key or any special knowledge or effort?



  1. Are circuit breakers/fuses labeled to identify the protected area?
  2. Are extension cords only used on a temporary basis?
  3. Electrical outlets, switches and junction boxes properly covered with cover plates and is system safe from any apparent shock and/or electrical hazards?
  4. If multiple items need to be plugged in, is a power tap utilized with a built-in circuit breaker and is the power tap plugged directly into a permanent receptacle?
  5. Is the area maintained clear at least 30 inches in front of electrical panel(s)?


Emergency Lighting/Egress Illumination:

  1. Is the means of egress illuminated when the building or structure is occupied?

Exit Signs:

  1. If exit signs are required, are they maintained illuminated or self-luminous?
  2. Does the back-up battery work? (push the test button, the exit sign should illuminate under battery power).


Fire Alarm System:

  1. If the building is equipped with a fire alarm system, has the required annual been performed by a qualified fire alarm company?


Fire Safety and Evacuation Plans:

  1. Are records maintained on the premises?
  2. If fire drills are required, are they conducted successfully at varying times and under varying conditions?
  3. If required, are Evacuation Plans posted?
  4. If required, do you have Fire Safety Plans?


Fire Extinguishers:

  1. Are all fire extinguishers visible and accessible (not blocked)?
  2. Are the fire extinguisher(s) properly mounted? (Proper locations - near exit doors where possible, not exceeding maximum travel distance, properly mounted (maximum 5 feet high if less than 40 pounds, maximum 3 1/2 feet high if greater than 40 pounds. In all cases, minimum 4 inches above the ground).
  3. Have the fire extinguisher(s) been serviced/tagged by a qualified company within the last 12 months?
  4. Is there access to fire extinguisher(s) rated at a minimum 2A-10BC?
  5. Is the travel distance from all portions of the building less than 75 feet to a fire extinguisher?
  6. Sign posted above fire extinguisher?


Fire/Smoke Separations:

  1. Are the fire/smoke separations (smoke doors, fire doors, walls, etc.) in maintained/working condition?


Fire Suppression Systems:

  1. If the building is equipped with a fire sprinkler system, has the required annual service of the fire sprinkler system been performed in the last year by a qualified sprinkler company?
  2. In commercial cooking applications, has hood suppression system been serviced in the last six months and is the hood cleaned to prevent the accumulation of grease?
  3. Is the top of the storage maintained a minimum 18 inches below head deflectors in fire sprinkled areas?


Heat Producing Appliances:

  1. If portable electric heaters are used, are they used safely?
  2. Are they plugged directly into wall outlets and kept a minimum of 3’ away from combustibles? (Open flame unvented heaters are prohibited in a commercial occupancy).
  3. Is the clearance between ignition sources, such as light fixtures, heaters and flame producing devices, and combustible storage maintained in an approved manner?


Housekeeping and Decorations:

  1. Are combustible decorations flame retardant?
  2. Are oily rags or similar materials stored in metal, metal-lined or other approved containers equipped with tight-fitting covers?
  3. Is combustible rubbish that is stored in containers outside of vaults or rooms removed from the building a minimum of once each working day?


Mechanical Hazards:

  1. Are safe clearances maintained between gas fired appliances (such as water heaters, furnaces, etc.) and combustible materials?
  2. Is the venting fixed for exhaust products of combustion intact for gas appliances (i.e.: water heaters, furnaces)?


Smoke Detectors:

  1. If smoke detection is required in common areas such as corridors or part of the fire alarm system, have they been tested in the last year by a qualified service company?


Storage of Combustibles:

  • Are the boiler rooms, mechanical rooms and electrical panel rooms maintained without the storage of any combustible materials within?
  • Are combustible materials not stored beneath the building or structure?
  • Are dumpsters that are 1.5 cubic yards or more not stored inside the building and placed more than 5’ from combustible walls, openings or combustible roof eaves?
  • Are rubbish containers over 5 1/3 cubic feet (40 gallons) provided with lids and made of noncombustible construction?
  • Is the storage of combustible materials orderly?
  • Storage must be below 24 inches of the ceiling level.


Storage of Compressed Gas Cylinders:

  1. If you have compressed gas containers (such as co2, helium, etc.), are they chained to prevent falling?


Storage of Combustible and Flammable Liquids:

  1. Are quantities in excess of 10 gallons of flammable and combustible liquids used for maintenance purposes and the operation of equipment stored in liquid storage cabinets?