PROCEDURE REGARDING FIRE INSPECTIONS AND FIRE CODE VIOLATIONS
SLU is inspected annually by the NYS Office of Fire Prevention and Control and may be fined by New York State for failure to adequately abate violations. While past violations have almost exclusively been in private student residences or employee office spaces the University is held accountable, and, in the interest of the safety of the community must address these very serious issues. A procedure to address this has been developed and is described below.
First, fire code compliance within private offices and work spaces is the responsibility of the occupant with respect to office contents, storage, use of electrical outlets and appliances, proper regard for fire safety apparatus, extinguishers, sprinklers, etc. These spaces will be inspected by the NYS fire code inspector(s). Second, if there are reported violations fire safety staff will alert occupants and will work with occupants to correct the violation(s). However, if after the second inspection (assuming NYS will continue with the three inspection process), the violation(s) are not corrected, the University will assume the right to enter the space, correct the violation(s), charge the occupant(s) for any costs incurred, and remove any contents causing the violation(s).
Third, if, after the process of successive inspections, warnings, and opportunities to rectify the problems, the University still incurs a fine, that fine will be charged directly to the occupant of the space. Fourth, fire safety is a year round practice, not a once-a-year process. All SLU space, public and private, must always be in compliance. Fire safety staff will alert private space occupants whenever a code violation becomes apparent, with the expectation that the violation will be corrected in a timely manner. Again, a violation left uncorrected will be corrected by University staff if necessary, with any resulting costs charged directly to the occupant.
Please follow these five reasonable and simple premises:
1. No combustible materials can be stored or located within 18 inches of a sprinkler head or within 24 inches of an unsprinklered ceiling.
2. No unapproved extension cords may be used and ALL power strips MUST be plugged directly into an outlet, not an extension cord or another power strip. Extension cords and flexible cords shall not be a substitute for permanent wiring and shall not be affixed to structures, extended through walls, ceilings, floors or under doors or floor covering and shall be used ONLY with temporary portable appliances.
3. Work areas must be maintained in an orderly manner with any combustible materials properly stored.
4. Exits and aisles must always be clear and accessible with fire doors in the closed position.
5. Fire protection equipment, extinguishers, and sprinklers must be in working order, periodically inspected and unobstructed.
Pictures of acceptable and unacceptable use of power strips and extension cords are included in the Quick Electrical Safety Checklist. For questions or assistance contact the Environmental Health & Safety office at (315) 229-5607 or firstname.lastname@example.org.