Fire Safety Inspections

The Denver Fire Department conducts inspections of the City’s 24,000 commercial occupancies (businesses, schools, institutions, apartment buildings, etc.) to ensure that conditions at those properties are in compliance with the Denver Fire Code.

Your annual Fire Safety Inspection, which is required by law, is also one of the lowest-cost resources available to protect your property and the health and lives of your employees and those who visit your business or occupy your premises. There is a fee for this inspection.
 
In part thanks to this inspection program, the City of Denver enjoys an extremely low fire loss rating for a city of its size, with the additional benefit of lower overall property insurance rates compared to other cities.

Fire Inspections Information

The City and County of Denver has approved an increase to the fees charged for your annual Fire Safety Inspection as of January 1, 2009. Your fee is based on your property’s square footage, number of floors and type of occupancy.

Although the new fees represent an increase of 30% over last year’s fees, this is the first fee increase in 7 years and the low price is still a bargain for the service received.

Your Annual Fire Safety Inspection, which is required by law, is also one of the lowest-cost resources available to protect your property and the health and lives of your employees and those who visit your business or occupy your premises. In part thanks to this inspection program, the City of Denver enjoys an extremely low fire loss rating for a city of its size, with the additional benefit of lower overall property insurance rates compared to other cities.

Whether your business is a smaller property, such as a small retail store or low-rise apartment building (inspected by crews from your local fire station) or a high-rise building, institutional campus with highly technical life-safety systems, or hazardous material occupancy (inspected by personnel from the Fire Prevention and Investigation Division), your annual inspection helps you ensure that your property is in compliance with Denver’s Fire Code and therefore national safety standards.

Your 2009 Fire Inspection

Based on last year’s records for your business, our staff will schedule your 2009 inspection to take place approximately 12 months from your 2008 inspection, or as close to that date as possible given our crews’ workloads.

  1. Prefer to have your inspection at a different time of year? Just call our office at 720-913-3473 and we’ll do our best to accommodate your request.
  2. Change in your business ownership, size of property, etc.? Please call 720-913-3570 and let us know.

Commercial Property Owners and Managers November 20, 2008 Page 2

In most cases, the personnel who will be doing the inspection will contact you a day or two beforehand to let you know when they will be coming.

Once on site, Fire Department inspectors will check your building’s exits, emergency lighting, exit signs, components of fire-resistive separation, access roadways and fire lanes, and testing and maintenance records of fire-safety systems. They will also make sure there is an emergency evacuation plan in place.

If the inspectors find any conditions that violate city ordinance, they will notify you and, if the conditions cannot be corrected on the spot, will issue an order notice requesting that the condition be corrected as soon as possible. If you are unsure how to correct the problem, you are always welcome to call and we will help you determine what action steps to take. A later inspection will be scheduled to confirm that the violation has been corrected. An additional fee is charged for each re-inspection.

After any inspection, you will be invoiced within a week of the inspector finishing the inspection report. Fees are due and payable within 30 days.

Emergency Pre-Plan Inspection

In addition to receiving an annual Fire Safety Inspection, many businesses and commercial occupancies in Denver receive an annual Emergency Pre-Plan Inspection, where crews from the local fire station visit the facility to conduct pre-emergency planning to ensure that their response is as efficient and effective as possible in the event of an emergency. This inspection is handled at a different time than your Fire Safety Inspection and this service is provided at no charge. (Although, if violations are noted during this inspection, your property may be referred for a Fire Safety Inspection, for which there is a fee.)

Questions?

If you have any questions about the Fire Safety Inspection Program, you can contact us at 720-913-3473 or denverfpb@denvergov.org with any questions. We thank you for your efforts in helping us keep Denver a safe place in which to work, live and visit.

As part of the annual Fire Safety Inspections conducted in all multi-family residential occupancies (three units or more), the Fire Department checks many different components of fire safety, such as proper exiting, emergency access, and more. One purpose of this inspection is to ensure that all units have functioning smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and fire extinguishers.

  • As a property owner or manager of a multi-family residential occupancy (rented), you are required to conduct tests of all smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and fire extinguishers in all rented units and keep those records for the Fire Department personnel to see during the annual inspection. See the links below for details.
  • As a property owner, manager, or homeowners’ association president of a multi-family residential occupancy such as owner-occupied condominiums, you are required to ask the homeowners to conduct tests of these devices, and you must keep the test results for Fire Department personnel to see during the annual inspection. 

Documentation

Installation and new construction inspections by Fire Prevention personnel ensure compliance with adopted codes and standards and help eliminate problems before the building is occupied, before a new process or hazard is introduced, or before a new life safety system is placed in service. These inspections also benefit the fire service by helping them to become familiar with the building before it is occupied and with the life safety systems that have been installed. A successful Building Occupancy Inspection generally results in a Certificate of Occupancy.

Refer to the building permit for details about timing of and arranging for a building occupancy inspection, or contact:
Fire Prevention Occupancy Inspections Group
720-913-3409
shawn.lord@denvergov.org.

Besides conducting annual fire safety inspections in all day care homes and day care centers, the Fire Department has prepared a set of guidelines outlining safety features you should look for when evaluating potential day care centers for your child. '

Read our Fire Safety in Day Care Centers handout.

In addition to receiving an annual Fire Safety Inspection, many businesses and commercial occupancies in Denver receive an annual Emergency Pre-Plan Inspection, in which crews from the local fire station visit the facility to conduct pre-emergency planning to ensure that their response is as efficient and effective as possible in the event of an emergency. Pre-emergency planning for certain target occupancies is a requirement of the Insurance Services Office (ISO) that sets the fire insurance rates for all the properties within the City and County of Denver.
 
This inspection is handled at a different time than your Fire Safety Inspection and this service is provided at no charge (although, if violations are noted, your property may be referred for a Fire Safety Inspection, for which there is a fee).
 
Because the fire crews must balance their emergency response duties with their inspection duties, they cannot schedule Emergency Pre-Plan Inspections far in advance. However, if your property does require such an inspection, the crew will call you first to schedule a time that is convenient.
The Denver Fire Department conducts annual fire safety inspections inDenver’s nightclubs and also makes occasional unannounced visits to nightclubs to ensure that exits are unblocked, occupancy limits are being observed, etc. 
 
As an individual, there are things you can do to ensure your nightclub experience is safer. Read our Nightclub Safety Brochure.
Due to the complexity and magnitude of fire protection problems and hazards that new operations may introduce into existing properties, the Fire Protection Engineering unit offers an evaluation of the property to determine that it meets the basic requirements--fire sprinkler system, fire sprinkler system density, smoke vents, construction type, etc--for the intended operation.
 
If you are interested in such an evaluation, please contact:
Plan Check Unit
720-865-2963
david.clark@denvergov.org.

Payment for Services and Fees

Checks made payable to:
Denver Manager of Finance

You can deliver in person to:
745 West Colfax Avenue - 1st Floor
(receipt will be issued)

Or mail to:
P.O. Box 40385
Denver, CO 80204 

Payment may also be made by credit card.
Please call 720-913-3474 or 720-913-3411 to make a credit card payment.

Contact Us

To schedule a fire safety inspection, or if you have questions or concerns about inspections, please contact us at:

720-913-3474
denfpb@denvergov.org.

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