Plan Review and Practices

     The review of building plans and specifications provides the fire department with its best opportunity to make sure that the fire protection standards are met before construction is completed and the building is occupied.  Whenever possible, the FPB participates in pre-construction meetings with other code officials, project architects, engineers and contractors.  The site plan review provides the FPB with the first look at new construction and/or additions to existing buildings.  The site plan includes information on building placement, exposures, type ofplan construction, size, occupancy, water supply (from both public & private mains), hydrant placement and access. The review of preliminary building plans gives the FPB an opportunity to comment on those features of the building that significantly affect life safety and protection of the building from fire. An estimated 75% of the building code may relate directly to provision for life safety in case of a fire within the building. Therefore, the review may include among other things, the type of occupancy; allowable areas & heights; fire separations; fire resistance of construction; interior finish; occupant loading; number & location of exit ways; protection of vertical openings & special hazards.  When the final building plans are submitted to the FPB, they may be approved if they agree with the applicable code requirements. Only then, may a building permit be issued and construction begin.