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When is a Fire Safety Plan Required in Ontario

Do you know the legal requirements for fire safety plans in Ontario? If not, you’ll want to keep reading to get a better understanding.

Fire safety plans save lives. They are the difference between a fire breaking out and causing panic and chaos in the building, or safely evacuating the entire building without any incidences. When fires occur, fear and panic tend to set in, making us want to get to safety as soon as possible.

When you create a fire safety plan, you’re outlining a detailed report of what personnel should do in the case of an emergency. While you build your plan with your fire protection services in Toronto, you’ll have to fully explain all the exit points, how every fire system works within the building and all other features that relate to fire safety.

When is a Fire Safety Plan Required in Ontario?

Ontario regulations for fire safety plans require that any owner of a business, building, or property must have an approved fire safety plan. Schools, hospitals, and residential buildings with 10 or more people are some of the buildings that must have a fire safety plan.

There is a Provincial/National board that regulates the laws over fire safety plans in the country. Although they set Fire Codes for businesses to follow, not everyone is required to produce a fire safety plan. However, the Workplace Safety & Insurance Board (WSIB) in Ontario also has fire regulations. They require that every workplace in the province, regardless of how many employees there are and what the size of the organization is, staff members must have access to emergency evacuation procedures.

Buildings Requiring Fire Safety Plans

Under Ontario Fire Code / Safety Regulations

  • Group A-Assembly Occupancies
  • * Public places of gathering

  • Group B-Care, care and treatment, and detection occupancies
  • * Places where people receive special care, supervision, and dependent on other people.

  • Group C-Residential occupancies exceeding 10
  • * Places with provided sleeping accommodations

  • Retirement homes
  • Group D & E-Business, personal service, and mercantile occupancies exceeding 300
  • Group F-Division 1 High hazard industrial buildings. Occupancy load exceeding 25
  • * Buildings that contain highly combustible, flammable and/o explosive materials that could result in a special fire hazard

  • Group F-Division 2 Medium hazard industrial buildings. Occupancy load exceeding 100
  • * When the combustible materials are more than 50 kg/m2 or 1200 MJ/m2 of the floor area. These buildings are not considered high hazard industrial occupancies

  • Group F-Division 3 Low hazard industrial buildings. Occupancy load exceeding 300.
  • * When the combustible materials are no more than 50 kg/m2 or 1200 MJ/m2 of the floor area

  • Buildings containing 4 or more stories, including below grade (the average level of finished ground adjoining the building at the exterior walls)
  • Outdoor tire storage yards
  • Buildings containing flammable and combustible liquids exceeding 500 L or 250 L of Class I liquids
  • Laboratories where flammable or combustible liquids are used or handled
  • Boarding, lodging, or rooming houses
  • Buildings used as a convalescent home or children’s custodial home providing sleeping accommodations for more than 3 persons
  • Recreational camps regulated under the Health & Protection and Promotion Act
  • Fire Safety Plan Contents

    What Fire Safety Plans Must Include

  • Any and all fire protection equipment within the building
  • A comprehensive contact list of the supervisory staff and a description
  • All emergency procedures to follow in the case of a fire
  • Schematic diagrams
  • All procedures related to holding fire drills
  • Fire hazard control in the building
  • All of the maintenance of the building facilities
  • Alternative measures for the shut down of fire protection equipment
  • Fire Safety Plan Inspection

    To ensure that the building’s fire safety plan is up to date and reflects the building’s current conditions, you must review and edit your fire safety plan annually. If the building undergoes any changes before the annual inspection, the fire safety plan must get updated to reflect the changes. When in doubt, err on the side of caution and ensure your fire safety plan stays current with the building it belongs to.

    The Importance of Complying

    Complying with safety regulations isn’t just for following the law. It’s is also for ensuring the safety of every person that steps foot in that building. If a fire broke out and your building didn’t comply with the fire regulations, the consequences could be detrimental.

    Ensure the safety of everyone in the building, learn how to make a fire safety plan. If you’re ever unsure of what your plan should look like, contact us today to go through your plan so it passes the necessary approval.


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