Fire safety is the set of practices intended to reduce the destruction caused by fire.
3.3.1. Certificate of Fitness
The FDNY monitors compliance for all Certificates of Fitness (COF). These certifications are legally required for most businesses to operate within New York City. COF program prepares people to prevent fire by teaching how to safely use, store and handle dangerous materials in the workplace. There are eight (8) types of Certificate of Fitness:
- Certificate of Fitness F-01-Citywide Fire Guard for Impairment –Someone with this COF must be on-site whenever a fire protection system is out of service for an extended period of time.
- Certificate of Fitness F-03-Indoor Place of Assembly Safety Personnel –An individual responsible for assisting in maintaining fire safety at an approved place of assembly (PA) or temporary place of assembly (TPA) at a specific location is required to hold a Certificate of Fitness.
- Certificate of Fitness F-04-Temporary Indoor/Outdoor Place of Assembly Safety Personnel –An individual responsible for assisting in maintaining fire safety at temporary place of assembly events at different locations is required to hold a Certificate of Fitness. This is vital if you have frequent temporary place of assemblies (TPAs) within your building or space.
- Certificate of Fitness F-58-Fire Safety Director – Any building classified as Group E (1968 Code) or Group B (2008 Code) by the NYC Department of Buildings, which has an occupancy of 100 people or more must have a Fire Safety Director on site during regular business hours. This includes office buildings, public or civil services buildings, and hotels.
- Certificate of Fitness F-59-Emergency Action Plan Director – An Emergency Action Plan Director is responsible to implement a fire safety and emergency action plan, training emergency action personnel and other duties related to emergency action plan. An EAP Director is required for any commercial building classified as Group B and mixed occupancies by the NYC Department of Buildings during regular business hours.
- S-56 Construction Site Fire Safety Manager – This C of F is required at most major construction sites.
- Certificate of Fitness S-95-Supervision of Fire Alarm Systems and Other Related Systems–Any FDNY approved fire alarm must be supervised by a COF holder. This can sometimes be the FSD or an S-95 holder.
- Certificate of Fitness B-29– Supervision of Battery Systems and Other Related Equipment – This one is becoming more popular and important, as more uninterruptible power supply systems are in demand. These systems provide power to ensure the ongoing operation of critical systems (e.g. those used in hospitals, banks, hotels, etc.).
Certificate of Fitness (COF) are valid for 3 years. The certificate may be renewed 90 days before the expiration date. Renewals can be done online, by mail or in person. Majority renewals are $15. Depending on the exam, a new exam may be required.
3.3.2. Emergency Preparedness Guide
The Fire and Emergency Preparedness Guide is a fire safety information booklet sent out to residents, oftentimes during safety notice mailings season. The FEP Guide is split into two parts. Part I is building-specific and Part II is drafted by the FDNY, highlighting general safety tips and directions.
The FEP Guide has to be provided to tenants at least once every three calendar years, and can be delivered in a few ways, including first class mail, hand-delivery, or email. The Guide can also be delivered during Fire Safety Week in October. But no matter when you choose to deliver it, or how, records of delivery and a copy of the Guide itself needs to be kept and provided to the FDNY upon request.
Besides the regular, ongoing delivery, Guides must also be provided to all residents in the case of a material change in building conditions (not including temporary repairs or maintenance work).
It must also be provided to new residents at the time of lease, sublease, or other occupancy agreements. Also, when hiring a new building employees must receive a copy before they report to work at the building.