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Fire Department
Codified Title: 
Title 3: Fire Department

Proposed Rules: Open to Comments (View Public Comments Received:2)

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Agency:
Comment By: 
Tuesday, July 17, 2018
Proposed Rules Content: 

 

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Proposed Rule

 

Background

 

Since 2000, New York City has required apartment building owners to print and distribute residential fire safety guides to apartment building residents and building staff, and to post fire safety notices on the inside of dwelling unit entrance doors and in building lobbies.  The purpose of these fire safety guides and notices is to:

 

·      promote fire safety and fire prevention in apartment buildings;

·      educate residents and building staff about the design and construction of their building, including construction type, fire protection systems and means of egress; and

·      outline emergency procedures to assist them in the event that they are confronted by a fire and need to determine what action to take to protect themselves and their families.

 

The format, content, distribution and posting requirements for the fire safety guide and notices were incorporated into the 2008 Fire Code (in FC408.9) and in Fire Department rule 3 RCNY §408‑02, which the proposed rule would amend.

 

New Fire and Emergency Preparedness Guide

 

The 2014 Fire Code comprehensively revised Chapter 4, which governs emergency planning and preparedness, and moved the fire safety guide and notice requirements to FC401.6.  The 2014 Fire Code expanded the scope of the guide to encompass non-fire emergencies, such as medical emergencies, severe weather emergencies, power outages, hazardous materials releases, and terrorism-related incidents.

 

This proposed rule would implement the 2014 Fire Code by replacing the existing Fire Safety Guide with a new Fire and Emergency Preparedness Guide (“FEP Guide”) entitled “New York City Apartment Building Emergency Preparedness Guide” (Appendix 1 to the renumbered §401‑06). Like its predecessor, the proposed FEP Guide consists of two parts. Part I is the Building Information Section, a form completed by the owner for each building indicating the building’s construction, fire protection systems, means of egress and other information specific to the building for which it is prepared.  The proposed rule would not substantially change the existing content requirements for this obligation, except to require the owner to indicate whether there is an emergency voice communication system in the building.

 

Part II of the FEP Guide is designed to educate all building occupants about ways to prepare for emergencies, prevent fires, and protect themselves from various fire and non-fire emergencies.  In addition, the FEP Guide emphasizes emergency preparedness planning for persons with functional or access needs who will need assistance if they must evacuate the building in an emergency.  During most non-fire emergencies, the elevator is available to evacuate persons unable to walk down stairs without assistance, and in modern buildings of non‑combustible construction, all residents are generally advised to shelter in place during the fire.  The Guide explains the importance of developing an individualized evacuation plan and a network of supports who can assist persons with functional or access needs in the event of an emergency in which they need to evacuate and they cannot use the elevator, such as in the case of a fire in their apartment.

 

Revised FEP Guide Distribution Requirements

 

Currently, the Fire Safety Guide must be provided to apartment building residents at time of occupancy (when they first move into the building) and must be distributed again every year.  The Fire Department proposes to require distribution of the new FEP Guide at time of occupancy and again as part of a building-wide distribution every three years.  During the off-years, the proposed rule would require building owners to distribute a short informational bulletin (4 pages or less), which would be used to highlight and reinforce an important, timely fire safety or other emergency preparedness message.  This would take advantage of an opportunity to communicate lessons learned or other message when the issue is fresh in the public’s mind because of a recent fire or other incident. The informational bulletin will remind apartment building residents to familiarize themselves with the contents of the FEP Guide and advise them on how to obtain a copy if they have not received one.

 

Additionally, the Fire Department proposes to authorize electronic distribution of the FEP Guide (by email or other form of electronic transmission) to apartment residents and building staff.  This would encourage development of electronic communications between owners and residents that can be used for other emergency preparedness communications and in actual emergencies.

 

Other Considerations

 

The proposed rule would not change the fire safety notices (Appendix 2 to the renumbered §401‑06) that building owners are required to post.

 

Text proposed to be deleted is [bracketed].  New text is underlined.

 

The underlining of words highlighted in green does not indicate a text change, but rather that the text of the existing rule is underlined.  The green highlighting indicates that the underlining should be retained in the publication of the final rule.

 

The underlining of words highlighted in blue indicates new text is being added to the rule.  The blue highlighting indicates that the underlining should be retained in the publication of the final rule.

 

“Shall” and “must” denote mandatory requirements and may be used interchangeably in the rules of this department, unless otherwise specified or unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

Subject: 

FDNY Proposed Promulgation of Fire and Emergency Preparedness Guides and Notices

Location: 
Fire Department Auditorium
9 MetroTech Ctr
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Contact: 

No contact

Download Copy of Proposed Rule (.pdf): 

Adopted Rules: Closed to Comments

Adopted Rules Content: 

 

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Final Rule

 

Existing Regulation of Commercial Cooking Exhaust Systems

 

The New York City Fire Code requires the periodic inspection and cleaning of exhaust systems for restaurant and other commercial cooking equipment that generate grease-laden vapors.  Grease accumulations in exhaust systems are the source of numerous fires, which the exhaust ducts can spread throughout the building. The residue generated by wood-burning cooking equipment compounds the risk of a fire.

Restaurant owners and others have been targeted over the years by unscrupulous businesses that charge for cleaning the commercial cooking exhaust system but fail to perform a proper cleaning.  To help prevent this, companies that clean commercial cooking exhaust systems must be licensed by the Fire Department, which requires businesses performing the cleaning to obtain a company certificate and their cleaning technicians a certificate of fitness.

The cleaning companies are required to attach a decal to the commercial cooking equipment to document that the exhaust system has been cleaned, as well as by what company and technician, and when the cleaning was performed.  Currently, cleaning companies print their own decals as proof of compliance with Fire Code requirements. Recent investigations by the New York City Department of Investigation revealed that unlicensed businesses unlawfully conducting such cleanings fraudulently placed decals identifying other, licensed companies as having done the work.

Existing Regulation of Portable Fire Extinguishers

The New York City Fire Code requires the periodic inspection and servicing of portable fire extinguishers where such extinguishers are required.  An annual inspection must be conducted by a licensed portable fire extinguisher servicing company to ensure that the portable fire extinguishers are functional and to repair or recharge them if necessary.  A tag must be attached to the portable fire extinguisher to document the inspection and/or servicing.

It is difficult for business owners to assess whether the companies they have hired to service portable fire extinguishers are properly servicing them. The Fire Department itself may not be able to evaluate the adequacy of the services provided when it inspects the premises weeks or months later. There is a history of unscrupulous companies charging businesses inflated fees for these services, and then failing to perform necessary servicing. Most recently, the New York City Department of Investigation discovered several such companies attaching an inspection tag bearing the name of another company, jeopardizing the other company’s business reputation.

As a result, companies that sell or service portable fire extinguishers are required to be licensed by the Fire Department. The companies must obtain a company certificate and their technicians must obtain a Fire Department certificate of fitness.

New Regulation of Proof of Compliance

The Fire Department adopts this rule to regulate the decals and tags that serve as proof of compliance with Fire Code requirements.

Section 115-02 requires commercial cooking exhaust system cleaning companies to use Fire Department-issued, numbered decals as proof of compliance with Fire Code inspection and cleaning requirements. It also requires portable fire extinguisher sales and servicing companies to use Fire Department-issued, numbered tags as proof of compliance with Fire Code inspection, testing and servicing requirements. Only licensed companies are eligible to purchase the Fire Department-issued decals and tags, and only the Fire Department-issued decals and tags will be acceptable proof of the inspection, cleaning and/or servicing. The decals and tags will be designed with various security measures to prevent counterfeiting.

This will help ensure that only licensed businesses perform the required fire safety inspections, cleaning and servicing; promote proper performance by preventing misidentification of the company that performed the work; and make it more difficult for unqualified and unlicensed businesses to engage in fraudulent practices.

Unauthorized use of Fire Department-issued proof of compliance by an unlicensed company or individual, or misuse by a licensed company or one of its technicians, constitutes a violation of the applicable Fire Code requirements for commercial cooking exhaust systems or portable fire extinguishers and will subject the violator to a civil or criminal penalty. It can also result in denial, suspension, revocation or non-renewal of a Fire Department certificate.

In accordance with existing Fire Code requirements (as set forth in Section FC107.7), records of all inspections, cleaning and/or servicing of equipment, and the names and Certificate of Fitness numbers of all company personnel who performed the work, must be maintained for a period not less than three (3) years.

Proof of Compliance Issuance Process

The Fire Department will coordinate the purchase of the proof of compliance from an approved City vendor. The Fire Department will retain the services of a vendor and order blank proof of compliance, which will be completed with the name of the company certificate holder at time of purchase.  The price of the proof of compliance for company certificate holders will reflect the cost of its preparation and printing, as well as administrative processing costs. Minimum order sizes may apply. Price, order and payment arrangements will be published on the Fire Department’s website and are subject to change. When possible, the Fire Department will offer company certificate holders the benefit of bulk discounts that are available for large print orders. The Fire Department anticipates publishing a bulk reorder schedule.

Related Amendments

The Fire Department also amends 3 RCNY §115-01, the rule addressing company certificates, to reference company certificates for commercial cooking system cleaning (currently set forth in Fire Code Section FC901.6.3.3), and incorporate the existing qualifications for the certificate (currently set forth on the Fire Department application form), including five years’ experience. Section 115-01(d) also incorporates existing minimum company staffing requirements and indicates the types of tools, materials and equipment required to conduct commercial cooking exhaust system cleaning.

Public Comment and Fire Department Response

Public comment received at the public hearing, including the statement of an industry association, the New York Association of Fire Equipment Distributors, was generally favorable to the proposed rule.  Various speakers acknowledged that there are unlicensed persons or companies that engage in deceptive practices, including use of misleading or stolen decals and tags.

Various speakers expressed concern about the cost of the decals and tags, but also urged that they be able to incorporate company logos, license numbers from other jurisdictions, and other identifying information.  The Fire Department will endeavor to design decals and tags that can accommodate as many of the requested features as possible, consistent with the goal of keeping the cost low.

Public comment urged the use of multi-year decals and tags.  The proof of compliance will address this concern.

Public comment was received expressing skepticism about the ability to prevent counterfeiting.  The Fire Department is incorporating various security measures into the decals and tags.

Several comments were received expressing concern about additional recordkeeping requirements.  Use of Fire Department-issued proof of compliance will require somewhat more careful recordkeeping, but this will be facilitated with the use of bar codes.

One printing company expressed opposition to the rule on the impact it would have on competing printing companies, claiming that it restrains competition.  Requiring government-issued decals or tags as proof of compliance with public safety regulations (like the registration and inspection decals affixed to motor vehicles) is not a restraint of trade.  The City vendor that will be used to print the required decals and tags was retained by the New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services in accordance with City procurement processes.

A public comment was received suggesting that the term “precipitator” be clarified to include any pollution control device.  This suggested change has been accepted and incorporated.

 

Effective Date: 
Fri, 06/01/2018

Proposed Rules: Closed to Comments (View Public Comments Received:11)

Agency:
Comment By: 
Tuesday, February 27, 2018
Proposed Rules Content: 

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Proposed Rule

Existing Regulation of Commercial Cooking Exhaust Systems

The New York City Fire Code requires the periodic inspection and cleaning of exhaust systems for restaurant and other commercial cooking equipment that generate grease-laden vapors. Grease accumulations in exhaust systems are the source of numerous fires, which the exhaust ducts can spread throughout the building. The residue generated by wood-burning cooking equipment compounds the risk of a fire.
Restaurant owners and others have been targeted over the years by unscrupulous businesses that charge for cleaning the commercial cooking exhaust system but fail to perform a proper cleaning. To help prevent this, companies that clean commercial cooking exhaust systems must be licensed by the Fire Department, which requires businesses performing the cleaning to obtain a company certificate and their cleaning technicians a certificate of fitness.
The cleaning companies are required to attach a decal to the commercial cooking equipment to document that the exhaust system has been cleaned, as well as by what company and technician, and when the cleaning was performed. Currently, cleaning companies print their own decals as proof of compliance with Fire Code requirements. Recent investigations by the New York City Department of Investigation revealed that unlicensed businesses unlawfully conducting such cleanings fraudulently placed decals identifying other, licensed companies as having done the work.
Existing Regulation of Portable Fire Extinguishers
The New York City Fire Code requires the periodic inspection and servicing of portable fire extinguishers where such extinguishers are required. An annual inspection must be conducted by a licensed portable fire extinguisher servicing company to ensure that the portable fire extinguishers are functional and to repair or recharge them if necessary. A tag must be attached to the portable fire extinguisher to document the inspection and/or servicing.
It is difficult for business owners to assess whether the companies they have hired to service portable fire extinguishers are properly servicing them. The Fire Department itself may not be able to evaluate the adequacy of the services provided when it inspects the premises weeks or months later. There is a history of unscrupulous companies charging businesses inflated fees for these services, and then failing to perform necessary servicing. Most recently, the New York City Department of Investigation discovered several such companies attaching an inspection tag bearing the name of another company, jeopardizing the other company’s business reputation.
As a result, companies that sell or service portable fire extinguishers are required to be licensed by the Fire Department. The companies must obtain a company certificate and their technicians must obtain a Fire Department certificate of fitness.
Proposed Regulation of Proof of Compliance
The Fire Department proposes to regulate the decals and tags that serve as proof of compliance with Fire Code requirements.
The proposed rule would require commercial cooking exhaust system cleaning companies to use Fire Department-issued, numbered decals as proof of compliance with Fire Code inspection and cleaning requirements. It would also require portable fire extinguisher sales and servicing companies to use Fire Department-issued, numbered tags as proof of compliance with Fire Code inspection, testing and servicing requirements. Only licensed companies would be eligible to purchase the Fire Department-issued decals and tags, and only the Fire Department-issued decals and tags would be acceptable proof of the inspection, cleaning and/or servicing. The decals and tags would be designed with various security measures to prevent counterfeiting.
This would help ensure that only licensed businesses perform the required fire safety inspections, cleaning and servicing; promote proper performance by preventing misidentification of the company that performed the work; and make it more difficult for unqualified and unlicensed businesses to engage in fraudulent practices.
Unauthorized use of Fire Department-issued proof of compliance by an unlicensed company or individual, or misuse by a licensed company or one of its technicians, would constitute a violation of the applicable Fire Code requirements for commercial cooking exhaust systems or portable fire extinguishers and subject the violator to a civil or criminal penalty. It could also result in denial, suspension, revocation or non-renewal of a Fire Department certificate.
In accordance with existing Fire Code requirements (as set forth in FC107.7), records of all inspections, cleaning and/or servicing of equipment, and the names and Certificate of Fitness numbers of all company personnel who performed the work, must be maintained for a period not less than three (3) years.
Proposed Proof of Compliance Issuance Process
The Fire Department would coordinate the purchase of the proof of compliance from an approved City vendor. The Fire Department would retain the services of a vendor and order blank proof of compliance, which would be completed with the name of the company certificate holder at time of purchase. The price of the proof of compliance for company certificate holders would reflect the cost of its preparation and printing, as well as administrative processing costs. Minimum order sizes may apply. Price, order and payment arrangements would be published on the Fire Department’s website and would be subject to change. When possible, the Fire Department would offer company certificate holders the benefit of bulk discounts that are available for large print orders. The Fire Department anticipates publishing a bulk reorder schedule. If enough orders are received from the companies during the bulk reorder period, significant discounts may be obtained.
Related Amendments
The Fire Department also proposes to amend 3 RCNY §115-01, the rule addressing company certificates, to reference company certificates for commercial cooking system cleaning (currently set forth in Fire Code Section FC901.6.3.3), and incorporate the existing qualifications for the certificate (currently set forth on the Fire Department application form), including five years’ experience. Proposed Section 115-01(d) will also incorporate existing minimum company staffing requirements and indicate the types of tools, materials and equipment required to conduct commercial cooking exhaust system cleaning.
New material is underlined. Material to be deleted is in [brackets].
“Shall” and “must” denote mandatory requirements and may be used interchangeably in the rules of this department, unless otherwise specified or unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

Subject: 

Proposed Rule 3RCNY 115-02 Issuance of Proof of Compliance to Company Certificate Holders

Location: 
Fire Department Auditorium
9 MetroTech Center
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Contact: 

No contact

Download Copy of Proposed Rule (.pdf): 

Proposed Rules: Closed to Comments

Agency:
Comment By: 
Tuesday, August 15, 2017
Proposed Rules Content: 

 

 

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Proposed Rule

 

The Fire Department is proposing to amend existing rules 3 RCNY §§ 109-01 and 109-02 to reflect changes in the administrative body that adjudicates most Fire Department violations and to the name of the violation form returnable to that body. The Fire Department is also proposing to adopt a penalty schedule as a new Fire Department rule, 3 RCNY §109-03.

 

The Fire Department is responsible for enforcing the New York City Fire Code (FC) (Title 29 of the Administrative Code); Title 15 of the Administrative Code (Fire Prevention and Control); the New York City Construction Codes (Title 28 of the Administrative Code); and the rules promulgated by the Department and codified in Title 3 of the Rules of the City of New York (“RCNY”).

 

The Fire Department conducts enforcement by, among other things, issuing “FDNY Summonses” to people and businesses that violate the above laws and rules. FDNY Summonses are returnable to the New York City Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings (“OATH”) acting pursuant to Section 1049-a of the New York City Charter, which relates to the Environmental Control Board (“ECB”). In 2008, ECB became part of OATH.  The new procedural rules of OATH’s Hearings Division, found in Chapter 6 of the Rules of the City of New York, use the term “Summons” rather than “Notice of Violation.”

 

Accordingly, to reflect the changes described above, the Fire Department now proposes conforming amendments to Sections 109-01 and 109-02 of its rules.

 

Additionally, the Fire Department’s penalty schedule used in the adjudication of agency violations, which defines the penalties associated with each type of violation of the above laws and rules, will now be included in the Fire Department’s rules. The Department’s penalty schedule is currently promulgated as part of the OATH rules, and that rule will be repealed by OATH simultaneous with the Fire Department’s adoption of this rule.

 

The enforcement agencies possess the expertise to adopt appropriate penalties based upon the severity of each violation and its corresponding impact on public safety.  Making the penalty schedule part of the issuing agency’s rules will make it more accessible to the public as it will now be located in the same title and chapter as the rules cited in the FDNY Summonses.

 

Accordingly, the Fire Department hereby proposes adoption of a new rule, 3 RCNY §109‑03, which sets forth a penalty schedule for FDNY Summonses.  The proposed penalty schedule is unchanged from the existing penalty schedule, which is currently codified as 48 RCNY §3‑106 of OATH rules, except that the violation categories for flashback arrestor, backflow valves and gas boosters (BF34) and for cryogenic fluids (BF36) have been eliminated.  Such violations will be integrated into the applicable Violation Categories in a separate rulemaking.

 

The Fire Department’s proposed adoption of the penalty schedule is being undertaken in conjunction with OATH’s proposed repeal of the existing penalty schedule.

 

Text that has been deleted is indicated by [brackets].  Text that has been added is underlined.

 

“Shall” and “must” denote mandatory requirements and may be used interchangeably in the rules of this department, unless otherwise specified or unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

Subject: 

Amendments to 3RCNY Section 109-01: FDNY Summons, Certification of Correction and Stipulation Procedures
Amendments to 3RCNY Section109-02: Consolidation of Administrative Code Provisions For Enforcement Purposes
Propose New Rule 3RCNY Section 109-03: Penalty Schedule For FDNY Summonses

Location: 
FDNY Headquarters Auditorium
9 MetroTech Ctr
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Contact: 

No contact

Proposed Rules: Closed to Comments (View Public Comments Received:6)

Agency:
Comment By: 
Wednesday, June 14, 2017
Proposed Rules Content: 

 

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Proposed Rule

 

The Fire Code regulates the manufacturing, storage, handling, use and transportation of hazardous materials in New York City, including liquefied carbon dioxide, a compressed gas that is a potential asphyxiant (i.e., suffocation hazard). The fire safety regulations for carbon dioxide installations currently set forth in Section 3004-01 of Title 3 of the Rules of the City of New York are outdated, as they are based on reference industry standards dating from 1984 and 1986.

 

Carbon dioxide is used for refrigerating and fire extinguishing systems, but the most common use is for carbonation of soft drinks in restaurants and other places of business.  Steel containers storing carbon dioxide, pressurized and liquefied to below minus 100 degrees Fahrenheit, are installed in such premises and connected by special piping to the fountains that dispense soft drinks and supply the carbon dioxide needed to carbonate the beverages.  Cargo tank trucks periodically refill these containers through a fill connection on the outside of the building that is connected by piping to the storage container.  This system is typically self-contained; it is not connected to any building systems other than being plugged into a standard electrical outlet.

 

After reviewing current industry standards, the Fire Department proposes to repeal and re‑promulgate Section 3004-01 in order to reference the relevant provisions of the 2015 International Fire Code, the model code upon which the New York City Fire Code is based and the National Fire Protection Association standard referenced by the International Fire Code, and to eliminate or update the New York City-specific design, installation, operation and maintenance requirements set forth in the rule.

 

The proposed rule would:

 

·        regulate carbon dioxide beverage dispensing systems storing more than 100 pounds of liquefied carbon dioxide (that is, all but the smallest containers for commercial use for liquefied carbon dioxide);

 

·        require the installation of such systems by a Fire Department certificate of fitness holder;

 

·        eliminate outdated design and installation requirements, such as copper piping, that are no longer approved for use in carbon dioxide beverage dispensing systems, and reference new design and installation standards, including carbon dioxide detection and alarm systems;

 

·        allow installers to electronically file with the Fire Department the report certifying the installation of the system, and require submission of a report if there is a release of carbon dioxide or activation of the carbon dioxide detection and alarm system;

 

·        require “quick checks” of the system at time of delivery, and full inspections on an annual basis; and

 

·        standardize recordkeeping requirements for such systems.

 

This rule was identified for repeal and re-promulgation in response to a review of the City’s existing rules conducted by the New York City Mayor’s Office of Operations, working with the New York City Law Department and Office of Management and Budget, to reduce regulatory burdens, increase equity, support small businesses, and simplify and update content to help support public understanding and compliance.

 

The entire proposed rule is underlined, indicating that it is a new rule.

 

“Shall” and “must” denote mandatory requirements and may be used interchangeably in the rules of this department, unless otherwise specified or unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

 

Subject: 

3RCNY Section 3004-01 Use of Carbon Dioxide in Beverage Dispensing Systems

Location: 
Fire Department Auditorium
9 MteroTech Center
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Contact: 

No contact

Adopted Rules: Closed to Comments

Adopted Rules Content: 

 Statement of Basis and Purpose of Rule

The Fire Department is increasing the amounts it charges patients and insurers for Emergency Medical Service (EMS) ambulance transport service provided through the New York City 911 System, to reflect increased costs and help defray the City’s cost of providing these services.

The charges for ambulance service were last increased five years ago, in March 2012.  The new rates reflect a 10.4% increase in the salary of EMS and other Fire Department personnel. The rate increases will help the Fire Department recoup the cost of providing ambulance service and reduce the portion of such cost that is currently borne by City taxpayers.

The schedule of charges represents a single rate for BLS service, and separate rates for ALS1 and ALS2 levels of service.  The definition of BLS, ALS1 and ALS2 are determined by the Federal Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

The charges set forth in the rule are the amounts that the Fire Department would bill for EMS ambulance treatment and transport service.  The charges do not necessarily reflect the amounts accepted by the Fire Department as payment for such services from government and private health insurance plans.

Effective Date: 
Sun, 03/12/2017

Adopted Rules: Closed to Comments

Adopted Rules Content: 

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Final Rule


The Fire Code regulates the manufacturing, storage, handling, use and transportation of hazardous materials in New York City, including fuel oil, a combustible liquid.

Section 3405-01 of the Fire Department’s rules (Title 3 of the Rules of the City of New York) allows mobile heating and power generating trailers to operate with a citywide permit, and sets forth permit, supervision, and design and installation requirements. The rule was originally developed in response to the use of these trailers to serve buildings whose heating or electrical systems were undergoing major repairs or replacement and were taken out of service.  The trailers are typically parked on the street and connected to building utilities by piping or electrical lines.

Effective Date: 
Wed, 03/15/2017

Proposed Rules: Closed to Comments

Agency:
Comment By: 
Wednesday, January 25, 2017
Proposed Rules Content: 

 

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Proposed Rule

 

The Fire Department is proposing to increase the amounts it charges patients and insurers for Emergency Medical Service (EMS) ambulance transport service provided through the New York City 911 System, to reflect increased costs and help defray the City’s cost of providing these services.

 

The charges for ambulance service were last increased five years ago, in March 2012.  The proposed rates reflect a 10.4% increase in the salary of EMS and other Fire Department personnel. The proposed rate increases will help the Fire Department recoup the cost of providing ambulance service and reduce the portion of such cost that is currently borne by City taxpayers.

 

The proposed schedule of charges represents a single rate for BLS service, and separate rates for ALS1 and ALS2 levels of service.  The definition of BLS, ALS1 and ALS2 are determined by the Federal Department of Health and Human Services’ Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

 

The current and proposed charges set forth below are the amounts that the Fire Department would bill for EMS ambulance treatment and transport service.  The charges do not necessarily reflect the amounts accepted by the Fire Department as payment for such services from government and private health insurance plans.

 

The Fire Department proposes to amend subdivision (b) of §4900-02 of Title 3 of the Rules of the City of New York to adopt the following schedule of charges for ambulance transport service provided by the Fire Department through the New York City 911 System:

 

Subject: 

Schedule of Charges for Fire Department Ambulance Transport Service

Location: 
Fire Department Auditorium
9 MteroTech Center
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Contact: 

No contact

Download Copy of Proposed Rule (.pdf): 

Proposed Rules: Closed to Comments (View Public Comments Received:1)

Agency:
Comment By: 
Tuesday, January 3, 2017
Proposed Rules Content: 

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Proposed Rule

 

The Fire Code regulates the manufacturing, storage, handling, use and transportation of hazardous materials in New York City, including fuel oil, a combustible liquid.

 

Currently, Section 3405-01 of the Fire Department’s rules (Title 3 of the Rules of the City of New York) allows mobile heating and power generating trailers to operate with a citywide permit, and sets forth permit, supervision, and design and installation requirements. The rule was originally developed in response to the use of these trailers to serve buildings whose heating or electrical systems were undergoing major repairs or replacement and were taken out of service.  The trailers are typically parked on the street and connected to building utilities by piping or electrical lines.

 

Permitting of Mobile Trailers for Outdoor Gatherings

 

When the current rule was promulgated, the Fire Department did not envision that these trailers would be used at public gatherings like street fairs and festivals near large numbers of people, cooking operations, and other activities where their presence may potentially pose a danger to others. In response to this unanticipated use of these trailers, the Fire Department is proposing to amend the rule to clarify when the citywide permit may be used and what it authorizes, and to specifically provide that a site-specific permit, different from the one used for building heating and electrical systems, is required for mobile heating and power generating trailers used at street fairs, bazaars, carnivals, concerts, festivals, and similar outdoor gatherings.

 

Additional Capacity Permitted

 

The Fire Department additionally proposes to amend the rule to increase from 550 gallons to 1200 gallons the fuel oil storage capacity permitted on mobile heating and power generating trailers.  Trailers with 1200-gallon tanks have become the industry standard; use of such trailers has been allowed by the Fire Department by modification (variance) without incident.  Although the rule would allow the on-site storage of a substantial additional amount of fuel, the risk of fire and fuel spills is greatest when the tanks are being filled.  During peak usage, when the equipment is in constant operation, a 550 gallon tank may need to be refueled daily.  The larger tank reduces the need for frequent fueling and therefore reduces the risk of fire or spills.  Accordingly, the Fire Department has concluded that 1200-gallon capacity trailers should be allowed, eliminating the need for special applications and additional fees to obtain permission to use larger tanks.

 

Elimination of Certificate of Fitness Requirement For Most Uses

 

The Fire Department further proposes to amend the rule to provide that mobile heating and power-generating trailers only need to be supervised when connected to a high-pressure boiler.  Personal supervision of most residential heating systems is no longer required by the New York City Department of Buildings (DOB) now that use of #6 fuel oil has been virtually eliminated for environmental reasons and replaced by fuels that do not require pre-heating.  Personal supervision by a DOB-licensed operating engineer continues to be required by DOB for high-pressure boilers.  Accordingly, under this proposal, the requirement of a certificate of fitness would be eliminated where no high-pressure boiler is involved.

 

Rule Clarifications

 

The proposed rule includes two clarifications.  First, the section would be amended to make clear that it applies only to mobile heating and power generating trailers with storage for more than 10 gallons of combustible liquid fuel on the trailer or in the equipment mounted thereon, which  require a permit as set forth in FC105.6 .

 

Second, the scope of the rule would be amended to clarify that a mobile trailer with heating and power generating equipment that stores 10 gallons or less of combustible liquid fuel (or no fuel) in or upon the trailer, but is fueled by an off-vehicle temporary tank, is subject to the permit requirement applicable to combustible liquid fuel storage in the tank (also set forth in FC105.6), rather than the permit requirement applicable to mobile trailers.

 

To summarize, the proposed rule:

 

1.    Clarifies the authorization granted to operate mobile trailers under a citywide permit and makes clear that use at a street fair requires a site-specific permit to address the fire safety concerns associated with operation at such an event;

 

2.    Allows larger (1200-gallon) tanks to be installed on such mobile trailers instead of the current 550 gallon tanks;

 

3.    Eliminates the supervision requirement except for use of such mobile trailers in connection with high-pressure boilers;

 

4.    Clarifies that the rule applies only to mobile heating and power generating trailers that require a permit – that is, trailers with storage for more than 10 gallons of combustible liquid fuel on the trailer or in the equipment mounted thereon; and

 

5.    Clarifies that a mobile trailer with heating and power generating equipment that stores 10 gallons or less of combustible liquid fuel (or no fuel) in or upon the trailer, but is fueled by an off-vehicle temporary tank, is subject to the permit requirement applicable to combustible liquid fuel storage in the tank, not the permit requirement applicable to mobile trailers.

 

Working with the City’s rulemaking agencies, the Law Department, and the Office of Management and Budget, the Office of Operations conducted a retrospective rules review of the City’s existing rules, identifying those rules that will be repealed or modified to reduce regulatory burdens, increase equity, support small businesses, and simplify and update content to help support public understanding and compliance. Portions of this proposed rule amendment were identified through this initiative.

 

Text that has been deleted is indicated by [brackets].  Text that has been added is underlined.

 

“Shall” and “must” denote mandatory requirements and may be used interchangeably in the rules of this department, unless otherwise specified or unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

 

Guidance with respect to the interpretation of the Fire Code and Fire Department rules may be obtained using the Public Inquiry Form on the Fire Department’s website,http://www1.nyc.gov/site/fdny/about/resources/code-and-rules/nyc-fire-code.page.

 

Subject: 

Storage and Use of Fuel Oil on Mobile Trailers for Heating and Power Generation

Location: 
Fire Department Auditorium
9 MetroTech Center
Brooklyn, NY 11201
Contact: 

No contact

Download Copy of Proposed Rule (.pdf): 

Adopted Rules: Closed to Comments

Adopted Rules Content: 

Statement of Basis and Purpose of Final Rule

 

The Fire Department issues licenses known as certificates of fitness authorizing qualified persons to serve as Fire Safety and Emergency Action Plan (Fire Safety/EAP) Directors in office buildings, and Fire Safety Directors in hotels and in other buildings that have voluntarily installed fire alarm systems with two-way voice communication.  Fire Safety/EAP Directors and Fire Safety Directors train building occupants in the building’s emergency procedures in case of fire, and implement those procedures when there is a fire.

 

The 2014 Fire Code (incorporating amendments enacted by Local Law No. 148 of 2013) replaced these two certificates of fitness with a single certificate of fitness for a Fire and Life Safety (FLS) Director in both types of occupancies. This rule implements the new Fire Code requirements by repealing the two rules relating to Fire Safety Director (3 RCNY §113-02) and Fire Safety/EAP Director (3 RCNY §113‑03) and replacing them with a new Section 113-02 for FLS Director.

 

The 2014 Fire Code was also updated to cover non-fire emergencies, such as situations involving active shooters and medical emergencies.  This rule requires persons applying for an FLS Director certificate of fitness to obtain training in these areas.

 

In response to public comment, the timeframe for implementation of these Fire Code requirements has been extended.

 

Beginning March 1, 2020, all occupancies currently required to be staffed by a Fire Safety/EAP Director or Fire Safety Director are required to be staffed instead by a person holding an FLS Director certificate of fitness.

 

This rule sets forth the procedure and timeframes by which current Fire Safety/EAP Directors and Fire Safety Directors must transition to the new FLS Director certificate of fitness:

 

  • Fire Safety/EAP Directors, who have been trained in non-fire emergencies, must complete an active shooter and medical emergency training course from an accredited training school (based on a curriculum recently developed by the Fire Department and the New York City Police Department) by the earlier of September 4, 2017 or the date of expiration of the Fire Safety/EAP Director certificate of fitness, in order to obtain their new FLS Director certificate of fitness.  No Fire Department written or on-site (practical) examination will be required for active Fire Safety/EAP Directors who timely complete the active shooter and medical emergency training course.

 

  • Fire Safety Directors, who do not hold the EAP certificate of fitness and have not been trained in non-fire emergencies, must complete an active shooter and medical emergency training course by the earlier of September 4, 2017 or the date of expiration of the Fire Safety Director certificate of fitness.  Fire Safety Directors must thereafter complete a full course in non‑fire emergencies by the earlier of September 3, 2018 or the date of expiration of the Fire Safety Director certificate of fitness.  Fire Safety Directors may, if they wish, take the full course (which includes training in active shooter and medical emergencies) by the earlier of September 4, 2017 or the date of expiration of the Fire Safety Director certificate of fitness, instead of the two courses.  Upon completion of the full course, Fire Safety Directors must apply for the new FLS Director certificate of fitness and complete the necessary written examination by the earlier of March 1, 2020 or the date of expiration of the Fire Safety Director certificate of fitness.

 

The certificates of fitness for Fire Safety/EAP Directors and Fire Safety Directors who do not comply with these requirements, or who fail the applicable FLS Director written examination, will be suspended and the holder may be required to apply as a new applicant.

 

First-time certificate of fitness applicants must comply with the new FLS Director certificate of fitness requirements, including attending and successfully completing an accredited course that includes fire safety and non-fire emergency training, and passing written and practical Fire Department examinations.

 

Public comment was mixed in response to the Fire Department’s proposal to establish a minimum of one year of qualifying experience for the FLS Director certificate (as opposed to the current requirement of three years for a Fire Safety Director).  Some supported the change as a beneficial expansion of the pool of qualified applicants; others were concerned that one year was insufficient qualifying experience.  After further consideration, the Fire Department has determined to strike a balance by retaining the current requirement of 3 years of qualifying experience, but accepting as an alternative qualification 18 months of qualifying experience that includes 6 months of continuous employment at one work location.  In the Fire Department’s judgment, continuous employment at one location deepens an applicant’s understanding of building operations and/or increases the likelihood of exposure to the types of incidents and emergencies that an FLS Director will encounter.

 

This rule also amends and expands the existing rule for the Fire Safety Director training course (3 RCNY §113-05) to cover all requirements for FLS Director training courses, including the requirements in the existing rule for Fire Safety/EAP Director training courses (3 RCNY §113‑06).

 

New Section 113-06 sets forth the requirements for courses for active shooter and medical emergency training. In response to public comment, the rule has been revised to make clear that FLS Directors are neither expected nor required to personally provide patient care.

 

Active shooter and medical emergency training have been added as a component of the FLS Director training course, but the requirements have also been set forth in a separate section to allow accredited educators and educational institutions to offer it as a separate training course for emergency preparedness staff and other building staff not seeking an FLS Director certificate. In response to public comment, the curriculum for the medical emergency training course will make clear that:

 

  • FLS Directors are neither expected nor required to personally provide patient care, as their duties as FLS Director require them to remain at the fire command center during an emergency.

 

  • A building owner is not required to establish or train an emergency medical response team, but only to invite CPR-trained or other qualified persons working at the premises to volunteer to be contacted in the event of a medical emergency on the premises, and to establish a procedure by which they can be notified (such as a text or call).

 

  • The volunteer’s unavailability, untimely response, or unwillingness to respond to a notification of a medical emergency does not constitute a breach of the owner’s or the emergency preparedness staff’s obligations under this rule.

 

Also, in response to public comment, the qualifications for conducting the active shooter and medical emergency training have been revised to include instructors experienced in fire safety and non-fire emergency (EAP) training.  (One of the instructor qualification provisions, inadvertently marked for deletion, has been restored.)

 

Conforming terminology changes have been made to the general certificate of fitness rule (3 RCNY §113-01), the training course accreditation rule (3 RCNY §113-04) and the Fire Code fee schedule (3 RCNY §4601-01).

 

This rule also:

 

·         Requires verifiable proof of qualifications or fitness to serve as an FLS Director or other certificate of fitness.

 

·         Codifies the current practice of allowing applicants who fail the Fire Department-accredited training course examination to take the examination a second time.  Applicants who fail a second time must re-take the training course.

 

·         Establishes an original application fee of $25, test fee of $25, and a practical (on-site) examination fee of $750 for the new FLS Director certificate of fitness.  These amounts reflect the consolidation of the existing fees for Fire Safety Director and EAP Director certificates of fitness. The renewal fee of $5 remains unchanged.

 

·         Establishes an original application fee of $2,940 (and a renewal fee of $420) for an application for accreditation of the new active shooter and medical emergency course.  These fees are identical to the fees currently charged for Fire Department accreditation of other training courses, including emergency preparedness-related training courses.

 

Terms used in the rule that are defined in the Fire Code or elsewhere in the Fire Department’s rules are indicated by italics.

 

Text that has been deleted is indicated by [brackets].  Text that has been added is underlined.

 

Guidance with respect to the interpretation of the Fire Code and Fire Department rules may be obtained using the Public Inquiry Form on the Fire Department’s website, http://www1.nyc.gov/site/fdny/about/resources/code-and-rules/nyc-fire-code.page.

 

Effective Date: 
Thu, 12/01/2016

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