Fire and Life Safety Director Certificate of Fitness
Proposed Rules: Closed to Comments (View Public Comments Received:4)
Statement of Basis and Purpose of Proposed 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. The proposed rule would implement 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. The proposed rule would require persons applying for an FLS Director certificate of fitness to obtain training in these areas.
Beginning March 1, 2019, all occupancies currently required to be staffed by a Fire Safety/EAP Director or Fire Safety Director would be required to be staffed instead by a person holding an FLS Director certificate of fitness.
The proposed 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 March 1, 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.
· 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 March 1, 2017, and a full course in non‑fire emergencies by March 1, 2018, or in both cases by the expiration of the Fire Safety Director certificate of fitness if sooner, in order to obtain the new FLS Director certificate of fitness by the earlier of December 1, 2018 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.
The Fire Department also proposes to amend and expand 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).
A proposed new Section 113-06 will set forth the requirements for courses for active shooter and medical emergency training. Active shooter and medical emergency training will become a component of the proposed 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.
Conforming terminology changes are proposed to be 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).
The proposed rule would also:
· Require verifiable proof of qualifications or fitness to serve as an FLS Director or other certificate of fitness.
· Codify 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.
· Establish 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.
· Establish 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 proposed rule that are defined in the Fire Code or elsewhere in the Fire Department’s rules are indicated by italics.
Text proposed to be deleted is indicated by [brackets]. Text proposed to be added is underlined.
“Shall” and “must” denote mandatory requirements and may be used interchangeably in Fire Department rules, 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.