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Fire safety systems

Fire safety systems are installed into buildings to help protect people and buildings from fires. They include but are not limited to portable fire extinguishers, sprinklers and fire extinguishing systems, fire alarms and their systems. Fire safety systems are also known as life safety systems and fire protection installations.

When should a system be inspected?

Fire safety systems have to be inspected regularly, as per the Alberta Fire Code, by a qualified service company. When a service company completes an inspection they will create a service report that will contain their findings. These reports must be kept on site for two years and be readily available for examination by a Fire Safety Codes Officer.

What is in a service report?

Service reports of a fire safety system will include:

  • Building Address
  • Inspection and testing date
  • Testing Standard
  • System Status (fully functional or system has deficiencies)
  • Deficiencies
  • Recommendations (reported on a separate page)

What is a deficiency?

Deficiencies are problems with the system that MUST be corrected according to Alberta Fire Code. They differ from recommendations which are suggestions on how you can improve your fire protection system and recommendations are not mandatory.

When do I report deficient systems?

If an owner or their authorized agent is unwilling or unable to correct a system that has deficiencies then the system must be reported to the Calgary Fire Department. The person(s) carrying out the maintenance are responsible for submitting the report. Reporting these systems is a requirement of the Alberta Fire Code.

How do I report deficient systems?

Currently, we have a pilot project allowing deficient Fire Alarm systems to be reported electronically. Additional systems may be added in the future for electronic reporting.

Service companies can contact the Calgary Fire Department to learn more about reporting Fire alarm systems and to get the private electronic link to send in a report.

What happens after a report is filed?

Once a report has been submitted, a Fire Safety Codes Officer will contact the building owner to ensure that all repairs have been or will be completed. Building owners or operators will need to confirm the repairs through documentation. The documentation needs to be in the form of a formal report which indicates the inspection findings and any supporting documents from the service company that made the repairs. This is typically in the form of a letter which states the repairs were made and that the system is fully functional.

Are there consequences for not complying?

Failure to comply with the Alberta Fire Code can result in provincial orders or legal actions against companies, owners and/or operators. This information is outlined in the Safety Codes Act. Failure to comply applies to both reporting a deficient system and not repairing of deficient system.

Letters for service companies

Below are letters for service companies to use to help explain the requirements and standards that they are held to by the Calgary Fire Department and how the requirements impact their customers:

It is up to the service company to decide when they want to provide these letters to their customers. Typically letters would be provided once an annual inspection has been completed and the final report has been given to the owner or operator of the building.