Bureau of Fire Prevention

Bureau of Fire Prevention


Non-Residential Change of Occupancy
Inspections
The Bureau of Fire Prevention performs inspections for all Non-Residential Certificates of Occupancy (COs) for non-residential businesses and properties.  The Non-Residential CO Application is available HERE or at the West Deptford Township Municipal Building and must be accompanied by a $60.00 fee. 

Annual Business Registration & Commercial Inspections
West Deptford Township Bureau of Fire Prevention is the Local Enforcing Agency (LEA) charged with enforcing the New Jersey Uniform Fire Code (N.J.A.C. 5:70-1 et seq.) and the Township’s General Ordinances for ALL commercial businesses and properties located within West Deptford Township.  Inspections are required to occur on an annual basis, or other cyclical inspection schedule required by the Uniform Fire Code, for all life-hazard and non-life hazard uses (N.J.A.C. 5:70-2.1). 

Within 30 days of receiving a Certificate of Occupancy, all commercial businesses and properties shall register with the West Deptford Township Bureau of Fire Prevention.  To register, please complete the Business Registration Application HERE.

Common Violations Found
-       Extension cords (temporary use only) and piggy-backed surge protectors (plugged directly into wall);
-       Inoperable Exit Signs and Emergency Egress Lights (test monthly and keep a log sheet);
-       Missing Electrical outlet covers and Junction box covers;
-       Life Safety System reports, as follows:
         -       Fire Alarm (tested annually);
         -       Sprinkler System (tested annually);
         -       Standpipes (tested annually); and
         -       Kitchen Fire Suppression System (tested annually or every 6 months for Type 1 Fire Safety Permits if not a life hazard use).
-       Carbon Monoxide (CO) Alarms (tested monthly, keep a log sheet and change batteries every 6 months);
-       Maintenance of Fire Rated Construction (holes in walls and ceilings);
-       Locking and Blocking Means of Egress;
-       Fire Extinguishers (minimum 2A:10BC Fire extinguisher required, which is inspected by a Licensed Fire Extinguisher Company annually);
-       Storage Height (24” in a non-sprinklered building and 18” in a sprinklered building); and
-       Electrical/Mechanical Room Signage (identify rooms where the electrical panel and/or mechanical rooms are located if behind a door/access panel).

Violation Procedure
These are just some common violations that the Bureau of Fire Prevention encounters during inspections. If any violations are found during an inspection of a business and/or commercial property, depending on the violation, the responsible party (e.g. – business owner, property owner, tenant) will have anywhere from 15 days to 30 Days to abate the violation. An official Notice of Violation will be provided to the responsible party upon completion of the inspection with a timeframe to abate the violation. Once all violations have been abated, the business/property will be issued a “Certificate of Inspection,” which shall be posted in a conspicuous location.

Fire Investigations
The Bureau of Fire Prevention is charged with investigating any and all reported fires and explosions within West Deptford Township per N.J.A.C. 5:71-3.3. 

The Bureau has two (2) certified Fire Investigators who utilize the New Jersey Uniform Fire Code and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 921 and 1033 documents to determine the authority to investigate and provide a basic methodology for fire investigations.

Fire Safety Permits
There are four (4) different types of fire safety permits that the Township Bureau of Fire Prevention issues to commercial businesses and properties located within West Deptford.  The Fire Safety Permit Application can be found HERE

Applications for permits are required to be submitted at least 2 weeks (10 Business days) prior to the event and/or permit inspection. These applications shall be submitted the Bureau of Fire Prevention with a check made payable to “West Deptford Township.”

The fees and types of uses (examples provided from the Uniform Fire Code) that require Fire Safety Permits include: 

Type 1 ($54.00 Dollars)

  1. Bonfires;
  2. Kitchen Fire Suppression Systems (non-Life-Hazard Use businesses and Mobile Food Trucks);
  3. Group overnight stays;
  4. Temporary change of use/multipurpose room;
  5. Welding, cutting operations or hot work;
  6. Tents (900 SF or greater);
  7. Unoccupied/vacant building (2,500 – 12,000 SF); and
  8. Churches being used as a temporary shelter.

 Type 2 ($214.00 Dollars) 

  1. Carnivals;
  2. Unoccupied/vacant buildings (12,000 – 100,000 SF); and
  3. Storage/retail of consumer grade fireworks. 

 Type 3 ($427.00 Dollars) 

  1. Storage, handling or discharging of fireworks;
  2. Junk yards/outdoor used tire storage/outside storage of forest products; and
  3. Unoccupied/vacant buildings (100,000 SF or greater).  

 Type 4 ($641.00 Dollars) 

  1. Storage of 2,000 – 6,000 cubic feet of flammable compressed gas;
  2. Storage, handling and processing of combustible, flammable and unstable liquids of 660 gallons or more;
  3. Any amount of radioactive material for which a specific license from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission is required; and
  4. Storage/handling of:

            -       55 gallons or more of corrosive liquids;
            -       500 lbs. of oxidizing materials;
            -       10 lbs. of organic peroxide;
            -       500 lbs. of nitromethane; or
            -       1,000 lbs. of ammonium nitrate.

Fire Safety Education
The Bureau of Fire Prevention provides fire safety and prevention educational programs to the West Deptford community and schools, as well as to the Township’s volunteer fire fighters and staff.

October is National Fire Prevention month. If you would like to know more about the Township’s Fire Safety Educational Programs, please contact the West Deptford Township Bureau of Fire Prevention.  For month by month Fire Safety Tips, click on the links below:
- January Fire Safety Tips                   
- February Fire Safety Tips
- March Fire Safety Tips                     
- April Fire Safety Tips
- May Fire Safety Tips                           
- June Fire Safety Tips
- July Fire Safety Tips                           
- August Fire Safety Tips
- September Fire Safety Tips           
- November Fire Safety Tips             
- December Fire Safety Tips

Staff Contacts 

NAME

TITLE

PHONE

John Austin

Fire Official/Fire Investigator

(856) 845-4004 ext. 118

David Raso

Fire Inspector/Fire Investigator

(856) 845-4004 ext. 118

Walter Woodward

Fire Inspector

(856) 845-4004 ext. 118