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Frequently Asked Questions



  1. My building has a fire alarm system. Are there things I should do to maintain the system?
  2. I had some violations on my last inspection report. How long do I have to correct these violations?
  3. Am I required to have fire extinguishers in my place of business? If so, what type and how may do I need? How often do they have to be serviced?
  4. Does the Douglas County Fire Department sell and/or inspect fire extinguishers?
  5. I am going to be opening a business in Douglas County. Before I sign the lease and apply for a license, will the Fire Department inspect it to be sure that the building is okay for the type of business I have planned?
  6. Are there any charges for doing a fire inspection for a structure?
  7. What ISO (Insurance Services Office) rating does the Douglas County Fire Department have?
  8. Why are extension cords not allowed in my place of business?
  9. My building has a sprinkler system. Are there things I should do to maintain the system?


1. My building has a fire alarm system. Are there things I should do to maintain the system?
If you own the building, you are responsible to see that the system is tested annually by a reputable contracted agency and the documentation of this test kept on file for the Fire Prevention Bureau to view. Also, it would help if someone who is likely to be in the building on a daily basis knows where the alarm panel is located.

If you are a tenant or owner-occupant there are other things you can do to be sure your system is ready in case it is needed. Never paint a detector surface. Each detector is designed to cover a certain amount of area in your building so before you build walls, large shelving units or stack storage to the ceiling, check with your fire inspector to be sure that what you are doing will not prevent the detector from doing its job. Also, never hang anything from a detector.
(Posted on: March 18, 2004)

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2. I had some violations on my last inspection report. How long do I have to correct these violations?
How long you have to rectify a code violation depends on the code that has been broken. We are allowed a certain amount of flexibility with some codes. Generally, most violations should be corrected within thirty (30) days. Some violations require more immediate action. Your Fire Inspector will let you know if any such conditions exist.
(Posted on: March 18, 2004)

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3. Am I required to have fire extinguishers in my place of business? If so, what type and how may do I need? How often do they have to be serviced?
The code requires all businesses and commercial occupancies to install fire extinguishers in adequate numbers and to keep such extinguishers ready for immediate use at all times. The intent is to keep these devices readily available to extinguish fires when they are small.

Further, the code requires annual inspection and service of each extinguisher to assure they are in good working condition and ready for use. A minimum of one (1) extinguisher is required in every business and commercial occupancy. Travel distance to an extinguisher cannot exceed seventy-five (75) feet. In occupancies using flammable or combustible liquids, travel distance to an extinguisher cannot exceed fifty (50) feet.

Extinguishers are to be protected from damage by being mounted or hung from a wall in an accessible path of travel. The preferred installation is towards the exit doors. Extinguishers shall be placed on a shelf if not mounted or hung on a wall and must be readily accessible at all times.
(Posted on: March 18, 2004)

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4. Does the Douglas County Fire Department sell and/or inspect fire extinguishers?
The Douglas County Fire Department does not sell or inspect fire extinguishers. You can locate a certified fire extinguisher inspector by linking to the State of Georgia Fire Marshal's homepage or by looking in the yellow pages under " fire extinguishers " for a company near you.
(Posted on: March 18, 2004)

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5. I am going to be opening a business in Douglas County. Before I sign the lease and apply for a license, will the Fire Department inspect it to be sure that the building is okay for the type of business I have planned?
Yes, the Fire Prevention Bureau recommends that you call before you take any action so that we can inspect the structure, the zoning and anything else that might restrict the use of the building. We prefer that you do this before you sign the contract for the building.
(Posted on: March 18, 2004)

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6. Are there any charges for doing a fire inspection for a structure?
There are no charges for doing a fire inspection.
(Posted on: March 18, 2004)

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7. What ISO (Insurance Services Office) rating does the Douglas County Fire Department have?
The Douglas County has a rating of 4/9.
(Posted on: March 18, 2004)

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8. Why are extension cords not allowed in my place of business?
Extension cords are intended for temporary and portable use only.
(Posted on: March 18, 2004)

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9. My building has a sprinkler system. Are there things I should do to maintain the system?
If you own the building, you are required to see that the system is tested annually by a Georgia licensed sprinkler contractor and the documentation of this test kept on file for the Fire Prevention Bureau to review. If there is a sprinkler system in your building it must be in operational condition at all times.

If you are a tenant or owner-occupant, there are other things you can do to be sure your system is ready in case it is needed. Never paint a sprinkler head. Each sprinkler head is designed to cover a certain amount of area in your building so before you build walls, large shelving units or stack storage to the ceiling check with your fire inspector to be sure that what you do will not prevent the sprinkler head from doing its job. Also, never hang anything from a sprinkler head.
(Posted on: March 18, 2004)

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