Fire Suppression Frequently Asked Questions/Codes and Standards




FIRE SUPPRESSION PROGRAM FAQ
 AND CODES AND STANDARDS


Plan Review

Q: Is the Plan Intake/Permit form only for State of Colorado projects?

A: Yes, all of the forms, procedures, and permit processes identified on this website (and in the Suppression Rules) are strictly for projects wherein the State of Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control is the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ). Check with all local jurisdictions for their specific project/inspection requirements.

 Q: My town has a fire department, why don’t I send my plans to them?

A: The Division of Fire Prevention and Control is considered the Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) for suppression systems in all cities, towns, and areas that do not have a current certified fire inspector. In these cases, the DFPC will perform the plan review and all required inspections related to the fire suppression system.

 Q: Why don’t I send my fire alarm plans to the DFPC.

A: The DFPC Fire Suppression Program does not regulate fire alarms (not connected to the suppression system). These plans need to be sent to the local fire/building official for their review and inspection.

In cases where the local jurisdiction is unable or unwilling to review/inspect the fire alarm, the DFPC can perform these activities under an Advanced Technical Assistance agreement. This agreement must be formally requested by the local jurisdiction, NOT the suppression contractor.

Advanced technical support is just that—support; at no time does the DFPC assume AHJ responsibility and all permitting and inspections must be performed by the local authority.

 Q: How many sets of paper plans do I need to send to the Division of Fire Prevention and Control?

A: A minimum of three (3) sets of plans (drawings) , one (1) electronic set (disc, email or thumb drive)  one (1) set of product specifications and two (2) sets of hydraulic calculations are required.

  Q: My plans came back “Not Approved.” Do I have to resubmit three (3) entire new set of drawings?

A: Yes. Although, depending on the reason for non-approval, the designer may be able to indicate changes by way of a letter, “clouding” changes on plans, or calling the plan examiner to discuss the situation.

 Q: How long will my plans take to review once received in your office?

A: Normally it is best to allow 6 weeks for the entire process.

 Q: May I contact the Division to find out the status of my plan review?

A: In order to ensure efficiency, it is best to allow the plans examiners to contact you if your plans will be delayed or there are problems found with the submitted design.

Q: Can I request that my plans have an expedited review? Even if I pay more?

A: No, we review plans in the order received. Also, the State of Colorado cannot accept extra fees to expedite plan review.

 Q: Can I drop off paper plans or do they need to be mailed in?

A: Either, depending on your location, you may mail the plans to the office or personally drop them off. They are date stamped and processed in the order we receive them.

 Q: My company is installing a suppression system in a public school. Do I have to do anything different?

A: Yes, the Division of Fire Prevention and Control manages a separate Public School Program. All plan submittals and inquiries should be submitted under that program’s rules and procedures. The DFPC website has more information and the applications for these projects.

 Q: Does the Division bill my company for plan review and inspection services?

A: Yes, all billing is performed on a monthly basis. In order to be in “good-standing” with the DFPC all outstanding balances shall be paid within 60 days of the invoice date.

 Q: How much does the DFS charge for plan review/inspection services?

A: Plan reviews are charged per hour plus a plan registration (application) fee  per submission.

Inspections are charged at per hour for travel and site time with a one-hour minimum.

Inspections

 Q: How do I schedule an inspection?

A: The DFPC website has a form to complete and send via email to CDPS_Colorado_Division_of_Fire_Prevention_inspections@state.co.us

 Q: When should I call for an inspection?

A: A minimum of five days is required to schedule your inspection.

 Q: What do I need at my inspection?

A: All requests for inspections shall only be approved if the appropriate permit, an approved set of plans, all equipment necessary to test, and applicable forms (e.g. NFPA 24, Contractors Aboveground) are on site. Failure to have the above requirements will result in a forfeited inspection with fees charged.

Also, coordinating with other interested parties is crucial to pass your inspection. This would include, but is not limited to, alarm contractors, HVAC installers, construction supervisors, or facility maintenance personnel.

 Q: How do I know if the fire inspector assigned to my inspection is currently certified in the State of Colorado.

A: You can check the status of any fire inspector at the www.dfs.state.co.us website.

 Q: Do you perform annual “maintenance” inspections on sprinkler systems?

A: No. Although the DFPC does perform annual life-safety inspections on all Public Schools and limited gaming areas in the State of Colorado.Local jurisdictions and/or other State agencies may conduct their own annual or maintenance inspections.

Q: Do you inspect fire alarms, commercial hood systems, or fire extinguishers.

A: We will review and inspect fire alarm components required and related to the fire suppression system. We also review and inspect Commercial Hood Systems. We do not inspect fire extinguishers.

The DFPC will inspect fire alarms, hood systems upon request of the local jurisdiction, on projects for which we have been approved to provide “technical assistance” and have performed a formal plan review. All prerequisites (i.e. approved plans, permit, etc) apply in these situation before an inspector will be scheduled.

 

Contractor Registration

 Q: I currently service and install fire extinguishers, do I need a Suppression Contractor’s registration from the DFPC?

A: No, the State of Colorado currently does not register contractors for fire extinguishers. It is important to check with local jurisdictions where you will be working as they may have their own certification process.

 Q: How long are Suppression Contractor Certifications valid.

A: All Backflow,Underground and Suppression Contractor Certification registrations are good for one (1) calendar year; January 1st to December 31st. Sprinkler Fitter Registration is valid for 1 year which runs from July 1 to June 30.

 Q: My company installs both sprinklers and backflow devices. Do I need separate registrations for each?

A: Yes, Suppression contractors will need to apply and become registered for each level depending on their operations. Suppression contractors may install a backflow appliance but to test it would require the Backflow Registration.

Suppression contractors that perform tests (i.e. maintenance, annual, acceptance) on backflow devices are required to obtain the Backflow Regsitration.

Contractors that only install/test backflow devices or underground fire lines require the Backflow and/or Underground registrations respectively. These contractors cannot install, test, or maintain any aboveground fire sprinkler components.

 Q: My main company office is located in a state outside Colorado, but I have regional offices in Colorado, Arizona, and Utah. Do I need to register each office? 

A: Any office that designs and submits plans to a Colorado fire department or the DFPC requires a separate registration. In the example above, each office would require a separate certification to submit plans to the DFPC.

 Q: How do I become registered?

A: Our registration information, forms and application are conveniently located on our website. dfs.state.co.us

 Q: I am a registered Fire Suppression Contractor, do I also need to be a DFPC Registered Sprinkler Fitter?

A: It depends. It you are the principal of a suppression company and do not work in the field installing sprinkler systems, then you do not need to be a registered fitter.

Your installers do require the registration.

If you are working in the field and install any aboveground fire suppression component, then you would need to get the DFS Sprinkler Fitter registration.

 Q: Do apprentices need to be registered as a Fitter?

A: No, but they need to be supervised by a DFPC registered fitter. The ratio is 2 apprentices to every 1 registered fitter (2:1).

Apprentices need to be currently enrolled in a U.S. Department of Labor Apprenticeship program to meet the program’s requirements.

 Q: I am a Registered Fitter in another state/jurisdiction, can I transfer that registration to the DFPC program?

A: No, but you may be able to use the qualifications and credentials from that state to meet the minimum qualification requirements of the DFPC program.

 Q: Is there an examination requirement for the Fitters program?

A: The DFPC will accept the following three tests-

1. United Association State (UA Star) Pipefitter Mastery Exam

2. CSA Sprinkler Commercial Residential On Site Competent Person

3. City of Denver’s Journeyman Inspector Examination

 

CODES AND STANDARDS ADOPTED

SECTION 6 CODES AND STANDARDS ADOPTED

6.1 All publications, standards or rules adopted and incorporated by reference in these rules are on file and available for public inspection during normal business hours by contacting the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control, 690 Kipling suite 2000, Lakewood, CO 80215. All publications, standards or rules adopted and incorporated by reference in these rules may also be examined at any state publications depository library. This rule does not include later amendments to or editions of any materials incorporated by reference.

6.2 Questions, clarification, or interpretation of these rules should be addressed in writing to: Fire Suppression Program Administrator, Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control, 690 Kipling Suite 2000, Lakewood, CO 80215.

6.3 The following codes and standards, including applicable addenda and appendices, are adopted by the Administrator for the Fire Suppression Program

6.3.1 International Building Code, 2006 edition.

This code is published by the International Code Council (ICC), 5203 Leesburg Pike, Suite 600, Falls Church, VA 22041-3405. Copies of the incorporated material can be purchased from the ICC at the address shown above.

6.3.4 International Fire Code, 2006 edition.

This code is published by the International Code Council (ICC), 5203 Leesburg Pike Suite 600, Falls Church, VA 22041-3405 Copies of the incorporated material can be purchased from the ICC at the address shown above.

6.3.5 International Residential Code, 2006 edition

This code is published by the International Code Council (ICC), 5203 Leesburg Pike Suite 600, Falls Church, VA 22041-3405. Copies of the incorporated material can be purchased from the ICC at the address shown above.

6.3.6 National Fire Protection Standards

NFPA 1 Uniform Fire Code, 2006 edition

NFPA 11 Standard for Low Expansion Foam and Combined Agent Systems, 2005 edition.

NFPA 12 Standard for the Installation of Carbon Dioxide Extinguishing Systems, 2005 edition

NFPA 12A Standard for the Installation of Halon 1301 Fire Extinguishing Systems, 2004 edition.

NFPA 13 Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems, including all standards referenced in Chapter 10 and considered part of the requirements of this adoption, 2002 edition.

NFPA 13D Installation of Sprinkler Systems in One and Two Family Dwellings and Mobile Homes, 2002 edition.

NFPA 13R Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems in Residential Occupancies up to four stories in height, 2002 edition.

NFPA 14 Standpipe and Hose Systems, 2003 edition.

NFPA 15 Water Spray Fixed Systems for Fire Protection, 2001 edition.

NFPA 16 Deluge Foam Water Sprinkler and Foam Water Spray Systems, 2003 edition.

NFPA 17 Standard for Dry Chemical Extinguishing Systems, 2002 edition.

NFPA 17A Standard for Wet Chemical Extinguishing Systems, 2002 edition.

NFPA 20 Centrifugal Fire Pumps, 2003 edition.

NFPA 22 Water Tanks for Private Fire Protection, 2003 edition.

NFPA 24 Private Fire Service Mains and Their Appurtenances, 2002 edition.

NFPA 25 Standard for the Inspection, Testing, and Maintenance of Water Based Fire Protection Systems, 2002 edition.

NFPA 72 National Fire Alarm Code, 2002 edition

NFPA 409 Aircraft Hangars, 2004 edition.

NFPA 423 Aircraft Engine Test Facilities, 2004 edition.

NFPA 750 Water Mist Fire Protection Systems, 2003 edition.

NFPA 2001 Clean Air Extinguishing Systems, 2004 edition.

NFPA 5000 Building Construction and Safety Code, 2006 edition.

These standards are published by the National Fire Protection Association, Batterymarch Park, Quincy, MA 02269, Telephone: (800) 344 3555. Copies of the incorporated material can be purchased from the National Fire Protection Association at the address shown above.

6.4 In the case of any conflicting requirements between any code and standard adopted by the Administrator, the Administrator, in his sole discretion shall determine which provisions shall apply.

6.5 Municipalities, counties, fire protection districts and other units of local government having the authority to do so, may adopt codes, standards, ordinances and/or resolutions governing the design and installation of fire protection systems that may be different than those adopted by the Administrator.

6.5.1 Municipalities, counties, fire protection districts and other local authorities employing certified fire suppression inspectors may enforce locally adopted codes, standards ordinances and/or resolutions governing the design and installation of fire protection systems, to the extent permitted by the adopting ordinance or resolution.

6.5.2 Conflicts between the codes and standards adopted by the Administrator and those adopted by a local government shall be resolved in the following manner:

A. In cases where the local authority employs certified fire suppression inspectors, the local government requirements shall prevail.

B. In cases where the local authority does not employ certified fire suppression inspectors and the Division of Fire Safety conducts plan reviews and inspections, the more restrictive requirements shall prevail.
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