Last year, residents in a 10-story condominium building at the corner of Beacon Street, adjacent to the Massachusetts avenue witnessed the largest fire-fighting operation the city has seen in recent years. The fire claimed the lives of Boston Fire Lt. Ed Walsh and Fire-fighter Michael Kennedy.
Upon investigation, it was revealed that welders doing repair work on a hand rail on the fire escape ladder had accidentally sparked the blaze next door at 298 Beacon St.
City Inspection records revealed that the last time a fire escape inspection was done at the building was in 2004 despite requirements that the safety apparatus should have been inspected in 2009 and 2014. Due to this, inadequate fire escape inspection seemed to be the likely cause and raised the question of whether the repair work being done in 2014 could have been avoided altogether.
Indeed, this tragic episode highlights the importance of regular fire escape inspections.
Why is it important to have regular the fire escape inspections?
Compliance with the law
State laws specify that your fire escape needs to be inspected at least after every 5 years, and an affidavit must be filed with the building department. Failure to this may result in penalties and liabilities in case of any fire escape-related accident.
If the law is not convincing, remember that the sole purpose of Inspection, Evaluation and Maintenance of a Fire Escape System is to ensure it will perform as needed during an evacuation of the building i.e. during an emergency. This is to save lives and prevent further damage of property. Having regular fire escape inspections is therefore a precautionary measure and an ethical responsibility.
Who is Responsible for Fire Escape Maintenance?
Building owners are solely responsible, but the fire escape evaluations and inspections must be done by Individuals with knowledge and understanding of the operating components of the fire escape subject to testing. The inspector will record and report the condition of the fire escape and the owner will have to decide if, corrective actions will be taken.
Don’t wait until a tragedy happens; call us today for a thorough fire escape inspection.
We specialize in fire escape repair, fire escape replacement, fire escape maintenance and fire escape certification. With decades of experience, we are guaranteed to provide the best service possible.