Fire Prevention

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    What we do

The Bureau of Fire Prevention is responsible for providing fire and life safety protection to the public by ensuring fire code compliance and enforcement of the Massachusetts Fire Prevention Laws and Regulations, Building Codes related to Fire Protection and City Ordinances related to Fire Protection and Prevention. Four major functions of the Bureau are 1) to review engineered building plans for all life safety systems; 2) to perform inspections and witness testing of any installation, alteration, modification or repair to any fire alarm, sprinkler or suppression system; 3) investigate and mitigate complaints received from the public, other City agencies and the fire suppression forces that involve fire hazard and life safety code violations and 4) investigate for the cause and origin of all fires.


Additional responsibilities include:


Issuance of permits as mandated by Massachusetts General Law Chapter 148 for Fire Prevention; Massachusetts State Fire Code (527CMR); and Massachusetts State Building Code (780CMR); Administering the state mandated inspection program conducted by fire suppression personnel for public and private schools, hospitals, hotels, clinics, day care centers, theaters and nursing homes; Administering the residential smoke detector and carbon monoxide compliance laws and supervising the smoke detector/carbon monoxide inspection program conducted by fire suppression personnel; Conducting inspections for Occupancy Certificates; Conducting inspections as required by the City of Cambridge License Commission; Administering the Fire Detail program as required for public safety; Administering and performing inspections mandated by state fuel storage tank regulations; Administering the annual flammable storage permits;; Performing inspections of restaurants and nightclubs as part of the City Manager's License Task Force; Providing the necessary resources required for public events;


The Bureau of Fire Prevention reports directly to the Chief of Department. The division is staffed with one Deputy Chief, two Fire Captains and two Fire Lieutenants.


The SARA Title III Officer performs additional fire prevention duties such as public relations and education, and coordinates of fire prevention week activities.