Group A Occupancies (Places of Assembly) – Emergency Evacuation Drills

The following summarizes our written fire drill procedures for Group A (Assembly) Occupancies, which are defined by the 2009 International Fire Code (IFC) as buildings or structures used for the gathering of 50 or more persons for purposes such as civic, social or religious functions, recreation, education or instruction, food or drink consumption, or awaiting transportation. Examples included, but are not limited to: Banquet halls, Exhibition halls, Concert halls, Theaters, Indoor Sports Arenas, Auditoriums, Libraries and Stadiums. Fire drills are to be conducted for these occupancies and are to meet the code requirements of the IFC, Sections 404 through 406, listed in supporting documents.
I. Code Requirement Summary
Based on the code requirements listed in the supporting documents, fire drills are to be conducted for employees only. The drills are to be conducted on a quarterly basis and are to provide training in the following areas:

  1. Evacuations procedure and planning,
  2. Location and use of portable fire extinguishers (when assigned),
  3. Alarm response duties,
  4. Location of assembly point(s),
  5. Reentry control and procedure.

The drills are to be conducted at unexpected times and under varying conditions and are to be initiated by activating the fire alarm system. Evacuation plan training is to be conducted for all new employees during orientation and for all employees at least annually. Please see supporting documents for evacuation plan code requirements. Once occupants have arrived at the assembly point, efforts are to be made to determine that all occupants have evacuated or are otherwise accounted for. Additionally, a record of the drills, documenting the time, the name(s) of the drill administrator(s) and other necessary information listed in the code section is to be kept on site for review by the Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJ).

Please see supporting documents if you need a more complete listing of the code requirements and recommendations.

II. Fire Drill Preparation and Scheduling Procedure
A. Drill Administrators' Duties:

  1. Schedule the drill with Fire Systems Group (FSG) 303-492-0633 two to three weeks prior to the date of the drill.
    • At the time of the fire drill, FSG will send an alarm technician that will activate the alarm system and then deactivate and reset the system when the drill is completed.
    • The alarm tech will notify the campus Service Center to deactivate the 911 dispatch and will notify the Service Center when the drill is completed.
  2. One week prior to the drill, notify the campus Fire Marshal , the campus Service Center , the Department of Public Safety , and the campus Emergency Planning Coordinator , and include the time, date and extent of coverage of the fire drill in your message. The Service Center will convey that message to the responsible parties including CU Police Department (CUPD), the Boulder Fire Department (BFD) and University Risk Management. In the message, the Service Center will invite the recipients of the email to attend the fire drill if they wish to do so.
  3. Notify CUPD dispatch (303-492-6666) of the fire drill no later than two hours prior to the drill.
  4. During the drill, drill administrators will walk the building and confirm that everyone has evacuated.
  5. When the drill is completed and the alarm is silenced, the drill administrator will give the “all clear” call and signal for normal building operations to resume.

B. Staff Duties:

  1. Locate nearest exits to their respective areas prior to the drill.
  2. With the guidance of the drill administrator, determine the location of a designated meeting place outside of the building prior to the drill. Preferably, the designated outside meeting place is to be near the fire-crew response location e.g., in front of but away from the main entrance. (See supporting documents for guidelines.)
  3. Account for all staff and inform responsible personnel of any missing persons, after evacuation.
  4. Occasionally study the emergency evacuation plans, installed throughout all major campus buildings.

Please contact Zachary Niehues at 303-492-4042 with further questions concerning the procedure for conducting fire drills.