Based on the new code requirements, the 2009 International Fire Code (IFC) and the 2009 International Building Code (IBC), outpatient clinics are not required to conduct fire drills. However, the Fire and Life-Safety Group (FLS) believes that the Joint Commission on the Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO) may require that such facilities conduct fire drills for employees at regular intervals. The following summarizes our written fire drill procedures for conducting fire drills on campus and are based on the code requirements of the IFC, Sections 404 through 406, listed in supporting documents.
I. Code Requirement Summary
Fire drills are to be conducted for employees only in frequencies established by JCAHO but not less than once a year. Based on the code requirements listed in the supporting documents, fire drills are to provide training in the following areas:
- Evacuations procedure and planning,
- Location and use of portable fire extinguishers (when assigned),
- Alarm response duties,
- Location of assembly point(s),
- 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:
- 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.
- One week prior to the drill, notify the campus Fire Marshal Zachary.Niehues@colorado.edu , the campus Service Center sdesk@facman.Colorado.edu , the Department of Public Safety Michell.Irving@Colorado.edu , and the campus Emergency Planning Coordinator Deborah.Nelson@colorado.edu , 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.
- Notify CUPD dispatch (303-492-6666) of the fire drill no later than two hours prior to the drill.
- During the drill, drill administrators will walk the building and confirm that everyone has evacuated.
- 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:
- Locate nearest exits to their respective areas prior to the drill.
- 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.)
- Account for all staff and inform responsible personnel of any missing persons, after evacuation.
- 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.