5 Things That Property Managers Need to Know Right Now and Going into 2023

I was recently blessed enough to do a presentation at the Canadian Fire Safety Association’s 50th Annual Education Forum, and what an experience it was!

It was so energizing and inspiring to be around people from all different sectors of the fire safety world. I had a lot of eye-opening conversations and meaningful discussions with people on both sides of the coin, from building owners, to Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJs), to Fire Marshals from all over Ontario.

There was so much good information, I wanted to pass some of it on and help condo owners know what trends and changes they need to know about right now, and what’s going to impact them for the next year or so.

With that in mind, here are 5 things that all building owners and property managers should know about fire safety…

1. Fire Safety Has NEVER Been More Important

Sure, we could say this every year, but let me explain…

We’ve seen a huge increase in residential fires because of the number of people that were home during the pandemic, and many of them still remain home now. This raises the risks exponentially.

More people means more risks. And more risks mean more work for condo building owners and property managers to mitigate those risks and stay compliant with fire codes.

2. Fire Departments and Municipalities are Cracking Down
(and it’s a Good Thing)

The alarming fire statistics and the heightened risks we spoke about in the previous section have led to authorities doing everything they can to keep condo buildings as safe as possible. 

They’re doing more inspections and they’re sending more orders out to building owners across Ontario.

Because fire safety is now being so heavily enforced by municipalities, you’re now more likely than ever to get an inspection. And if you’re not compliant, you’re more likely to get an inspection order or a notice of violation.

3. We’re Seeing Increased Fines

This is a part of the initiative I mentioned above.

Building owners that get issued a notice of violation are not facing the $50,000 fine that they would’ve received a couple of years ago. They’re facing something closer to a $150,000 fine right now.

You can see why I led with fire safety being more important than ever. We’re seeing more inspections and bigger fines. The demands and the penalties are increasing.

If you haven’t had an inspection lately, it’s definitely in your best interest to contact us right now to find out how to prepare for an inspection and ensure your building is compliant ASAP.

4. Changes to Your Systems? You Need a Partial Integrated Test

There were several AHJs at the event. Many of them said they will be asking for a partial integrated test if you do any work to parts of your existing buildings that are interconnected, or an auxiliary function, or an interface to the fire alarm system. 

This would include things like:

  • Replacing the fire control panel
  • Adding or upgrading mag locks 
  • Changes to hold-open devices
  • Any work on fan control and/or the pressurization systems
  • Any work on their elevators

If this is your first full or partial integrated test, you will definitely want to contact us ASAP.

5. It All Starts With Fire Alarms

It’s hard to say enough about fire alarms.

In fact, The Office of the Fire Marshal of Ontario is really focusing on fire alarms right now. The theme for their fire prevention week in October will be Cause for Alarm.

As a condo building owner or property manager, of course, it is important to make sure your alarm systems are functional at all times.

However, it’s just as important to make sure that every resident knows what a fire alarm indicates, and what they need to do when they hear one. 

It’s about more than maintaining compliance. It’s about saving lives!

If you have any questions, you can email us at admin@fcsfire.com any time, or call us at (705) 436-9865 or 1-800-281-8863.

COVID-19 Update

As a company whose business revolves around Safety and Prevention, we have been monitoring the COVID-19 situation as it unfolds. We have developed internal and external policies to keep our team and yours safe. We will continue to monitor this situation and are continuing to develop a variety of contingency plans which we will activate accordingly as necessary.
What we are doing to keep our team and yours safe:
What we ask of you:
We have every intention of continuing regular operation, with the safety of your team and ours being the top priority. We are taking steps to ensure no on-site services are impacted, however, will re-scheduling if necessary, based onsafety concerns or if quarantines are mandated.
The health and safety of both our team and yours is of the utmost importance. If you have any questions about our policies or would like to request more information about them please reach out to our team at Admin@fcsfire.com

Safe Wishes,
Michele Farley
President & Senior Code Consultant
FCS Fire Consulting Services LTD