Fire Inspections

The purpose of the Fire Code is to establish minimum requirements consistent with nationally recognized good practices for providing a reasonable level of life safety and property protection from the hazards of fire, explosion, or dangerous conditions in new and existing buildings, structures, and premises. Both the building and fire codes are periodically updated and adopted by local ordinance and are enforceable by state law.  

Fire inspections are conducted annually within in all existing commercial occupancies and residential occupancies larger than a two-family dwelling. Places of worship and utility sites are inspected every three years.  

To assist you in complying with the North Carolina Fire Code, we have listed commonly found violations below along with helpful hints that will enhance your protection and increase the efficiency of your annual inspection.  

  • Egress and Exits - Exit doors must be unlocked, unobstructed and marked. This includes the path to the exit and the discharge on the exterior.  
  • Lighted exit signs and emergency lighting must be in proper working order and provide at least 90 minutes of continuous operation in the event of a power failure. Testing shall be conducted monthly and records of testing maintained and available for review by the fire inspector. An annual test of battery powered lighting shall be conducted for a duration of not less than 90 minutes.  
  • Occupancy - Buildings are designed and permitted for specific types of occupancy and number of people. Venues of entertainment, places of assembly and dining are subject to spot inspections due to the potential overcrowding creating an imminent threat to life safety. Overcrowded conditions may result in fines and legal actions even for initial violations. 
  • Fire extinguishers - Required extinguishers shall be mounted in a visible location and unobstructed. Extinguishers shall be inspected and tested annually by a qualified service company.  
  • Extension Cords - Extension cords shall not be used as a substitute for permanent wiring. Extension cord use is limited to filling a need to power a temporary portable appliance or device while in use and the cord must be labeled and listed for use. Extension cords may not be attached to the structure or run through walls, floors, or floor coverings, nor shall cords be subject to physical or environmental damage. 
  • Fire alarm, fire sprinkler/ suppression systems shall be inspected and tested by a qualified service company annually. Test reports shall be maintained on site and made available to the fire inspector. Please assure that your Fire/Security Alarm Monitoring Company has current information for your property and the appropriate contact numbers. 
  • Fixed Fire Suppression systems such as commercial hood systems and spray booths shall be inspected and tested by a qualified service company at a frequency based on use and determined by the Fire Code. 
  • If your property has a Fire Department emergency access “Knox Box” key box, please assure the keys contained within the box are current and labeled. Contact your local fire department if changes are made to your locks. 
  • Alterations, additions or deletions to walls, doors, plumbing, heating, ventilation, electrical, and changes of use/occupancy may require a permit through the Randolph County Building Inspection’s Central Permitting office.  

You may contact us at 336-318-6914 during the regular office hours of 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday with questions about the inspection process or to schedule an inspection.