February 15, 2016 7:17 pm

B.C.’s fire safety act to be revamped for the first time since 1979

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A law that mandates fire safety in B.C. is getting a much needed update.

B.C. government says the new Fire Safety Act, which was introduced today, will modernize the regulatory framework for fire safety in the province.

It says the new act will improve fire code compliance monitoring by making it risk-based.

“This is a model where condition and the use of building will determine the level and frequency of inspections,” said Minister of State for Emergency Preparedness Naomi Yamamoto at today’s announcement.

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The minister says the act will establish an administrative enforcement model to address non-compliance and enable local authorities to appoint fire safety personnel to carry out fire inspections, investigations and evacuations.

Yamamoto was joined by Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Todd Stone, who said the Fire Services Act was last updated 20 years ago and these would be the first significant amendments proposed in over three-and-a-half decades.

The Fire Chiefs’ Association of British Columbia is also in support of the new regulations, saying the adoption of a risk-based model will help local governments apply their fire prevention and inspection efforts where the need exists, preventing fires and providing for life safety where the fire risk is highest.

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