Ordinances and Fees

Fire Inspection Fees
Effective July 1, 2003, the Winston-Salem Fire Department was approved by the City Council to increase service fees. Previously, the Fire Department did not fine businesses for fire safety violations. The tragic nightclub fire in Rhode Island demonstrated the importance of fire safety. These fees will give businesses an incentive to make sure they comply.

Under the new regulations, businesses that violate basic fire safety by blocking emergency exits will be fined $200. Violations of the fire safety rules, such as failing to have their fire alarm tested annually or unauthorized storage of flammable or hazardous materials, carry $100 fines.

The new fee schedule raises existing fees for tents, ABC permits, hazardous event permits and storage tank installation, and establishes new fees for fire standby requests and courtesy inspections of foster homes and day-care centers.

These fees more accurately reflect the cost of the services we provide, but they are still less than, or in line with, what many other cities charge.

Questions pertaining to these fees should be directed to the Winston-Salem Fire Marshal's Office at 773-7900.

You can pay Fire Department fees and fines online
  

 

Fire Safety Fines

$200 Blocked Exits
$100 Unauthorized Storage
$100 Spraying Operation Not in Compliance
$100 Failure to test Fire Alarm System
  $50 Use of Unauthorized Heating Device
  $50 Street Address Numbers Not Visible
  $50 Failure to test Emergency Lighting
  $50 Extinguisher Refill/Maintenance

The following are some definitions, which should help clarify the types of Life Safety Code Violations.

Definitions of Life Safety Violations

Blocked Exits – ($200) Any obstruction in the required width of a means of egress. ("Means of Egress" is the continuous and unobstructed path of vertical and horizontal egress travel from any point in a building or structure to a public way, consisting of three separate and distinct parts: the exit access, the exit, and the exit discharge.)

Unauthorized Storage – ($100) The storage of flammable, combustible or hazardous liquids or materials improperly stored and/or without a permit. (This violation applies to facilities that are required to report under the Hazardous Chemicals Right-to-Know Act.)

Spraying Operation Not in Compliance – ($100) Spraying flammable or combustible finishes without a properly installed spray booth or approved spraying area.

Alarm System Not Tested – ($100) Failure to have required maintenance test conducted of fire alarm system(s), and to have required documentation of test(s).

Use of Unauthorized Heating Device – ($50) The use of non-listed heating appliances and/or used in an unapproved manner or location.

Street Address Numbers Not Visible – ($50) Failure to post street address numbers where visible from the street or primary emergency means of egress. Address numbers shall be Arabic numerals or alphabet letters. Numbers shall be a minimum of 4-inches (102mm) high with a minimum stroke width of 0.5-inch (12.7mm).

Extinguisher Refill – ($50) Failure to properly maintain and service required portable fire extinguishers.

Emergency Lighting Not Tested – ($50) Failure to provide documentation on the following: 

Equipment Type of Test Frequency
Emergency generator (if applicable) 30 minute load test Monthly
Battery Pack Lighting 30 second test Monthly
Battery Pack Lighting 90 minute test Annually

Revised Fee Schedule 7/1/2008 [pdf]

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