The Board of Fire Prevention Regulations (BFPR) voted to adopt a national model fire code at a recent meeting. The new code adopts the NFPA Fire Code (NFPA 1, 2012 edition) with Massachusetts amendments. Massachusetts joins nearly 20 other states in the country that use this model code as the backbone of their fire code. The new Massachusetts Comprehensive Fire Safety Code (527 CMR 1.00) will take effect on January 1, 2015.
The Board of Fire Prevention Regulations is a 16 member board responsible for promulgating a comprehensive fire safety code for the state. The board was created in the wake of the 1942 Cocoanut Grove nightclub fire in Boston that killed 492 people, to write the first statewide, uniform fire code. Since the 1940’s, this Governor-appointed board has written, revised and administered the state’s fire code.
State Fire Marshal Stephen D. Coan said, “The adoption of a model code sets the stage for a code that is adaptable to new technologies and emerging trends, while also being easily maintained going forward. It taps into the depth and expertise of the NFPA's voluntary code development process.”
Marshfield Fire Chief Kevin Robinson, chairman of the BFPR, said, “This adoption reflects many years of work consisting of constituent input, community outreach and stakeholder collaboration. However, the hard work is about to begin as the fire service transitions to the new code and attends training to understand how to navigate and enforce it uniformly across the Commonwealth.”
The Department of Fire Services and NFPA are offering a number of two-day training opportunities this fall intended to prepare fire service personnel for the implementation and use of the revised code document.