While remote video inspection (RVI) is new to many, it can represent an effective alternative to an on-site inspection, enabling one or more parties to remotely perform an inspection of a building or building component. As code officials, enforcers, and inspectors work to ensure building safety during the COVID-19 pandemic, NFPA has created a fact sheet that provides guidance on how to conduct an RVI.
This new resource, which is based on “Conducting Remote Video Inspections,” a white paper developed by NFPA’s Building Code Development Committee (BCDC), addresses several considerations, including setting clear expectations, selecting technology, location verification and sign-offs/follow-up. We encourage jurisdictions to review this guidance to become more familiar with the benefits as well as the limitations of RVI.
Just like traditional on-site or in person inspections, an RVI is typically associated within a jurisdiction’s permitting process, the project, or contract schedule, and needs to be approved by AHJ. Remote inspection may be able to accomplish critical and emergency permit work that is still underway. It is not intended to be less complete than an on-site inspection and can be employed to achieve the same (or enhanced) results as an on-site inspection.
RVI is currently in use in select jurisdictions across the US, although no formal standard governs its use. These jurisdictions often utilize everyday smartphone technologies to facilitate the inspection.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, NFPA has been continuing to provide key resources and information that address emergency planning, building, fire and life safety issues. Make sure to check our website regularly for new content and updates. Stay safe.