Page Contents

Chapter 10-8: Fire Code1

10-8-1  Legislative Intent. Go to the top

The purpose of this chapter is to protect public health and safety by regulating the use, condition, construction, alteration, and repair of property, structures, and occupancies in the city in order to prevent the ignition and spread of fire and risk of harm to persons or property from fire and other causes. The city council hereby adopts the 2012 edition of the International Fire Code with certain amendments, additions, and deletions thereto found to be in the best interests of the city. The standards provided in this chapter shall be used, insofar as they are applicable, in determining whether a condition is hazardous, whether any work that has been performed has been done in an approved manner, or whether any equipment is of an approved type or quality, and in any determination concerning fire hazards and fire safety in the city building code not specifically provided for therein.

Ordinance Nos. 5781 (1996); 6015 (1998); 7566 (2007); 7925 (2013)

10-8-2  Adoption of International Fire Code With Modifications. Go to the top

(a)  The 2012 edition of the International Fire Code of the International Code Council is adopted by reference as the City of Boulder Fire Code, and has the same force and effect as though fully set forth in this chapter, except as specifically amended by the provisions of this chapter.

(b)  The Fire Code adopted by Subsection (a) of this section is amended in the following places:

(1)  Section 102.3 is repealed and reenacted to read:

102.3 Change of use or occupancy. No change shall be made in the use or occupancy of any structure that would place the structure in a different division of the same group or occupancy or in a different group of occupancies, unless such structure is made com comply with the requirements of this code and the International Building Code.

(2)  Section 103.1 is repealed and reenacted to read:

103.1 Division of Fire Safety. A Division of Fire Safety is established within the fire department under the direction of the manager, which shall consist of such fire department personnel as may be assigned thereto by the manager. The function of this division shall be to assist the manager in the administration and enforcement of the provisions of this code.

(3)  Section 103.4 is repealed and reenacted to read:

103.4 Liability.

The fire code shall not be construed to hold the City of Boulder or any of its employees or agents responsible for any damage to persons or property by reason of inspection or reinspection or failure to inspect or reinspect as herein provided or by reason of the approval or disapproval of any equipment as herein provided.

No employee of the city who enforces, attempts to enforce, or is authorized to enforce the fire code renders him or herself or the city liable to third parties for any damage or injury to the person or property of such third parties as a result of the enforcement or nonenforcement of the fire code. The city assumes no duty of care by virtue of the adoption of the fire code. No person is justified in relying upon the approval of a plan, the results of an inspection, or the issuance of a certificate of inspection or occupancy, and such approvals, inspections, and certificates are not a guarantee that the plan or work so approved, inspected, or certificated in fact complies with all requirements of the fire code. It is the duty of the person owning, controlling, or constructing any building or structure to insure that the work is done in accordance with the requirements of the fire code, and it is such persons and not the city who are responsible for damages caused by negligent breach of such duty.

(4)  Section 104.4 is repealed and reenacted to read:

104.4 Identification. For the purposes of this section, the term "fire code official" includes all firefighters appointed pursuant to Section 2-5-4, "Identification Card for Firefighters," B.R.C. 1981.

(5)  Section 105.6 is repealed and reenacted to read:

105.6 Required operational permits. The fire code official may issue an operational permit for the following operations:

(a) 105.6.14, Explosives

(b) 105.6.30, Open Burning

(c) 105.6.32, Open Flames and Candles

(d) 105.6.36, Pyrotechnic special effects material

(6)  105.6.43 is amended by the addition of the following:

105.6.43 Temporary membrane structures, tents and canopies. An operational permit may be issued with the construction permit that will be issued by the building official.

(7)  Section 105.7 is repealed and reenacted to read:

105.7 Required construction permits. All construction permits will be issued by the building official. The Division of Fire Safety will be the approving authority for the following:

(a) 105.7.1, Automatic fire-extinguishing systems.

(b) 105.7.6, Fire alarm and detection systems and related equipment.

(c) 105.7.7, Fire pumps and related equipment.

(d) 105.7.15, Stand-pipe systems.

(8)  Section 108, "Board of Appeals," is repealed and reenacted to read:

108 Appeals.

(a) Any appeal under this section shall be heard by the Board of Building Appeals established under Section 2-3-4, "Board of Building Appeals," B.R.C. 1981, unless the city manager determines, due to the nature of the issues in a particular appeal, to appoint a hearing officer under Section 1-3-5, "Hearings and Determinations," B.R.C. 1981.

(b) Appeal of refusal to approve work or building permit. A person refused a building permit or refused approval of work done under a permit on the grounds that the proposed or completed construction fails to comply with this code or any other city building code may appeal the decision on the grounds that:

1. The denial was based on an erroneous interpretation of such code by the manager; or

2. The manager has erroneously failed to approve an alternate material or method pursuant to section 104.9 of the fire code prior to its installation or use. In determining such an appeal, the board or hearing officer shall apply the standards of section 104.9 of the fire code.

The manager has the burden of proof under paragraph 1. above. The appellant has the burden of proof on appeals brought pursuant to paragraph 2. The board or hearing officer shall determine the appeal and decide whether the manager's interpretation or application of such code was correct or in error at a hearing under the procedures described by Chapter 1-3, "Quasi-Judicial Hearings," B.R.C. 1981.

(c) Appeal of suspension or revocation of building permit or certificates. Any person whose building permit or certificate of occupancy or certificate of completion has been suspended or revoked may appeal such action by the city manager on the ground that the suspension or revocation was based on an error in fact or an erroneous application of this code to the facts. The manager has the burden of proving the facts upon which the manager relies at such a hearing.

(d) An application for appeal must be filed in writing with the city manager within fourteen days after the date of refusal of the building permit or approval of work performed under the permit or revocation or suspension of the building permit or certificate of occupancy or certificate of completion stating the basis for appeal.

(e) Appeals Concerning Existing Conditions.

1. Any aggrieved person who has been issued an order or other notice of violation under this fire code, other than a summons and complaint, under sections 102.1 and 102.2 concerning legally existing conditions in a structured based upon the city manager's determination that such conditions constitute a distinct hazard to life or property, and who believes the alleged violation to be factually or legally contrary to the requirements of this fire code or rules and regulations issued pursuant to this fire code may appeal the order or notice. An appellant shall file the appeal with the board within thirty days from the date of service of the notice of alleged violation. The appellant may request enlargement of time to file if such request is made before the end of the time period. The manager may extend for a reasonable period the time to file with the board if the applicant shows good cause therefor.

2. Any person aggrieved by a decision of the manager upon a reinspection that any or all of the violations alleged in the notice of violation have not been adequately corrected may appeal such determination by filing a notice of appeal within fourteen days of the date of the reinspection.

3. The appeal will be conducted under the procedures of Chapter 1-3, "Quasi-Judicial Hearings," B.R.C. 1981. The burden of proof is on the manager to establish an alleged violation.

4. If the board of appeals or hearing officer affirms the determination by the manager, it shall grant the person a reasonable period of time to correct the violation appealed. Any subsequent determination by the manager as to whether the violations alleged in the notice of violation have been adequately corrected is final.

5. If no person appeals a notice of violation under this section, the provisions of the notice become final when the time for filing an appeal with the board has expired. An order appealed to court is final unless a stay is in effect.

6. If a person to whom the manager has issued a notice of violation does not appeal under this section, such person may not raise a defense to any subsequent prosecution in municipal court for a violation of an order that the conditions alleged to be violations in the notice of violation were not in fact or law violations.

(f) An applicant for an appeal shall pay the fee prescribed by Section 4-20-52, "Fire Code Permit and Inspection Fees," B.R.C. 1981. The fee for an appeal heard by a hearing officer shall be the same as the fee for an appeal heard by the Board of Building Appeals.

(g) The manager may apply to the Board of Building Appeals, without fee, for an advisory opinion concerning alternative methods, applicability of specific requirements, approval of equipment and materials, and granting of special permission as contemplated in section 104.8 or 104.9 of the fire code.

(h) The Board of Building Appeals or hearing officer has no authority to interpret chapter 1 (the administrative requirements) of this code except as expressly provided in this section, nor, because this code sets minimum standards, to waive any requirement of this code.

(i) An aggrieved person seeking judicial review of a decision of the Board of Building Appeals or hearing officer made under this section shall file a complaint for such review within thirty days after the date of the decision under Colorado Rule of Civil Procedure 106(a)(4).

(j) If the city manager determines that the subject of an order or notice issued under this fire code constitutes an immediate hazard to the public health, safety, or welfare, the manager may order immediate compliance. Persons subject to such orders shall comply forthwith, but shall be entitled to a prompt post-compliance appeal hearing before the Board of Building Appeals or a hearing officer under the procedures specified in this section.

(9)  Section 109.1, "Unlawful acts," is repealed and reenacted to read:

109.1 Violations.

(a) General Provisions:

(1) No person shall violate a provision of this code, or fail to comply therewith or with any of the requirements thereof. No person shall fail to comply with any order issued by the city manager under this code. No person shall erect, construct, enlarge, alter, extend, repair, move, remove, improve, convert, demolish, equip, use, occupy, maintain, or utilize any building, structure, occupancy, premises, or system in the city or cause or permit the same to be done except in conformity with all of the provisions of this code and in conformity with the terms and conditions of approval issued under this code, or of any directive of the code official.

(2) In accordance with the provisions of Section 5-2-11, "Prosecution of Multiple Counts for Same Act," B.R.C. 1981, each day during which illegal construction, alteration, maintenance, occupancy, or use continues, constitutes a separate offense remediable through the enforcement provisions of this code.

(3) The owner, tenant, and occupant of a structure or land, and the agents of each of them, are jointly and severally liable for any violation of this code with respect to such structure or land.

(4) The remedies for any violation of any provision of this code or of any permit, certificate, or other approval issued under this code or other City of Boulder code or of any directive of the fire code official may be pursued singly or in combination.

(5) If any person fails or refuses to pay when due any charge imposed under this section, the fire code official may, in addition to taking other collection remedies, certify due and unpaid charges to the Boulder County Treasurer for collection as provided by Section 2-2-12, "City Manager May Certify Taxes, Charges, and Assessments to County Treasurer for Collection," B.R.C. 1981.

(6) The fire code official may charge the cost of any action taken to correct or abate a violation, as authorized by this code, plus up to fifteen percent of such cost for administration, to the property owner. If any property owner fails or refuses to pay when due any charge imposed under this section, the fire code official may, in addition to taking other collection remedies, certify due any unpaid charges, including interest, to the Boulder County Treasurer, to be levied against the person's property for collection by the county in the same manner as delinquent general taxes upon such property are collected, under the procedures described by Section 2-2-12, "City Manager May Certify Taxes, Charges, and Assessments to County Treasurer for Collection," B.R.C. 1981.

(b) Administrative Procedures and Remedies:

(1) If the fire code official finds that a violation of any provision of this code or any approval granted under this code exists, the city manager, after notice and an opportunity for hearing under the procedures prescribed by Chapter 1-3, "Quasi-Judicial Hearings," B.R.C. 1981, may take any one or more of the following actions to remedy the violation:

(A) Impose a civil penalty according to the following schedule:

(i) For the first violation of the provision or approval, $100;

(ii) For the second violation of the same provision or approval, $300; and

(iii) For the third violation of the same provisions or approval, $1,000.

(B) For a violation concerning the use of a residential building under a rental license, revoke such license;

(C) Require the filing of a declaration of use as provided in subsection (e); or

(D) Issue an order reasonably calculated to ensure compliance with the provisions of this code or any approval granted under this code.

(2) Prior to the hearing, the fire code official may issue an order that no person shall perform any work on any structure or land, except to correct any violation found by the fire code official to exist with respect to such structure or land.

(3) If notice is given to the fire code official at least forty-eight hours before the time and date set forth in the notice of hearing on any violation that the violation has been corrected, the fire code official will reinspect the structure or land. If the fire code official finds that the violation has been corrected, the manager may cancel the hearing.

(4) No person shall fail to comply with any action taken by the fire code official under this section.

(c) Criminal Penalties. Violations of this code are punishable as provided in Section 5-2-4, "General Penalties," B.R.C. 1981.

(d) Other Remedies. The city attorney may maintain an action for damages, declaratory relief, specific performance, injunction, or any other appropriate relief in the District Court in and for the County of Boulder for any violation of any provision of this code or any approval granted under this code.

(e) Declaration of Use. If the fire code official determines that a person is using a structure in a way that might mislead a reasonable person to believe that such use is a use by right or otherwise authorized by this title, the fire code official may require such person to sign under oath a declaration of use that defines the limited nature of the use and to record such declaration in the office of the Boulder County Clerk and Recorder against the title to the land. In addition to all other remedies and actions that the code official is authorized to use under the Boulder Revised Code or other applicable federal, state, or local laws to enforce the provisions of this code, the city manager is authorized to withhold any approval affecting such structure or land, including, without limitation, a building permit, use review, site review, subdivision, floodplain development permit, or wetland permit, until such time as the person submits a declaration of use that is in a form acceptable to the fire code official.

(10)  Section 109.3.3, "Prosecution of violations," is repealed.

(11)  Section 109.4, "Violation penalties," is repealed and reenacted to read:

109.4 Abatement of violation. In addition to the imposition of the penalties described in Section 109.1, "Violations," the fire code official is authorized to institute appropriate action to prevent unlawful construction or to restrain, correct, or abate a violation; or to prevent illegal occupancy of a structure or premises; or to stop an illegal act, conduct of business, or occupancy of a structure on or about any premises.

(12)  Chapter 2, "Definitions," is amended by the addition of the following additional definitions:

Accessible Private Drive means a twenty-foot unobstructed clear width with a twelve-foot hard, all-weather, drivable surface which can support forty tons on ten wheels and has an SU-30 turning radius for the fire department's fire apparatus.

Attached Dwelling Unit means a structure which contains more than one dwelling unit regardless of any fire separation features.

Detached Dwelling Unit means a structure which contains only one dwelling unit together with any building accessory to the dwelling unit, and is structurally independent of other structures or occupancies, and has a fire separation distance of not less than six feet from other structures.

Emergency Vehicle Access Street means a street meeting the requirements of this code and the City of Boulder Design and Construction Standards.

Fire Access Distance means the distance between two hydrants, or the distance from a hydrant to any external portion of any building or buildings, or the distance from the centerline of a non-dead-end emergency vehicle access street to the point on the curb on such street from which access to such building is gained, measured along public or private (but accessible to fire equipment) roadways or fire lanes, as would be traveled by motorized firefighting equipment.

Fire code official means the city manager or the manager's delegate.

Fire Department or Municipal Fire Department means the Fire Department of the City of Boulder, Colorado.

House Behind a House exists if the dwelling unit is on a lot which does not front on an emergency vehicle access street meeting the requirements of sections 503.1 and 503.2, or the dwelling unit is not served by a fire lane meeting the requirements of section 502.1 from an emergency vehicle access street to an entrance to the dwelling unit, and access from the emergency vehicle access street to the unit is obstructed by any structure.

Portable Appliance means any appliance that is designed to be moved or relocated on a daily basis without any special knowledge. This includes, but is not limited to, box or oscillating fans, power tools, vacuum cleaners, and floor polishers.

Tank Truck means any single rear axle, self-propelled motor vehicle, equipped with a cargo tank mounted thereon, and used for the transportation of flammable and combustible liquids, but this term excludes any combination of units, such as a semi-trailer. Said tank truck shall not exceed 35,000 GVW, and its total capacity shall not exceed 3,000 gallons.

Transport route means:

(1) Denver-Boulder Turnpike (U.S. 36) from the south city limits to Baseline Road.

(2) Foothills Parkway (Colorado 157) from U.S. 36 to the north city limits.

(3) 28th Street from Baseline Road to the north city limits.

(4) Arapahoe Avenue from Folsom Street to the east city limits.

(5) Canyon Boulevard from 28th Street to the west city limits.

(6) Pearl Street/Pearl Parkway from Folsom Street to the east city limits.

(7) Longmont Diagonal Highway (Colorado 119) as it passes through the city limits.

(8) Valmont Road from Folsom Street to 55th Street.

(9) Airport Road and Airport Boulevard.

(10) Baseline Road from 27th Way to Foothills Parkway (Colorado 157).

(11) 55th Street from Valmont Road to Arapahoe Avenue.

(12) 30th Street from Arapahoe to Diagonal Highway (Colorado 119).

(13) Longmont Diagonal Highway (Colorado 119) from 28th Street to and connecting with Foothills Parkway (Colorado 157).

(14) South Foothills Parkway/Broadway (Colorado 93) from the south city limits to 27th Way and connecting to Baseline Road.

Unobstructed by Any Structure Above Grade means that no structure blocks the view so that there is not at least one entire face of the building substantially visible in a direct line over the lot upon which the building sits from the nearest emergency vehicle access street, and no structure would significantly interfere with a stream of water being sprayed on the building by a nozzle mounted on a fire truck parked on the nearest emergency vehicle access street. For the purposes of this definition, a legal fence shall not be considered an obstruction if it has a gate which opens at least three feet wide, which is not locked, and through which firefighters on foot have ready access to the building within the distance limitations.

(13)  Section 307, "Open burning, recreational fires, and portable outdoor fireplaces," is repealed and reenacted to read:

307 Open burning and recreational fires.

(1) No person shall kindle or maintain outside of a habitable building or outside of an exterior fireplace built in accordance with the City of Boulder Building Code any bonfire or burn or permit to be burned any trash, paper, rubbish, wastepaper, wood, weeds, brush, plants, or other combustible or flammable material anywhere within the city limits or anywhere on city property outside of the city limits, except when:

(a) The burning is in the course of an agricultural operation in the growing of crops as a gainful occupation and presents no fire hazard to other property in the vicinity;

(b) The burning is a smokeless flare or a safety flare used to indicate some danger to the public;

(c) The burning is a training fire conducted by the fire department, or is a training fire conducted by another fire department, or privately for industrial or commercial fire training purposes; or

(d) The burning is solely for the purpose of fuel mitigation to alleviate wildland fire potential, or weed abatement to assist restoration of native plants.

(2) Mobile or portable type outdoor fire places are prohibited within the city limits or anywhere on city property outside of the city limits.

(14)  Exceptions 1 and 2 to Section 311.2.2, "Fire protection," are repealed.

(15)  A new Section 401.9, "Fire alarm fees," is added to read:

401.9 Fire alarm fees.

(a) After the fire department has responded to two alarms of fire from any property or address in any calendar year, the city manager may impose a charge for each additional response to an alarm which originates from the property during the same calendar year, in accordance with the schedule prescribed by Section 4-20-52, "Fire Code Permit and Inspection Fees," B.R.C. 1981.

(b) The city manager may waive a charge imposed for a fire alarm response if the property owner of record demonstrates that such alarm was caused by a fire or the threat of a fire, or that such alarm was not under the property owner's control. It shall not be a defense that the alarm system is malfunctioning, unless the owner or manager is able to demonstrate that said alarm system is currently being serviced to remedy the problems being encountered.

(c) If any fee is not paid within thirty days after demand therefor has been mailed to the record owner of the building, the city manager may certify the amount due to the County Treasurer pursuant to Section 2-2-12, "City Manager May Certify Taxes, Charges, and Assessments to County Treasurer for Collection," B.R.C. 1981.

(16)  Section 503.2.1, "Dimensions," is repealed and reenacted to read:

503.2.1 Dimensions. Fire apparatus access roads shall have an unobstructed width of not less than twenty feet (6,096 mm), except for approved security gates in accordance with section 503.6, and an unobstructed vertical clearance of not less than fifteen feet (4,572 mm).

(17)  Section 507.5.1, "Where required," is repealed and reenacted to read:

507.5.1 Where required. Location and spacing of fire hydrants will be in accordance with the City of Boulder Design and Construction Standards.

(18)  Section 603.4, "Portable unvented heaters," is repealed and reenacted to read:

603.4 Portable unvented heaters. Portable unvented fuel-fired heating equipment is prohibited.

(19)  Subsection 605.11.3.2.1, "Residential buildings with hip roof layouts," is repealed and reenacted to read:

605.11.3.2.1 Residential buildings with hip roof layouts. Panels/modules installed on residential buildings with hip roof layouts shall be located in a manner that provides a 3-foot-wide (914 mm) clear access pathway from the eave to the ridge on each roof slope where panels/modules are located.

Exceptions:

1. These requirements shall not apply to roofs with slopes of 2 units vertical in 12 units horizontal (2:12) or less.

2. These requirements shall not apply to roofs where each panel/module array area on the roof is 1,000 square feet (92.90 m2) or less in size, no continuous section of panels/modules is larger than 150 feet in length or width, a clear access pathway of not less than 12-inch-width is provided along each side of all horizontal ridges, and a clear access pathway of not less than 30-inch-width is provided from the eave to the ridge of one roof slope where panels/modules are located.

3. These requirements shall not apply to roofs where each panel/module array area on the roof is 1,000 square feet (92.90 m2) or less in size, no continuous section of panels/modules is larger than 150 feet in length or width, a clear access pathway of not less than 12-inch-width is provided along each side of all horizontal ridges, and, where panels/modules are to be placed on both sides of a hip, a clear access pathway of not less than 18-inch-width is provided along each side of such hip.

4. These requirements shall not apply to roofs where the total combined area of solar array does not exceed 33 percent as measured in plan view of the total roof area of the structure.

(20)  Subsection 605.11.3.2.2, "Residential buildings with a single ridge," is repealed and reenacted to read:

605.11.3.2.2 Residential buildings with a single ridge. Panels/modules installed on residential buildings with a single ridge shall be located in a manner that provides two, 3-foot-wide (914 mm) clear access pathways from the eave to the ridge on each roof slope where panels/modules are located.

Exceptions:

1. This requirement shall not apply to roofs with slopes of 2 units vertical in 12 units horizontal (2:12) or less.

2. This requirement shall not apply to roofs where each panel/module array area on the roof is 1,000 square feet (92.90 m2) or less in size, no continuous section of panels/modules is larger than 150 feet in length or width, and a clear access pathway of not less than 12-inch-width is provided along each side of the horizontal ridge, provided that:

a. The total combined area of solar array does not exceed 33 percent as measured in plan view of the total roof area of the structure; or

b. A 30-inch-wide clear access path is provided from the eave to the ridge of a roof slope where panels/modules are located.

(21)  Subsection 605.11.3.2.3, "Residential buildings with roof hips and valleys," is repealed and reenacted to read:

605.11.3.2.3 Residential buildings with roof hips and valleys. Panels/modules installed on residential buildings with roof hips and valleys shall be located no closer than 18 inches (457 mm) to a hip or a valley where panels/modules are to be placed on both sides of a hip or valley. Where panels are to be located on only one side of a hip or valley that is of equal length, the panels shall be permitted to be placed directly adjacent to the hip or valley. In addition, a 12-inch-wide clear access pathway shall be provided along each side of any horizontal ridge.

Exceptions:

1. This requirement shall not apply to roofs with slopes of 2 units vertical in 12 units horizontal (2:12) or less.

2. These requirements shall not apply to roofs where a 30-inch-wide clear access pathway is provided from the eave to the ridge as well as 12-inch-wide clear access pathways along each side of any horizontal ridge.

(22)  Subsection 605.11.3.2.4, "Residential building smoke ventilation," is repealed and reenacted to read:

605.11.3.2.4 Pathways. All access pathways required under this section 605.11.3.2 shall be provided in a structurally strong location on the building capable of supporting the live load of firefighters accessing the roof.

(23)  Section 901.6, "Inspection, testing and maintenance," is amended by the addition of the following:

If any building, structure, or portion of the same is protected by a fire detection, alarm, and extinguishing system, or the owner has agreed with the city manager so to protect the building or structure or portion thereof, then no person shall shut off or disable such system except as authorized under Section 11-1-45, "Water to Be Shut Off for Failure to Pay," B.R.C. 1981, and no owner, manager, or tenant of such space shall fail to prevent the shutting off or disabling of such system. It is a specific defense to a charge of violation of this section that the system was shut off in order to perform maintenance work on the system, that it was shut off for the minimum period of time necessary to perform such work, and that maintenance personnel were on the premises performing such work during the entire time the system was shut off. The minimum penalty for violation of this section, no portion of which may be suspended, is a fine of $1,000.

(24)  Section 903 is amended by the addition of the following:

Any new building or change of occupancy of an existing building that does not have approved fire department access as required by the fire code may be required by the fire code official to have an automatic fire sprinkler system installed regardless of the building size.

(25)  Section 903.1 is repealed and reenacted to read:

903.1 General. An automatic sprinkler system shall be installed in the occupancies and locations as set forth in this section.

(26)  The first sentence of Section 903.2 is repealed and reenacted to read:

Approved automatic sprinkler system in new buildings and structures shall be provided in the locations described in sections 903.2.1 through 903.2.15.

(27)  Section 903.2.1 is amended by the addition of the following:

903.2.1 Group A. All basements classified as, or a part of, a Group A occupancy shall be provided with an automatic sprinkler system regardless of the gross square footage.

(a) Section 903.2.1.1 Group A-1, #1 is repealed and reenacted to read:

1. The fire area exceeds 2,000 square feet (185.8 m2)

(b) Section 903.2.1.2 Group A-2, #1 is repealed and reenacted to read:

1. The fire area exceeds 2,000 square feet (185.8 m2)

(c) Section 903.2.1.3 Group A-3, #1 is repealed and reenacted to read:

1. The fire area exceeds 2,000 square feet (185.8 m2)

(d) Section 903.2.1.4 Group A-4, #1 is repealed and reenacted to read:

1. The fire area exceeds 2,000 square feet (185.8 m2)

(28)  A new subsection is added to Section 903.2.1 to read:

903.2.1.6 Group B occupancies. An automatic sprinkler system shall be provided throughout all new Group B occupancies greater than 2,000 gross square feet (185.8 m2).

(29)  Section 903.2.3, Group E. #1, is repealed and reenacted to read:

(a) Throughout all Group E fire areas greater than 2,000 square feet (185.8 m2) in area.

(b) Exception is repealed.

(c) All basements classified as, or a part of, a Group E occupancy shall be provided with an automatic sprinkler system regardless of the gross square footage.

(30)  Section 903.2.4, Group F-1, is repealed and reenacted to read:

An automatic sprinkler system shall be provided throughout all new Group F occupancies greater than 2,000 square feet (185.8 m2).

(31)  Exceptions 3 and 4 to section 903.2.6, Group I, are repealed.

(32)  Section 903.2.7, Group M, is repealed and reenacted to read:

An automatic sprinkler system shall be provided throughout all Group M occupancies greater than 2,000 square feet (185.8 m2).

(33)  Section 903.2.8 is amended by the addition of the following:

(a) Exception 1: Detached and two-unit attached dwelling units are not required to have an automatic fire sprinkler system if they are not used as residential board and care occupancies, and the distance, unobstructed by any structure above grade, landscaping, or topographical obstruction, from the curb face of the emergency vehicle access street on which the structure is addressed, to a face of the unit containing an entrance, is not greater than one hundred feet.

(b) Exception 2: A detached dwelling unit is not required to have an automatic fire sprinkler system if it is not used as a residential board and care occupancy, and is located on a lot larger than 14,500 square feet, in which the driveway meets the requirements of a fire department accessible private drive, and extends without interruption from the nearest emergency vehicle access street on which the structure is addressed, to the side of the building which contains the main entrance.

(c) If more than one principal building is constructed on a lot pursuant to the exceptions listed in Section 9-7-12, "Two Detached Dwelling Units on a Single Lot," B.R.C. 1981, then each building other than the building closest to an emergency vehicle access street on which the structure is addressed, shall be protected by an approved and supervised automatic sprinkler system in accordance with Section 903.3.

Exception: If a lot has frontage on two streets and each street is an emergency vehicle access street, then two buildings, each closest to their respective streets, shall not be required to be so protected by this subsection.

(d) Houses behind houses shall be protected throughout by an approved automatic sprinkler system in accordance with section 903.3.

(34)  Section 903.2.9, Group S-1, is repealed and reenacted to read:

An automatic sprinkler system shall be provided throughout all Group S-1 occupancies greater than 2,000 square feet (185.8 m2), including, but not limited to, repair garages.

(35)  Section 903.2.10, Group S-2, is repealed and reenacted to read:

An automatic sprinkler system shall be provided throughout all Group S-2 occupancies greater than 2,000 square feet (185.8 m2).

(36)  A new Section 903.2.13, Group U occupancies, is added to read:

903.2.13 Group U occupancies. An automatic sprinkler system shall be provided throughout all new Group U occupancies greater than 2,000 gross square feet (185.8 m2).

(37)  A new Section 903.2.14 is added to read:

903.2.14. Any occupancy, structure, or unit required to be protected by a sprinkler system by one provision of the fire code or the building code, and falling within an exception to a requirement of such protection to any other provision of the fire code or building code, shall be so protected.

(38)  A new section 903.2.15 is added to read:

903.2.15. If the floor area of an addition to any existing occupancy as described in sections 903.1 through 903.2.13 above is greater than either fifty percent of the existing gross floor area or 2,000 square feet, and the total altered structure would be required to be protected by a sprinkler system by this section if it were new construction, then the entire addition shall be protected throughout by an approved and supervised automatic sprinkler system, installed in accordance with section 903.3.1. Said sprinkler system shall be continuous throughout the addition up to a fire barrier built in accordance with the building code for that occupancy.

(39)  Section 903.3.1.1.1 Exception 4 is repealed.

(40)  Section 903.3.5.1.2 is repealed and reenacted to read:

903.3.5.1.2 Residential combination services. Combination of domestic and fire service lines shall be in accordance with the City of Boulder Design and Construction Standard.

(41)  Section 903.4.1, "Monitoring," is repealed and reenacted to read:

903.4.1 Monitoring. Alarm, supervisory and trouble signals shall be distinctly different and shall be automatically transmitted to an Underwriters Laboratory listed supervising station.

Exceptions:

1. Underground key or hub valves in roadway boxes provided by the municipality or public utility need not be supervised.

2. Systems installed in accordance with NFPA 13D.

(42)  Section 903.4.2, "Alarms," is repealed and reenacted to read:

903.4.2 Alarms. Approved audible and visual devices shall be connected to every new automatic sprinkler system. Such sprinkler water-flow alarm devices shall be activated by water flow equivalent to the flow of a single sprinkler of the smallest orifice size installed in the system. Alarm devices shall be provided in the interior of the building in accordance with NFPA 72 and on the exterior of the building in an approved location. Where a fire alarm system is installed, actuation of the automatic sprinkler shall actuate the building fire alarm system.

(43)  A new Section 903.7, "Response time sprinkler requirement," is adopted to read:

903.7 Response time sprinkler requirement.

(a) It is the city's goal, as reflected in the Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan's urban fire service criteria, that land not be annexed unless the response time for service is normally six minutes or less. Nonetheless, there may be occasions when annexation outside the existing six-minute limit but within eight minutes or less is, due to special circumstances, in the city's best interest. Before such land is annexed, consideration must be given to the need for and provision of additional fire stations and equipment to serve properly the area being annexed and to bring it within the six-minute limit eventually. Protection by a sprinkler system as required by subsection (c) below is a temporary substitute, and is not intended to eliminate the requirement for additional fire stations and equipment.

(b) Land used or to be used for residential purposes will not normally be annexed if it is outside the six-minute limit unless excepted from this policy by subsection (d) below. All new dwelling units on land annexed outside the six-minute limit shall be protected by an automatic fire sprinkler system.

(c) On land annexed after the effective date of this chapter and not excepted under subsection (d) below, all new nonresidential construction and any existing nonresidential structures shall be provided throughout with an approved and supervised fire sprinkler system installed in accordance with section 903.3.1 adopted in Chapter 10-8, "Fire Code," B.R.C. 1981, if such land is outside of the six minute City of Boulder fire response time from city fire stations housing at least one pumper which is rated at one thousand gallons per minute pumping capacity or greater, and which requires a crew of three or more for proper operation.

(d) The requirements of this Section may be waived by the city council by a provision doing so in an annexation agreement incorporated into an annexation ordinance if, in the opinion of the city council, it is in the city's best interest to do so because:

(1) Of changed or special conditions;

(2) The land to be annexed is located on Arapahoe Avenue west of the city; or

(3) The land to be annexed is below the blue line, west of Broadway, south of Norwood Avenue, and north of Table Mesa Drive.

Exceptions (2) and (3) above reflect the fact that it is not anticipated that new fire stations will be constructed to bring these areas within the six-minute limit. In other areas, it is anticipated that new fire stations will eventually be constructed or upgraded to bring the service area within this limit.

(44)  A new Section 903.8, Fire suppression systems, is added to read:

903.8 Fire suppression systems. All existing structures in the following categories shall be protected throughout by an approved and supervised automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with the provisions of section 903.3.1. Except that any structure or portion thereof required by this section to be so protected prior to the effective date of this ordinance shall be immediately so protected:

(a) R-1 and R-2 occupancies greater than fifty-five feet high.

(b) Hotels and motels. Exceptions: One- and two-story structures, and three-story structures with an exterior exit balcony for all rooms above grade.

(c) Congregate residences classified as Group R-4.

(d) Group I-1 and I-2 occupancies as defined in the fire code.

(e) Basements greater than 2,000 gross square feet.

Exception 1. Basements below R occupancies.

Exception 2. Basements used exclusively for "services to the building," such as electric meters, compressors, and so forth. But "services to the building" shall not include any storage (either combustible or noncombustible), nor routine human occupancy.

Exception 3. Basements where there is provided at least 20 square feet of opening entirely above the adjoining ground level in each fifty lineal feet or fraction thereof of exterior wall in the basement on at least one side of the building. Openings shall have a minimum dimension of not less than 30 inches, and shall be accessible to the fire department from the exterior, and shall not be obstructed in a manner that firefighting or rescue cannot be accomplished from the exterior.

When openings are provided on only one side and the opposite wall of said basement is more than seventy-five feet from such openings, said basement shall be provided with an approved automatic sprinkler system, or openings as specified above shall be provided on at least two sides of an exterior wall of the basement.

(f) All Group A occupancies used primarily for dining, drinking, or motion picture viewing shall be protected throughout by an approved and supervised automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with the provisions of section 903.3.1 when said Group A occupancy is greater than 2,000 gross square feet in size.

For Group A occupancies described in this part (f) not currently provided with complete automatic sprinkler protection, this paragraph shall take effect during a remodel or renovation which 1) requires one or more building permits with a combined valuation (labor and materials) of $30 per square foot or more within any calendar year, and 2) necessitates business closure for a combined period of five calendar days or more, in the aforementioned calendar year.

(45)  Section 907.6.5 is repealed and reenacted to read:

907.6.5 Monitoring. Fire alarm systems shall be supervised by an Underwriters Laboratory listed supervising station.

(46)  Section 1103.5, "Sprinkler systems," is repealed and reenacted to read:

1103.5 Sprinkler systems. The automatic sprinkler system requirements set forth in sections 903.1 and 903.2 of this code shall be complied with in existing buildings where the occupancy or use, as defined in Chapter 3 of the Building Code of the City of Boulder, changes in a fire area exceeding 2,000 square feet.

(47)  Section 5601.2.4.2, "Fireworks," is amended by the addition of the following:

The city manager shall require a certificate of insurance to protect persons and property from death or injury as a result of the fireworks display, in an amount not less than $150,000 per person injured and $600,000 per incident. The insurance shall cover any liability of the city or any employee or agent thereof arising out of or connected with the permit and the fireworks display permitted thereunder. Before any permit for a fireworks display is issued, the applicant shall comply with the provisions of this section.

(48)  Section 5701.4, "Permits," is amended by the addition of the following:

(1) A regular permit allows a permittee on a transport route to take delivery of flammable and combustible liquids from any delivery vehicle or from a tank truck where the premises are located on a transport route. Upon payment of the fee provided in Section 4-20-52, "Fire Code Permit and Inspection Fees," B.R.C. 1981, the city manager shall issue to an applicant therefor a permit to receive deliveries of flammable and combustible liquids at a particular location or outlet if the manager finds that:

(a) The outlet or location contains sufficient room to accommodate the delivery vehicle, so that the delivery vehicle is capable of being parked entirely within the property boundary lines of the outlet or location and in such a manner that no part of the vehicle extends into any street, sidewalk, or alley while the vehicle is off-loading and no backing of the vehicle either into or out of station property is necessary;

(b) The entrance and exit access-ways for the delivery vehicle are so arranged that no obstruction of traffic will result from the vehicle entering or leaving the outlet or location; and

(c) The storage tanks for flammable and combustible liquids are located underground and constructed in accordance with the applicable provisions of this code, unless specifically allowed to be installed above ground by other sections of this code.

(2) A special permit allows a permittee to take delivery of flammable and combustible liquids on premises outside of transport routes from specified delivery vehicles other than a tank truck. The owner or person in control of any outlet or location holding a regular permit may, upon payment of the fee provided in Section 4-20-52, "Fire Code Permit and Inspection Fees," B.R.C. 1981, apply to the city manager for a special permit allowing delivery with a vehicle other than a tank truck as defined in section 221. The manager shall schedule with the applicant a simulated demonstration with an empty vehicle of the size and design that the applicant will use under the permit. The applicant shall furnish the vehicle and driver at its cost. The simulated test shall be observed by the manager who shall issue the special permit if the manager finds that:

(a) The outlet or location contains sufficient room to accommodate the delivery vehicle, so that the delivery vehicle is capable of being parked entirely within the property boundary lines of the outlet or location in such a manner that no part of the vehicle shall extend into any street, sidewalk, or alley while the vehicle is off-loading, and no backing of the vehicle either into or out of the station property is necessary;

(b) The entrance and exit access-ways for the delivery vehicles are so arranged that no obstruction of traffic will result from the vehicle entering or leaving the outlet or location;

(c) The roads and streets are accessible to fire-fighting equipment and vehicles;

(d) The topography or configuration of the roads and streets does not involve potential difficulties in containing, fighting, or suppressing a fire or spill and does not impair the ability of a transport vehicle to maneuver safely; and

(e) The traffic congestion and flow of vehicles using the roads and streets will not create potential hazards to transport vehicles.

Upon issuance, the permit will designate a specific route to be followed from the nearest transport route to the permit location and to return to the transport route. The permit will specify a vehicle capacity. Special permits are valid only between 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. But, for the delivery of gasoline or diesel fuel only, if the permit location is in an industrial zone and is connected to a transport route by a former transport route established by ordinance 4636 (1982), and the applicant demonstrates that there were no incidents involving the discharge of gasoline or diesel fuel from delivery vehicles using the relevant portion of such former route, then the manager may issue the special permit for such other hours as the applicant is able to demonstrate present no more hazard than delivery during the hours of 3 a.m. through 6 a.m.

(3) Revocation or Suspension of Permits.

(a) Each of the following is a ground for revocation of a special permit:

1. Failure of a transport vehicle to park entirely on the site while unloading;

2. Obstructing of sidewalks while unloading;

3. Backing the vehicle onto or off of the site;

4. Obstruction of traffic while entering or leaving;

5. Failure of a transport driver to follow the prescribed route to or from the permit location;

6. Failure to maintain a copy of the special permit on the premises; or

7. Failure of a transport driver to be present while off-loading.

(b) Each of the following is a ground for suspension of a regular permit for up to fourteen days:

1. Failure of a transport vehicle to park entirely on the site while unloading;

2. Obstructing of sidewalks while unloading;

3. Backing the vehicle onto or off of the site;

4. Obstruction of traffic while entering or leaving;

5. Failure of a transport driver to follow the prescribed route to or from the permit location; or

6. Failure of a transport driver to be present while off-loading.

(c) When matters are brought to the attention of the city manager, which if substantiated would be grounds for revocation of a special permit or suspension of a regular permit, the manager shall issue a written notice thereof to the permittee containing a concise written statement of the violation constituting grounds for revocation or suspension and indicating that the revocation or suspension shall take effect fourteen days after the issuance of said notice unless the permittee appeals in accordance with the terms of section 108.

(d) All special permit revocations shall be for a period of six months, after which time the permittee may reapply for a special permit. During the period of revocation, the outlet may continue to operate with and according to the terms of a regular permit.

(4) If, due to changed conditions, including, without limitation, changes in the transport routes, the manager has probable cause to believe that an existing regular or special permit no longer meets the criteria for issuance, the manager may require a new simulated demonstration. For purposes of notice and appeal, such proceedings shall be deemed a new application, but no additional fee shall be charged.

(49)  A new Section 5701.6, "Prohibited acts," is adopted to read:

5701.6 Prohibited acts.

(a) No owner and no person in control of any outlet or location shall accept deliveries of flammable or combustible liquids, unless such person has applied for and has been issued a permit therefor by the city manager.

(b) No owner and no person in control of any outlet or location for which a permit to accept deliveries of flammable or combustible liquids has been issued shall accept deliveries of such liquids unless delivery is in compliance with all the provisions of this code and any conditions on the permit.

(c) No person shall spill more than thirty-two fluid ounces of flammable or combustible liquid upon the ground.

(d) No person shall fail to notify the fire department of any spill of flammable or combustible liquid of more than thirty-two fluid ounces at the earliest practicable moment after said spill has occurred.

(e) Except to replace existing tanks, no person shall install any tanks used for the storage of any type of flammable or combustible liquid, or other hazardous material or waste in the floodplain as defined in Chapter 9-16, "Definitions," B.R.C. 1981. This prohibition is not retroactive, but no person shall use or maintain any tank installed in violation of this prohibition.

(f) No person shall weld or cut by torch on the premises of a service station or allow or cause crankcase drainings to be spilled or poured onto the ground. No person shall dispose of hazardous materials by dumping or pouring on the ground or into a storm drain or sanitary sewer or any connection thereto.

(50)  Section 5704.2, "Tank storage," is amended by the addition of the following:

(a) Except for fuel carried on tank trucks, above-ground storage of all Class I, II, and III flammable and combustible liquids in aggregate amounts of more than 500 gallons of such liquids on a single lot is allowed only in those areas of the city zoned "industrial." All installations shall comply in all respects with chapter 57. Any tank intended for the bulk storage of any Class I, II, or III flammable or combustible liquid may be stored above ground only in those areas of the city zoned industrial.

(b) Liquefied natural gas (LNG) or liquefied petroleum gas (LP-Gas) may be stored aboveground in areas of the city zoned "industrial" and dispensed at such sites by a service station if the city manager finds that such installation meets all the requirements of applicable fire codes before any dispensing of such fuel and proper and necessary on-site fire control devices are provided.

(c) All underground tanks used for dispensing or bulk storage of any flammable or combustible liquid shall comply with the requirements of chapter 57, Flammable and Combustible Liquids, any other pertinent city codes, including, without limitation, those concerning fire and flood, the Colorado State Oil Division, and the manufacturer's specifications for installation. Plans for installation shall be approved by the Colorado State Oil Division and the city flood control office before the city may issue permits for construction, installation, and use of the tanks. No person shall install a used tank.

(d) No person shall install a tank or tanks for the dispensing or bulk storage of any flammable or combustible liquid, including temporary installations on construction sites, until such person has first submitted plans for the installation to the city manager and has received approval of such plans and of the installation.

(51)  A new Section 5706.2.8.2, "Safety devices required for outlets or locations accepting deliveries of flammable or combustible liquids," is adopted to read:

5706.2.8.2 Safety devices required for outlets or locations accepting deliveries of flammable or combustible liquids. No owner and no person in control of any outlet or location shall accept deliveries of flammable and combustible liquids, and no person shall make deliveries of such liquids to any outlet or location, unless the following conditions are met during such delivery:

(a) The hose connection employed in making a delivery of flammable or combustible liquids contains the safety device known as a "glass elbow" to allow inspection of the contents of the delivery hose; and

(b) Any hose used in making deliveries of flammable or combustible liquids contains the apparatus commonly known as a tight-fill connection device to secure the off-loading device of the delivery vehicle to the intake structure of the storage tank.

(c) Exceptions to (1) and (2) above may be granted by the city manager for industrial installations if conditions warrant.

(52)  A new Section 5706.2.8.3, "Full compartment dumps required," is adopted to read:

5706.2.8.3 Full compartment dumps required. Any person delivering flammable and combustible liquids in a vehicle that contains compartments larger than six hundred gallons shall empty each such compartment at a single stop, if any delivery of liquids is made at any outlet or location from any such compartment.

(53)  In Chapter 80, "Referenced Standards," the NFPA standard reference numbers for 13, 13D, 13R, and 72 are repealed and reenacted to read:

13-13
13D-13
13R-13
72-13

Ordinance Nos. 5562 (1993); 5622 (1994); 5781 (1996); 6015 (1998); 7371 (2004); 7566 (2007); 7577 (2007); 7925 (2013)

10-8-3.  Violations. Go to the top

Repealed.

Ordinance Nos. 7566 (2007); 7925 (2013)


1 Adopted by Ordinance No. 5493. Amended by Ordinance No. 7304. Derived from Ordinance Nos. 3798, 4154, 4485, 4636, 4680, 4799, 4946, 4967, 4969, 5029, 5125, 5194, 5245, 5271, 5382.

Top of Page