Municipality of Murrysville, PA
Westmoreland County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY:[1] Adopted by the Council of the Municipality of Murrysville as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Uniform Construction Codes — See Ch. 96.
Subdivision and land development — See Ch. 201.
Zoning — See Ch. 220.
Attachment 1 - Table 1, Fire Hydrant Inspection, Maintenance and Repair
[1]
Editor's Note: Former Ch. 115, Fire Prevention, Art. I, Standards, adopted 8-1-1988 by Ord. No. 220A-88, was repealed 12-15-2004 by Ord. No. 671-04. See Ch. 96, Construction Codes, Uniform.
[Adopted 12-19-2007 by Ord. No. 756-07]

§ 115-1 Definitions.

The following definitions shall apply to word usage within this article:
CODE OFFICIAL
The Building Code Official or his designee in consultation with the Fire Code Official.
COMMERCIAL ESTABLISHMENT
A place that comprises an economic unit, generally at a single physical location, where business is conducted or services or industrial operations performed which are required to maintain or house an existing fire suppression system, including Ansul systems.
OPERATOR
The entity, establishment, or owner as per § 115-3 of this article that is responsible for obtaining a fire suppression operating license.
RESIDENTIAL FACILITY
All residential dwelling units or facilities, excluding single-family and multifamily units classified as R-3 one- and two-family use group and those bearing four units or less in one building, which are required to maintain or house an existing fire suppression system, including Ansul systems.

§ 115-2 Purpose.

The Municipality desires to ensure public health, safety, and welfare through the annual inspection of residential facilities and commercial establishments and to ensure the continued adherence of such facilities and establishments to municipal ordinances and land development approvals.

§ 115-3 License required.

A. 
All residential facilities and commercial establishments shall obtain a business license.
B. 
Where a shopping center, office building, or similar commercial center owns or operates a fire suppression system central to the structure, the owner of the center shall be required to obtain one license for the entire center. Where an individual commercial establishment within the center bears or requires independent fire suppression systems such as an Ansul system, said establishment shall be required to obtain a business license.
C. 
Where a condominium or homeowners' association operates a required or existing central system within a residential facility or commercial establishment, said association shall be required to obtain a business license.
D. 
Each license shall be effective for a period of one year after issuance.
E. 
The license shall be obtained, initially, within the 2008 calendar year with all residential facilities to obtain said license by June 30, 2008, and all commercial establishments by December 31, 2008.

§ 115-4 Application; inspections; corrections; violations and penalties; other remedies.

A. 
Each operator shall submit an application on forms provided by the Municipality along with the required fee or fees as instituted in Chapter 112, Fees, within 30 days of the initial date cited and subsequently within 30 days prior to the expiration of the license.
B. 
The Code Official shall inspect the following, the satisfaction of which is required prior to the issuance or renewal of the license.
(1) 
Compliance of the establishment or facility with the International Fire Code and National Fire Prevention Association as adopted by the Municipality of Murrysville through the Pennsylvania Uniform Construction Code.
(2) 
Compliance with all accessibility requirements of the Uniform Construction Code.
(3) 
Compliance of exterior fire suppression systems, including fire hydrants, with associated land development approvals and municipal ordinances.
(4) 
Where an evacuation plan is required by the International Fire Code, said plan shall be approved and maintained.
(5) 
The Code Official may refuse to issue a license where violations of the approved land development plan; Chapter 220, Zoning; or any other municipal ordinance exist on the site associated with the establishment or facility.
C. 
In the event that an application is not received by the due date required, the Code Official shall notify the operator that said entity submit the required application and fee within one week of receipt of the letter.
D. 
The Code Official, upon inspection, shall issue a written report, to the owner of the establishment and the tenant where the specific establishment requires a license, of any deficiencies, violations, or corrections, which report shall include a reasonable amount of time not to exceed 30 days.
E. 
Penalty. A person or legal entity that violates any provision of this article shall be guilty of a summary offense and, upon conviction thereof before a District Justice, shall be subject to a fine of not less than $300 nor more than $1,000 and shall be required to pay the costs of prosecution (including reasonable legal fees). Each violation shall be considered a separate and distinct offense. Further, each day of continued violation or noncompliance shall be considered as a separate offense. In addition to the foregoing, the Municipality may take such other lawful action in any court of competent jurisdiction as is necessary to prevent or remedy any violation of this article. Such other lawful actions shall include, but shall not be limited to, an equitable action for injunctive relief or an action at law for damages.
F. 
Remedy. The aforesaid remedy is not intended to preclude the Code Official from seeking any other remedy afforded by the Uniform Construction Code or Murrysville Code where violations of other ordinances or immediate safety issues exist.
[Adopted 11-18-2015 by Ord. No. 929-15]

§ 115-5 Purposes.

The purposes of this article are to:
A. 
Provide standards and requirements for the inspection, testing, maintenance, correction and repair of fire hydrants located on private property of the Municipality of Murrysville.
B. 
Ensure that every private fire hydrant to which the Fire Departments of the Municipality of Murrysville or other municipal fire departments connect in the event of a fire or other emergency will function as designed to produce the water necessary to respond appropriately to the fire or other emergencies.
C. 
Protect the public health, safety and general welfare of the Municipality of Murrysville.

§ 115-6 Definitions.

As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
CODE ENFORCEMENT OFFICER
The duly appointed code enforcement officer of the Municipality of Murrysville.
EMERGENCY IMPAIRMENT
A condition where a private fire hydrant is out of service due to an unexpected occurrence, such as frozen or ruptured hydrant components or an interruption of the water supply to the system.
FIRE DEPARTMENT
The Fire Departments of the Municipality of Murrysville.
HYDRANT
A private fire hydrant as defined below.
IMPAIRED HYDRANT
A private fire hydrant which is not operational due to an emergency impairment or a preplanned impairment.
IMPAIRMENT
A shutdown of a private fire hydrant which renders the hydrant nonoperational and therefore out of service.
IMPAIRMENT TAG
A tag affixed to a private fire hydrant to indicate that the hydrant is out of service.
INSPECTION
A visual examination of a private fire hydrant to verify that it appears to be in operating condition and is free from physical damage.
MAINTENANCE
Work performed to keep a private fire hydrant operable or to make repairs.
NFPA STANDARD
Publication 25 of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) entitled "Standard for the Inspection, Testing and Maintenance of Water-Based Fire Protection Systems 2002," and any subsequent amendments or revisions thereto.
OWNER
The person that holds record title to the property upon which a private fire hydrant is located. For fire hydrants located in the right-of-way of a public highway in the Municipality of Murrysville and that are not owned by the Municipality of Murrysville, the owner is the person that owns the fire hydrant itself.
OWNER'S DESIGNEE
Where the owner is not the occupant of the premises upon which a private fire hydrant is located, the occupant, management firm, or managing individual designated by the owner through specific provisions in the lease, written use agreement, or management contract that has the responsibility to inspect, test, and maintain, correct and repair a private fire hydrant located on the owner's property.
PERSON
Any institution, public or private corporation, individual, partnership, fire district, or other entity.
PREPLANNED IMPAIRMENT
A condition where a private fire hydrant is out of service due to work that has been planned in advance.
PRIVATE FIRE HYDRANT
A valved connection to a water main for the purpose of supplying water to a fire hose or other fire-protection apparatus and that is not located within the right-of-way of a public highway of the Municipality of Murrysville. A private fire hydrant also includes any fire hydrant located in a right-of-way of a public highway in the Municipality of Murrysville that is owned by any person other than the Municipality of Murrysville.
QUALIFIED
Having knowledge of the installation, construction, operation, maintenance, correction or repair of a fire hydrant and the hazards involved.
RECORD
Written documentation of the inspection, testing, maintenance, correction, or repair of a private fire hydrant.
SHALL
Indicates a mandatory requirement.
TESTING
A procedure of periodic physical and operational checks used to determine whether a private fire hydrant is capable of being operated as intended and will perform as intended, for example, water-flow tests. These tests follow up on the original tests at intervals specified in this article.

§ 115-7 General requirements.

A. 
Responsibility for properly maintaining a private fire hydrant shall be that of the owner of the property or the owner's designee.
(1) 
Where the owner of a private fire hydrant has designated an occupant, management firm, or managing individual, through specific provisions in the lease, written use agreement, or management contract, to be responsible for the inspection, testing and maintenance of a private fire hydrant in accordance with this article, the owner's designee shall comply with the requirements of this article and shall be subject to enforcement of this article in the event of a failure to so comply.
B. 
By means of periodic inspections, tests, maintenance, correction, and repair, every private fire hydrant shall be maintained in proper working condition, consistent with this article, the NFPA Standard, and the manufacturer's specifications or recommendations.
C. 
Inspection, testing, maintenance, correction and repair shall be implemented with the procedures meeting or exceeding those established in this article and the NFPA Standard and shall be in accordance with the manufacturer's specifications or recommendations. This article shall control in the event of a conflict among any of the aforementioned applicable standards. Inspection, testing, maintenance, correction, and repair shall be performed by qualified maintenance personnel or a qualified contractor.
D. 
The owner or owner's designee shall notify the Code Enforcement Officer of the Municipality of Murrysville before testing or shutting down a private fire hydrant or its water supply.
(1) 
This notification shall include the purpose for the shutdown, the private fire hydrant involved, and the estimated time that the hydrant will be impaired.
E. 
The owner or owner's designee shall notify the Code Enforcement Officer when the private fire hydrant is returned to service.
F. 
The owner or owner's designee shall promptly correct or repair any deficiencies, damaged parts, or impairments found while performing the inspection, testing, and maintenance requirements of this article.
G. 
The owner or owner's designee shall promptly correct or repair any deficiencies, damaged parts, or impairments of any private fire hydrant of which the owner or owner's designee has knowledge or, in the exercise of reasonable care, ought to have knowledge.

§ 115-8 Inspection, testing, maintenance, correction and repair.

A. 
This section shall provide the minimum requirements for the routine inspection, testing, maintenance, correction, and repair of private fire hydrants. These functions shall be permitted to be carried out simultaneously.
B. 
On or before October 1 of each year, the owner or the owner's designee shall inspect, test, maintain, and, if necessary, correct, and repair each private fire hydrant to ensure proper functioning, with the necessary repair or corrective action taken as shown in Table 1.[1]
(1) 
The owner or owner's designee shall conduct an inspection of a private fire hydrant after each time the hydrant is operated.
[1]
Editor's Note: Table 1 is included as an attachment to this chapter.
C. 
When conducting a test of a private fire hydrant, the hydrant shall be opened fully and water flowed until all foreign material has cleared.
(1) 
Flow shall be maintained for not less than one minute.
(2) 
After operation, the hydrant shall be observed for proper drainage from the barrel.
(3) 
Full drainage shall take no longer than 60 minutes.
(4) 
Where soil conditions or other factors are such that the hydrant barrel does not drain within 60 minutes or where the groundwater level is above that of the hydrant drain, the hydrant drain shall be plugged and the water in the barrel shall be pumped out.
D. 
Private fire hydrants shall be lubricated annually to ensure that all stems, caps, plugs, and threads are in proper operating condition.
E. 
Private fire hydrants shall be kept free of snow, ice, or other materials and protected against mechanical damage so that free access is ensured.
F. 
The owner or the owner's designee shall repair as soon as possible a private fire hydrant which is impaired or otherwise does not function as required by this article, the NFPA Standard, or the manufacturer's specifications.
(1) 
After completing all necessary repairs to a private fire hydrant, the owner or the owner's designee shall inspect and test the hydrant as necessary consistent with the standards of this article, including, without limitation, Table 1,[2] to ensure that the hydrant is operational.
[2]
Editor's Note: Table 1 is included as an attachment to this chapter.

§ 115-9 Identification and notification of impaired hydrant.

A. 
The owner or owner's designee shall notify the Code Enforcement Officer in advance of a preplanned impairment of a private fire hydrant.
B. 
The owner or the owner's designee shall notify the Code Enforcement Officer immediately of an emergency impairment of a private fire hydrant.
C. 
The owner or owner's designee shall affix an impairment tag to an impaired hydrant at the commencement of a preplanned impairment and at the time of discovery of an emergency impairment.
D. 
Once the necessary inspection and testing confirm that repairs have restored a private fire hydrant to operational status, the owner or the owner's designee shall remove the impairment tag and shall notify the Code Enforcement Officer that the hydrant is operational.

§ 115-10 Records.

A. 
Records shall indicate the procedure performed concerning the inspection, testing, maintenance, correction, and repair of a private hydrant. Such records shall include the organization that performed the work, the results, and the date, as well as such other pertinent information as the Code Enforcement Officer shall require.
B. 
Records shall be maintained by the owner or the owner's designee.
C. 
The owner or owner's designee shall submit to the Code Enforcement Officer a record of the annual inspection, test, maintenance, correction and repair of each private fire hydrant and its components.
D. 
The owner shall retain the original records of a private fire hydrant for the life of the private fire hydrant.
E. 
Subsequent records shall be retained for a period of one year after the next inspection, test, maintenance, correction or repair required by this article.

§ 115-11 Violations and penalties.

A. 
A fine of not less than $500 nor more than $1,000, plus cost of prosecution, including reasonable attorney fees, shall be imposed for a violation of this article.
B. 
Each violation shall be considered a separate and distinct offense. Further, each day of continued violation or noncompliance shall be considered a separate offense. In addition to the foregoing, the Municipality may take such other lawful action in any court of competent jurisdiction as is necessary to prevent or remedy the violation. Such other lawful actions shall include, but shall not be limited to, an equitable action for injunctive relief or an action at law for damages.