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Town of Lewiston, NY
Niagara County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Adopted 12-2-1974 by L.L. No. 3-1974 (Ch. 9A of the 1965 Code)]
This article may be cited as the "Lewiston Fire Prevention Code."
[Amended 5-4-1981 by L.L. No. 2-1981; 4-28-2014 by L.L. No. 1-2014]
There is hereby adopted by the Town of Lewiston, for the purpose of prescribing regulations governing conditions hazardous to life and property from fire or explosion, that certain code known as the "Fire Code of New York State," as amended from time to time. Copies are available in the office of the Clerk of the Town of Lewiston, and the same is hereby adopted and incorporated as fully as if set out at length herein, and, from the date on which this article shall take effect, the provisions thereof shall be controlling within the limits of the Town of Lewiston outside of any incorporated village.
A. 
The Fire Code of New York State shall be enforced by the Bureau of Fire Prevention of the Town of Lewiston, hereinafter referred to as the "Bureau," which is hereby established and which shall be operated under the supervision of the Chairman of the Bureau.
[Amended 4-28-2014 by L.L. No. 1-2014]
(1) 
The following inspections shall be conducted by the Bureau Fire Inspectors:
(a) 
Firesafety and property maintenance inspections of all multiple dwellings and all nonresidential occupancies at intervals consistent with local conditions, but in no event shall such intervals exceed three years.
(b) 
Firesafety and property maintenance inspections of buildings which contain an area of public assemblies at intervals not to exceed one year.
B. 
The Bureau shall consist of 13 members as follows:
(1) 
The Chief and two members of each of the following fire companies: Lewiston Fire Company No. 1, Lewiston Fire Company No. 2, Upper Mountain Fire Company of Lewiston, New York, Inc., and the Sanborn Fire Company.
(2) 
One member of the Lewiston Town Board.
C. 
The Chairman of the Bureau shall be elected from its membership by a majority thereof, with the exception that the member of the Bureau who is a member of the Lewiston Town Board may not be elected as Chairman even though he shall be entitled to vote thereon. The Chairman shall serve as such for an indefinite term at the pleasure of the Bureau.
D. 
The Chairman of the Bureau shall recommend to the Lewiston Town Board the employment of an Inspector or Inspectors who, when such authorization is made, shall be selected through an examination to determine fitness for the position, and shall be known as "Inspector (or Inspectors) of the Bureau of Fire Prevention." The Town Board must accept the recommendations of the Bureau, and the appointments shall be made for an indefinite term at the pleasure of the Bureau.
E. 
A report of the Bureau shall be made annually and transmitted to the Chief Executive Officer of the Town of Lewiston. It shall contain all proceedings under the Fire Prevention Code, with such statistics as the Chairman of the Bureau may wish to include therein. The Chairman of the Bureau shall also recommend any amendments to the Code which, in his judgment, shall be desirable.
As used in this article and the code adopted hereby, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
CHIEF OF THE BUREAU OF FIRE PREVENTION
The Chairman of the Bureau of Fire Prevention.
CHIEF OF THE FIRE DEPARTMENT
The Chief of the incorporated fire company having jurisdiction over the geographical area involved, as such geographical jurisdiction has been established by the Bureau pursuant to the authority delegated to the Bureau by § 130-5 of this article.
CORPORATION COUNSEL
The Attorney for the Town of Lewiston.
FIRE DEPARTMENT
The incorporated fire company having jurisdiction over the geographical area involved, as such geographical jurisdiction has been established by the Bureau pursuant to the authority delegated to the Bureau by § 130-5 of this article.
MUNICIPALITY
The Town of Lewiston outside of any incorporated village.
WITHIN THE LIMITS ESTABLISHED BY LAW (as used in Sections 12.5B, 16.22A, 16.61 and 21.6A of the Fire Prevention Code)
Within the limits established by the Bureau pursuant to the authority delegated to the Bureau by § 130-5 of this article.
A. 
The Town Board hereby delegates to the Bureau of Fire Prevention the authority and power to promulgate and establish rules, regulations and policies to execute, effect the purpose of and enforce the Town of Lewiston Fire Prevention Code, specifically including but not limited to the power and authority to:
(1) 
Establish the geographical boundaries of jurisdiction of each of the incorporated fire companies servicing the Town of Lewiston, outside of any incorporated village.
(2) 
Establish limits of districts in which storage of explosives and blasting agents is to be prohibited.
(3) 
Establish limits of districts in which storage of flammable liquids in outside aboveground tanks is to be prohibited.
(4) 
Establish limits in which bulk storage of liquefied petroleum gases is to be restricted.
(5) 
Establish and designate the motor vehicle routes for vehicles transporting explosives and blasting agents referred to in Section 12.7m of the Fire Prevention Code.
(6) 
Establish and designate the motor vehicle routes for vehicles transporting hazardous chemicals or other dangerous articles referred to in Section 20.14 of the Fire Prevention Code.
(7) 
Establish fire lanes on private property devoted to public use.
(8) 
Establish the manner and minimum number of fire drills to be conducted in educational and institutional occupancies.
(9) 
Establish a schedule of permit fees, based upon inspection and administration costs.
B. 
The rules, regulations and policies established and promulgated by the Bureau, pursuant to the authority delegated to it by this section, shall be reduced to written form and compiled under the title "Rules and Regulations of the Bureau of Fire Prevention of the Town of Lewiston," copies of which shall be made available to the public, at cost, at the Lewiston Town Hall and any other location which the Bureau deems fit.
C. 
Display of address numbers; penalties for offenses.
[Added 2-12-1990 by L.L. No. 3-1990]
(1) 
In order to aid police, fire and ambulance vehicles in locating the proper address during an emergency, all residential, commercial and industrial buildings shall be required to display address numbers so that they can be easily recognizable from the street or road upon which they front.
(2) 
Violation of this subsection of the Code shall be punishable by a fine of not to exceed $25. Each and every day that a violation is permitted to exist after due notice shall constitute a separate offense.
The Fire Prevention Code is hereby amended and changed as follows:
A. 
Section 1.2.a is hereby amended as follows:
a.
The provisions of this code shall apply equally to new and existing conditions, except that existing conditions not in strict compliance with the terms of this code may be permitted to continue for a period of time not to exceed one year following the effective date of this code, in the discretion of the Inspector of the Bureau of Fire Prevention, provided that good cause is shown and that such exceptions do not, in the opinion of the Inspector of the Bureau of Fire Prevention, constitute a distinct hazard to life or property.
B. 
Section 1.2.b is hereby deleted in its entirety.
C. 
Section 1.5 is hereby amended to read as follows:
Section 1.5. Orders to Eliminate Dangerous or Hazardous Conditions.
Whenever any of the officers, members or inspectors of the Fire Department or Bureau of Fire Prevention as mentioned in Section 1.4 shall find, in any building or upon any premises, dangerous or hazardous conditions or materials as follows, the Inspector of the Bureau of Fire Prevention shall order such dangerous conditions or materials to be removed or remedied in such manner as he may specify.
a.
Dangerous or unlawful amounts of combustible, explosive or otherwise hazardous materials.
b.
Hazardous conditions arising from defective or improperly installed equipment for handling or using combustible, explosive or otherwise hazardous materials.
c.
Dangerous accumulations of rubbish, wastepaper, boxes, shavings or other highly combustible materials.
d.
Accumulations of dust or waste material in air-conditioning or ventilating systems or of grease in kitchen or other exhaust ducts or inadequate clearances to unprotected combustible material from hoods, grease extractors and ducts.
e.
Obstructions to or on fire escapes, designated access openings in exterior walls for Fire Department use, stairs, passageways, doors or windows, which are liable to interfere with the operations of the Fire Department or egress of occupants in case of fire.
f.
Any building or other structure which, for want of repair, lack of adequate exit facilities, automatic or other fire alarm apparatus or fire extinguishing equipment, or by reason of age or dilapidated condition, or from any other cause, creates a hazardous condition.
g.
Hazardous conditions resulting from the covering of a fire hydrant with snow or the planting of shrubbery or trees within 15 feet of a fire hydrant so as to obstruct the view of the hydrant from the street or roadway, or hazardous conditions resulting from the placement of brush, rubbish, debris, automobiles or other material within 15 feet on either side of a hydrant so as to hinder access to or operation of the hydrant by Fire Department personnel.
[Added 5-4-1981 by L.L. No. 2-1981]
D. 
Section 1.6. is hereby amended to read as follows:
Section 1.6. Service of Orders.
a.
The service of orders for the correction of violations of this code shall be made by the Inspector of the Bureau of Fire Prevention, upon the owner, occupant or other person responsible for the conditions, either by delivering a copy of same to such person or by delivering the same to and leaving it with any person in charge of the premises, or in case no such person is found upon the premises, by affixing a copy thereof in a conspicuous place on the door to the entrance of the said premises. Whenever it may be necessary to serve such an order upon the owner of premises, such order may be served either by delivering to and leaving with the said person a copy of the said order or, if such owner is absent from the jurisdiction of the Inspector making the order, by sending such copy by certified or registered mail to the owner's last known post office address.
b.
If buildings or other premises are owned by one person and occupied by another under lease or otherwise, the orders issued in connection with the enforcing of this code shall apply to the occupant thereof, except where the rules or orders require the making of additions to or changes in the premises themselves, such as would immediately become real estate and be the property of the owner of the premises. In such cases the rules or orders shall affect the owner and not the occupant unless it is otherwise agreed between the owner and the occupant.
c.
The orders for a correction of a violation of this code shall contain a specified time within which compliance must occur. The specified time shall be determined by the Inspector of the Bureau of Fire Prevention, in his discretion, but in no event shall exceed 90 days. Extension of the time specified for compliance to a time exceeding 90 days may only be made by the Bureau of Fire Prevention upon application and a demonstration and determination of good cause for such an extension.
E. 
Section 1.7. is hereby amended to read as follows:
Section 1.7. Investigation of Fires.
a.
The Chief of the Fire Department shall investigate the cause, origin and circumstances of every fire occurring in the municipality which is of suspicious nature, which involves loss of life or injury to persons or by which property has been destroyed or substantially damaged. Such investigations shall be begun immediately upon the occurrence of such a fire and, if it appears that such fire is of suspicious origin, the Chief of the Fire Department shall take charge immediately of the physical evidence, shall notify the proper authorities designated by law to pursue the investigation of such matters and shall further cooperate with the authorities in the collection of evidence and in the prosecution of the case.
b.
Every fire shall be reported, by the Chief of the Fire Department, to the Bureau of Fire Prevention at its next regularly scheduled meeting immediately following the occurrence of the fire.
c.
The Corporation Counsel and the Police Department, upon request of the Bureau of Fire Prevention, shall assist the Inspectors in the investigation of any fire which, in their opinion, is of suspicious origin.
F. 
Section 1.8. is hereby amended to read as follows:
Section 1.8. Fire Record.
The Chief of the Fire Department shall keep, in his office, a record of all fires and of all the facts concerning the same, including statistics as to the extent of such fires and the damage caused thereby and whether such losses were covered by insurance and, if so, in what amount. All such records shall be public and shall be immediately available to the Bureau of Fire Prevention upon its request.
G. 
Section 1.9. is hereby amended to read as follows:
Section 1.9. Permits.
a.
A permit shall constitute permission to maintain, store or handle materials, or to conduct processes, which produce conditions hazardous to life or property, or to install equipment used in connection with such activities. Such permit does not take the place of any license required by law. It shall not be transferable, and any change in use or occupancy of premises shall require a new permit. The following operating permits are required in the Town of Lewiston.
[Amended 4-28-2014 by L.L. No. 1-2014]
(1)
Operating permits shall be required for conducting the activities or using the categories of building listed below:
(i)
Manufacturing, storing or handling hazardous materials in quantities exceeding those listed in Tables 2703.1.1(1), 2703.1.1(2), 2703.1.1(3) or 2703.1.1(4) of the Fire Code of New York State (see 19 NYCRR Part 1225);
(ii)
Hazardous processes and activities, including, but not limited to, commercial and industrial operations which produce combustible dust as a by-product, fruit and crop ripening, and wastewater handling;
(iii)
Use of pyrotechnic devices in assembly occupancies;
(iv)
Buildings containing one or more areas of public assembly with an occupant load of 100 persons or more; and
(v)
Buildings whose use or occupancy classification may pose a substantial potential hazard to public safety, as determined by the government or agency charged with or accountable for administration and enforcement of the Uniform Code.
(2)
Parties who propose to undertake the types of activities or operate the types of buildings listed in paragraph (1) of this subdivision shall be required to obtain an operating permit prior to commencing such operation. An application for an operating permit shall contain sufficient information to permit a determination that quantities, materials, and activities conform to the requirements of the Uniform Code. Tests or reports necessary to verify conformance shall be required.
(3)
An inspection of the premises shall be conducted prior to the issuance of an operating permit.
(4)
A single operating permit may apply to more than one hazardous activity.
(5)
Operating permits may remain in effect until reissued, renewed or revoked or may be issued for a specified period of time consistent with local conditions.
(6)
Where activities do not comply with applicable provisions of the Uniform Code, an operating permit shall not be revoked or suspended.
b.
Before a permit may be issued, the Inspector of the Bureau of Fire Prevention, or his assistants, shall inspect and approve the receptacles, vehicles, buildings or storage places to be used. In cases where laws or regulations enforceable by departments other than the Bureau of Fire Prevention are applicable, joint approval shall be obtained from all departments concerned.
c.
All applications for a permit required by this code shall be made to the Inspector of the Bureau of Fire Prevention, and said applications shall be in such form and detail and be accompanied by such plans as the Bureau of Fire Prevention may prescribe.
d.
The Inspector of the Bureau of Fire Prevention shall have the authority to issue permits after proper application and a determination by him that issuance is proper. The Inspector shall, at each regularly scheduled meeting of the Bureau of Fire Prevention, report on each application made and each permit issued.
e.
Fees for permits shall be based upon inspection and administration costs and shall be paid, to the Town Clerk, at the time of making the application, in an amount as is set forth in a schedule of fees promulgated by the Bureau of Fire Prevention.
f.
Permits shall at all times be kept on the premises designated therein and shall at all times be subject to inspection by any officer of the Fire or Police Departments.
g.
One permit only shall be required by establishments dealing in or using two or more flammable, combustible or explosive materials to be kept in the establishment at any one time, but each of the materials shall be listed in the permit.
H. 
Section 1.10. is hereby amended to read as follows:
Section 1.10. Revocation of Permit.
The Inspector of the Bureau of Fire Prevention may revoke a permit or approval issued if any violation of this code is found upon inspection or in case there has been any false statement or misrepresentation as to a material fact in the application or plans on which the permit or approval was based.
I. 
Section 1.11. is hereby amended to read as follows:
Section 1.11. Fire Drills in Educational and Institutional Occupancies.
Fire drills in educational and institutional occupancies shall be conducted periodically in a manner and number prescribed in the regulations of the Bureau of Fire Prevention.
J. 
Section 1.12 is hereby added to read as follows:
[Added 4-8-1991 by L. No. 1-1991[1]]
Section 1.12. Certain Sales of Gasoline Prohibited.
a.
No person or persons shall transport more than a maximum five gallons of Class 1B flammable liquid (gasoline) in an approved container or containers in any motor vehicle in the Town of Lewiston. An approved portable container for gasoline will be made of metal or suitable listed unbreakable material as described in the New York State Uniform Fire Prevention and Building Code and will have a spring- or screw-type cover with a spout or other design to prevent spilling when poured.
[Amended 8-28-1995 by L.L. No. 1-1995]
b.
No person who holds a license under this chapter nor any employee of such license holder shall sell or permit to be sold more than five gallons of gasoline to any person for transportation in any motor vehicle in an approved portable container where more than five gallons of gasoline will be transported in said vehicle.
c.
The foregoing provisions shall not apply to the extent that the Bureau of Fire Prevention has issued a permit to transport gasoline in excess of the limits prescribed by this section to any person who has demonstrated special circumstances which in the former's discretion warrant an exception thereto.
d.
Any person who violates the provisions of this section shall be fined not more than $250 or imprisoned not more than 15 days, or be subject to both such fine and imprisonment.
[1]
Editor's Note: Pursuant to this local law, former Subsection J was renumbered to become Subsection K.
K. 
Article 3 of the Fire Prevention Code is hereby amended as follows:
ARTICLE 3
WASTE MATERIAL HANDLING PLANTS
Section 3.1. General.
Waste material handling plants shall conform to all other applicable requirements of this code as well as the following provisions.
Section 3.2. Permit Required.
A permit shall be obtained to conduct or maintain waste material handling plant.
Section 3.3. Location.
No waste material handling plant shall be located as to seriously expose adjoining adjacent properties.
Section 3.4. Burning Operations.
The burning of any waste materials shall be done only in designated open spaces or incinerator enclosures approved for burning purposes by the Bureau of Fire Prevention.
Section 3.5. Construction and Protection.
a.
Handling and storage of large quantities of wastepaper, rags or other combustible materials shall not be in a building of wood frame or ordinary construction, unless the building is sprinklered. Vertical openings shall be enclosed in an approved manner.
b.
Picking rooms shall be separated from storage rooms by construction having a fire resistance rating of not less than one hour, with each door opening provided with an approved fire door. Picking rooms shall be provided with exhaust systems of sufficient capacity to adequately remove dust and lint.
The Bureau of Fire Prevention shall have power to modify any of the provisions of the Fire Prevention Code, upon application in writing by the owner or lessee, or his duly authorized agent, when there are practical difficulties in the way of carrying out the strict letter of the code, provided that the spirit of the code shall be observed, public safety secured and substantial justice done. The particulars of such modification when granted or allowed and the decision of the Bureau of Fire Prevention thereon shall be entered upon the records of the Bureau of the fire company having jurisdiction over the geographical area involved, and a signed copy shall be furnished to the applicant.
Whenever the Inspector of the Bureau of Fire Prevention shall disapprove an application or refuse to grant a permit applied for, or when the Bureau denies an application for modification, or when it is claimed that the provisions of the code do not apply or that the true intent and meaning of the code have been misconstrued or wrongly interpreted, the applicant may appeal from such decision to the Town of Lewiston Board of Appeals within 30 days from the date of the decision appealed.
The Bureau of Fire Prevention shall act as a committee to determine and specify, after giving affected persons an opportunity to be heard, any new materials, processes or occupancies which shall require permits, in addition to those now enumerated in said code. The Bureau of Fire Prevention shall post such list in a conspicuous place and distribute copies thereof to interested persons.
A. 
Any person who shall violate any of the provisions of the code hereby adopted or fail to comply therewith or violate or fail to comply with any of the rules and regulations promulgated by the Bureau of Fire Prevention, or who shall violate or fail to comply with any order made thereunder, or who shall build in violation of any detailed statement of specifications or plans submitted and approved thereunder, or any certificate or permit issued thereunder, and from which no appeal has been taken, or who shall fail to comply with such an order as affirmed or modified by the Lewiston Board of Appeals or by a court of competent jurisdiction, within the time fixed herein, shall severally for each and every such violation and noncompliance respectively, be guilty of a Class B misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of not more than $500 or by imprisonment for not more than 90 days, or by both such fine and imprisonment. The imposition of one penalty for any violation shall not excuse the violation or permit it to continue, and all such persons shall be required to correct or remedy such violations or defects within a reasonable time, and, when not otherwise specified, each 10 days that prohibited conditions are maintained shall constitute a separate offense.
B. 
The application of the above penalty shall not be held to prevent the enforced removal of prohibited conditions.