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Fire Permit & Inspection Submittal Process

Fire Permit Process

The North Charleston Fire Department – Fire Inspection Bureau is in the process of making several changes to the application, permitting and review process.  These changes are intended to ensure more accurate tracking of requests, timely processing of applications and plans, and to help ensure a standardized level of service for everyone working in our community. 

These changes affect all fire plan submittals including, but not limited to: Fire Sprinkler, Fire Alarm, Standpipe, Fire Pump, Fire Service Underground, Hood Suppression, Specialized Suppression, and Tent/Canopy permits. Please note the following:

Applications

Please visit www.northcharleston.org to print out your permit application.

Plan Submittal

All plan submittals must include the needed applications, supplemental information, required drawings and information in order to ensure a smooth and timely review process.  Submittals that are incomplete will be placed on “hold” until all needed materials have been received.  Plans may be dropped off or mailed.

  • Drop off:  Plans may be delivered to the Zoning Department located at 2500 City Hall Ln – 3rd   floor “One Stop Shop”
  • Mailing:  Plans may be mailed to the City of North Charleston Zoning Department at 2500 City Hall Ln, N. Chas., SC  29406.

Plan Review

Upon receipt of a complete plan submittal package the plans will be assigned to a reviewer.  A review will typically be conducted within 10 business days of the submittal and correspondence provided on the status of the review. Reviews for simple tent, canopy, or minor special event related permits will be conducted within 5 business days.

Please contact the Fire Marshal Cindy Killette at (843)740-2622 or Deputy Fire Marshal Wanda Miller at (843) 740-2625 with any questions, comments, or concerns regarding the fire permit process.

Fire Alarm Permit Application  

Plan Submittal Checklist

The following checklist is provided as a summary of the minimum information required before a review will be initiated.  It is the contractor’s responsibility to have a thorough working knowledge of the applicable ordinances, codes, and/or standards. Failure to provide the needed information will delay the review process.

  1. Fire Alarm Permit Application, 2 sets of prints and one on a disk, 1 set of documents (specs, etc.)
  2. Name, address, phone, fax, e-mail, and state contractor’s license number on the prints.
  3. Creation date of plan, revision dates, point of compass, scale and graphic representation of scale.
  4. Description of the scope of work.
  5. Manufacturers cut sheets for all equipment, clearly indicating which models will be utilized.
  6. Floor plan(s) indicating all device locations and clearly identifying rooms, areas, etc. 
  7. 1-line diagram (riser), including power connection and conductor type and sizes.
  8. Battery and voltage drop calculations.
  9. Clear description of ceiling construction and height or detailed elevation drawing.
  10. Operation of any specialized equipment (smoke control/exhaust or other life safety systems).
  11. Compatibility listings to verify component compatibility with the FA control panel
  12. Alarm response matrix
  13. Clearly indicate the location and tamper switches for the Knox Box (if tamper switches are installed).
  14. Existing systems: Provide a copy of the most recent annual inspection report.

Required Inspections

The following inspections are minimum required during the project.  Failure to call for an inspection may result in delays or require covered work to be uncovered for visual inspections:

  1. Rough-in inspection to be completed before wiring or wiring methods is concealed.
  2. Overhead inspections to be completed before the installation of ceiling tiles or ceiling system.
  3. Final Inspection to include: verification of device placement, functional test of system, response time test, a review of contractors 100% self-inspection documentation. 

Pre-Final Inspection Checklist

The contractor shall verify completion of the following items prior to scheduling the final inspection.  Any item from this general list found outstanding at the time of the final will result in termination of the inspection and assessment of a re-inspection fee. 

  1. All equipment, devices, etc. have been installed per the submitted prints.  Any deviations must be approved before acceptance testing and shall be noted on as-built drawings that will be provided to the inspector.
  2. 100% pre-test has been completed and documented by the contractor.
  3. Any mechanical/electrical systems have been reviewed and approved by the Building Department.
  4. Contractor has current State License and proper documentation indicating adequate training and qualifications to install the selected system, permit, stamped drawings, system manual(s), and needed testing equipment.
  5. Provide a Record of Completion attesting to proper installation, copy to owner and inspector.

A copy of the submittal package and the Record of Completion shall be placed in a plan tube or binder marked “Fire Alarm Plans – Do Not Remove From Site” shall be installed at the fire alarm panel.

Fire Service Underground Permit Application

Plan Submittal Checklist

The following check list is provided as a summary of the minimum information required before a review will be initiated.  It is the contractor’s responsibility to have a thorough working knowledge of the applicable City, State, National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), and International Code Council (ICC) requirements and to include additional information specific to this system.  Failure to provide information will delay the review process.

All Projects

  1. Fire Service Underground Permit Application, 2 sets of prints and one on a disk, 1 set of documents (specs, etc.)
  2. Name, address, phone, fax, e-mail, and state contractor’s license number on the submitted prints.
  3. Creation date of plan, revision dates, point of compass, scale and graphic representation of scale.
  4. Complete address (include building name or suite) of project (include tenant name if known).
  5. Clear and definitive scope of work for the project and the company permitting the work.
  6. Size of the water mains supplying the system.
  7. Location of back flow prevention vault and/or FDC.
  8. Equipment cut sheets for all materials and components.
  9. Thrust blocks or other approved restraint methods as allowed by 2010 NFPA 24 section 10.8.2
  10. Hydraulic calculations that demonstrate the total system demand at the needed PSI for system operation.

New Installation/Major Remodel

  1. Site/plot drawings with paved roads, fire lanes, parking, and building orientation. Include locations of area hydrants and the remote FDC.  FDC’s shall be labeled in accordance with City Requirements. 
  2. Site/plot drawings indicating location, weight/class, size and length of underground piping and materials from water source to riser.  Include any valves, meters, valve pit (include pit details), depth to bury pipe, thrust blocks, etc.
  3. All valves, excluding the public water system roadway valve, controlling the water supply for automatic sprinkler systems up to an including the back flow prevention device shall be electrically supervised as required by 2012 International Fire Code section 903.4.
  4. Provide the means to conduct a full forward flow testing of the backflow prevention device as required by 2010 NFPA 13 section 10.10.2.5.1.
  5. Provide information on any hydrants to be installed; private hydrants to have the barrels painted red. The available flow to be marked on the hydrant bonnet and caps to meet NFPA 291 section 5.2.1.2.

Required Inspections and Documents

Testing and acceptance will be required to meet 2010 NFPA 24 section 10.10 requirements. Items to be reviewed or inspected include:

  1. Inspection of piping and restraint system before covering.
  2. Flushing of piping. Flow rate to meet NFPA 24 section 10.10.2.1.
  3. Hydrostatic test as required by NFPA 24 section 10.10.2.2.
  4. Underground material and test certificate.
  5. Private hydrants shall be flushed and flow tested.
  6. Flow rates to be marked on the hydrant with an approved method.
  7. Final inspection. 

Additional testing may be required based on system or complexity.

Pre-Final Inspection Checklist

The contractor shall verify completion of the following items, any item from this list found outstanding at the time of the final will result in termination of the inspection and assessment of a re-inspection fee. 

  1. All previous inspections completed and any deficiencies corrected.
  2. Installation per the submitted prints or deviations approved and as-built drawings prepared for inspector.
  3. Permit, stamped drawings, plan review comments, and 3 copies of the Certificate of Underground Piping on site.

Fire Sprinkler Permit Application

Plan Submittal Checklist

The following checklist is provided as a summary of the minimum information required before a review will be initiated.  It is the contractor’s responsibility to have a thorough working knowledge of the applicable ordinances, codes, and/or standards. Failure to provide the needed information will delay the review process.

All Projects

  1. Fire Sprinkler Permit Application, 2 sets of prints  and one disk, 1 set of documents (specs, etc).
  2. Name, address, phone, fax, e-mail, and state sprinkler contractor’s license number on the prints.
  3. Creation date of plan, revision dates, point of compass, scale and graphic representation of scale.
  4. Complete address (include building name or suite) of project (include tenant name if known).
  5. Clear and definitive scope of work for the project and the company permitting the work. .
  6. Existing systems: Provide a copy of the most recent annual inspection report.

New Installation/Major Remodel and all Group E (Educational), I (Institutional), A (Assembly)

  1. Site/plot drawings with paved roads, fire lanes, parking, and building orientation. Include locations of area hydrants, the remote FDC.  FDC’s shall be labeled in accordance with City Requirements. 
  2. Site/plot drawings indicating location, weight/class, size and length of underground piping and materials from water source to riser.  Include any valves, meters, valve pit (include pit details), depth to bury pipe, thrust blocks, etc.    All valves, including backflow, shall be electronically monitored. 
  3. One set of: hydraulic calculations for all remote areas, cut sheets for all components, P.E. signed/sealed FSSS and COC
  4. Provide the type of construction (per NFPA 13).  Include locations of wall partitions, fire walls, floor openings, concealed spaces, etc.  Clearly label each area/room as to its use or title.  Any area without sprinklers shall be clearly indicated and the appropriate NFPA 13 exception number shall be included.
  5. Provide system design data at each design area.  Hydraulic reference points shown on the plan shall correspond with a comparable reference on the hydraulic calculations.
  6. Include full height cross section and elevations of the facility, include ceiling construction.
  7. If room design method is used, provide information of room rating, including self-closing doors and indicate all unprotected wall openings throughout that floor.
  8. Indicate location and type of inspector test.  Show all control valves, switches, and alarm/flow devices.  Flow switches per level of the building and an exterior water flow alarm will be required per City Code.
  9. Indicate all duct work, ceiling layouts, lighting, diffusers, etc. which may affect the system coverage.
  10. Show size, type, piping, drainage, location and elevation of: risers, drains, house outlets, hand hose, etc.
  11. Show settings for pressure reducing valves at all levels.
  12. Legend shall clearly indicate the sprinkler type, temperature, manufacturer, etc. of each head.
  13. Indicate spacing of sprinklers and number of sprinkler in each story or fire area. 
  14. Indicate type and location of hangers, sleeves, flexible couplings, and braces.  Provide location spacing, direction, and calculations on loads for sizing of sway bracing with materials detail.

Required Inspections

Underground material certificate and full bore flush test, rough-in/overhead before concealment, hydro test (and air for dry systems), flow response test, and final.  Additional testing may be required based on system or complexity

Pre-Final Inspection Checklist

The contractor shall verify completion of the following items, any item from this list found outstanding at the time of the final will result in termination of the inspection and assessment of a re-inspection fee. 

  1. All previous inspections completed and deficiencies corrected.
  2. Installation per the submitted prints or deviations approved and as-built drawings prepared for inspector.
  3. Permit, stamped drawings, and 3 copies of the Certificate of Completion on site.
  4. A copy of the submittal package and Certificates shall be placed in a plan tube labeled “Sprinkler Plans – Do Not Remove From Site” and installed at the sprinkler riser or other approved location. 

Fire Suppression Permit Application

Plan Submittal Checklist

The following checklist is provided as a summary of the minimum information required before a review will be initiated.  It is the contractor’s responsibility to have a thorough working knowledge of the applicable ordinances, codes, and/or standards. Failure to provide the needed information will delay the review process.

  1. Fire Suppression Permit Application, 2 sets of prints and one on a disk, 1 set of documents (specs, etc.).
  2. Name, address, phone, fax, e-mail, and state contractor’s license number of the licensed contractor.
  3. Creation date of plan, revision dates, point of compass, scale and graphic representation of scale.
  4. Description of the system to be installed including (but not limited to): manufacturer, make, model, tank size, maximum flow points, and the number of flow points utilized (as applicable).
  5. Description and location of nozzles and pipe locations and sizes.
  6. Description, location, and size of appliance(s) to be protected.  Description of method to secure equipment and verify proper replacement of movable equipment (chain/cable, marking the floor, etc), as applicable.
  7. Location and temperature rating of fusible links and method to verify proper link temperature setting, such as manufacturers listing or ambient temperature review.  In general, setting link temperatures 70 degrees F above the tested ambient operational plenum temperature is considered acceptable.
  8. Type and function of gas valve, electrical shunts, etc.  Statement that all fuel sources, including electrical appliances and fixtures (including hood lights), will terminate upon system activation.
  9. Statement of installation standards (NFPA, IFC, etc.) to which the system will be installed.
  10. Function/operation of make-up air and exhaust upon system activation.
  11. Location of manual pull station(s) and K extinguisher (as applicable).
  12. Indication of interconnection to fire alarm system (as applicable).
  13. When multiple systems are present, hoods and pull station must be clearly labeled with signs of not less than 1” tall letters/numbers.

Note:  In order to assist with the review process, contractors are encouraged to provide a manufacturers installation manual with the submittal.  Manuals will be required on new or non-standard systems.  Manuals will be returned upon request from the contractor

Pre Inspection Checklist

The contractor shall verify completion of the following items prior to scheduling an inspection.  Any item that is outstanding at the time inspection will result in termination of the inspection.  

  1. Pre-test/functional has been completed to verify proper operation of ALL system components.
  2. All equipment (protected hazard) is installed and secured in place.
  3. Any mechanical/electrical systems have been reviewed and approved by the Building Department.
  4. When fire alarm present, system properly connected to fire alarm by qualified individual. If a fire alarm system is not present, connection to audio and visual notification device that has been clearly labeled.
  5. Contractor has current State License that properly indicates approval to install the permitted system or documentation provided from the manufacturer for the installation contractor.
  6. Permit, stamped drawings, system manual(s), and needed testing equipment.
  7. Prepared to review the documented manufacturers testing requirements with the inspector.
  8. At a minimum, prepared to conduct a functional test of all devices and a balloon test. 
  9. Provide certificate of compliance or other form of documentation attesting to proper installation.
  10. A copy of the approved drawings, completed certificate of compliance, a copy of the manufacturer’s listed installation and maintenance manual or listed owner’s manual shall be issued to the owner or posted on site at an approved location.

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Listed on this page

  • Fire Alam Permit Application
  • Fire Service Underground Permit Application
  • Fire Sprinkler Permit Application
  • Fire Suppression Permit Application
           

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