HomeFire DepartmentFire Inspections

Fire Inspections

The Fire Inspection Bureau is staffed with one Fire Marshal, one Deputy Fire Marshal, six fire inspectors and one Fire and Life Safety Educator.  The Fire Marshal and her staff enforce the 2015 International Fire Code, South Carolina State Fire Marshal Rules and Regulations and the National Fire Prevention Association Standards referenced in the International Fire code.

Fire Permit & Inspection Submittal Process

The Fire Marshal enforces City and State codes regulating the construction, use and occupancy of buildings and structures, reviews and approves commercial plans and conducts fire inspections to verify life safety code compliance and oversees the day to day operations of the Fire Inspection Bureau.  The Deputy Fire Marshal assists with plan reviews, conducts fire inspections and provides training and leadership to fire inspectors.  The fire inspectors inspect residential, public and commercial buildings for compliance with fire and life safety codes and ordinances, prepare inspection reports and manage complaints and maintains inspection records.  The Fire and Life Safety Educator manages and conducts fire and life safety programs to a variety of audiences.

A fire department plan review process is in place to ensure compliance with codes and standards.  The 2015 International Fire Code is a comprehensive code that adequately provides fire prevention regulations for new construction and large remodel projects in the City of North Charleston.

The purpose of fire inspections is to evaluate and minimize the risk of fires. In general, routine inspections are conducted on all commercial structures in North Charleston to ensure that the appropriate fire safety requirements are being met. During the fire inspection process, the inspector will ensure that the proper maintenance is being met on the fire alarm system, sprinkler system and fire extinguishers.  Click on the link to see a list of the top 10 fire violations that are commonly found during a routine fire inspection.

Fire Alarms and Sprinkler Systems

If you have a sprinkler and alarm system, they must be inspected, certified, and tagged annually by a licensed South Carolina contractor, and all systems must operate properly.

Commercial Food Preparation

In commercial cooking operations, all cooking equipment must have a proper hood and suppression system and must be tested and certified by a licensed South Carolina contractor every 6 months.  All cooking components (ducts, filters, hoods etc.) should be free from grease and cleaned in accordance with NFPA 96, Table 11.4

Fire Extinguishers

Buildings must have the proper type of fire extinguisher for their potential hazards; occupants must assure that all extinguishers are inspected, certified and tagged by a licensed South Carolina Contractor annually.


Maintain your business pre-plan, this should be up-dated once a year to ensure that the fire department has your correct business name, phone numbers and emergency contacts, etc.