Fire & Life Safety Inspection

Oak Harbor Fire personnel inspect commercial properties on a regular basis to ensure they are safe for the public and to help us prepare for fire incidents. Commercial properties are buildings open to the public, including retail businesses, government buildings, churches, restaurants, medical facilities, schools, and apartment complexes.

What is a Fire & Life Safety Inspection and why does my commercial property need one?

  • Inspections are free! We provide this service to identify potential hazards and keep your business safe
  • Inspections are a tool for better firefighting. We want to be familiar with your building before it is on fire
  • We create pre-fire plans for all commercial properties:
    • A pre-fire plan is a record of critical information about your building
    • It helps firefighters making life-saving decisions during an incident
    • We are preparing to save your life and property
  • Knowing your risks and hazards will help your business be prepared for an emergency
  • Fire inspections reduce property insurance premium rates
  • Meeting with you once a year keeps your contact information up to date
  • Our goal is always to assist you in maintaining a safe environment for your employees and customers
  • If you have questions or concerns - before, during, or after your fire and life safety inspection - please discuss these with your inspector


Inspection tips: download our Fire and Life Safety Inspection Form (PDF) and use it as a checklist to prepare for your annual inspection.

Common Code Violations

The following is a list of hazards commonly identified during a fire and life safety inspection. Reviewing these areas in advance will increase your business's safety and assist you in preparing for an inspection:

  • Address not posted
  • Blocked/locked exits
  • Improperly maintained fire lanes
  • Fire extinguishers not serviced annually
  • Fire sprinklers and alarms not serviced annually
  • Improper use of extension cords
  • Housekeeping (aisles clear and safe)

Emergency Preparedness for Business

Focus on Prevention

The best way to avoid a disaster is to prevent it from happening. Schedule an annual Fire and Life Safety Inspection with Oak Harbor Fire Department. Regularly assess your risks.

Establish an Evacuation Plan

Know two ways out. Just like at home, you and your employees need to know how to escape. Plan two exits from every room, establish a meeting place outside of your business, and hold a drill to practice your escape plan.

Keep an Updated List of Emergency Contact Numbers

In addition to emergency personnel (fire, police, hospital) and disaster relief agencies, include information for customers, suppliers, and distributors. Include insurance information.

Create an Emergency Kit

Include essential items such as first aid supplies, flashlights, battery powered radio, tool kit, extra batteries, nonperishable food, and bottled water. Make sure the kit is easily accessible during an emergency.

Protect Vital Business Records

Keep your most important documents in a safe that is resistant to fire, heat, burglary tools, torches, and water. Have a back-up set of your documents stores in a location off-site.

Know Your Risks and Prepare

Learn what types of disasters are more likely to occur in your area, then take steps to minimize potential damage and loss to your building and employees. Think through different scenarios and plan what actions you must take.

Additional Resources

Fire & Life Safety Links