Fire Standards, Permits & Inspections


Fire Prevention is responsible for consulting with and securing the cooperation of individuals and property owners regarding life safety matters, and for inspection and testing of new fire protection equipment installations such as automatic fire sprinkler and fire alarm systems: for enforcement of fire related federal, state and local laws, ordinances and administrative orders for public safety in City schools, public/private institutions and places of public assembly; and for investigation of suspicious fires and/or fires of undetermined origin.

Fee Schedule

Fire Prevention Standards
The Standards for Fire Protection were set by the Fire Prevention Officers division of the Fire Chiefs Association of Santa Cruz County. 

Licensed Contractors

» Licensed Contractors Standard (2015)
» Fire Alarm Contractors (2001)
» Fire Sprinkler Contractors (2001)
» 5 Year Certifications
» Underground Contractors (2001)
» Hood & Duct Contractors
» Weed Clearing Contractors 

Permits & Inspections
The Santa Cruz Fire Department provides permits and inspections for all specialized fire detection and suppression systems, as well as tent permits, fire dancing permits and other special event permits.

Business Fire Safety Inspection Program
Per Resolution NS 27,591, effective October 1 2007,  the City of Santa Cruz establishes fees and charges for services, inspections and permits under the fire prevention code of the city of Santa Cruz.

Residential Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Alarm Requirements
Smoke & carbon monoxide detectors must be installed in accordance with the 2010 California Residential Code (CRC). All alarms shall comply with requirements for listing and approval by the Office of the State Fire Marshal

Cal Fire Solar PV Installation Guidelines
The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection - Office of the State Fire Marshal (CAL FIRE-OSFM), local Fire Departments (FD), and the solar photovoltaic industry have developed this guideline for installations to increase public safety for all structures equipped with solar photovoltaic systems. 

Fire Safety Complaints
For all complaints please call our administration office at 420-5280.  We will complete a complaint form and have an inspector conduct an inspection of the property.  We will investigate all fire safety complaints, including weed complaints.  We are not able to look over fences, climb fences, enter a back yard unless the resident is present and we have their permission.  If the site is determined to be a fire hazard, a safety notice will be issued.

Recreational or Warming Fire
Allowed every day - unless there is high wildfire danger. A warming recreational fire is an outdoor fire, burning materials other than rubbish where the fuel being burned is not contained in an incinerator, outdoor fireplace, barbeque grill or barbeque pit and has a total fuel area of 3 feet (914 mm) or less in diameter and 2 feet (610 mm) or less in height for pleasure, religious, ceremonial, cooking, warmth or similar purposes Per California Fire Code 307.4.2 Recreational Fires shall not be conducted within 25 feet of a structure or combustible material.  Conditions which would cause a fire to spread within 25 feet of a structure shall be eliminated prior to ignition.  Fires are not allowed on any City Beaches.

Outside Backyard Burning

The annual backyard burn season begins December 1, 2016 and ends April 30, 2017. Burn permits are required for all burning projects and must be completed between the hours of 8 am to 4 pm. Residents must follow Burning Guidelines and maintain control of their fire at all times. Property owners may be held liable if a fire escapes their control and/or burns the property of a neighbor.  Permits will only be issued to property owners.

Weed Abatement
The Weed Abatement program runs each year, in Spring and Summer, to ensure that excess weeds and brush don't become a hazard to the properties around them. In early April, owners of all vacant lots in the city are contacted about the need to mow/abate the weeds and overgrowth on their lots before May 15th.   

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