Borough of Wilmerding, PA
Allegheny County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Borough Council of the Borough of Wilmerding as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Fire Protection Consultant — See Ch. 33.
Code enforcement — See Ch. 138.
Uniform construction codes — See Ch. 145.
[Adopted 11-10-2008 by Ord. No. 1003]
The purpose of this article is to implement and assure compliance with the 2006 International Fire Code in Chapter 145, Construction Codes, Uniform, Article II, Adoption of Standards.
As used in this article, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
CAUSE
That the Fire Marshal has received reliable information that a condition exists in the Borough which is or may be in violation of the code. It shall also include circumstances which would reasonably lead one to believe that a fire has occurred or where there is a fire in a structure.
CERTIFICATE OF INSPECTION
A document to be issued by the Fire Marshal following a fire inspection where he has found no deficiencies which may reasonably endanger personal safety or property and where he has found no fire hazards or violations of the code.
CODE
The 2006 International Fire Code.
EMERGENCY
Circumstances that exist which allow one to reasonably conclude that there is an imminent threat to safety due to a fire hazard.
FIRE HAZARD
Any condition, whether in a structure or not, that presents a danger of a fire or that is contrary to the code.
FIRE MARSHAL
That person appointed from time to time by Borough Council to enforce the terms of this article and others relating to fires and fire prevention and to enforce the code.
INSPECTION
To physically go upon the land and into any structure for the purpose of determining whether or not there are violations of the code.
NONRESIDENTIAL PROPERTY
Includes all structures of any nature which are not residential, including commercial, multiunit apartments, condominiums and industrial properties.
RESIDENTIAL PROPERTY
Includes single-family dwellings and apartment buildings containing three or less residential units.
STRUCTURE
Any building, edifice, improvement or construction on land, whether permanent or temporary, whether in use or not, whether occupied or not
Borough Council shall from time to time appoint a person to act as Fire Marshal to enforce the code and to carry out other duties as set forth herein. Such Fire Marshal shall serve at the pleasure of Council. In addition to the Fire Marshal, the Code Enforcement Officer, Building Inspector or any authorized police officer is authorized to enforce the terms of this article, related fire ordinances and the code. Collectively, when the "Office of Fire Marshal" is used herein, it shall include the other officers and persons identified in this section.
The Fire Marshal shall have the authority to inspect any structure or go upon any land in the Borough for the purpose of determining whether such structure or land is in compliance with the code or if there is "cause," as defined herein. Moreover, a fire inspection is mandatory upon the transfer of ownership of nonresidential property or land with a structure thereon by deed, will, intestate succession, or entering into a lease for a term longer than five years.
No Building Inspector, Borough Secretary, Code Enforcement Officer or other Borough official shall issue an occupancy permit to any owner, prospective owner or occupant of land with a structure thereon which must undergo a fire inspection as mandated herein and which has not received a satisfactory certificate of inspection. Moreover, it shall be unlawful for any owner, tenant or occupier of land to occupy or permit the occupancy of a structure where such structure has not been inspected when required to be inspected under the terms of this article or, if it has been inspected, it has not received a satisfactory certificate of inspection.
The Fire Marshal shall have the authority to enforce the terms of this article and the code or any successor law or other ordinance relative to fire or fire prevention. Such authority shall extend to ordering the elimination of fire hazards or the abatement of practices which he finds, in his discretion, to be fire hazards pursuant to the code, whether such conditions are in a structure or not. The Fire Marshal is authorized to make forms to carry out his duties and appeals under this article. In the event of an emergency, the Fire Marshal shall have the authority to go upon any land for the purpose of alleviating or removing the cause of an emergency.
In the event the Fire Marshal determines, in his discretion, that a structure or land should be inspected, he shall make a reasonable effort to locate the owner or occupier of the land and make a demand to inspect the land. If the owner or occupier cannot be located, refuses or fails to accommodate the Fire Marshal, the latter shall have the authority to apply for a search warrant from the Magisterial District Judge or such other authority authorized to issue search warrants. Authorized Borough police officers are authorized to assist and accompany the Fire Marshal when he carries out his search with a warrant.
Fees levied by the Borough of Wilmerding for fire inspections shall be paid to the Borough. A certificate of inspection shall not be issued until the fee is first paid to the Borough Secretary. Fees may be set from time to time by Borough Council by resolution and are set so that they will cover the costs of conducting the inspection and the administration of this article.
The following is the initial fee schedule:
Residential property $50
Apartment buildings with more than 3 living units $100
Commercial structures $100
Industrial structures $100
Appeals $250
Any person or entity aggrieved by a decision of the Fire Marshal may, within 30 days of the decision, file an appeal to the Hearing Appeals Board of Wilmerding Borough in writing by delivering the same to the Borough Secretary at the Borough Building and paying the applicable appeals fee.
The Board shall be composed of three residents of the Borough selected by Council at its sole discretion and who shall serve at the pleasure of Council. They shall be selected in accordance with the code. The Board shall sit as an adjudicatory body pursuant to the Local Agency Law.[1]
[1]:
Editor's Note: See 2 Pa.C.S.A. §§ 551 et seq. and 751 et seq.
Any person or entity found to be in violation of this article shall be subject to a civil fine in the amount of $600 for each violation. If a hazardous condition is not remedied after being ordered to be so remedied by the Fire Marshal, each day shall be a separate violation.
[Adopted 11-10-2008 by Ord. No. 1004]
This article applies to all outdoor burning and open burning within the Borough of Wilmerding, except for the following:
A. 
It shall not apply to grilling or cooking food using charcoal, wood, propane or natural gas in cooking or grilling appliances in an appropriate container or fireplace.
B. 
It shall not apply to burning for the purpose of generating heat in a stove, furnace, fireplace or other heating device within a building used for human or animal habitation.
C. 
It shall not apply to the use of propane, acetylene, natural gas, gasoline or kerosene in a device intended for heating, construction or maintenance activities.
Open burning of wood, trees, logs, brush and/or stumps shall only be permitted in compliance with the following:
A. 
Only clean, dry wood products may be burned.
B. 
Burning shall only be permitted in an approved outdoor-rated fireplace, fire pit, chimney or fifty-five-gallon drum.
C. 
No burning shall be permitted between the hours of 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m., prevailing time.
D. 
All burning and fires must be no less than 15 feet distant from the nearest structure.
E. 
All outdoor burning shall be attended at all times by an individual not younger than 18 years of age.
F. 
Adequate means of fire extinguishment must be immediately available at all times when outdoor burning is taking place.
G. 
Burning at construction sites having a valid building permit for the purpose of providing warmth shall only be permitted if the weather is at or below 32° F., and said burning shall only take place in a fifty-five-gallon drum suitable for containing such fire.
H. 
Persons utilizing or maintaining an outdoor fire shall be responsible for all fire-suppression costs and any other liability resulting from damage caused by the fire.
I. 
All allowed open burning shall be conducted in a safe, nuisance-free manner, when wind and weather conditions minimize adverse effects and do not create a health hazard or a visibility hazard on roadways, railroads or airfields. Open burning shall be conducted in conformance with all local and state fire protection regulations and the Borough 2006 International Fire Code.[1]
[1]:
Editor's Note: See Ch. 145, Construction Codes, Uniform, Art. II, Adoption of Standards.
J. 
No materials may be burned upon any street, curb, gutter, sidewalk or on the ice of a lake, pond, stream or water body, or on any public property.
K. 
No person shall be permitted to create or permit on open fire on property unless he/she has the legal right to possession of that property.
L. 
The Fire Marshal or other authorized officer, agent, employee or representative of the Borough of Wilmerding who presents credentials may inspect any property for the purpose of ascertaining compliance with the provisions of this article.
The open burning of refuse is prohibited. "Refuse" shall include any waste material, including building supplies, garbage, grass and leaves. It shall not include trees, logs, brush, stumps and other vegetative matter.
The Fire Marshal shall have the power to prohibit open burning if such burning is contrary to the provisions of this article or the Borough 2006 International Fire Code.[1]
[1]:
Editor's Note: See Ch. 145, Construction Codes, Uniform, Art. II, Adoption of Standards.
Any person or entity found to be in violation of this article shall be subject to a civil fine in the amount of $600 for each violation.
Any person or entity aggrieved by a decision of the Fire Marshal shall have the same right of appeal as is set forth in § 169-10 in Article I of this chapter.