The City Manager, with the advice and consent of the City Council, shall appoint the Fire Chief.
[Amended 2-3-1992 by Ord. No. 360; 6-21-2018 by Ord. No. 18-099]
The Fire Chief must be a resident of the City of Augusta within 90 days of his/her appointment. The City Council, upon recommendation of the City Manager, may waive this requirement at its discretion.
The Fire Chief is responsible for the fire prevention and suppression programs for the City and for the administration and operation of emergency medical services.
The Fire Chief is authorized to send his personnel and equipment to aid other cities and towns in extinguishing fires.
In case of nearby towns not having full-time fire departments, the Fire Chief shall endeavor to secure contracts with such towns providing for mutual exchange of aid, compensation therefor, and payments in case of damage to a City vehicle or injury or death to personnel of the Department.
The failure to cut and remove grass, weeds, bushes and underbrush from any vacant lot within the compact or built-up section of the City so as to bring about a condition dangerous in causing or promoting fires is hereby declared to be illegal. Failure of the owner or person in possession of such lot to remove the same within seven days of written notification by the Fire Chief shall be punishable in accordance with Chapter 1, Article III, General Penalty, of the City Code.
No person shall willfully or mischievously give or cause to be given a false alarm of fire, or shall injure or in any way interfere with the fire alarm apparatus.
The expense of installing and maintaining wires running from the fire alarm boxes situated in and on private property to the central fire station or to any other fire station shall be borne by the person installing such fire alarm boxes on private property or using them.
No person except employees of the Augusta Water District or employees of the Fire Department shall open any fire hydrant.
[Added 8-18-2008 by Ord. No. 133]
Purpose. The purpose of this section is to establish criteria which provide a method by which the Fire Department may gain rapid entry into specific buildings for lifesaving or fire-fighting purposes without forcible entry.
This section shall apply to the following types of buildings:
All new or existing buildings that require either a fire alarm or fire suppression system by Maine State Fire or local Life Safety Code.
New residential buildings which contain more than six living units and utilize common corridors to access the living units.
All existing residential buildings which contain more than 12 living units and utilize common corridors to access the living units.
Buildings containing sensitive materials vital to national security or defense are exempt from the above.
An existing building shall be considered a new building:
When alterations or repairs are made within any period of 12 months, costing in excess of 50% of the physical value of the building before the repairs are made, as determined by the Assessor.
If the building is damaged by fire or other cause to an extent in excess of 50% of the physical value of the building before the damage was incurred and the building is rebuilt as determined by the Assessor.
If the building is increased in floor area by 25% or additional stories are added.
Every building subject to the requirement of this section shall be equipped with a rapid-entry system. The rapid-entry system shall be Knox Company. Exceptions may be approved by the Fire Chief.
The Knox rapid-entry system shall consist of a key vault containing but not limited to keys necessary for entry into the building and controlling emergency systems. The key vault shall be of a type which utilizes the master key system of the City of Augusta Fire Department.
The installation of the system shall be subject to the following criteria:
The Fire Department or any employee thereof shall not sell rapid-entry system products.
All costs associated with the installation of the key vault shall be the responsibility of the building owner.
The key vault shall be installed in a location determined by the Fire Chief and/or designee.
The key vault shall be installed at an easily accessible location. The bottom of the vault shall be no less than five feet nor more than six feet in height above the finished grade.
No key or lock product used in the rapid-entry system shall be released from the factory without written authorization of the Fire Chief.
For new construction, the key vault location shall be determined during the building plan review by the Fire Chief and/or designee.
The building owner and/or occupant shall be responsible for notifying the Fire Department in the event locks or type of occupancy is changed.
Compliance. All buildings subject to this section shall be in compliance 12 months after adoption of this section. The Fire Chief may approve extensions at his discretion.
Penalty. Any building owner violating the provisions of this section after receiving due notice from the Fire Department shall be subject to a fine of $100 each month until compliance is achieved.