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Community Fire Safety By-law, 2002
- Published in Province of Western Cape: Provincial Gazette no. 5832 on 28 February 2002
- Commenced on 28 February 2002
- [Up to date as at 9 April 2021]
PreambleThe Municipal Council of The City of Cape Town recognises: —• that everyone has the constitutional right to an environment that is not harmful to their safety or well-being;• that losses due to fire and the subsequent economic and social impact on people, property and infrastructure causes unnecessary hardship;• that the protection of all sectors of the community against fire is an important aspect in the development and sustainability of the economy;• that certain aspects of the daily existence need to be controlled in such a manner as to prevent and reduce the effects of fire on the community as a whole;• that the community has a vital role to play in achieving the objectives of this By-law, and• that the benefits of a fire-safe environment should be accessible to all.Purpose and scope of this By-lawThe purpose and scope of the By-law is:• to promote the achievement of a fire-safe environment for the benefit of all persons within the area of jurisdiction of the Municipality;• to repeal all existing relevant by-laws of the Municipality;• to provide for procedures, methods and practices to regulate fire safety within the area of jurisdiction of the Municipality.Application of this By-lawThis By-law is applicable to all persons within the area of jurisdiction of the Municipality and includes both formal and informal sectors of the community and economy.
1. DefinitionsIn this By-law, words used in the masculine gender include the feminine, the singular includes the plural and vice versa, the English text prevails in the event of an inconsistency between the different texts and unless the context otherwise indicates:—"above ground storage tank" means a tank situated above ground for the storage of a flammable liquid;"automatic releasing hold-open device" means a device used to hold open a fire door and operates on the detection of a fire to close the fire door;"boundary" means any lateral or street boundary of a site;"building" means:—(a)any structure, whether of a temporary or permanent nature and irrespective of the materials used in the construction thereof, erected or used for or in connection with:—(i)the accommodation or convenience of human beings or animals;(ii)the manufacture, processing, storage or sale of any goods;(iii)the rendering of any service;(iv)the destruction or treatment of combustible refuse or combustible waste;(v)the cultivation or growing of any plant or crop;(b)any wall, swimming pool, reservoir or bridge or any other structure connected therewith;(c)any fuel pump or any tank used in connection therewith;(d)any part of a building, including a building as defined in paragraph (a), (b) or (c);(e)any facilities or system, or part or portion thereof, within or outside but incidental to a building, for the provision of a water supply, drainage, sewerage, stormwater disposal, electricity supply or other similar service in respect of the building;"bund wall" means a containment wall surrounding an above ground storage tank, constructed of impervious material;[definition of "bund wall" substituted by section 1(a) of the Amendment By-law, 2006 and of the Amendment By-law, 2007]"chief fire officer" means the person in charge of a service, or the acting chief officer, as contemplated in the Fire Brigade Services Act;"combustible material" means combustible refuse, combustible waste or any other material capable of igniting;"combustible refuse" means combustible rubbish, litter or material that is discarded, refused, rejected, or considered worthless;"combustible waste" means combustible waste material which is salvageable, retained or collected for scrap or reprocessing and may include all combustible fibres, hay, straw, hair, feathers, down, wood shavings, turnings, all types of paper products, soiled cloth trimmings and cuttings, rubber trimmings and buffing, metal fines, and any mixture of the above items, or any other salvageable combustible waste material;"Constitution" means the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996 (Act 108 of 1996);"controlling authority" means either a chief fire officer, a municipal manager or their respective delegates as contemplated in sections 2 and 3 of this By-law;"dangerous goods" means a flammable gas, liquid or solid as contemplated in SABS 0228;"division separating element" means a building element or component which separates one area in a building from another and has a fire resistance of not less than that required by the National Building Regulations (T1) read with the SABS 0400;"emergency evacuation plan" means a plan specifically designed to aid in the evacuation of occupants from a building in the event of a fire or other threatening danger and assigns responsibility to various staff, indicates escape routes to be used and provides for general contingencies for a safe and quick evacuation from a building;"emergency route" means that part of an escape route that provides fire protection to the occupants of any building and which leads to an escape door;"emergency vehicle" means any fire, rescue or other vehicle intended for use at fires and other threatening dangers;"entertainment and public assembly occupancy" means a place where people gather to eat, drink, dance or participate in other recreation;"escape door" means the door in an escape route, which at ground level leads directly to a street or public place or to any approved open space which leads to a street or public place;"escape route" means the entire path of travel from the furthest point in any room in a building to the nearest escape door and may include an emergency route;"escape route plan" means a diagram indicating the floor layout, the occupant’s current position and the route of travel to the nearest primary and secondary escape routes in the building, as well as the action to be taken in the event of a fire or other threatening danger;"firebreak" means a natural or constructed strip of land where vegetation has been removed or modified to contain or to reduce the spread and intensity of any fire that may occur in or enter a premises, and may consist of one or more of the following:(a)grass or vegetation that does not exceed 50mm in height;(b)lawn or cultivated garden, or(c)a road or driveway;[definition of "fire break" inserted by section 1(b) of the Amendment By-law, 2006 and of the Amendment By-law, 2007]"Fire Brigade Services Act" means the Fire Brigade Services Act, 1987 (Act 99 of 1987);"fire damper" means an automatic damper and its assembly that complies with the requirements contained in SABS 193;"fire door" means an automatic or self-closing door or shutter assembly especially constructed to prevent the passage of fire for a specific length of time;"fire extinguisher" means a portable or mobile rechargeable container which has a fire extinguishing substance that is expelled by the action of internal pressure for the purposes of extinguishing a fire;"fire hazard" means any situation, process, material or condition which may cause a fire or explosion or provide a ready fuel supply to increase the spread or intensity of the fire or explosion and which poses a threat to life or property;"fire lanes" means the road, path or other passageway constructed or designated to allow access for emergency vehicles;"fire protection system" means any device or system designed and installed to —(a)detect, control or extinguish a fire, or(b)alert occupants or the fire service, or both, to a fire,but excludes portable and mobile fire extinguishers;"fire wall" means a wall that is able to withstand the effects of fire for a specific period of time as contemplated in the National Building Regulations (T1) read with SABS 0400;"firework" has the meaning assigned thereto in section 1 of the Explosives Act, Act 15 of 2003;[definition of "firework" inserted by section 1(c) of the Amendment By-law, 2006 and of the Amendment By-law, 2007]"flammable gas" as contemplated in SABS 0228, means a gas that at 20 °C and at a standard pressure of 101, 3 kilopascals:—(a)is ignitable when in a mixture of 13% or less (by volume) with air, or(b)has a flammable range with air of at least 12 percentage points, regardless of the lower flammable limit;"flammable liquid" means a liquid, or mixtures of liquids, or a liquid containing solids in solution or in suspension that give off a flammable vapour at or below 60,5 °C and also includes a liquid within the following danger groups as determined in SABS 0228:—
|Danger Group Based on Flammability|
|Danger Group||Closed Cup Flash Point (°)||Initial Boiling Point(°C)|
|i||—||≤ 35 (°C)|
|ii||< 23 (°C)||> 35 (°C)|
|iii||≥ 23 ≤ 60,5 (°C)||> 35 (°C)|
|iv||> 60,5 - 100 (°C)||> 35 (°C)|
2. Administration and enforcement
4. Enforcement provisions
5. Authority to investigateNotwithstanding anything to the contrary contained in any other law, a controlling authority has the authority to investigate the cause, origin and circumstances of any fire or other threatening danger.
6. Failure to comply with provisions
7. Denial, suspension or revocation of an approval or a certificateA controlling authority may refuse, suspend or revoke an approval or a certificate required by this By-law for: —(a)failure to meet the provisions of this By-law for the issuance of the approval or certificate, or(b)non-compliance with the provisions of the approval or certificate.
8. Records requiredThe safekeeping of all relevant records and documents is the responsibility of the controlling authority.
10. Reporting a fire hazard and other threatening dangerAn owner or the person in charge of the premises, upon discovering any evidence of a fire hazard or other threatening danger pertaining to this By-law, must immediately notify the controlling authority.
Fire protection of buildings
11. GeneralThe controlling authority in terms of section 4(3) or section 6(1) of this By-law must abate a contravention of the National Building Regulations relating to fire and safety of buildings.
12. Access for emergency vehicles
13. Division and occupancy separating elementsAn owner or person in charge of a building may not alter a division or occupancy separating element in any way that would render it less effective or to allow flame, heat or combustion products from penetrating into the adjacent compartment or structure.
14. Fire doors and assemblies
15. Escape routes
Fire safety equipment
17. Fire extinguishers
18. Testing and maintenance of fire protection systems
19. Interference with and access to fire protection systems and fire extinguishersA person is not permitted to render less effective, inoperative, inaccessible, or tamper and interfere with a fire extinguisher or fire protection system, except as may be necessary during emergencies, maintenance, drills or prescribed testing.
20. Fire alarms and fire hydrants
21. Prevention and control of overcrowding
22. Attendance of a service
23. Formulation of an emergency evacuation plan
24. Displaying of escape route plans
25. Barricading of vacant buildingsThe owner or person in charge of a building or portion thereof which is vacant must remove all combustible waste or refuse therefrom and lock, barricade or otherwise secure all windows, doors and other openings in the building to the satisfaction of the Municipality which will prevent the creation of a fire hazard caused by the entering of an unauthorised person.
26. Combustible waste and refuse
27. DustThe owner or person in charge of the premises or a portion thereof may not allow the accumulation of dust in quantities sufficient to create a fire or other threatening danger and must store or dispose of the dust as prescribed in the applicable legislation dealing with the storage and disposal of that specific type of dust.
28. Combustible or flammable substances and sweeping compounds
29. Accumulations in chimneys, flues and ductsThe owner or person in charge of the premises or a portion thereof must not allow soot or any other combustible substance to accumulate in a chimney, flue or duct of the premises in such quantities or in such a manner as to constitute a fire hazard or other threatening danger.
30. Sources of ignition
32. Electrical fittings, equipment and appliances
33. Flame-emitting deviceA person may not cause or permit a flame-emitting device, such as a candle, lantern or torch, but not limited thereto, to be used in a manner which is likely to create a fire hazard or other threatening danger.
[title of Chapter 7 substituted by section 8(a) of the Amendment By-law, 2006 and of the Amendment By-law, 2007]
Fire hazards and firebreaks
34. Combustible material
35. Lighting of fires and burning of combustible material
36. Application of this chapterNotwithstanding the provisions in either the Hazardous Substances Act or the Occupational Health and Safety Act, this Chapter regulates flammable substances in the local government sphere so as to prevent and reduce fire hazards or other threatening dangers.
37. Storage and use of a flammable substance
38. Flammable substance certificate
39. Permanent or temporary above ground storage tank for a flammable liquid
40. Underground storage tank for a flammable liquidThe installation of underground storage tanks, pumps, dispensers and pipework at service stations and consumer installations must be in accordance with National Building Regulations (T1) read in conjunction with S.A.B.S. 0400, S.A.B.S. 089: Part 3 and S.A.B.S. 0131: Part 3
41. Bulk storage depot for flammable substancesThe handling, storage and distribution of flammable substances at bulk depots must be in accordance with the National Building Regulations (T1), read in conjunction with SABS 089: Part 1.
42. Small installations for liquefied petroleum gasLiquefied petroleum gas installations involving gas storage containers of individual water capacity not exceeding 500 litres and a combined water capacity not exceeding 3 000 litres per installation must be installed and handled in accordance with SABS 087: Part 1.
43. Liquefied petroleum gas installation in mobile units and small non-permanent buildingsA Liquefied petroleum gas installation in mobile units and small non-permanent buildings shall be in accordance with SANS 10087: Part 1.[section 43 substituted by section 12 of the Amendment By-law, 2006 and of the Amendment By-law, 2007]
44. The fuelling of forklift trucks and other liquid petroleum gas operated vehiclesThe fuelling of forklift trucks and other liquid petroleum gas operated vehicles shall be in accordance with S.A.B.S. 087: Part 8.[section 44 substituted by section 13 of the Amendment By-law, 2006 and of the Amendment By-law, 2007]
44A. The application of liquid petroleum and compressed natural gases as engine fuelsThe use of liquid petroleum gas and compressed natural gas as a fuel for internal combustion engines and for the operation of equipment built for or converted to the use of liquid petroleum gas shall comply fully with SANS 10087 part 6.[section 44A inserted by section 14 of the Amendment By-law, 2006 and of the Amendment By-law, 2007]
44B. Mobile filling stations for refillable liquid petroleum gas (LPG) containers
45. The storage and filling of refillable liquefied petroleum gas containersStorage and filling sites used for refillable liquefied petroleum gas containers of capacity not exceeding 9kg must be in accordance with SANS 10087: Part 8.[section 45 substituted by section 15 of the Amendment By-law, 2006 and of the Amendment By-law, 2007]
46. Bulk storage vessel for liquid petroleum gasThe layout, design and operation of installations for the storage of a bulk liquid petroleum vessel and allied facilities must be in accordance with the National Building Regulations (T1), read in conjunction with SABS 087: Part 3.
47. Termination of the storage and use of flammable substances
48. Reporting accidentsIf an accident occurs which involves a flammable substance and results in a fire, an explosion, spillage or loss of a flammable substance, as well as personal injury or death, the owner or person in charge of the premises must immediately notify the controlling authority.
49. Flammable stores
50. Container handling and storage
51. Spray rooms and boothsA spray room, booth or area designated for the application of a flammable liquid must be constructed and equipped in such a manner as to comply with the General Safety Regulations promulgated in terms of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
52. Liquid petroleum gas containers
52A. Major hazard installations
Transportation of dangerous goods
53. Dangerous goods certificate
54. State boundThis By-law binds the State and any person in the service of the State.
55. Offences and penalties
56. Repeal of laws and savings
57. Short title and commencementThis By-law is called the Community Fire Safety By-law and comes into operation on the date of publication in the Provincial Gazette.
[Chapter 11 inserted by section 19 of the Amendment By-law, 2006 and of the Amendment By-law, 2007]
58. Firework certificates and permits
- Entire By-law
- Chapter 1 – Definitions
- Chapter 2 – Administrative provisions
- Chapter 3 – Fire protection of buildings
- Chapter 4 – Fire safety equipment
- Chapter 5 – Public safety
- Chapter 6 – Housekeeping
- Chapter 7 – Fire hazards and firebreaks
Chapter 8 – Flammable substances
- 36. Application of this chapter
- 37. Storage and use of a flammable substance
- 38. Flammable substance certificate
- 39. Permanent or temporary above ground storage tank for a flammable liquid
- 40. Underground storage tank for a flammable liquid
- 41. Bulk storage depot for flammable substances
- 42. Small installations for liquefied petroleum gas
- 43. Liquefied petroleum gas installation in mobile units and small non-permanent buildings
- 44. The fuelling of forklift trucks and other liquid petroleum gas operated vehicles
- 44A. The application of liquid petroleum and compressed natural gases as engine fuels
- 44B. Mobile filling stations for refillable liquid petroleum gas (LPG) containers
- 45. The storage and filling of refillable liquefied petroleum gas containers
- 46. Bulk storage vessel for liquid petroleum gas
- 47. Termination of the storage and use of flammable substances
- 48. Reporting accidents
- 49. Flammable stores
- 50. Container handling and storage
- 51. Spray rooms and booths
- 52. Liquid petroleum gas containers
- 52A. Major hazard installations
- Chapter 9 – Transportation of dangerous goods
- Chapter 10 – General provisions
- Chapter 11 – Fireworks