NAPEG will be asking for clarification on the following answers to questions asked at a meeting with the Fire Marshal’s Office. In particular, clarification on responsibility and accountability. The answers were provided, in writing, from the Fire Marshal.
At what point do professionals assume sole responsibility for complying with adopted codes and standards in construction designs?
Registered architects and professional engineers are responsible for professional services delivered in their respective areas of expertise. As such, professional submissions submitted to the OFM should clearly identify the registered architect or professional engineer who prepared them by having affixed a seal and signature indicating compliance with the requirements of Territorial legislation.
All plans, specifications and subsequent design changes (e.g. alternative solutions), are to be submitted to the OFM for review, and construction shall not begin until the OFM has reported back to the owner in writing.
The OFM does not inspect construction projects to confirm whether observations made through plan review are effectively incorporated into the final construction of a building. That is the responsibility of owners and professionals, bearing in mind that failure to meet code requirements which result in fire-related risks will be subject to inspection either during or after construction, and a possible order for corrective action. As such, it is highly recommended that professionals and owners work closely with the OFM to eliminate the potential for fire-related risks early during the design phase.