Codes and Regulations
- Address Posting
- Smoke Alarms
- Knox Box Information
- Open Burning
- Fire Hydrants
- Vacant Buildings
Can Emergency Personnel Find You in Your Time of Emergency?
Valuable time may be lost trying to locate your home or business. For your safety, a Premise Identification Ordinance was created so emergency responders can locate your property in the event of a fire, medical, or other emergency.
What are the Requirements for Posting My Address?
- Persons having ownership or custody of buildings are responsible for posting and maintaining address numbers in accordance with the Fire Prevention Code.
- The design, style, and shape of address numbers must render them easily readable from the street, day or night. The numbers must contrast with the background and be separate from the mailbox.
- Where conditions (shadows, overgrown vegetation, building location, etc) adversely affect the legibility of numbers, larger numbers may be required.
- In some circumstances, addresses may be required to be posted adjacent to driveways, alleys, walkways, or other access ways.
- Addresses must be temporarily posted for a structure under construction, as soon as work commences on the property. The numbers shall be permanently posted in accordance with the Fire Prevention Code prior to the final building inspection.
- Address numbers shall be Arabic numerals or alphabet letter. Numbers shall not be spelled out.
- Addresses shall be posted within 3 feet of the main entrance. If the structure is more than 75 feet from the street or not visible from the street, then remote address signs shall be posted within 10 feet of the street and within 5 feet of either side of the driveway to the building, structure, or property and must be visible from either direction of travel along the main roadway. Remote address signs shall be at least 6-inches wide and 18-inches long, with 3-inch high reflective numbers.
- Where more than 2 structures are addressed on a road or driveway, each driveway shall be posted (with a directional arrow, if needed) with its own address number.
- Any 1 or 2-family dwelling that displays numbers designating the address prior to February 1, 2005 that are at least 3-inches high, shall comply with the size requirement of the Fire Prevention Code as long as they remain in place.
- Where a structure / dwelling unit shares a common entry or driveway, numbers must designate the addresses in sequence.
- Monumental signage - Non-residential properties shall have the address or address range incorporated into any new or modified monumental property signage. The numbers shall be no less than 6-inches high and visible from either direction of travel.
- The street name may be incorporated into the signage to further aid in premise identification.
- Street signs - When a sign is replaced or a new sign installed, the owner, property manager or Home Owners Association (HOA) must cause the hundred block of the address to be displayed on each sign erected / maintained.
- Green reflective mailbox signs - These may be purchased online at www.interstate911.com (800-344-0528) or they may be purchased from the following fire companies:
- Brunswick Ambulance Company - 301-834-8102
- Carroll Manor Volunteer Fire Company - 301-874-5111
- Emmitsburg Ambulance Company - 301-447-6626
- Lewistown Volunteer Fire Company - 301-898-9988
- Libertytown Volunteer Fire Company - 301-898-9193
- Middletown Volunteer Fire Company - 301-371-6907
- Rocky Ridge Volunteer Fire Company - 301-271-2666
- Woodsboro Volunteer Fire Company - 301-898-5100
What Size Do the Address Numbers and Letters Need to Be?
|Residential / Commercial||Numbers & Letters Size|
|One and two-family dwellings|
|Multifamily residential structures|
|Commercial / industrial properties|
What Happens if I Do Not Comply With the Ordinance?
Failure to comply with the Premise Identification Ordinance is considered a civil fire code infraction and is punishable by a $25 fine. A fine may be imposed upon any person responsible for a civil fire code infraction for each violation. Each day such violation is permitted to exist shall be considered a separate infraction.
Questions about address posting? Please contact the office of the Fire Marshal at 301-600-1479.
What Are They & Why Are They Required?
The KNOX-BOX® Rapid Entry System provides non-destructive emergency access to commercial and residential property. The fire service uses the various Knox key boxes, vaults, key switches and padlocks for safe and secure rapid entry into properties that are equipped with fire sprinkler or fire alarm systems, as well as other properties where the Fire Marshal considers it necessary for the Fire Department to gain rapid entry.
Requirements for Open Burnings & Open Fires
- Authority Having Jurisdiction: Frederick County Government including any of its agencies, divisions, departments, or official representatives.
- Cooking Fire: The noncommercial, residential burning of materials not exceeding 3 feet in diameter and 2 feet in height, other than rubbish in which the fuel burned is contained in an outdoor fireplace, a barbecue grill, or a barbecue pit for the purpose of preparing food.
- Recreational Fire: The noncommercial burning of materials other than rubbish for pleasure, religious, ceremonial, cooking, or similar purposes in which the fuel burned is not contained in an incinerator, a barbecue grill, or a barbecue pit, and the total fuel area is not exceeding 3 feet.
- Burn Permits: Can be obtained at the Environmental Health Department
- 350 Montevue Lane Frederick, MD, 21702
- Ph: 301-600-1717
- Ph: 301-600-1719
- Burning hours may be prescribed by the authority having jurisdiction.
- Conditions that could cause a fire to spread to within 25 feet of a structure shall be eliminated prior to ignition.
- During that period of the year declared by the authority having jurisdiction to be the dry season, it shall be unlawful to set fires to any brush or forest-covered land.
- Every commercial incinerator and commercial barbecue fireplace shall be equipped and maintained with a spark arrestor and shall be maintained in good condition, working order, and repair at all times.
- For other than 1 and 2-family dwellings, no hibachi, gas-fired grill, charcoal grill, or other similar devices used for cooking, heating, or any other purpose, shall be used or kindled on any balcony or under any overhanging portion or within 15 feet of any structure.
- On such occasions when the chief executive of the jurisdiction declares a dry season and establishes special regulations on the use of any form of fire or smoking material, the authority having jurisdiction shall have the authority to assist in the enforcement of such regulations.
- Open fires and cooking fires shall be constantly attended by a competent person until such fire is extinguished. This person shall have a garden hose connected to a water supply or other fire-extinguishing equipment readily available for use.
- Permits are not required for cooking or recreational fires.
- Recreational fires shall not be located within 25 feet of a structure or combustible material unless contained in an approved manner determined by the authority having jurisdiction.
- The authority having jurisdiction shall be authorized to require any fire to be immediately discontinued if the fire is determined to continue a hazardous conditions.
- The authority having jurisdiction shall have the authority to prohibit any or all open fires when atmospheric conditions or local circumstances make such fires hazardous.
Plowable Hydrant Markers
Plowable fire hydrant markers are used to identify the locations of fire hydrants in Frederick County (MD). Although it is not pictured, the color used is blue and it must be specially ordered. The manufacturer of the markers is Ennis-Flint Americas. The marker is a Stimsonite Marker; Model 101. Other markers may be acceptable for use in the county. Contact the County Fire Marshal’s office for approval before ordering and installing.
Installation of blue plowable fire hydrant markers:
- Two-way streets and roads - Markers shall be placed 6 inches from the edge of the painted centerline or from the approximate center of streets without a painted centerline on the side nearest the hydrant. Fire hydrants on street corners shall have markers installed in each roadway.
- Streets with multiple lanes - Markers shall be placed 6 inches from the edge of the painted yellow or white line, in each travel lane on the side nearest the hydrant.
- Streets with continuous 2-way left turn lane - Markers shall be placed 6 inches from the edge of the painted yellow barrier and in each travel lane on the side nearest the fire hydrant.
There are a number of dry fire hydrants strategically placed within Frederick County to allow firefighters’ quick access to water when needed.
- See a list of said hydrants for more information.
The Office of the Fire Marshal is responsible for investigating complaints with regard to abandoned/disreputable structures in all areas of the county except the City of Frederick. It is the responsibility of a property owner to ensure that the structure is secured and does not create a fire and/or life safety hazard. One way to secure the structure is in accordance with the U.S. Fire Administration's Board Up Procedures.
Excerpt from the Fire Prevention Code:
10.13.1 Every person owning or having charge or control of any vacant building or premises shall remove all combustible storage, waste, refuse, and vegetation and shall lock, barricade, or otherwise secure all windows, doors, and other openings to prohibit entry by unauthorized persons. (NFPA 1, Uniform Fire Code, 2006 edition)
Upon receiving a complaint, the fire marshal will conduct an investigation, and if the property is deemed a fire hazard, a letter will be sent to the property owner and he/she will be given fifteen (15) days to correct the problem.