Fire apparatus access roads shall be provided and maintained in accordance with Sections 503.1.1
Approved fire apparatus access roads shall be provided for every facility, building or portion of a building hereafter constructed or moved into or within the jurisdiction. The fire apparatus access road shall comply with the requirements of this section and shall extend to within 150 feet (45 720 mm) of all portions of the facility and all portions of the exterior walls of the first story of the building as measured by an approved route around the exterior of the building or facility.
The fire code official is authorized to increase the dimension of 150 feet (45 720 mm) where any of the following conditions occur:
- 1.1. The building is equipped throughout with an approved automatic sprinkler system installed in accordance with Section 903.3.1.1, 903.3.1.2 or 903.3.1.3.
- 1.2. Fire apparatus access roads cannot be installed because of location on property, topography, waterways, nonnegotiable grades or other similar conditions, and an approved alternative means of fire protection is provided.
- 1.3. There are not more than two Group R-3 or Group U occupancies.
- Where approved by the fire code official, fire apparatus access roads shall be permitted to be exempted or modified for solar photovoltaic power generation facilities.
The fire code official is authorized to require more than one fire apparatus access road based on the potential for impairment of a single road by vehicle congestion, condition of terrain, climatic conditions or other factors that could limit access.
Fire department vehicle access to buildings used for high-piled combustible storage shall comply with the applicable provisions of Chapter 32
Fire apparatus access roads shall be installed and arranged in accordance with Sections 503.2.1 through 503.2.8.
[California Code of Regulations, Title 19, Division 1, §3.05(a)] Fire Department Access and Egress. (Roads)
Roads. Required access roads from every building to a public street shall be all-weather hard-surfaced (suitable for use by fire apparatus) right-of-way not less than 20 feet in width. Such right-of-way shall be unobstructed and maintained only as access to the public street.
Exception: The enforcing agency may waive or modify this requirement if in his opinion such all-weather hard-surfaced condition is not necessary in the interest of public safety and welfare.
Fire apparatus access roads shall have an unobstructed width of not less than 20 feet (6096 mm), exclusive of shoulders, except for approved security gates in accordance with Section 503.6
, and an unobstructed vertical clearance of not less than 13 feet 6 inches (4115 mm).
The fire code official shall have the authority to require or permit modifications to the required access widths where they are inadequate for fire or rescue operations or where necessary to meet the public safety objectives of the jurisdiction.
Fire apparatus access roads shall be designed and maintained to support the imposed loads of fire apparatus and shall be surfaced so as to provide all-weather driving capabilities.
The required turning radius of a fire apparatus access road shall be determined by the fire code official.
Dead-end fire apparatus access roads in excess of 150 feet (45 720 mm) in length shall be provided with an approved area for turning around fire apparatus.
Where a bridge or an elevated surface is part of a fire apparatus access road, the bridge shall be constructed and maintained in accordance with AASHTO HB-17. Bridges and elevated surfaces shall be designed for a live load sufficient to carry the imposed loads of fire apparatus. Vehicle load limits shall be posted at both entrances to bridges where required by the fire code official. Where elevated surfaces designed for emergency vehicle use are adjacent to surfaces that are not designed for such use, approved barriers, approved signs or both shall be installed and maintained where required by the fire code official.
The grade of the fire apparatus access road shall be within the limits established by the fire code official based on the fire department’s apparatus.
The angles of approach and departure for fire apparatus access roads shall be within the limits established by the fire code official based on the fire department’s apparatus.
Where required by the fire code official, approved signs or other approved notices or markings that include the words NO PARKING—FIRE LANE shall be provided for fire apparatus access roads to identify such roads or prohibit the obstruction thereof. The means by which fire lanes are designated shall be maintained in a clean and legible condition at all times and be replaced or repaired when necessary to provide adequate visibility.
Fire apparatus access roads shall not be obstructed in any manner, including the parking of vehicles. The minimum widths and clearances established in Sections 503.2.1
shall be maintained at all times.
Traffic calming devices shall be prohibited unless approved by the fire code official.
The fire code official is authorized to require the installation and maintenance of gates or other approved barricades across fire apparatus access roads, trails or other accessways, not including public streets, alleys or highways. Electric gate operators, where provided, shall be listed in accordance with UL 325. Gates intended for automatic operation shall be designed, constructed and installed to comply with the requirements of ASTM F2200.
Where required, gates and barricades shall be secured in an approved manner. Roads, trails and other accessways that have been closed and obstructed in the manner prescribed by Section 503.5 shall not be trespassed on or used unless authorized by the owner and the fire code official.
Exception: The restriction on use shall not apply to public officers acting within the scope of duty.
School grounds may be fenced and gates therein may be equipped with locks, provided that safe dispersal areas based on 3 square feet (0.28 m2) per occupant are located between the school and the fence. Such required safe dispersal areas shall not be located less than 50 feet (15 240 mm) from school buildings.
Every public and private school shall conform with Section 32020 of the Education Code which states:
The governing board of every public school district, and the governing authority of every private school, which maintains any building used for the instruction or housing of school pupils on land entirely enclosed (except for building walls) by fences of walls, shall, through cooperation with the local law enforcement and fire-protection agencies having jurisdiction of the area, make provision for the erection of gates in such fences or walls. The gates shall be of sufficient size to permit the entrance of the ambulances, police equipment and fire-fighting apparatus used by the law enforcement and fire-protection agencies. There shall be no less than one such access gate and there shall be as many such gates as needed to assure access to all major buildings and ground areas. If such gates are to be equipped with locks, the locking devices shall be designed to permit ready entrance by the use of the chain or bolt-cutting devices with which the local law enforcement and fire-protection agencies may be equipped.
The installation of security gates across a fire apparatus access road shall be approved by the fire chief. Where security gates are installed, they shall have an approved means of emergency operation. The security gates and the emergency operation shall be maintained operational at all times. Electric gate operators, where provided, shall be listed in accordance with UL 325. Gates intended for automatic operation shall be designed, constructed and installed to comply with the requirements of ASTM F2200.