For Your Business

Community Risk Reduction

The Rochester Hills Fire Department Community Risk Reduction Division is made up of an Assistant Chief / Fire Marshal, Captain / Assistant Fire Marshal, four Lieutenant / Fire Inspectors, and a Fire and Life Safety Educator.  All Lieutenant / Fire Inspectors are National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) Fire Inspector I certified, and currently all inspectors also hold a Fire Inspector II, and Plans Examiner certification.  

The Rochester Hills Fire Department uses the International Fire Code 2006 edition for enforcement and plan review.  

Fire and Life Safety Inspection Information

Annual Fire and Life Safety Inspections are vitally important to the wellbeing of businesses, employees, and patrons.  The Rochester Hills Fire Department would like to thank business owners for their partnership in keeping the Rochester Hills community safe.  In 2020, the Rochester Hills Fire Department adopted a new inspection schedule.  The inspection schedule was structured based on the recommendations of the National Fire Protection Agency’s (NFPA) Standard 1730: Standard on Organization and Deployment of Fire Prevention Inspection and Code Enforcement, Plan Review, Investigation, and Public Education Operations. This standard has identified three different risk classifications based on building use and business practices.  

Businesses have been categorized into one of the following risk categories: 

High Risk – Inspected once per calendar year
Examples include: 
  • Multi-family dwellings (apartment buildings with common / shared hallways)
  • Hotels and Lodging
  • Assembly Locations (gathering places like restaurants with an occupant load of 50 or more persons)
  • Chemical Users / Producers that meet a quantity threshold set by the State Fire Marshal’s Bulletin 9
  • City Owned Infrastructure
Medium Risk – Inspected every other year, based on address number (Odd numbered addresses will be inspected in odd numbered years, even numbered addresses will be inspected in even numbered years)
Examples include:
  • Industrial occupancies that do not use or produce chemicals  above the quantity threshold set by the State Fire Marshal’s Bulletin 9
  • Fueling Stations and Repair Garages
  • Restaurants with an occupancy load of 49 persons or less
  • Businesses with large quantities of flammable / combustible products or aerosols that are not in use (being stored)
  • Locations with specialty fire equipment that are not a high risk
Low Risk – Inspected once every three years (based on geographic area of the City)
Examples include: 
  • Storage Facilities
  • Mercantile Use (retail stores)
  • Business use locations (office buildings)
For information regarding when your business will be inspected or what risk category your business falls into, please contact the Community Risk Reduction division at 248-656-4717 and ask to speak with a fire inspector.  

Fire and Life Safety Inspection Fees

In 2020, the Public Safety and Infrastructure Committee recommended and the City Council approved the Rochester Hills Fire Department’s new inspection and fee schedule for all Fire and Life Safety Inspections.  The fee provides for the initial inspection and first re-inspection and is based on the square footage of the building.  If a business requires inspections beyond the first two visits, other fees may apply.  

For locations that contain hazardous materials in high quantities, as defined by the State of Michigan Fire Marshal Bulletin 9, the location is designated as a site specific / high hazard location and an additional $150 site specific fee will be applied to the inspection invoice.  This additional fee is in lieu of issuing a hazardous materials permit and provides for the additional time that these inspections require.  The fire department is required to create and maintain a set of detailed plans, documentation, and specific chemical information for use during an emergency that go above and beyond the department’s normal pre-incident planning.   

Inspection Documents

Chemical Survey

This survey is requested to determine the quantity of specific chemical groups used, produced or stored in your facility. Fire Chiefs are required to collect chemical data under the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Act (MIOSHA), P.A. 154 of 1974, as amended, and the Fire Prevention Code, PA 207 of 1941, as amended.

1. We are now utilizing Google Forms to collect our Chemical Survey Information. 

2. Gather information to complete the chemical inventory sheet. Refer to the Hazardous Chemical Definitions (contained within the Google Form), the Safety Data Sheets, and/or SARA Title III reporting forms.

3. Check all the categories that apply. When a chemical has more than one characteristic (example: both a Class 3 flammable and a Class 6 poison), check both Poison and Class 3 Flammable Liquid based on the specified quantity for each class.

4. Each chemical listed in this survey includes a specified quantity. Indicate the quantity category for each chemical class on your site.  If you do not use or produce a chemical group listed, select "DO NOT HAVE" from the dropdown menu in that category.

5. Click Submit. You should receive an email confirmation of your answers once the form is completed and recorded in the system. 

6. If you have trouble filling out or submitting, please contact the Community Risk Reduction Division at 248-656-4717.

When a substantial change occurs in the quantity, type of chemical, use and manufacturing or related storage, a revised survey must be submitted to the Fire Chief. In addition, a revised survey will be requested every five years or as the Fire Chief deems necessary.

This survey may be followed-up with a request for more detailed information. This may include a request for Safety Data Sheets, chemical lists maintained under the Employee Right to Know provisions of MIOSHA and other information.

Burn Permit for the Preparation of Mortar

The City of Rochester Hills Fire Department requires a burn permit for the preparation of mortar.  The permit is good for one address or project (for example a new neighborhood) and cannot be used for multiple job sites throughout the City.  The burn permit is valid for the calendar year or duration of the project.  

Preparation of Mortar Rules & Regulations

  • Fire Must be attended at all times with adequate fire control measures on hand. 
  • No person shall start or maintain any fire within 50 feet of any structure or road right of way. 
  • Fuel for the fire shall consist only of wood or propane.  
  • Burning of materials such as plastics, rubber, hazardous materials, building materials, etc., is prohibited. 
  • Any violation of these requirements may void the permit, prevent the issuance of any further permits, and results in the issuance of a Municipal Civil infraction. 
The permit holder may also be required to reimburse the Fire Department for all costs incurred as a result of responding to any violations of these guidelines.  

The fines for burning outside of the guidelines or without a preparation of mortar burn permit are: 
  • 1st offense - $150
  • 2nd offense - $250
  • 3rd and subsequent offense - $500
Burn Permits for the preparation of mortar can be obtained at the Fire Department Administrative Office at 1111 Horizon Ct., Rochester Hills, MI 48309 between the hours of 8:30am and 4:30pm Monday - Friday, excluding holidays and cost $30.00.  

The best way to get the latest news about the City of Rochester Hills is through our notification system, RHConnect!
Sign up to receive the information you need, delivered via email, text or both.