Preventing fires is just as important as fighting them. At the Tallahassee Fire Department, that philosophy is front and center within the Prevention Division, led by Division Chief Bill Ekwall.
Each year, the personnel within Prevention interact with more than 2500 local businesses and places of assembly, including schools and churches, to ensure fire safety for the public as well as the employees who work there. Our inspectors inspect for compliance with all life safety and current NFPA fire codes.
During an inspection, TFD will evaluate whether conditions at a business site are safe or if there are issues that are liable to cause a fire or endanger lives and property as a result of fire. If these conditions do exist, TFD will advise the business immediately and consult with the owner/manager or designee about correcting these problems in a reasonable timeframe so the business will be safer and in compliance with fire codes.
Prevention also oversees the fulfillment of the department's home fire safety program with the free install of smoke detectors to elderly and low income citizens. Public education and outreach regarding home fire safety is another responsibility of Prevention. This programming mainly includes fire safety presentations at public events and local civic groups as well as an annual Fire Prevention Week community event in October.