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View Full Version : Avoiding being shut down by a Fire Marshall



Ashenwraith
09-27-2007, 11:40 AM
Hi, I'm building my first maze outdoors and I'm trying to do the best to avoid being shutdown by FMs (fire retardant walls and camo netting and no roof), but I still have a lot of questions...

If most FMs here in Southern Ca want fire retardant walls and fire retardant camo netting, then will they also require fire retardant dorp?

Do I really need fire exits with signs for this?


Any tips/must haves for electrical (other than not using damaged equipment, keeping wires off the ground/away from moisture, and not plugging power strips into power strips)?

brad
09-27-2007, 12:18 PM
The best tip that I can give you is to GET OUT OF THE CITY LIMITS!
It will be a lot less stressful for you.

I actually got shut out of a building this year thanks to Mr. Fire Marshall.

As far as fire retardant dorp, etc.- it seems to me that anything that the patron can reach or get close to needs to be fire retardant.
Dont go the cheap route and buy the tarp material that comes in big roles from Lowes or H.D. They will frown on that quicker than anything else.

As far as being outdoor, I dont know what the requirements will be for lighter fire exits, etc., but my guess will be that you will still need them.

As far as electrical- what you wrote is all true, and I cant think of anything else off the top of my head.

My best advice is to go talk to your F.M. before you start building, and he will tell you every detail of what he wants to see when he comes out to inspect it. Do this first, because it would suck if you spent all this time building your haunt, and then he wants you to make all these changes after your done.

This is all just from my personal experience with my F.M., so there are some people on this forum that can help you a little more than me, but I figured I could try to help out a little bit.

SpFXChic
09-27-2007, 12:20 PM
Best bit of advice I can give is...go talk to the FM first and see what he/she'll require. That way, you're ahead of the game and not out any $.

Ashenwraith
09-27-2007, 12:55 PM
The best tip that I can give you is to GET OUT OF THE CITY LIMITS!
It will be a lot less stressful for you.

I actually got shut out of a building this year thanks to Mr. Fire Marshall.

As far as fire retardant dorp, etc.- it seems to me that anything that the patron can reach or get close to needs to be fire retardant.
Dont go the cheap route and buy the tarp material that comes in big roles from Lowes or H.D. They will frown on that quicker than anything else.

As far as being outdoor, I dont know what the requirements will be for lighter fire exits, etc., but my guess will be that you will still need them.

As far as electrical- what you wrote is all true, and I cant think of anything else off the top of my head.

My best advice is to go talk to your F.M. before you start building, and he will tell you every detail of what he wants to see when he comes out to inspect it. Do this first, because it would suck if you spent all this time building your haunt, and then he wants you to make all these changes after your done.

This is all just from my personal experience with my F.M., so there are some people on this forum that can help you a little more than me, but I figured I could try to help out a little bit.

Hmmm.... I'm pretty hessitant to contact a FM from what I've read on here...

I think 'll probably have to remove every leaf and dry piece of grass and yes, I was actually thinking of getting that cheap plastic because it comes certified in California and plastic doesn't kindle like wood.


The biggest thing that's bugging me about contacting them is that the local fire dept runs some kind of "Haunted House" around here.

It just seems like it's asking for trouble.

MMManiac
09-27-2007, 03:31 PM
you would rather ask and have them come out then not ask and still have them come out and shut you down. Our FM in green bay was very nice and helped us out the intire time to make sure we opened on time. They are not out their to shut people down. They are their to make sure you provide a safe haunt.

sean

brad
09-27-2007, 05:46 PM
Hmmm.... I'm pretty hessitant to contact a FM from what I've read on here...

I think 'll probably have to remove every leaf and dry piece of grass and yes, I was actually thinking of getting that cheap plastic because it comes certified in California and plastic doesn't kindle like wood.


The biggest thing that's bugging me about contacting them is that the local fire dept runs some kind of "Haunted House" around here.

It just seems like it's asking for trouble.

We might not be thinking of the same plastic. The king I was refferring to is as flammable as flammable gets. My F.M. told me that I could put it in my haunt but it couldnt be in a spot that someone(actor, or patron) will be near.

Also, as Sean said you'd much rather get a hold of them right now, than them come out there and not like your setup and shut down.

Greg Chrise
09-27-2007, 09:31 PM
If a fire department is your competition, there lies the real problem. They will by training make it known that you either do or do not have a fire department with the equipment necessary to respond to your event in case of an emergency. So the trick is to get your fire department (if it is a different village) to support you, and you support them with a part of the proceeds, or pay thier fee to have a truck there and then the fire marshal is all cool as not only trained responders but people he knows and trusts will be watching his area of responsibility.

If you are in the same town and that fire department haunt is who would be responding to your event, you will need their blessing with trading customers and fliers and what ever you can do to be neighborly. Share advertising, even the workload of getting their name out there.

Without support of the community, you need to be like Disney and have your own fire department and trained personel. Even with everything being the right material, even if it was all metal with no paint on it, who are you going to call.

It is pretty easy to have multiple exists every 50 foot that become access for actors and such. Wether they are marked like the inside of an air liner depends on wether they want you to be there. Hence the community is part of the gig.