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SCDF charges six building owners for occupying premises without valid Fire Certificate
12 May 2021

Between 12 January and 27 April 2021, six building owners were charged in court for contravening Section 20(2) of the Fire Safety Act (FSA)1 , by occupying their respective premises without a valid Fire Certificate (FC). For a list of the premises and charges meted out, please refer to ANNEX.

 

Importance of a Fire Certificate

Under the FSA, premises must have a valid FC before they can be occupied. 2 A valid FC is evidence that the fire safety measures3 installed within the premises have been checked to be in working condition, and that the building is safe to be occupied.

 

Depending on the premises’ fire risk and extent of fire safety measures required, its FC has to be renewed every one to three years. A Professional Engineer must be engaged to check the serviceability of its measures before SCDF approves the FC renewal.

 

SCDF had alerted the six building owners to renew their FC two months prior to the FC’s expiry and issued multiple reminders thereafter. However, the owners had disregarded the reminders and failed to renew their FC, and allowed the premises to be occupied even after the FC had expired. All six premises have since renewed their FC.

 

SCDF takes a serious view of Fire Certificate-related offences

SCDF takes a very serious view of FC-related offences, especially the occupying of premises without a valid FC. A valid FC is issued only after a building’s fire safety measures - such as fire alarm systems, sprinkler systems, and emergency power supply systems – have been checked to be in working condition. If these critical systems are not functioning, there is great risk to the building’s occupants during emergencies, and can lead to severe consequences such as loss of life and damage to property. We urge all building owners to play their part to ensure the safety of the occupants of their premises. 


Singapore Civil Defence Force

12 May 2021

 

1 This section states that a person must not (a) occupy or use a building; or (b) permit a building owned or managed by the person to be occupied or used; unless there is a fire certificate authorising the occupation or use.

2 Newly-constructed buildings that are issued with a Fire Safety Certificate (FSC) are exempted from the requirement to have a valid FC for the first year. This is because the FSC already indicates that fire safety works had been completed in accordance with the requirements of the Fire Code, which includes ensuring that the fire safety measures installed are in proper working condition.

3 Such measures include automatic sprinkler systems, fire alarm systems, and emergency power supply, among others.

 

News-Release