State Fire Marshal’s Office promotes May as Building Safety Month

National campaign brings awareness to life-saving capabilities of building codes

NASHVILLE – Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee has declared May 2019 as Building Safety Month to increase public awareness of the critical role building codes play in ensuring fire and life safety.

Created 39 years ago by the International Code Council (ICC), Building Safety Month is an international campaign designed to raise awareness about the importance of code adoption and celebrate the work of state and local codes inspectors who help ensure the safety of communities. The Tennessee State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFMO) is proud to join Gov. Lee and the ICC in promoting this annual campaign.

“Our team of fire prevention experts works closely with homebuilders, contractors, and others in the construction industry to ensure Tennesseans are protected by compliance with the construction standards that promote public safety,” said State Fire Marshal and Tennessee Commerce & Insurance (TDCI) Commissioner Julie Mix McPeak. “Ensuring that buildings are constructed to code helps limit the risk of death, injury, and property damage.”

Codes officials in the SFMO’s Codes Enforcement Section as well as those in the Electrical, Residential and Marina Inspections Section work to ensure buildings are constructed safely and public marinas are operating safely. Building Safety Month brings recognition to the work of these professionals as they create safe, resilient, affordable, and energy efficient places for Tennesseans to live, work, learn, worship and play.

In 2018, the SFMO completed 2,873 inspections of residential structures, issued 135,011 electrical permits, reviewed 1,045 building plans, and conducted 211,131 total electrical inspections.

Additionally, the Tennessee Fire Service and Codes Enforcement Academy (TFACA) offers a progressive and challenging curriculum for the testing and certification of code enforcement officials. TFACA’s state-of-the-art equipment and customized classrooms, which will be home to a new conference center, provide a solid foundation for individuals who are starting a career in codes enforcement or seasoned professionals looking to keep pace with updated regulations.

Building codes address all aspects of construction, including fire prevention, structural integrity, and energy efficiency, to name a few.

Because these structures are being built with such resiliency, the risk of property damage is reduced, which may provide property owners with lower insurance costs and save millions of taxpayer dollars in the wake of natural disasters.

For more information on Building Safety Month, visit the International Code Council’s website.

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