Miami's independent source of
local news and culture
Fire watch guards are trained to monitor your property and identify fire hazards. They also act swiftly in case of a fire by alerting the fire department.
AHJs can require fire watches when certain activities, like temporary heating or hot work on construction sites, create a higher fire risk.
Fire Watch Services are assigned to watch a building’s fire alarm and sprinkler systems. They monitor these systems to ensure they’re functioning properly and that all occupants know the situation.
The National Fire Protection Association is a United States trade association with international members that sets standards and codes for fire safety. They help businesses, local governments, and other organizations improve fire safety.
NFPA has more than 250 technical committees that represent different interests. These committees review public input and vote on codes and standards.
The USPA Nationwide Security Division visits locations nationwide to educate its fire watch guards and clients on NFPA-compliant fire watch procedures. This month, they are stopping in Dade County.
Fire watch guards receive certification from the Fire Department of the City of New York (FDNY). This certification ensures that fire watch guards are properly trained and licensed to work in buildings.
FDNY also administers and enforces building fire code policies to promote fire safety and prevention. The fire code specifies when, where, and how many fire watch guards are required in buildings.
To be certified as a fire guard, you must complete an accredited training course. This training typically consists of at least 20 hours of instruction and at least two hours of practical work.
You must also pass an FDNY exam before you can receive your certificate. The exam costs $25 and is given at the FDNY Metro Tech Center in Brooklyn.
A Fireguard Certificate of Fitness license is required by individuals with fire guard responsibilities at construction sites where torch operations are conducted. The FDNY issues it after passing an exam (70% or higher) consisting of 20 multiple-choice questions.
OSHA training is necessary for fire watch guards at construction sites that perform hot work, where workers cut, weld, or use torches. They must also monitor for smoldering or sparking that could start a fire if not controlled immediately.
The 10-hour OSHA certification covers the basics of general safety and health provisions, hazard recognition, employer responsibilities, personal protection equipment (PPE), and safety policies. Students can then choose from a menu of elective options to focus on specific hazards and policies.
Upon completion, students receive a wallet-sized card that shows they've received the training from an authorized trainer. Cards don't expire, but periodic safety training may be required when employees demonstrate inadequate safety knowledge or a workplace change exposes them to new hazards.
The 30-hour OSHA course focuses on specific hazards, policies, and best practices. It's an excellent choice for more experienced employees. The class is offered online and in person by authorized OTI Education Center trainers.