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Commercial Fire Safety Inspections

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Fire Safety Inspections


We know that you care about the level of safety in your business and on the premises. When a Tumwater Fire Department Inspector visits, we strongly encourage you to accompany them. This mutual assistance in the inspection of your business and premises can greatly enhance the level of life safety for you, your employees, and the public. Even a small fire can disrupt your business operation for weeks or more. A catastrophic fire can take years to recover from if at all.

Fire Safety Inspection Program - Fire Code Enforcement

A fee is charged only for the Fire Code Enforcement Inspection as the Inspector providing the inspection is trained and certified. These occur for commercial and institutional properties on a regular basis, normally once a year to start.  This is dependent upon the occupancy type and the risk that a commercial property poses.  If there is a high life risk or property hazards, it may be more often.

Fire Inspection - what to expect

The inspector will conduct a thorough inspection to ensure satisfactory life safety conditions on your property, examining items such as:

  • Exits: including doors, pathways, exit signs, and exit discharge areas.
  • Combustible storage: including paper, trash and recycling.
  • Emergency lighting if present.
  • Maintenance of fire lanes.
  • Fire hydrant and FDC obstructions.
  • Proper addressing.
  • Fire extinguisher location and service dates.
  • Electrical appliances and cords.
  • Fire alarm and fire protection systems like sprinklers and hood and duct systems.
  • Evacuation plan

See Most Common Fire Code Violations for more information.


If any conditions are found that violate the codes, or could cause a fire or endanger life or property, the inspector will issue a report requiring that the condition be corrected.  A re-inspection will be scheduled within 30 days unless there are serious life hazard issues. Then it may be as short as one day. There is no extra charge for the first re-inspection. Failure to correct violations will result in additional re-inspections for an additional fee.

Why is there a charge for fire inspections?

Due to the Fire Departments limited resources and staffing, it is not feasible to inspect all occupancies on a routine basis. The fee is based on the actual costs to the City for the Fire Code Enforcement Inspection Program.  A regular inspection program will lead to less business interruption from fire/injury, faster recovery from an incident, and lower insurance rates!

How much is the inspection fee?

The fee for your inspection is based on a fee- schedule that takes into consideration your occupancy type, the complexity of the inspection and the size of the building.  Included in the fee are the primary inspection and one re-inspection. Any further re-inspections will be charged the actual costs of the visit and may lead to legal action, which could result in additional fees and fines. 

Inspection Fees pdf-icon-sm

Company "Pre-fire" or Courtesy Visit

A “Pre-fire” or courtesy visit is a chance for the local fire companies to visit your business prior to an emergency. These visits are handled differently than your Fire Safety Inspection. Fire companies take the opportunity to familiarize themselves with the fire and life safety challenges that a location may present during an emergency response and plan for it. See Courtesy Inspections for more information.


Contact Craig Mugartegui, Fire Inspector, City of Tumwater Fire Department, at (360) 754-4176 or email