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Division of Business Affairs
Facilities Management and Environmental Health & Safety (EHS)

Quarterly Building Inspection Form Instructions

General Information

The quarterly building inspection form is designed to help the person performing the inspection identify hazards in the building.  All items that appear on the form may not be applicable in your particular building, if this is the case then simply place an "x" in the N/A column.  For items that do apply to your building, carefully check the items and place an "x" in the YES or NO section as appropriate.  When issues and problems are found please be sure to use the comments section of the form to specifically identify the problem.  The specific location and a good description of the problem are extremely helpful in getting the problem addressed. If a work order has been issued to correct the problem, please note the work order number in the comment section.

For more specific information on what each question in the form is about please see the following below:

Fire Safety Conditions
General Building Safety Conditions
Electrical Safety Conditions
Other Building Safety Issues & Concerns

Fire Safety Conditions

  1. Are all fire extinguishers in place, fully charged, and checked monthly?
    1. Check all fire extinguishers in the building to make sure that they are there.  Document any missing fire extinguishers in the comments section.
    2. Check each fire exinguisher to ensure that it is fully charged.  You can do this by viewing the guage that is on most fire extinguishers.  The needle on the guage should be pointing in the middle of the range.  Please document in the comments if the needle is not in the normal range.
    3. Check each fire extinguisher to ensure that the fire extinguisher monthly inspection tag is correctly completed.

  2. Are fire exinguisher inspection tags in place?
    1. Annual Fire Extinguisher Inspection Tag - this tag will state at the top "DO NOT REMOVE BY ORDER OF THE STATE FIRE MARSHAL".  Check the tag to ensure that it has been inspected within the past year.  This inspection must be performed by a licensed contractor.
    2. Monthly Inspection Tag - check this tag to ensure that building personnel are inspecting fire extinguishers on a monthly basis.

  3. Is the fire alarm system functioning properly and has it been tested within the past year?
    1. Unless you know of any problems with the fire alarm system then it is probably functioning correctly.  It is not necessary to sound the fire alarm during each building inspection.
    2. Look near the alarm control panel or on the panel for the inspection tag.  This inspection tag is issued by a licensed contractor and performed annually.  Check to ensure that it is still within date.
    3. While you are at the alarm control panel look at it and make sure that there are no obvious trouble signals (i.e. trouble lights, visual or audible warnings, etc.)

  4. Are smoke alarms functioning correctly?
    1. Testing smoke detectors is usually not necessary by the building inspector. Contractors are required to test them annually with the fire alarm inspection. If a building is equipped with smoke detectors and a fire alarm panel, do not test them. Call the campus Safety Officer if fire alarm panel shows a trouble.
    2. For small buildings with residential smoke detectors but no fire alarm panel, you may test each smoke alarm in the building by pushing the test button on the smoke alarm until the smoke alarm sounds (on some models you have to hold the button in several seconds).  If an alarm does not sound, note what you think the problem is (i.e. no electricity, defective alarm, etc.).  Some buildings do not have smoke alarms, if this is the case check N/A (not applicable).

  5. Are emergency lights functioning correctly?
    1. You can determine this by pushing the test button on the emergency lights.  If the lights come on then they are functioning correctly.  Some buildings do not have emergency lights, if this is the case check N/A (not applicable).

  6. Are all exits marked with exit signs and illuminated by a reliable source?
    1. Check exit signs throughout the building to ensure that they are legible and illuminated.  Report if any bulbs are out or if lights and/or signs are missing.

  7. Are evacuation plans posted near doors?
    1. Each building should have an evacuation plan posted near all doors in the building.

  8. Are all doors and hallways leading to an exit, free to access with no possibility of being locked in?
    1. Check to make sure that no doors leading to an exit are blocked or locked.  This will impede egress (exit) during an emergency and is not allowed by the fire marshal.  Check for materials blocking the doors.  If doors are locked then appropriate panic hardware must be installed on the door that is locked.  This will allow exit in case of an emergency.

  9. Are exit routes kept free of obstructions?
    1. Check exit routes to ensure that they are kept clear.  Exit routes include hallways, stairways, entranceways, etc.  Please make sure that boxes, desks, trash cans, etc. are blocking hallways.  This may impede egress in an emergency and is not allowed.

  10. Do exit doors open outwards? Will fire & exit doors close and latch properly?
    1. All exit doors should open outwards.
    2. Check fire doors and exit doors to make sure they close and latch properly.  These type of doors should have automatic door closers attached to them.  Check the closers carefully and make sure they are working properly.  Once the door closes ensure that it latches shut properly.  The reason for doing this is in case of a fire the door will isolate that floor from fire and smoke as long as it is closed.  Do not allow anyone to prop these doors open.

  11. Has a fire / evacuation drill been conducted within the past year?
    1. This requirement is issued by ORM and requires a fire drill in all of our buildings at least once per year.  The fire drill should be documented on the fire drill form.  During the quarterly inspections check your records to ensure that your building is not due for a fire drill.  See the fire drill section of this site for more information before conducting a fire drill.

  12. Are there any portable heaters present in the building?
    1. Check rooms and offices of the building to ensure that no portable heaters are present.  If portable heaters are found please note that on the form.  Make sure that the heater conforms to the Portable Heater Policy.  If not, ask the owner of the heater to remove the heater from the building.

  13. Are emergency phone numbers posted on all phones in the building?
    1. Check phones, especially department office and other public phones to ensure that emergency phone numbers are posted on the phone.  This would include 911 and campus police number x-1911

  14. Are there any first aid kits in the building? Inventory card current? Location._______________
    1. Check the first aid kits with in your building.  Make sure that each kit is has an inventory card listing all the supplies. Make sure each kit has been checked monthly.
    2. Make sure there are no medications (Tylenol, antacids, etc.) in the kits. Burn ointment is acceptable. 
    3. Make sure that none of the supplies are expired.

General Building Safety Conditions

  1. Are there any slip / trip / fall hazards located inside or outside of the building?
    1. Slips, trips, and falls are the most common types of accidents.  Check the building and the outside areas of the building for any conditions or hazards that might cause slips, trips, and / or falls.

  2. In areas that stay wet, greasy, or slippery are floor mats or other anti-slip material used?
    1. Note any areas that are wet, greasy, or otherwise slippery.  These areas should have floor mats or other anti-slip material.  Common problem areas include:  entranceways, halls, and stairs (due to wet weather), kitchen & food preparation areas (due to grease), maintenance areas (due to oil & other fluids), etc.

  3. Are service holes, man holes, drains, etc. properly covered?
    1. Look at the outside grounds of the building and make sure that all drains, service holes, man holes, etc. are properly covered to keep pedestrians from accidentally stepping into these holes.

  4. Is the building well lit, inside and outside?
    1. Check the building lights carefully to determine if any bulbs need replacing.  Lights inside and outside of the building should be checked.

  5. Is housekeeping in the building adequate?
    1. Check to make sure that the housekeeping in the building is adequate.  Building should be cleaned regularly, material should be stored in proper locations, garbage emptied regularly, areas free of debris and clutter, etc.

  6. Are floors in good condition with no loose or broken flooring?
    1. Check floors carefully to make sure that flooring is in good condition with no loose or broken flooring.

  7. Are stairways in good condition with handrails in place?  Are stair treads in good condition?
    1. Check all building stairways, check for loose handrails, and check to make sure stair treads are in good condition (i.e. there is still tread, it is not breaking loose, etc.)

  8. Does the building have any pest problems?
    1. Please list any pest problems in your building.  Be specific as possible.  Also note the last time the building was treated for pests if known.

  9. Are all ceiling tiles in place and in good condition throughout the building?
    1. Check all ceiling tiles and report any broken or damaged tiles on the inspection report.

  10. Is the building secure?  Are all outside doors locked at the end of each day?  Are all locks and other security devices working properly?
    1. Check to make sure that all outside doors are locked at the end of each day.  Also check each door in the building to make sure that locks and other security devices are functioning properly.

  11. If equipped, is the security system for the building working properly?
    1. Report any problems or issues with the security system if your building has one.  If your building does not have a security system, mark this item N/A.

  12. Are all maintenance and mechanical areas secure?
    1. Check all maintenance & mechanical areas (boiler room, air handler, sprinkler room, etc.) and make sure they are locked except when authorized personnel are in these areas.

  13. Are all custodial areas in good condition?  Are all chemicals stored properly with no overstocking?  Is this area secure?
    1. Check the custodial areas to make sure that they are well kept.  No excess chemicals should be stored, only what is needed.  Make sure the area is secure and that only authorized personnel can access these areas.

  14. Do any windows have broken panes?  Do windows open & close correctly?
    1. Check all windows in the building to make sure that none of the panes or glass is broken or cracked.
    2. For windows that are supposed to open make sure that they open, close, and latch correctly.

  15. Are all elevators working correctly?  Are elevators equipped with an emergency phone?
    1. Check each elevator in the building to make sure it is working correctly.  Check to make sure that on each floor the elevator is stopping level.  Make sure that the all of the elevator buttons function correctly.  For elevators operated by keys check to see if the key hole can be turned by any key.  Check each elevator to make sure that it has an emergency phone and that this phone is working properly.

  16. Is the parking lot in good condition?
    1. Check the parking lot to make sure that no major potholes are present.  Check to make sure parking lines are visible, handicapped spaces are marked, etc.

  17. Are there any water leaks in the building?
    1. Note the exact location of any water leaks in the building.  When looking for leaks look for wet ceiling tiles, wet walls, areas of mold & mildew, etc.

  18. Are all plumbing systems working properly?
    1. Note any plumbing problems in the building (i.e. clogged drains, flushing problems, drain leaks, potable water leaks, sink leaks, etc.

  19. Check that any hazardous materials in the building are stored properly. 

  20. Check the safety bulletin board to ensure the following are posted:  president's policy statement, asbestos notice, natural gas notice, emergency numbers, whistleblower protection

Electrical Safety Conditions

  1. Are all breaker boxes and junction boxes properly labeled?  Are empty breaker slots covered (no blanks)? Do the box doors close properly?
    1. Check to make sure that each breaker in the box is properly labeled as to its function.
    2. Make sure that any empty slots in the breaker box are covered with metal inserts
    3. Make sure the box doors close and latch properly

  2. Check extension cords
    1. Check to make sure extension cords are properly grounded (look for the three prong plugs on each end with the third plug made for grounding purposes)
    2. Is the extension cord adequately sized for the current being drawn?  This will depend on what the extension cord is powering.  Question extension cords that are powering many devices or large electrical devices.  In these scenarios you may want to consult an electrician to determine if the electrical load is too great for the extension cord.  Feel the cord and see if it is hot, this is an indication that the cord is overloaded.
    3. Check the cords for damage, make sure the insulation is intact, the cord has not been melted, cut, or frayed in any way.
    4. Check to ensure that the cords are placed in a manner to prevent tripping.  Cords should be out of heavy traffic areas and may need to be taped or secured to the floor to prevent tripping.  Rubber cord guards can also be used.

  3. Are there any exposed wires, frayed cords or wires, torn or frayed insulation, loose or broken conduit, etc.?
    1. Check the building completely and report any of the conditions listed above.  Any exposed wiring, torn wiring, broken conduit, torn or frayed insulation can present significant hazards.

  4. Are junction boxes, outlets, switches, fittings, etc., covered an in good condition?
    1. Check all outlets, switches, boxes, fittings, etc. and make sure that covers are in place and in good condition.  Report any and all missing or damaged covers. 

Other Building Safety Issues and Concerns Noted by the Inspector

While conducting these inspections there will be many instances when you see something that you think is unsafe but it is not on this inspection form.  Just because it is not a question on the inspection form does not mean it is not important.  This section of the form is intended to note such items.  List the item (specific location if applicable) and in the comments portion list the issue or problem.  If it is necessary you can continue on the back of the form or on a separate sheet of paper.