Premises Identification

PREMISES IDENTIFICATION


The fire service must be able to rapidly identify and locate a specific building. Address numbers should be placed on the building facing the street or road on which the building is addressed. If the building entry faces a different street, both the street name and the number should be on the address sign.

Numbers should be large enough to read from the street or road. If this is not possible due to the location of the building or due to obstructions, additional signs should be provided (Figure 2.11). The IFC specifies that address numbers be a minimum of 4 inches high. Some jurisdictions have a higher minimum height requirement, especially for commercial properties. The number should be in Arabic numerals rather than spelled out (for example, “120” instead of “One Hundred Twenty”).

Buildings set back in groups that share common entrances can make quickly locating a specific building and the shortest route to it difficult. On such sites, additional signs with directional arrows and/or diagrams of the buildings and access layout should be posted (Figures 2.12 and 2.13).

Whenever possible, signs should be illuminated. In areas subject to snow accumulation, signs should be positioned above anticipated accumulations. See the section Firefighter Access on page 21 for signage to assist the fire service in identifying portions of a building, or interior layouts.

 

(Fig. 2.11) Supplemental address sign at the entrance serving this building set far back from the road.

(Fig. 2.11) Supplemental address sign at the entrance serving this building set far back from the road.

 

(Fig. 2.12) Directional address sign at the entrance of a property.

(Fig. 2.12) Directional address sign at the entrance of a property.

 

(Fig. 2.13) Diagrammatic sign showing an entire complex of buildings and their address(es). The addition of fire hydrant locations (and any other fire protection features) would assist responding firefighters.

(Fig. 2.13) Diagrammatic sign showing an entire complex of buildings and their address(es). The addition of fire hydrant locations (and any other fire protection features) would assist responding firefighters.

 

Considerations – Premises Identification

 

  • Location: Addresses should be on each building.
  • Numeral size: At least 4 inches high for single family homes, and preferably 6 inches high for all other properties; larger if necessary to be visible from the street.
  • Numerals: Addresses (numbers) should be in Arabic numerals.
  • Color: Addresses should be in a color that contrasts with the background.
  • Provide street name with the address number for entrances facing other streets.
  • Provide additional address signs at entrances to the property when the building address is not legible from the public street.
  • Common entrances: Provide directional or diagrammatic signs for groups of buildings sharing common entrances; include locations of fire hydrants, fire department connections, and fire alarm annunciator panels.