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Fire Safety Inspections

Fire safety inspections are a necessary part of the licensing process. It is a means of assuring that the building used for a child care center is in compliance with essential fire safety requirements for licensure.

Types of Inspections

Fire Safety Inspections for Proposed Facilities: Inspection by the Bureau of Fire Services (BFS)-Following the approval by BFS of the submitted Plan Review, a BFS inspector will conduct an inspection of the new facility to ensure it meets the required safety standards.

Modifications - Additions, Alterations and Remodels: Plan Review and Inspection-Any proposed addition or remodeling to an existing child care center requires the submission of plans to the Bureau of Fire Services (BFS) for review and approval (a Plan Review). A BFS inspector will conduct the inspection upon completion.

Renewals: Qualified Fire Inspector (QFI) Inspections for Renewals-For an existing child care facility license renewal, a QFI will be responsible for conducting the on-site inspections. Additional information will be provided in the “Procedures for Requesting Fire Inspections for existing facilities” section below.

Fire Safety Plan Reviews (Proposed facility, New Construction, Additions, Modifications)

Procedures for Requesting Plan Reviews:

Plan Reviews will be provided by the Bureau of Fire Services (BFS)/Plan Review Division at no cost to the applicant or licensee. A plan review submittal is required for the following situations:

  • Newly Proposed Facility
  • Change of Ownership 
  • New Construction/ Addition to Building
  • Conversion of an existing building
  • Renovation/Remodeling
  • Fire Alarms (an addition or modification of an existing)
  • Hood Suppression System
  • Sprinkler System (an addition or modification of an existing)
  • Modification to increase capacity/space which then requires the need for a fire alarm
  • Modification to decrease the age of children occupying the approved space
  • Any structural, mechanical, plumbing, or electrical changes

Note: All correspondence from the Bureau of Fire Services (BFS) will be done via email from  to the email address provided by the applicant/licensee in the Accela Citizen Access Portal.

To initiate the Plan Review process: The applicant/licensee should create an account through the Accela Citizen Access Portal on the Bureau of Fire Services (BFS) website at the plan review link then click on Plan Review Submittal.

A Project and a Project Number (PR #) are created from submitting a Plan Review in Accela.

When submitting corrections to a Plan Review, providers should submit corrections under the same Project Number (PR #) that was first issued.

After the plan review has been approved, the applicant can make a request for a BFS inspector to complete an inspection by sending an email to Information on the inspector’s coverage areas and the regional supervisor is found in the interactive map on the BFS  website at this direct link Fire Safety Inspectors (

Additional Information on Plan Reviews:

Upgrading or remodeling the building or its components, either in whole or in part, will require a Plan Review and Fire Inspection from the Bureau of Fire Services (BFS).

When considering changes to the use of space, changing capacity or completing renovations, centers should be aware of the rule requirements of those changes.

Rooms that have less than an 80% wall opening are considered “well-defined spaces”; required ratio and group sizes must still be maintained in these rooms.

Changing interior finishes (e.g. new ceiling tiles, wall finishes/paint, etc.) would not require a Plan Review or an on-site inspection from a Qualified Fire Inspector (QFI); however, the materials must meet the requirements of R400.8520. Documentation of materials must be made available to the Qualified Fire Inspector (QFI) at the next scheduled on-site inspection.

Repairs required to keep a building and its component parts in operative condition, including the replacement of individual component parts when, for any reason, they become undependable or inoperable, does not require a Plan Review or Fire Inspection.

If the total cost of a project will be greater than $15,000 (this includes materials and labor), the plans must be prepared and submitted to the Accela Citizen Access Portal by a registered architect or engineer.

If the total cost of a project will be less than $15,000 (including materials and labor), the plans may be self-drawn but must still adhere to the guidelines below. These plans must also be submitted to the Accela Citizen Access Portal.

The following guidelines must be followed in the submission of plans:

  • Plans must be drawn to scale (usually ¼ inch = 1 foot) on 18 X 24 graph paper with exterior dimensions, interior room dimensions and room usage designated.
  • Indicate the type of building materials that will be used in construction, e.g., masonry or frame.
  • Total number of floors, including the basement and attic.
  • Interior finish of the walls and ceiling, e.g., drywall, paint, paneling.
  • Door size, type, direction of swing and type of door hardware, e.g., metal, wood, labeled.
  • Size and location of windows.
  • Interior finish classification.
  • Location and type of furnace and water heating equipment, e.g., fuel fired, electric.
  • Fire detection and alarm system plans and specifications.
  • Sprinkler systems and/or suppression system and specifications.
  • Fire extinguisher type, size, and location.
  • Areas of the building to be used for child care and ages of children in each space.
  • Any other information that would be pertinent to determine compliance with rules.


While not mandatory, initial consultations for a newly proposed facility can be arranged by the provider with a QFI to assist in evaluating potential buildings for child care use. This service is solely consultative and will have no bearing on the approval of a plan review or issuance of a new license.

Centers Operating in a School Building

For centers operating in a building that is currently functioning as a school, a copy of a previous approval from the Bureau of Fire Services, the State Fire Marshal or a statement from the School District Superintendent using the “Certification of School Building Compliance with Fire Safety Provisions” (BCAL-5043) form is acceptable in lieu of a Fire Safety Inspection.

By submitting the BCAL-5043 form, you are certifying all of the following:

  • The building has been approved for school use based on the school fire safety rules R 29.1901 to R 29.1934 of the Michigan Administrative Code.
  • The building has been continuously used as a public or nonpublic school for the instruction of children in kindergarten or higher since the fire safety approval was issued.
  • Any changes made to the building since the school’s original fire safety approval have been reviewed and approved by the State Fire Marshal or Bureau of Fire Services.
  • The parts of the building that have not been changed since the school's original fire safety approval are in compliance with the applicable rules for existing school buildings. Review the supplemental questions prior to signing the BCAL-5043 to ensure you understand some of the applicable rules for existing school buildings.

If you have further questions regarding this program, please contact your assigned Licensing Consultant at CCLB (Child Care Licensing Bureau) or the appropriate supervisor at the Bureau of Fire Services (BFS) for your region.

Fire Safety Inspection for existing facilities:

Procedures for Requesting Fire Inspections for existing facilities:

If you will be obtaining your Fire Safety Inspection for your license renewal (required every four years for licensed centers), please review Preparing for Your License Renewal Fire Safety Inspection to help you prepare for your Fire Safety Inspection and to help keep the children at your center safe from potential fire hazards throughout the year.

An approval or “A” rating, denoting substantial compliance with fire safety rules, is required on a Fire Inspection Report prior to renewal of a license.

The Child Care Licensing Bureau (CCLB) will not accept a Fire Inspection Report from any other authority, individual or organization that is not on the “Independent Qualified Fire Safety Inspectors (QFI).” Only Bureau of Fire Services (BFS) staff and Qualified Fire Inspectors (QFIs) may grant fire safety approval for child care centers

To initiate the Plan Review process: Applicants/licensees must arrange or contract with a Qualified Fire Inspector (QFI) themselves and are responsible for any costs of obtaining a Renewal Fire Inspection.

A list of QFIs can be found below.


Michael Albo



Manuel 'Bo' Bohannon

Paw Paw (Kalamazoo)


Chris Dixon



Bradley Dornbos



Art Eastman



Joseph Felton

Macomb Township


Jeff Fossitt



John Garwood



Mike Gregorich



James Hall



Bruce Johnson



Jason Kropf

Clinton Twp


Terrence Lane



Michael T. Larabel

Byron Center


Steven Lee



Tavis Millerov



Larry Moore



Paul Rainwater



Ron Rybak



Darrell Saulsby



Derek K. Segars



Linda Schluchter



Arthur E. Shaw



Dwayne Small



Greg Smith



Justin Turner

Berrien Springs


Steve Trall



Jeffrey Young



Jeffrey F. Wise



Jim Williams