Building fire escape to code
June 14, 2012 8:06 AM   Subscribe

Fire escape construction help: I own and live in a residential house in the Bronx. For income, I rent out a room in the attic, but it needs some kind of fire escape to be insurable. Fire escapes can be rope ladders or wrought iron. How do I find out exactly what the law requires?

There are lots of people who offer to install fire escapes, but I have a nagging feeling that there must be some standard it must comply with. Who decides that standard, and how can I find out what it is?
posted by cloudscratcher to Home & Garden (4 answers total)
I would start with the NYC fire Code and move on to calling 311 if it doesn't work.
posted by Blisterlips at 8:13 AM on June 14, 2012 [1 favorite]

NYC Firecode (online, searchable, really a model of good online government resources.)

To submit a Fire Code question

Rules of the City of New York on Fire Escapes (pdf)

Contact info for the NY Buildings Dept.
posted by Wretch729 at 8:13 AM on June 14, 2012

Fire Code and Building Code is what you want. Fire Code is linked above, and here are some building code resources.
posted by griphus at 8:16 AM on June 14, 2012

This is absolutely what you want to do -- work with the appropriate city authorities. I mean, worse than not getting insurance, you could end up with illegal construction you have to rip out and rebuild, and a building that's under a vacation order (as I'm sure you're aware from news reports). Still, I'd be prepared for some hassle between fire inspector and building inspector, based on what I've heard regarding this when I lived in NYC and Chicago. Take it slow, listen more than you speak, be careful not to volunteer problems that could lead to more ... Imperial entanglements.
posted by dhartung at 2:30 PM on June 14, 2012

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