For the purposes of the Fire Code, the condominium corporation is essentially a co-owner of the unit. In addition, a condominium corporation is obligated to take reasonable steps to ensure that unit owners comply with the Fire Code; which may include conducting an annual inspection on the fire alarm systems within a condominium building.
We were asked about the timing of such annual inspections. Specifically, whether or not a condominium corporation is required to schedule such an annual inspection on the same day each year, of if the date could be changed year-to-year.
Neither the Fire Code, nor the Condominium Act, impose a timeframe to complete the annual fire testing. As the Fire Code is enforced by local municipalities, it would be best for condominium corporations to check with the local municipality to ensure compliance.
In Ottawa, we have been informed by the municipality that condominium corporations are not required to schedule the annual fire alarm testing on the same day each year, as long as the testing is conducted at least once each calendar year.
While subsection 17(2) of the Condominium Act does place a positive obligation on the condominium corporation, its directors, and the property managers to ensure that the obligations under the Fire Code are carried out, each condominium corporation can make their own reasonable governance decisions about when to conduct the annual testing.
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