Fire Prevention Bureau

From constructing new buildings to making renovations, from installing new fire-suppression systems to testing fire hydrants, Charlotte Fire Department inspectors are ready to assist.

Review the information below to learn more about the services we provide and to find any required forms.

All new buildings, additions to existing buildings, renovations and upfits, and changes of use to an existing building require an inspection by a fire official for the purpose of obtaining a Certificate of Occupancy (CO). The information provided below may be used as a guide to help you prepare for the inspection. To request an inspection, contact our office at 704-336-2101.

Certificate of Occupancy Requirements:

Certificate of Occupancy Requirements, Rev. 4-3-12

Temporary CO Minimum Guidelines

Stair Identification Requirements

Typical Stair Enclosure Sign

Phased Occupancy Requirements

Your inspection will require that approved plans or shop drawings are on site for reference. For shop drawings, download and submit the attached form below with your drawings. For electronic submittal of plans, click on the following link:

In order to submit plans electronically, you must have an account established with our office. Contact our office at 704-336-2101 for establishing your account.

For shop drawings, download and submit the attached form below with your drawings.

Shop Drawing Review Application, rev. 4-28-1​5



Fire and Life Safety System Testing and Fire Hydrant Testing

The installation of fire suppression and life-safety systems will require that the Charlotte Fire Department inspector assigned to your project be on site during all acceptance tests.

All newly installed private fire hydrants for commercial properties, including multi-family occupancies, are required to be tested and approved in order to determine the available fire flow. 

City-owned fire hydrants may be tested at the request of architects, engineers, fire sprinkler designers, etc. to determine the available water supply for the purpose of designing fire sprinkler systems. The hydrant closet to the tap shall be utilized for testing purposes, and this test must be completed by the Fire Department's water supply officer. Test results more than 12 months old shall require a new test.

"Storz" Connections:

All public and private hydrants installed after July 2004 are required to be fitted with a Storz connection.  The Storz connection is a coupling device that neither has male or female ends connected by screw threads, but interlocking flanges with identical ends so that either end will join the other. All large diameter hose (LDH) on CFD's apparatus have Storz connections on both ends to allow easy and rapid connections between the hydrant and pump.   Important:  Painting the Storz coupling device can negatively impact its operation, so it is not to be painted. 

Hydrant Painting Requirements:

Privately installed hydrants are required to be "color coded" based on their operational arrangements such as through a water meter, tied to a fire pump, limited water supply, etc. The Charlotte Fire Department requires that private fire hydrants meet the following color codes:

1. Hydrants connected to a public water main through a meter: 

    -  Yellow hydrant with hydrant caps painted green.

2. Hydrants connected to a fire pump: 
    -  Yellow hydrant with hydrant caps painted white.

3. Hydrants limited in their water availability: 
    -  Yellow hydrant with hydrant caps painted blue.

4. Hydrants lacking a large diameter hose connection: 
    -  Entire hydrant painted red.

Paint should be high-quality enamel.  The Water Supply Coordinator or the inspector assigned to your project will be able to offer assistance in determining the color requirements.

To request a test, you may either contact the Fire Department's Fire Hydrant Coordinator at the telephone number or email address below, or you may download the flow test request form below and mail or fax it to the Charlotte Fire Department, Fire Prevention Bureau Office at the address or fax number, also indicated below. There is a fee associated with each test, so please read the instructions carefully. Please provide an email address somewhere on the form so that we may contact you. 


Fire Hydrant Flow Request Form

Instructions for Completing Fire Hydrant Test Request

FPB 221 Acceptance Testing of Standpipe Systems

Water-Based Fire Protection System Test Release Form

Contact Information: 
Adam Cloninger, Water Supply Coordinator