Calgary Fire Department lays charges against owners of illegal secondary suite
The Calgary Fire Department has laid charges under the Alberta Fire Code 2006, which falls under the Safety Codes Act, against two property owners for offences in relation to two illegal secondary suites.
In each incident the Calgary Fire Department responded to a fire which originated in the secondary suite. Following the fire investigations, multiple fire code deficiencies were found at both properties. Charges were laid on May 13, 2015.
“Ensuring that rental suites meet the Alberta Fire Code is an important priority for the Calgary Fire Department,” said Ed Kujat, fire marshal, Calgary Fire Department. “Owners of secondary suites are legally accountable for knowing and understanding their obligations under the Alberta Fire Code. Tenants have a right to live in a safe home and to be protected under the Fire Code, regardless of whether the rental unit is a secondary suite or in a multifamily building.”
The first incident occurred on April 12, 2015 at 631 68 Ave N.W., where one person received minor injuries and was transported to the hospital by EMS. The owners are charged with two counts of failing to ensure that the bedroom window meets Alberta Fire Code requirements, one count of failing to ensure that there is an interconnected smoke alarm between suites and two counts of failing to ensure that there is proper fire separation in the secondary suite.
The second incident occurred on April 19, 2015 at 8412 Hawkview Manor Rd N.W. There were no injuries in this incident. The owner is charged with two counts of failing to ensure that the bedroom window meets Alberta Fire Code requirements, one count of failing to ensure that there is an interconnected smoke alarm between suites and one count of failing to ensure that there is proper fire separation in the secondary suite.
Both matters are set for first appearance in Provincial Court on July 8, 2015. A conviction under the Safety Codes Act carries a maximum fine of $100,000 for a first offence.
The Calgary Fire Department continually works to reduce injuries and fatalities through inspection, prevention and public education programs. If members of the public, landlords or prospective landlords have questions or concerns about secondary suites, they can call 311 or visit calgary.ca/secondarysuites for more information.