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Covered Boat Moorage Ordinance

On April 18, 2005, Mayor Greg Nickels signed the Covered Moorage Fire Protection Ordinance requiring fire protection improvements for existing Seattle marinas with covered moorage.

The ordinance will result in most existing covered moorage structures being equipped with smoke and heat vents and draft curtains.  The addition of these built-in features will help to slow the spread of a fire by allowing heat and smoke to escape more rapidly. Boathouses and marinas without covered moorage are not affected by the ordinance.

Additional ordinance requirements deal with standpipes, hydrant proximity, signage, emergency planning and fire extinguishers.  A few of the covered moorage facilities may be required to install fire sprinklers.

The ordinance was drafted by the Seattle Fire Department following a number of high property loss fires at covered marinas.  Prior to Seattle City Council approval of the ordinance, there was considerable input and involvement by a stakeholders’ workgroup comprised of marina owners, marine-related associations, yacht clubs and boat owners. The stakeholders’ workgroup ultimately supported passage of the ordinance.

Marina owners impacted by the ordinance will receive an official letter from the Seattle Fire Department instructing them to submit a plan to comply with the new fire protection requirements.  There are varying compliance times allowed for the each element of the covered moorage ordinance ranging from one to ten years from the date the Seattle Fire Department approves the marina owner’s plan for compliance. 

See Also:  Marina Fire Safety Information

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Last Modified:   January 02, 2015

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