The Fire Prevention Bureau exists to prevent all loss of life and property through public education and fire prevention inspections. All Fire Prevention Bureau personnel are Wisconsin State certified fire inspectors, certified in fire investigations, Wisconsin Certified Paramedics and nationally certified safety officers. The Division is lead by Division Chief Guy J. Santelli II and Assistant Division Chief Theonita A. Cox.
Guy J. Santelli II
Theonita A. Cox
Assistant Division Chief
In 2004 the Kenosha Fire Department was awarded a FEMA Grant. The Grant was awarded in the area of fire prevention. Part of the grant was to assemble a team of firefighters to conduct 2,000 residential home inspections.
The inspections included going through the house with a checklist and finding fire violations that could make the home susceptible to fire and discussing them with the homeowner to get them corrected. While one firefighter was doing the inspection another firefighter hung three (3) smoke detectors or replaced batteries in existing ones, hung a fire extinguisher close to the kitchen, installed outlet covers at ground level, tested the hot water to make sure the temperature was not too hot, and provided the occupant with an E.D.I.T.H. packet (Exit Drills In The Home) containing everything a homeowner needs to conduct a fire drill in their home.
The inspections were very successful. We inspected 2,076 homes stepping on 10,376 porches to achieve that goal. For the occupants that were not home at the time of the inspection we left “We Were Here” cards that enabled the occupant to call us back and make an appointment if they wanted to receive a free home inspection.
Due to the success of this program, we will be continuing this service. If you are interested in a home inspection please contact the Fire Prevention Bureau at 262-653-4100 for an appointment.
We also have a smoke detector and battery program established for the low income and elderly population within our community. If you need a smoke detector or a battery for your smoke detector please come to the Fire Prevention Bureau, located in the Municipal Building, 625 52nd street, or you can go to a fire station in your local area.
Don’t let this be your house:
The Fire Prevention Bureau oversees line-personnel inspection duties and assists in problematic inspections.
Inspections are conducted to ensure that commercial and multi-family buildings are in compliance with fire safety codes (Wisconsin Administrative Codes). Fire safety inspections are also conducted to meet requirements of City distributed licenses (liquor, amusement, salvage, Christmas tree).
In accordance with Kenosha General Ordinance 3.05(A.) all buildings are inspected at least twice a year. All reports relating to fire inspections are entered into the computer system.
Fires are the number one cause of death at home for children under six. More than one out of every eight fatal structure fires is started by a child under age 15. The principal reason most children play with fire is out of curiousity. Troubled children may act out their anger or frustration by setting fires. Abused children may cry for help. Older children may set fires due to peer pressure, or as part of gang activity.
The dollar loss from juvenile firesetting continues to diminish the value of real property in Kenosha. With the aid of computer tracking and quality assurance of fire incident reporting, it has been determined that juvenile firesetting is accountable for a significant amount of dollar loss and number of incidents.
To address this issue, the Fire Prevention Bureau provides the “Juvenile Firesetter” program to all juveniles apprehended in fire play. This program is based upon the Federal Juvenile Firesetter program. Additionally, all juveniles are referred to Juvenile Intake which is a division of Kenosha County. Juvenile Intake then provides additional, on-going counseling and outside resources for the juvenile as well as the family.
It is the experience of the Bureau that “prevention” is the best defense against fire play. Although the Juvenile Firesetter program is enormously successful, children who have the propensity for fire play that do not receive fire safety instruction continue to be “at risk.”
The Fire Prevention Bureau actively oversees new development in the City of Kenosha. The purpose is to protect the health, safety and welfare of the public by enforcing minimum standards for design, construction, and structural strength, quality of materials, adequate egress, and fire safety for all public buildings and places of employment.
This is accomplished by reviewing all new construction, renovation and addition plan submissions, attending weekly plan review meetings, working with designers, architects, contractors, and building owners. The two (2) inspectors receive continuing edudcation with D.O.C., NFPA, and other organizations. These activities keep the Fire Prevention Bureau current with new codes, laws, and practices.
The Fire Prevention Bureau conducts a minimum of four (4) inspections during the construction process. These inspections ensure quality, competency, and reassures the final outcome to be within the parameters of the law. All our efforts are required by law and are necessary for the safe development of our community.
Site Plan Review Checklist:
- Name of Project
- Owners name , address, phone
- Project Address
- Contact person; name, phone, address
- Intended site/building(s) use
- CAD on disk
Site Plan to Include:
- Location and footprint of building(s) and structure(s)
- Location of existing and proposed streets, driveways, alleyways, easements, rights-of-way, parking, vehicular & pedestrian access points and sidewalk.
- Location of details on any required emergency access road.
- Location of city and/or private fire hydrant.
- Location of Fire Department connection, if applicable.
Fire Suppression Systems:
- Letter of intent for fire suppression systems, sprinklers, standpipes, smoke and Heat detection, fire alarms, fire extinguishers, cooking hood suppression systems or any other safety device(s).
- Sprinkler & Alarm Permit Application
Building Plan to Include:
- Layout of building(s) including size and layout of rooms.
- Building elevation.
- Building classification.
- Square footage.
- Exit locations.
- Fire walls, if applicable.
- Fire extinguishers locations and types.
- Smoke detector placement, if applicable.
- Heating/cooling systems.
|The Fire Prevention Bureau offers a variety of public fire safety education. Some of the classes or programs are offered at the school and some are offered throughout the community.|
|KUSD Fall Fire Safety Program: Fire Safety Program that takes place at the elementary level, usually during Fire Safety Month in October, utilizing the Fire Safety House. The Fire Safety House allows us to teach the children within the community Exit Drills in the Home. In addition, thefocus would be on all aspects of fire safety within the residential environment, burn prevention, and survival.|
|KUSD Spring Fire Safety Program: Fire Safety Program that takes place in the spring at the elementary level usually during the months of March, April and May. There would be specific emphasis targeting smoking, kitchen safety and the usage of candles which are continuous causes of residential fires within the City of Kenosha, as well as burn prevention, smoke detector awareness, and fire extinguisher usage.|
|Fire Safety Presentations/Training: This presentation/training is usually implemented at companies/ organizations; assisted living facilities; nursing homes; schools/universities; and/or anywhere in the community that is looking to provide a group of individuals fire safety education/training. The presentation is tailored to the needs of the group.|
|Day Care Center Presentations: This is a program that is available for all day care centers both private and public. Through this program we are able to teach young children the basics of fire prevention and to show them how to respond in fire situations. It is never to earlier to learn fire safety.|
|Public Safety Presentations: The program continues to teach basic fire safety, how to install and maintain smoke detectors, identification and correction of home fire hazards, plan escape routes, extinguisher usage, reporting of emergencies, and the legal aspects of fire setting.|
|Engine/Sparky Presentations: This program is usually in coordination with a community event. It is an opportunity for the community to meet, talk with and gain an awareness of fire safety. The Sparky mascot is usually present, and the crew is actively emphasizing a specific area of fire safety while giving tours of the fire apparatus and/or handing out educational material.|
|Fire Safety Booth: This is another program that is usually in coordination with a larger community event. There is an area established where the community has the opportunity to gain fire safety awareness, obtain fire safety material, and speak directly to fire department representatives.|
|Community Fire Drills: This program allows the fire department to work with a facility/building and assist them in learning the appropriate ways to evacuate the building.|
|Extinguisher Training: This program is available for companies/organizations both public and private who want to build their awareness of fire extinguisher usage and have an opportunity to use an extinguisher in a hands-on situation.|
|Station Tours: This program allows organizations and/or the community to come into the fire house and have a guided tour as well as a fire safety presentation. Call the station of your choice to set up a visit.|