Deadline Extended for High-Rise Retrofit Data Call:
The Division of State Fire Marshal is aware that the COVID-19 crisis has caused a significant disruption to Florida’s fire service providers’ daily operations. As such, the Division of State Fire Marshal is extending the deadline for responding to the high-rise retrofit data call. The high-rise retrofit data call was required pursuant to s. 718.1085, F.S. All responses are now due by COB May 1, 2020.
If you have any questions about this data call or the completion of the survey or spreadsheet, please contact Casia Sinco, Chief of Fire Prevention, at
or (850) 413-3620.
The spreadsheet and survey can be found at the following link:
Guidance for Maintaining Fire Protection and Life Safety Systems Regardless of Occupance Status:
NFPA Guidance for Fire Protection Systems during Global Pandemic
As government officials across the globe issue travel directives and ask non-essential employees to work remotely during the pandemic, once fully-occupied buildings are near vacant or dramatically underused. The National Fire Protection Association® (NFPA®), a global leader in fire, life and electrical safety, is urging officials to ensure that fire protection and life safety systems be maintained in all commercial and multi-occupancy residential buildings throughout the global pandemic. NFPA further urges that the personnel and vendors that service those systems be deemed essential.
“While communities are rightly focused on dealing with the pandemic, we cannot put additional strain to our overburdened emergency response capabilities, by not ensuring buildings are protected with the very equipment that saves lives and property,” said NFPA President and CEO Jim Pauley. Pauley said, “First responders rely on commercial and multi-occupancy residential buildings in their communities to have a full array of fire and life safety systems such as working fire detection, alarms and sprinkler systems.”
Update From Pearson VUE for Testing:
As you likely know, there is a growing shortage of qualified Emergency Medical Services (EMS), first responders and front-line healthcare professionals available to provide care for those affected with COVID-19 due to its continued surge across the globe. It’s expected that many of these critical healthcare personnel will themselves contract COVID-19 and be forced into temporary quarantine, further exacerbating the shortage.
These are extremely serious circumstances, and we believe it is our civic and ethical responsibility to do our part to support the national and global response to the COVID-19 crisis. As such, we are working diligently to find alternative solutions to enable this important cohort to take their exams and join the workforce during these difficult times and join the fight against the pandemic.
It is in this spirit of obligation that we - along with our team of volunteer Test Administrators - will be opening a small subset of Pearson Professional Centers (PPCs) on a limited basis in major metropolitan areas across the United States and Canada, so that these licensure and certification exams for essential services may be delivered.
Regrettably, our initial openings will have extremely limited capacity, and testing availability must be strictly limited to organizations deemed as prioritized “Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers” such as nurses, Emergency Medical Services (EMS), and first responder personnel. We do intend to add other critical infrastructure worker programs to this initiative as soon as practicable.
This solution is extremely constrained and limited right now because of the critical imperative to maintain the safety and well-being of both the testing candidates and our employees while administering exams. The testing centers being used for these exams will have required distancing measures enforced, and we will be limiting the number of individuals, including staff, in the test center at any given time.
Our strong intention is to widen availability as quickly as we can, not only in the United States and Canada, but in other regions around the globe. Our ability to do so is dependent upon government guidance, staff availability, social distancing requirements, and sufficient cleaning and disinfectant supplies to mitigate health and safety risks.
We expect that conditions on the ground with COVID-19 will continue to rapidly evolve and change. We will continue to update you as new development emerge and as we’re able to expand or deploy additional testing solutions.
Ralph Steel, Program Manager, Regulatory Services