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COVID-19 Coronavirus Updates and Guidance

The County is taking a number of actions to keep residents safe and minimize the spread of COVID-19. Find status information for County operations and services.

Occupancy Fire Safety

Fire prevention involves making sure that places where large numbers of people assemble do not exceed their occupancy load. The Fire Marshal's Office determines occupancy capacities and issues an official certificate specifying this capacity.

This certificate must be at least 5 1/2 inches by 8 1/2 inches and must be permanently posted in a conspicuous place near the main entrance. This rule applies to new and existing occupancies (Baltimore County Fire Prevention Code, Chapter 20).

If you need a replacement certificate, contact the Fire Marshal's Office at 410-887-4880.

Places of Assembly

Fire codes define an assembly occupancy as one used for:

  • A gathering of 50 or more persons for deliberation, worship, entertainment, eating, drinking, amusement, awaiting transportation or similar uses
  • An area used as a special amusement building, regardless of occupant load. This includes bars, nightclubs, arcades, convention centers, sports arenas, etc.

The maximum number of occupants is governed by National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) Standard 101-2006 and may not be exceeded.

The Fire Marshal may, at the written request of the owner or occupant of the establishment, post a smaller occupancy load than required by the NFPA standard.

Crowd Manager Program

Fire codes require Crowd Manager Training for all establishments that handle 50 or more people. The Crowd Manager Program teaches establishments how to get people safely out of a building in case of fire or emergency.

Revised July 11, 2019         


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