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This website publishes administrative rules on their effective dates, as designated by the adopting state agencies, colleges, and universities.

Rule 5122-30-12 | Safety.


(A) As used in this rule:

(1) "Rules of the board of building standards" means the rules adopted by the board of building standards in accordance with Chapter 3781. of the Revised Code including the Ohio building and Ohio residential construction codes.

(2) "State fire code" means the state fire code adopted in accordance with section 3737.82 of the Revised Code.

(3) "Fire code official" has the same meaning as adopted in the state fire code.

(B) Facilities shall be constructed, occupied, altered, maintained, repaired, and used in accordance with the rules of the board of building standards and the state fire code.

(C) Smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors shall be installed, operated and maintained in accordance with the rules of the board of building standards and, the state fire code.

(D) Fire extinguishers shall be:

(1) Installed, operated, and maintained in accordance with the rules of the board of building standards and the state fire code; and,

(2) Be operational and shall be located on each floor of the facility in areas near bedrooms, and in specific locations as required by a fire code official.

In the event fire extinguishers are not on each floor and the time of day prohibits their purchase staff must remain awake and on duty twenty-four hours a day until detectors and extinguishers can be purchased and installed.

(E) Smoke detectors and fire extinguishers shall be visually inspected and manually tested by the operator as required by the state fire code.

(F) Each facility shall have installed appropriate alarms, lights or other safety devices and supports, or emergency equipment as may be required by a certified state or local fire official and/or the department in order to meet the needs of residents with disabling conditions.

(G) All stairways, hallways, inclines, ramps, open porches, elevators, fire escapes, exits, and doorways shall be well-lit, free of debris and obstructions. If requested by a resident, night lights shall be provided in the facility in appropriate places as determined by the operator.

(H) .Windows, screens, ceilings, walls and floors shall be in adequate repair.

(I) Each facility shall have written emergency evacuation plan drawings showing routes to exits. The evacuation plan shall be legible, explained to each resident, and shall be posted, at a minimum, on each floor, in highly visible locations throughout the facility.

(J) Each facility shall hold and provide documentation of an evacuation drill at least quarterly on each shift for all staff and residents. Drills shall be conducted at different and varying times of day and night, and shall be conducted utilizing different exit routes.

(K) Each facility shall establish a disaster plan appropriate to the facility's location, which includes contingencies for such items as the loss of utility service or the immediate evacuation of residents. The facility shall determine the requirements for training and disaster drills based on the facility's disaster plan, except fire evacuation drills, and shall document the requirements and provision of training and drills.

(L) Facilities with nine or more ambulatory residents shall have a combined smoke detector and fire alarm system. The fire alarm system shall be installed in accordance with the rules of the board of building standards and the state fire code. Such systems shall include approved bells, sirens, or horns, lights for hearing impaired residents, if served, and manual fire alarm boxes. All smoke detectors shall be interconnected with the fire alarm system. Smoke detection devices shall be located in the immediate vicinity but outside of all bedrooms. Two independent means of exit shall be provided for each occupied floor and occupied cellar level. The two independent means of exit shall be approved by the fire code official. The facility shall maintain and test the alarm system in accordance with state fire code and shall have documentation of testing.

(M) Facilities in which one or more of the residents is non-ambulatory shall have smoke detectors, fire alarm, automatic fire extinguishing systems, and two independent means of exit for each occupied floor and cellar. The two independent means of exit shall be approved by the fire code official. The facility shall obtain annual alarm and sprinkler system testing and shall have documentation of testing. Facilities licensed as of the effective date of the rule shall have two years from the rule effective date to obtain an automatic fire extinguishing system.

(N) The telephone numbers of the fire department, police department, and other emergency numbers or "911" shall be prominently displayed at each telephone in the facility.

(O) First aid supplies shall be readily available in the facility and in each vehicle used to transport residents. Supplies shall be accessible to all adult residents and staff, except in facilities for children and adolescents, supplies shall be accessible to staff only.

(P) All disinfectants, poisons, pesticides, and/or other substances defined as hazardous in Chapter 3716. of the Revised Code shall be correctly labeled, placed in proper containers, and stored separately from food products. In class one and two facilities, these substances shall be kept in locked storage spaces accessible to staff only.

(Q) All exterior and interior steps and floor coverings shall be kept in good repair, and maintained to avoid falls and other injuries.

(R) All interior and exterior door handles and locks shall be kept in good repair so they can be readily and easily operated.

(S) Residents shall not be locked out of a residential facility. If the facility is locked during any portion of the twenty-four hour day, each resident shall be provided with a working key, or staff shall be immediately available on the premises to open the door for any resident.

(T) With the exception of crisis stabilization units and class one facilities for children or adolescents, all lockable doors shall be capable of being opened without delay from the inside without the use of a key, special knowledge or effort, such as by standard operation of a door with a handle or knob, installation of panic bars, release of a dead bolt, etc. At no time may a resident be locked in any room in the facility, with the exception of a seclusion room of a class one facility in accordance with Chapter 5122-26 of the Administrative Code.

(U) No explosives, pyrotechnics, firearms, chemical weapons, or other similar weapons or substances shall be maintained or available in the facility or on its premises. No household member shall bear any firearm, chemical weapon, or other weapon or similar device while such person is on the premises of the facility. Nothing in this paragraph shall be construed as prohibiting law enforcement authorities from bearing arms in conjunction with their official capacity.

(V) Outdoor areas which are potentially hazardous to residents shall be reasonably safeguarded, considering the functioning level of the residents. Such areas include water areas, such as lakes, ponds, swimming pools; cliffs and caves; open pits and wells; and heavily traveled roads. Playground equipment shall be anchored securely and shall include impact dispersion material under swing sets, slides, etc.

(W) No open flame candles or smoking shall be permitted in resident bedrooms.

(X) All workshop or outdoor power equipment shall be maintained and operated in a safe manner. Outdoor power equipment shall be stored in locations outside of the structure, or an attached garage, as approved by the fire code official.

(Y) Portable heaters may be used, if:

(1) The heater is not the primary heat source for the facility;

(2) The heater is plugged directly into a receptacle and is not plugged into an extension cord.

(3) The heater has been approved by the underwriter's laboratory and the fire code official, and;

(4) Portable heaters are not prohibited by any local ordinances or the state fire code.

(Z) Pets or domestic animals, in or on the premises of a residential facility, shall be kept in a safe and sanitary manner in accordance with state and/or local laws.

(AA) Interior and exterior stairways accessible to children shall be protected by child safety gates, or doors, according to the child's age and functioning level.

(BB) Any bathtub or shower in the home that is used by residents shall have bathroom surfaces appropriate to the residents, such as non-skid surfacing and handrails or grab bars.

(CC) There shall be no combustible items stored within three feet of heat sources.

(DD) All stairways, inclines, ramps, and open porches shall have hand railings installed in accordance with the rules of the board of building standards.

(EE) The facility shall not utilize extension cords and flexible cords in the following manners: as a substitute for permanent wiring; affixed to structures; extended through walls, ceilings, floors, under doors or floor coverings; with evidence of environmental damage; with evidence of physical impact; or with the use of multiple plug adapters, such as cube adapters, unfused plug strips, or any other device that does not comply with the national fire protection association standard referenced in the state fire code.

Supplemental Information

Authorized By: 5119.34
Amplifies: 5119.34
Five Year Review Date: 6/30/2023
Prior Effective Dates: 5/10/1979, 5/1/1981, 1/1/2000, 8/1/2002