OFM - 13(2)
PART V - Subsection 13.(2)
FPPA Opinions & Applications
Subsection 13.(2) Rights of Entry
"A firefighter or such other person as may be authorized by the fire chief may, without a warrant, enter on lands or premises that are outside the territorial limits of the municipality of the fire department that employs the firefighter or fire chief for the purposes of fighting a fire or of providing rescue or emergency services on such lands or premises if,
- in the opinion of the fire chief, the fire or emergency threatens persons, property or the environment within the territorial limits of the municipality served by the fire department; and
- there is no fire department or other emergency response capability for the area in which the lands or premises are situated."
This provides rights of entry for emergency response to properties outside those of a municipality where the fire threatens properties within the municipality and the threat will not be controlled by a fire department local to that area.
The expectation is that if a municipality has its own fire department, it will control its own emergencies. The FPPA makes provisions for agreements between municipalities for providing emergency response outside municipal boundaries, but in the absence of these, the fire department should not go outside its municipal boundaries.
Can a fire department enter a property outside of their jurisdiction?
Fire departments may enter property outside their jurisdiction under three conditions:
- where, in the opinion of the fire chief, a fire on that property threatens people, property or the environment within the territorial limits, and there is no fire department for that jurisdiction
- where an agreement for fire suppression exists with the jurisdiction outside the municipality
- common law (see A1 for subsection 13.(4) for discussion of common law rights of entry)
Where a firefighter is fighting a fire outside his/her jurisdiction without being authorized or directed, he/she runs the risk of not being covered for injuries by the municipal insurance. He/she also runs the risk of not being covered by liability insurance, should he/she be sued for his actions.