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(1) Any applicant for a license from the Department of Public Health and Human Services to operate a day care center for 13 or more children under Title 52, chapter 2, MCA, must obtain a certificate of approval from the state fire marshal in accordance with this rule.

(2) To obtain a certificate of approval, the applicant shall contact the state fire marshal setting forth the following information:

(a) name and address of applicant;

(b) location of proposed day care center; and

(c) number of children for which proposed day care center will provide care.

(3) Upon receipt of an application for certificate of approval, the fire marshal or a representative shall conduct an inspection of the proposed day care center.

(4) Day care centers shall comply with the fire code.

(5) Day care centers shall also comply with the following additional requirements:

(a) A single, fixed space heater (wood, coal or fuel oil) may be used, provided it is properly installed and surrounded by a suitable barrier to prevent contact by children and is so located as to not obstruct egress. Installation shall be in accordance with the Uniform Mechanical Code.

(b) Portable unvented oil-fueled heating appliances are prohibited.

(c) No extension cords shall be used in lieu of permanent wiring. All appliance and lamp cords shall be suitably protected to prevent pulling or chewing by children.

(d) All unused electrical receptacles shall be properly capped.

(e) Every closet door latch shall be fixed so that the door is capable of being opened by a child inside the closet.

(f) Every bathroom door lock shall be installed to permit the locked door to be opened from the outside.

(g) In sleeping rooms, windows having a minimum of 5.7 square feet of clear, unobstructed opening shall be readily accessible for rescue or fire suppression. Windows shall be capable of being opened from the inside without the use of tools or special knowledge. Clear opening shall not be less than 20 inches in width or 24 inches in height. The bottom of the window shall not be more than 44 inches from the floor.

(h) Every day care center shall provide operational smoke alarms or smoke detectors in locations designated by the FPIS or chief fire official. Smoke alarms shall be tested at least every 30 days and a log of such tests maintained on the premises. Smoke detectors connected to a fire alarm system shall be tested in accordance with the IFC.

(i) Portable fire extinguishers shall be installed and maintained in accordance with IFC Section 906.

(j) A telephone shall be provided for emergency notification. Emergency phone numbers shall be posted in close proximity to the telephone.

(k) House numbers, no less than 4 inches in height, shall be placed in such a position as to be plainly visible and legible from the street or road fronting the property. Numbers shall contrast with their background.

(l) Space under stairwells shall not be used for storage of any kind except as permitted by the IFC.

(6) If the proposed day care center is in compliance with these rules, the fire marshal shall issue a certificate of approval. If the center is not in compliance, the fire marshal shall issue a notice of corrective action needed to bring the center into compliance. Additional inspections may be conducted as needed until compliance is achieved.

(7) For the purposes of this rule, the definitions contained in 52-2-703, MCA, are applicable.

(8) Inspection of any day care facility shall be done upon receipt of a request from the Department of Public Health and Human Services or as a part of an inspection performed by a fire department under other provisions of state law. Findings of any inspection conducted at the request of the Department of Public Health and Human Services shall be reported to that department.

History: 50-3-102, 52-2-734, MCA; IMP, 50-3-102, 52-2-733, 52-2-734, MCA; NEW, 1991 MAR p. 1839, Eff. 9/27/91; AMD, 1996 MAR p. 439, Eff. 2/9/96; AMD, 1999 MAR p. 2860, Eff. 12/17/99; AMD, 2005 MAR p. 260, Eff. 2/11/05; TRANS, from ARM 23.7.109, 2008 MAR p. 1467, Eff. 7/18/08; AMD, 2010 MAR p. 395, Eff. 2/12/10; AMD, 2015 MAR p. 931, Eff. 7/17/15.

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