Fire Prevention & Protection, Firefighting, Leadership

New York State Assembly Passes Bill Protecting Firefighters and Tenants from Illegal Modifications

The Firemen’s Association of the State of New York (FASNY) is pleased to announce that the State Assembly has overwhelmingly passed a bill that will levy fines on landlords who illegally alter a building and block means of egress.

The State Assembly passed the bill, A5847 sponsored by Assemblyman Robert Sweeney (D – Lindenhurst).  A Senate bill, S05041-A, sponsored by Senator Greg Ball (R, C, I-Patterson) is currently awaiting a vote.

“We would like to thank Assemblyman Sweeney for all of his hard work in getting this important piece of legislation passed in the State Assembly. Too often we have seen what happens when occupants and Firefighters are trapped in a fire because of illegal modifications that have caused barriers to safe egress,” said FASNY President James Burns. “This critical public safety bill will help protect New Yorkers and undoubtedly save lives.  We now look to the Senate to follow suit and pass this legislation as soon as possible.”

“The sad fact is that unscrupulous landlords who make illegal alterations to buildings they own are placing New Yorkers and the first responders who protect them in danger,” said Assemblyman Sweeney.  “This is an added measure to hold those individuals accountable.  I want to thank President Burns and the FASNY leadership for their help on this issue.”

This legislation amends the uniformed fire and building code to hold accountable building owners who perform an illegal alteration and as a result, block means of egress from that building during a fire or emergency evacuation.

A link to the legislation can be found here