How the Latest FDNY Safety Signage Guidelines Affect Your Building What You Need to Know From the New Rules


The New York City Fire Department (FDNY) recently passed new rules affecting many multi-family dwellings in the city. As reported in Habitat last month, duplexes and triplexes were required to install reflective signage on apartment and stairwell doors in an effort to better assist first responders by March 30th of this year. Buildings with single-level apartments are mandated to follow suit by that same date in 2018.

Purpose of the New Rules

Placed at door jambs, the signs are meant to assist firefighters when crawling through smoky conditions with low or no visibility. The signs are to indicate the apartment number; whether the apartment is a duplex or a triplex; whether there is more than a single entrance; and whether a particular entrance is the primary one.

Among some of the highlights from the new FDNY guidelines include:

Dwelling unit entrance door identification: “The entrance door marking or sign identifying the room number and/or letter shall be conspicuously and durably printed or posted on or adjacent to the entrance door, on the public corridor side of the door. The marking or sign letters and numbers shall be at least 48 inches, but not more than 60 inches, above the floor.”

Building lobby and hallway corridor directional markings or signs: “ a Group R-1 and Group R-2 building or occupancy with more than eight (8) dwelling units on a floor, a marking shall be placed or a sign posted in a conspicuous location in the elevator lobby or other public entry on each floor, and in the public corridor opposite each stairwell entrance...The marking or sign shall identify by directional arrows and dwelling unit numbers and/or letters, the direction to each dwelling unit...If dwelling units are located on more than one corridor, directional markings or signs shall be provided at each location where the corridor from the stairwell intersects with another corridor.”


Related Articles

Fire Safety Plans

Have a Strategy Before You Need It

NYC's New Multifamily Fire Safety Requirements

Is Your Building Prepared?

Assessing Your Building's Fire Safety Needs

How the Pros Do It



  • Hi, HYOOGE typo in your article. The rule applies to buildings ... with nine or more apartments PER FLOOR!!!, not just 9 or more units. “After some extensive research, we got the necessary clarification,” Rexhepi continues. “The rule applies to two types of multi-family dwellings: R-1 (transient) and R-2 (permanent), that are not fully sprinkled. Signs have to be installed in buildings and occupancies with nine or more apartments. Floors with eight or fewer apartments and buildings that are fully sprinkled are exempt from the rule.” See page 36 of the fire code guide: