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Fire Marshal


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The Office of the Fire Marshal is committed to providing the best public service 
possible in order to improve public safety and protect the lives and property of every citizen and visitor to the Town of Brighton.


The development of sound fire prevention practices through professional fire and life safety plan review services, coupled together with our education and inspection program continues to ensure the delivery of an unmatched level of professionalism and guidance to our community

meet our Staff & Office Hours 

 Chief Fire Marshal   Deputy Fire Marshal      Deputy Fire Marshal  Office Hours

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 Christopher Roth  Richard Tracy   Jared Guhl   Monday - Friday
    Direct (585) 784-5220
    Fax    (585) 784-5207

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      Direct (585) 784-5359 
      Fax    (585) 784-5207

Direct (585) 784-5214
Fax    (585) 784-5207
2300 Elmwood Avenue
Rochester, New York 14618

9:00 AM - 4:00 PM



Holds responsibility for the fire prevention division; enforces the provisions of the Fire Prevention code and the laws and regulations of Town of Brighton pertaining to fire prevention and fire protection.

Has responsibility for the administration and enforcement of the New York State Uniform Fire Prevention and Building Code.

Has responsibility for the inspection of all buildings and premises, with the exception of residential dwelling units, accordance with the provisions of the Town of Brighton Fire Prevention Code.

Reviews plans for new construction and installation of fire protection equipment to assure fire and life safety regulations are met.

Investigates complaints received by the Fire Prevention Division; establishes and maintains comprehensive records of all business transacted such as complaints, inspections, investigations, notices served and permits written.

Confers with, answers questions for and provides direction to property owners, contractors, engineers, architects and others regarding fire protection requirements.

Assists with investigation of all fires involving injury or substantial loss of property.

The Chief Fire Marshal also serves as the Emergency Disaster Coordinator, Employee Safety & Loss Prevention Coordinator and Secretary to the Public Safety Committee.



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Fire Prevention Week was established to commemorate the Great Chicago Fire, the tragic 1871 conflagration that killed more than 250 people, left 100,000 homeless, destroyed more than 17,400 structures and burned more than 2,000 acres. The fire began on October 8, but continued into and did most of its damage on October 9, 1871.

The 'Moo' myth

Like any good story, the 'case of the cow' has some truth to it. The great fire almost certainly started near the barn where Mrs. O'Leary kept her five milking cows. But there is no proof that O'Leary was in the barn when the fire broke out - or that a jumpy cow sparked the blaze. Mrs. O'Leary herself swore that she'd been in bed early that night, and that the cows were also tucked in for the evening.

But if a cow wasn't to blame for the huge fire, what was? Over the years, journalists and historians have offered plenty of theories. Some blamed the blaze on a couple of neighborhood boys who were near the barn sneaking cigarettes. Others believed that a neighbor of the O'Leary's may have started the fire. Some people have speculated that a fiery meteorite may have fallen to earth on October 8, starting several fires that day - in Michigan and Wisconsin, as well as in Chicago.

The biggest blaze that week

While the Great Chicago Fire was the best-known blaze to start during this fiery two-day stretch, it wasn't the biggest. That distinction goes to the Peshtigo Fire, the most devastating forest fire in American history. The fire, which also occurred on October 8th, 1871, and roared through Northeast Wisconsin, burning down 16 towns, killing 1,152 people, and scorching 1.2 million acres before it ended.

Historical accounts of the fire say that the blaze began when several railroad workers clearing land for tracks unintentionally started a brush fire. Before long, the fast-moving flames were whipping through the area 'like a tornado,' some survivors said. It was the small town of Peshtigo, Wisconsin that suffered the worst damage. Within an hour, the entire town had been destroyed.


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We all look forward to summer vacations, camping, family reunions, picnics, and Fourth of July, and Labor Day parties. Summertime and those outdoor occasions however, also bring fires and injuries due to fireworks, outdoor grills, camp fires, and Bonfires. Keep these tips in mind at your next excursion this summer to stay fire safe.


  • Select accommodations equipped with sprinklers and smoke detectors in guest rooms.
  • Consider fire safety when checking into a hotel or motel. Count the number of doors down the hall to the nearest fire exit staircase. Never use elevators in case of fire.
  • Keep the room key, eyeglasses and a flashlight on the night table. If a fire occurs, take them with you.
  • If it is unsafe to leave the room during a fire – Fill the tub with cold water, stuff wet towels around the door to keep smoke out. If possible, open a window and hang a sheet outside to signal for help. Cover your face with a wet cloth and stay low if smoke gets in the room.


  • Outdoor Barbecuing & Grilling Requirements
  • According to the NFPA, gas and charcoal grills caused an average of 3,400 structure fires and 4,800 outdoor fires in or on home properties between 2005 and 2009, resulting in a combined direct property loss of $75 million.
  • Before using a grill, position your grill at least 10 feet away from other objects such as your house or bushes and check the connection between the propane tank and the fuel line. Make sure the venturi tubes – where the air and gas mix – are not blocked.
  • Do not overfill the propane tank.
  • Do not wear loose clothing while cooking at a barbecue.
  • Always stay by the grill when cooking.
  • Keep all matches and lighters away from children.
  • Dispose of hot coals properly – douse them with plenty of water, and stir them to ensure that the fire is out. Never place them in plastic, paper or wooden containers.
  • Never grill/barbecue in enclosed areas – This is both a fire and carbon monoxide hazard.
  • Make sure everyone knows to Stop, Drop and Roll in case a piece of clothing does catch fire. Call 911 or your local emergency number if a burn warrants serious medical attention.


  • Be sure you have a battery powered smoke detector inside your camper or trailer.
  • Use only electrically operated lights in trailers.
  • Check and maintain gas connections and fume vents.
  • Keep combustibles away from cooking and heating equipment.
  • Have a fire extinguisher available at all times. Keep it by the camper/trailer exit door.
  • Develop a fire escape plan with your family.
  • Extinguish all smoking materials before going to bed, and soak with water.


  • NEVER start a fire in a strong wind.
  • Supervise Children AT ALL TIMES when camp fires are burning.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher, shovel or water near at all times.
  • Store extra fire wood at least 6 feet away from the fire.
  • Keep your camp fire small. If you try to build the world’s largest fire, you might actually succeed.

Emergency escape plan

Escape grid

Your ability to get out depends on advance warning from smoke alarms and advance planning.

In 2012, there were an estimated 365,000 reported home structure fires and 2,380 associated civilian deaths in the United States.

Fire can spread rapidly through your home, leaving you as little as two minutes to escape safely once the alarm sounds. Pull together everyone in your household and make a plan.

Walk through your home and inspect all possible exits and escape routes.  Households with children should consider drawing a floor plan of your home, marking two ways out of each room, including windows and doors.

Safety Tip

  For easy planning, download NFPA's escape planning grid.
  Read NFPA's escape planning tips and download our free safety tip sheet.



   New York State Codes Division

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The Town of Brighton - Office of the Fire Marshal should not be confused with the primary fire suppression and first response emergency medical operations provided by the Brighton Fire District or the City of Rochester Fire Department within the Town of Brighton.

The Office of the Fire Marshal should not be confused with the 
primary fire suppression and first response emergency medical operations provided by the 
Brighton Fire District or the City of Rochester Fire Department within the Town of Brighton

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