Overcrowding Prevention for Assembly Occupancies


Crowded bar
Every assembly occupancy in Springfield is required to comply with the 2018 International Fire Code, adopted by the City of Springfield. These codes were adopted to prevent overcrowding and other safety hazards in bars, nightclubs and other establishments where many citizens gather.

The Community Risk Reduction Division of the Springfield Fire Department offers customized onsite training for your establishment. Or, if you choose, online training is also available.  

Employees of all assembly occupancies are required to attend training at hiring and at least every year thereafter. This training, provided by the Springfield Fire Department, fulfills that requirement.

For customized on-site training, contact us. Otherwise, view our online training, followed by a short quiz to be completed by all employees.  Once you have passed the test with a score of at least 70%, a certificate will be mailed to your establishment.

Occupancy Inspections

Fire marshals and fire companies conduct fire and life safety inspections at commercial occupancies. These inspections are designed to allow fire department personnel to identify and correct deviations from the Fire Code. Review the Explanation Sheet, used during these type of inspections, which discusses some of the more frequent violations.


Roles and Responsibilities of Owners and Employees

To protect the safety of you, your employees and your patrons, be aware of these fire code regulations.

  • Every bar and nightclub has an occupancy load that must be posted and maintained.
  • Every assembly occupancy is required to have a written fire safety and evacuation plan.
  • Assembly occupancies are required to hold 4 fire drills each year.
  • Every bar and nightclub is required to train employees in fire emergency procedures.
  • Assembly occupancies must show proof that an annual inspection has been conducted by the Springfield Fire Department.

Helpful Tools for Assembly Occupancies

Common Hazards in Bars and Nightclubs

Notify management if you notice any of these hazards:

  • Blocked exits
  • No exit signs or exit lights out
  • Doors locked during business hours
  • Overcrowded
  • No occupant load sign posted
  • Tables in exit paths
  • Fire extinguishers not present or not serviced
  • Candles on tables in unsafe holders
  • Extension cords in place of permanent wiring
  • Decorations not fire-retardant treated
  • No emergency lighting
  • Lack of visible address.