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May is Building Safety Month

For the second year, Mayor W.J. “Jim” Lane has declared May as Building Safety Month in the City of Scottsdale. Building Safety Month is a campaign to raise awareness of the building codes, the importance of the building code in our community, and how citizens can maintain their homes and businesses. It is sponsored by the International Code Council and the City of Scottsdale Building Department. 


Mayor Lane


             Mayor Lane                     Mayor Lane with members of the
Building Advisory Board of Appeals

Proclamation (pdf/139kb)


What Do You Know About “The Building Code”?

In the City of Scottsdale’s Building Department, we see a lot of misinformation about “The Building Code”. Read our list of frequently asked questions (pdf/100kb) about the building code to find out what the building code is, who writes the building codes, and why you should get a building permit. We also have a short history of Scottsdale’s building code development.


What Can I Do?

There are many simple maintenance tasks you can do to improve your home or office building. Explore our Building Safety Month website to discover things you can do to create a safer and more sustainable homes and businesses. Building Safety Month spotlights four themes for building safety:  BSM 2014 Logo

We encourage you to visit our office at 7447 E. Indian School Road where you can learn about the building code and steps you can take to make your home and office more safe and sustainable.

The City of Scottsdale’s building code professionals are here to answer your questions all year round.  Please visit the following links to learn about our services:


BMS Week 1


Fire Safety and Awareness

In 2010, more than 362,000 residential fires caused 2,555 deaths, more than 13,000 injuries and more than $6.5 billion in property damage costs. 

More than 2,500 Americans died in home fires last year. 

Smoke detectors should be tested monthly and the batteries should be changed once a year.  The Scottsdale Fire Department recommends replacing smoke detectors every 10 years.  

Maintain a “defensible” space around your home by clearing away all flammable vegetation within 30 feet around all structures.

10 Important Tips to Remember for Fire Safety and Awareness (pdf/38kb)

Additional Links for More Information:

Building Safety Month – Fire Safety and Awareness Web Page

City of Scottsdale Fire Department Videos

FEMA Public Fire Safety Videos

Scottsdale Fire Department’s Wildland Firefighting

Wildfire Protection for Your Home (video)

A Tale of Two Homes – Wildfire (video)


Disaster Safety & Mitigation 

Educating yourself on the potential natural disasters that we are at risk for and developing an action plan is the best way to survive and endure a natural disaster. 

The top perils in the State of Arizona are

  • Extreme heat
  • Floods
  • Thunderstorms
  • Wildfires
  • Earthquakes  

Earthquakes?  Yes!  Southwestern Arizona (around Yuma) is in an active earthquake zone.  While the chances of Scottsdale experiencing a major earthquake are very small, we may still feel some ground motion and see damage in our older homes and buildings.  Being aware of the risk and preparing for it ahead of time is essential.

10 Important Tips for Disaster Safety & Mitigation (pdf/44kb) 

Additional Links for More Information:

Building Safety Month – Disaster Safety & Mitigation Web Page
Ready.gov– Be informed & make an action plan.

City of Scottsdale Fire Department Videos

FEMA Public Fire Safety Videos

Scottsdale Fire Department’s Wildland Firefighting

Wildfire Protection for Your Home (video)

A Tale of Two Homes – Wildfire (video)

A Tale of Two Homes – Wind (video)


Backyard & Pool Safety

In Scottsdale, we spend a lot of time outdoors, but there are many potential hazards in our backyard environments. 


  • Drowning is the leading cause of death to children under five.
  • Constant adult supervision is required around pools and spas.
  • Barrier fences with self-closing, self-latching gates are required for all pools, spas and hot tubs constructed in Scottsdale after July 20, 1995.  


  • Designate a “No Play Zone” around the grilling area.  Keep pets and children away until the grill equipment is completely cool.
  • Check propane cylinder hoses for leaks before use.
  • Never add charcoal starter fluid when coals or kindling have already been ignited, and never use any flammable or combustible liquid other than charcoal starter fluid to get the fire going.
  • Keep a fire extinguisher or garden hose close by when grilling

 Yard & Deck Safety

  • Don't leave toys, tools and equipment in the yard.
  • Keep steps, sidewalks and patios in good repair.
  • Check all swings, slides, playhouses and other structures for sharp objects, rusty metal pieces, breaks or weakened support pieces.
  • Keep pool chemicals, fertilizers, safely stored away from children and pets.

10 Important Tips for Backyard Safety (pdf/42kb)  

Additional Links For More Information:

Building Safety Month – Backyard & Pool Safety Web Page  

City of Scottsdale’s Swimming Pools, Hot Tubs, and Spas Building Ordinances  

Barbecue & Grilling Safety Tips – From Scottsdale’s Fire Department 

CPR, First Aid, & Babysitter Certification Classes - Offered by Scottsdale Fire Department 

Scottsdale Fire Department Safety Videos  

Energy & Green Building

Being green means living better, smarter, and healthier, but you don’t have to start from scratch.  One of the best things you can do for the environment is to introduce energy efficient and sustainable materials into your existing home or business.  

  • Use energy-efficient light bulbs, turn off lights and unplug electronics not in use.
  • Seal air leaks around doors and windows
  • Install a programmable thermostat.
  • Upgrade windows, heating and air conditioning equipment.
  • Change filters in heating and air conditioning equipment frequently.
  • Install more insulation in walls and attics.
  • When replacing appliances, choose energy efficient appliances.  

Reducing mold, mildew and other allergens that contribute to asthma and other significant health issues can also keep your home greener and healthier.

  • Keep it dry: install a drain pan under the water heater; place dehumidifiers in basements and other damp areas; position downspouts away from the house; repair any water damage.
  • Keep it clean: use track-off mats at all doorways; clean up dust to eliminate contaminants such as lead dust and allergens.
  • Keep it ventilated: install or replace exhaust fans in bathrooms and kitchens (make sure they vent to the outside).
  • Keep it contaminant-free: use wire shelving that doesn't collect dust; have your home tested for radon and lead-based paint.

10 Important Tips for Green & Sustainable Buildings (pdf/42kb)  

Additional Links For More Information:

Building Safety Month’s Energy & Green Building Web Page  

Scottsdale’s Green Building Program  

Green Home Guide

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