In the city of Tacoma, the professional care of children and adults is regulated by the State of Washington under the Washington Administrative Code and Revised Code of Washington. These State regulations are further supplemented by both the Tacoma Municipal Code, which regulates Licensing and Zoning, and the International Fire Code, which deals with the Life Safety aspects. Regulations and requirements are very specific and differ with the number of children or adults at a given location. The Tacoma Fire Department and the Washington State Fire Marshal's office are the agencies responsible for relicensing inspection of care facilities.
The Tacoma Fire Department has a two-tiered approach to the Life Safety inspection process. The local Fire Company conducts an annual inspection for site familiarization and non-technical code compliance. Prevention and Preparedness Inspectors are tasked with the Government Compliance Inspection which is necessary for relicensing at three-year intervals. The State Fire Marshall may also defer inspections to the local jurisdiction at their discretion. Additionally, all facilities providing care by unrelated persons on either a 24-hour or less basis shall obtain and keep current a City of Tacoma Business license.
The following resources will help you understand the fire and life safety requirements for your business.
Day care business conducted in your home with not more than 12 children are defined as, In-Home Daycares. The fire and life safety requirements for these businesses are set forth by the Washington State Department of Early Learning (DEL).
Facilities that provide care for more than 12 children are defined as, Daycare Centers. The fire and life safety requirements for these business are set forth in the Washington Administrative Code.
Adult Family Homes
Care given to adults in a home setting with not more than six adults is defined as an Adult Family Home. Click on the following link to learn more information about the states requirements for Adult Family Homes.
Congregate Care Facilities
Congregate Care Facilities are defined as an Institutional Occupancy Group I-1. TFD conducts familiarization level inspections in these types of facilities. Use the following links to learn more information about the states requirements for Congregate Care Facilities.