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Government information for entrepreneurs

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Fire safety measures and permits

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO

If you have business premises in the Netherlands, taking measures to avoid potential fire hazards is mandatory. These measures must be taken in accordance with the 2012 Dutch Building Decree (Bouwbesluit). In the event of a fire, you must be able to control the development and spread of fire and smoke using non-flammable or fire retardant materials that comply with various standards. In some cases you will need to apply for an All-in-one Permit for Physical Aspects regarding fire safety or submit a notification of occupancy to the municipal authority.

Statutory rules and regulations also apply to:

  • fire alarm and evacuation alarm systems
  • fire extinguishing equipment
  • exits and escape routes
  • systems for heating and cooking purposes
  • upholstery and decorations
  • lighting systems and lighting equipment

What fire safety measures should you take?

The rules that are applicable to you depend on your situation. For example:

  • which flammable materials you work with
  • which function your building has (for example healthcare institution, office or hotel)
  • how many people enter your building on average and whether your building is open to the public

You can look up which rules apply to you based on the function of your building in section 6.5 to 6.8 of chapter 6 of the Building DecreeExternal link 2012 (Bouwbesluit 2012, see draft text: en).

When do you need an All-in-one permit for physical aspects?

You need an all-in-one permit for physical aspects if your building is used in one of the following ways:
  • as overnight accommodation for more than 10 people (e.g. hospital, childcare centre, primary school or hotel);
  • for daytime accommodation for more than 10 people under the age of 12; or
  • for people who are physically or mentally disabled.
Please note: You also require an all-in-one permit for physical aspects for nonconstruction structures, such as a floating disco or a floating hotel.

Notification of occupancy

Certain buildings require a notification of occupancy. This applies in the following cases:
  • Buildings in which more than 50 people may be present at once, such as secondary schools, offices, restaurants, sports facilities, shopping centres and supermarkets. (This does not apply to housing and residential buildings).
  • Housing in which five or more rooms are rented separately (such as communes or student complexes)
  • If different fire safety measures are taken which are not included in chapter 6 and 7 of the Building DecreeExternal link 2012 (Bouwbesluit 2012, see draft text: en).
If you have to submit a notification of occupancy, you can do so whilst applying for the all-in-one permit for physical aspects for other activities.

Online application procedure via Message Box

If you provide the notification of occupancy via the online service counter all-in-one permit for physical aspects (Omgevingsloket online), you may complete your application digitally via Message Box. For this purpose, you must indicate your Message Box name in the application. Message Box is a secure email system which allows you as an entrepreneur to exchange digital messages with Dutch government organisations.

Where to find information and advice?

Specific fire safety information

This article is related to:

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO