Q: Are portable heaters permitted in long term care facilities in offices and other locations?
A: Portable space-heating devices are prohibited in healthcare care occupancies (such as hospitals, nursing homes, limited care facilities and hospice centers with more than 12 beds), with the exception of those portable heaters whose heating elements do not exceed 212 degrees F which are only permitted in smoke compartments which do not contain sleeping rooms, or patient care or treatment. For free standing medical offices which are classified as business occupancies, then the Life Safety Code has no restrictions on portable heaters. But if those offices are located in the healthcare occupancy, then you must comply with the above requirements. Depending on your authorities having jurisdiction, portable heaters may not be permitted even in areas that do not contain patient care, treatment or sleeping beds.