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Knox Box Rapid-Entry Program
On March 1, 2016, the Town of China Grove adopted an ordinance requiring Knox Boxes at new commercial buildings, existing commercial buildings, and mulita-family residential buildings.  The Knox Box is a secure means for the Fire Department to gain access to the building in an emergency.  The Knox system is nationally known and uses a master key that is secured on all Fire Department vehicles.  The use of this system will allow firefighters to expedite entry into buildings and eliminate forced entries, thereby avoiding costly and time-consuming efforts in gaining access to locked buildings during emergencies and increase security for property owners by eliminating the numerous amounts of keys currently carried on Fire Department apparatus.

Where can I get my Knox Key Lock Box?
Knox Boxes are purchased from the KNOX Company.  All KNOX Box purchases must be authorized by the China Grove Fire Chief.  For further information, you may call the Fire Chief at 704.857.2466 ext. 301.

Where Is a Knox Box Required?

The following type properties shall be equipped with a Knox Box at or near the main entrance or such other location as required or approved by the Fire Chief or designee:

  • All new commercial buildings
  • All existing commercial buildings constructing improvements that require Planning Board approval
  • All existing commercial buildings equipped with automatic fire detection and/or suppression system
  • Multi-family residential structures that have restricted access through locked doors and have a common corridor for access to the living units.
  • Other properties or structures where fire department access would be delayed as determined by the fire official.

Does This Apply to Private Residences?
The Knox Box rapid-entry system primarily applies to commercial structures.  Residential Knox Boxes can be purchased by the property owner on a voluntary basis, but is not required.  The only exception to this would be multi-family residential units that have restricted access through locked doors and share a common corridor for access to the living units.

Who has access to master keys and keys located inside of my KNOX Box?
The KNOX system utilizes a single master key that is coded specifically for the jurisdiction (The Town of China Grove) in which it will be used.  The master keys are placed inside of a coded security key lock box inside of each Fire Department vehicle.  Only authorized Fire Department personnel will have access to the master keys that are secured inside of the Fire Department vehicles.  Business owners, property owners and maintenance personnel will not have access to KNOX Box master keys.  KNOX Box master keys are strictly for Fire Department use for emergency access.  KNOX Box master keys are specially designed for the application and cannot be duplicated.

What if I need to change out the keys that are in my KNOX Box?
From time to time, property locks may change or access cards may need to be re-programmed.  If keys or cards need to be changed out in your KNOX Box, the property owner must contact the China Grove Fire Department to unlock the box and change out the keys.  All keys must be properly identified and will be placed back in the KNOX Box and secured by the Fire Chief or designee.

When do I have to have my Knox Box installed?
All newly constructed structures subject to the Knox Box requirement shall have the key lock box installed and operational prior to the issuance of a certificate of occupancy.   

Is there a penalty for not installing a Knox Box?
Yes, any property or building owner failing to comply with, or in violation of the terms of this Ordinance after notice from the Towns Fire Official, shall be subject to a fine of $500.00, each day a violation shall continue shall constitute a separate offense at the rate of $100.00 a day until corrected.

Can I use another type of key lock box?
No, the Town of China Grove has adopted the explicit use of the KNOX Rapid-Entry System in order to maintain consistency and security.  Using the Knox system will eliminate the need for the Fire Department to carry multiple keys or security codes and access cards by using a single master key device.

How much does the Knox Box cost?
For most applications, the 3200 Series style is acceptable.  For larger applications requiring numerous keys (up to 50), the 4400 Series may be warranted.

  • 3200 Series Ranges from $459 plus shipping and handling costs and optional mounting kit
  • 4400 Series Ranges from $781 plus shipping and handling costs and optional mounting kit

Who pays for the cost of the Knox Box?
The business or property owners will be responsible for the costs of purchasing a Knox Box.  

What is the procedure for getting my KNOX Box in service?
Once the order has been received by the KNOX Company, the KNOX Box will be delivered to the property owner.  Once received contact the Fire Department for an approved mounting location determined by the Fire Chief or designee.   Instructions on mounting the KNOX Box will accompany the package.  When the KNOX Box is installed and all required keys and/or access cards are ready to be placed into the box, the property owner will notify the Fire Chief or designee to visit the installation site for inspection and the Fire Chief or designee will lock the property keys in the KNOX Box and render the box in service.  All KNOX Box devices will be inspected annually by the China Grove Fire Department for proper operation and correct keys or cards.  For further information or questions pertaining to the KNOX Rapid-Entry program, please contact the China Grove Fire Chief at 333 North Main Street, China Grove, NC 28023, 704.857.2466 ext. 301.