Key Boxes for Emergency Access

Key Boxes for Emergency Access

Knox keybox product line is a secure rapid access system that provides the Fire Department and other emergency services staff with a quick and easy means to access a building or secured area during an emergency. It allows emergency response personnel access to keys, FOBs, and keycards to open doors and other access points on your property in an emergency, minimizing potential costly repairs caused by forcible entry and allows the building to be re-secured quickly and easily after the emergency incident has concluded. Most Knox products come standard as a 'master keyed' version, but are also available in a 'sub-mastered' version which allows access by fire, police, and (in limited situations) public works staff. The most commonly used Knox products are the keyboxes, keyswitches, and hardened padlocks.

More information on Knox products can be obtained online at

Commercial/Industrial or Multi-Family Residence Buildings

Attaching Knox key boxes to buildings for emergency Fire Department building access is recommended for all buildings and may be required by the City's Fire Code. Generally, the sub-master requirement in not mandated, but can be required when access to public areas is deemed necessary for police department personnel (such as apartment buildings with interior hallways) or public works staff for maintenance of public water, sewer, or other utilities on private property. Exceptions may be made by the Fire Department.

Pedestrian or Vehicular Security Gates

When access to a structure or area (such as a fenced-in pool compound) is impeded due to secured vehicle or pedestrian gates, doors, or other similar structures or barriers, or where immediate access is necessary for emergency, firefighting, law enforcement, or public works purposes, the City's Fire Code is authorized to require a Knox product. In these cases the gates or doors will need a nearby Knox keybox or keyswitch product that's been sub-mastered to permit  access. Installation of any structures or barriers that would impede emergency access must be approved by the Fire Department and will almost always require a Knox keybox or keyswitch. In some cases the Fire Department allow installation of a Knox hardened padlock on gates, typically when no gate controller is present, the gate is not normally used for daily property access, or existing gate security is a simple padlock-and-chain arrangement.

For additional information on fire access for pedestrian or vehicular security gates and buildings please refer to City Specification #403.

New - Knox Homebox Program

Installation of a Knox Homebox grants the Fire Department prompt access to your home and loved ones in an emergency and minimizes potential costly repairs caused by forcible entry. The Homebox won't work with most FOBs or keycards, and there are limitations on key size, so contact the Huntington Beach Fire Department if you are not sure it will work for your home's door locks. We can usually recommend an alternate product that will work for you.

The recommended location of the Knox Homebox installation is immediately adjacent to the front door, approximately 5 - 6 feet above grade. Once installation is complete, please contact the Fire Department to schedule an appointment to have your keys placed and locked in the Knox Homebox. The Fire Department can be reached at (714) 536-5411.

Knox Homebox can be ordered online at Knox HomeBox or by calling 855-GET-KNOX.

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Contact Information

City of Huntington Beach
Fire Department
2000 Main Street
Huntington Beach, CA
Phone: (714) 536-5411
Fax: (714) 374-1551

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