There are over 2,000 residence hall fires each year, according to the National Fire Prevention Association. Here are five fire safety tips to help you get started on playing it safe.
- Ask Questions When Selecting a School
- Have any fires occurred on campus within the past few years? Where, how and when? Were any changes made after the fire?
- Are evacuation drills conducted? How often?
- Does the residence hall staff receive any emergency preparedness training?
- Do a Fire Safety Check. Look for:
- smoke alarms (there should be one in each dorm room)
- carbon monoxide detectors
- sprinkler systems
- fire extinguishers
- pull stations (the small red box on the wall that says “FIRE”)
- nearest exits (memorize their location)
- Follow the Rules
- Certain items are banned for a reason: to keep students safe. Ask if smoking, incense, candles, hot plates and halogen lamps, etc., are allowed or prohibited.
- Exit the building when any alarm is sounded – even if you’re in the middle of a big date in your room. (Or, if you’re more scholarly, even if you’re in the middle of a brilliant sentence for a term paper….)
- Use Common Sense
- Don’t overload power strips or outlets. Read the directions for each strip.
- Don’t leave candles, cigarettes (though we know you don’t smoke….) or items on the stove unattended.
- Get Prepared
- Know basic fire safety tips and what your rights are post-fire.
- Plan how to get out in case of a fire.
WHN Expert Tip – Get a Fire Extinguisher: In this video, Edina, MN Fire Marshall Tom Jenson explains the features and uses of four different types of fire extinguishers to help you decide what extinguisher is right for you. The next video shows how to use it properly.
Photo Credit: kalhh