January Tip of the Month: Get Out and Stay Alive

January 11, 2010

January 11, 2010 — Campus-related fatal fires since January 2000 often include one or more of five common factors:

Over 80 percent occur in off-campus housing, such as rented houses and apartments.
These occupancies lacked automatic fire sprinklers.
There were missing or disabled smoke alarms.
Careless disposal of smoking materials was a common factor in the fire cause.
Impaired judgment from alcohol consumption played a role.

Take these steps to increase your fire safety:

Plan and practice: Have a fire escape plan. Know two ways to get out. Practice your plan.
Detect: Have working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Replace the batteries at the start of each semester. Test monthly.
Extinguish (if trained): Have a working fire extinguisher. Know how to use the extinguisher and check it monthly.
Burn smart: Keep combustibles three feet away from any flame or heat source. Extinguish flames before leaving the room. Place ashes in a proper receptacle.
Get out: Do not ignore fire alarms. Do not wait to see fire or smoke. Leave immediately when you hear an alarm.

For more, see the U.Va. Office of Environmental Health & Safety and Housing Division resources or contact the Office of Emergency Preparedness at 434-982-0565.

Email the Office of Emergency Preparedness