The fall college semester begins soon, so it is time to start gathering school supplies and enrolling in classes. It is also important to know how to stay fire safe in your college housing, whether on or off campus. This is an exciting time for students, especially those leaving home for the first time. Taking some extra time to talk about fire safety can offer reassurance for everyone.
According to the https://www.usfa.fema.gov/prevention/outreach/college.html U.S. Fire Administration, there were 85 fatal fires in dorms, fraternities, sororities, and off-campus housing from 2000-2015. There are several specific causes for fires in college housing including cooking, candles, smoking, and overloaded power strips. Follow these tips to start being fire safe:
· Have a fire escape plan that includes two ways out of every room. If living off-campus, establish a meeting place with roommates.
· Use surge protectors or power strips with internal overload protection.
· Never leave a candle unattended.
· Use flameless candles, which are both safe and attractive.
· Keep your cooking area clean and free of anything that can burn.
· If a fire starts in your microwave, keep the door closed and unplug the unit.
· Make sure cigarettes and ashes are out. Do not toss hot cigarettes into the trash.
· If the fire alarm is activated, don’t ignore it. Evacuate and follow instructions from first responders.
Do not let a campus fire ruin your semester. Take action now, and know how to prevent fires by visiting https://www.usfa.fema.gov/downloads/pdf/publications/campus_fire_safety_flyer.pdf