Annually, there are approximately 1,700 documented fires in college dormitories, classroom buildings and fraternities and sororities in the United States. Many of these fires have caused injuries, and some, even deaths. Most lives can be saved by using common sense in a fire emergency.
Stony Brook University urges you to follow these practical steps to protect yourself while working, living or learning on or off campus.
- Preplan Your Escape
- Know the location of fire alarm pull box locations.
- Locate at least two ways out of the building.
- If you are disabled and have special needs for evacuation, see additional planning for people with physical disabilities.
- Check the fire exits to make sure they are usable.
- Do not use the elevators in an evacuation.
- Know the location of fire rated stairwells.
- If you have fire blankets in your area, know how to use them.
- If there is a fire, Evacuate everyone!
- If you discover a fire or smoke condition, sound the building alarm by activating the nearest pull station.
- Try to help others if you can do so safely. Unless unusual conditions dictate otherwise, the best evacuation route is the nearest stairway and out the nearest exit.
- When leaving, close (do not lock) your door behind you.
- Once outside, meet at your assembly point and take a head count to make sure everyone is out and accounted for. Never attempt to re-enter the building to search for someone missing, let a Fire Marshal know.
- Is the Door Hot?
- Before opening a door, you should make sure there is no fire on the other side by using the back of your hand to touch the door, door knob or door frame. If it feels hot, don't open it, there's probably fire on the other side. If cool, open the door slowly, leave area and close the door behind you.
- Stay Low When There is Smoke
- If you encounter smoke while escaping, crawl or get as low as you can. The cleanest air will be 1 to 2 feet from the floor. If the main exit is blocked by fire or untenable smoke, you should use your alternate route. If this is not feasible, go back in your room to wait for rescue.
- If You Cannot Escape
- Close all doors between you and the fire. Stuff cloth in the cracks of the doors to keep the smoke out. Call University Police at (631) 632-3333 or 911 to notify them of your location. While waiting for rescuers, signal from a window by hanging clothes out the window, waving an object or shouting.
- A Note About False Alarms
- Be aware that tampering with fire alarm equipment or activating a false alarm is a violation of the Student Conduct Code. It is also a crime under NYS Penal Law and can result in arrest and/or expulsion from school. The University treats this very seriously.
- The Fire Marshals will assist departments in developing evacuation procedures and alternative emergency escape routes to be utilized by building occupants in the event of a fire or other emergency requiring building evacuation.