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Minnesota State University, Mankato

Minnesota State University, Mankato
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Fire Equipment and Safety

Page address: https://www.mnsu.edu/reslife/housing/policies/safety/fire_equipment_and_safety.html

Fire Extinguishers

Fire extinguishers are located in the hallways of Crawford, Julia Sears, McElroy and Preska. Fire extinguishers in Stadium Heights are located in each kitchen. They are to be used only in the event of fire.

Sprinkler System

Sprinkler heads are installed in various areas of the residence communities. Extreme heat or trauma directed toward a sprinkler head will activate the sprinkler system and fire alarm system. When the fire alarm system is activated, the area must be evacuated. Large volumes of water will flow out of the sprinkler head. Damage to the surrounding area will occur.

Smoke Detectors

Smoke detectors are an essential part of the fire safety system. Residents’ bedrooms are equipped with smoke detectors that sound independently. Residents are responsible for ensuring their smoke detectors are connected and operational at all times. Minnesota Law dictates smoke detectors are to be connected and operational at all times. Residents should test smoke detectors the first Monday of every month. Disabling or removing smoke detectors will result in disciplinary action. If your smoke detector is inoperable, contact your front desk.

Tampering with Fire Equipment

Fire safety equipment that has been tampered with may fail to operate correctly in an emergency. This could prove fatal. Tampering with fire safety equipment (including, but not limited to fire alarm pull stations, fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, sprinkler heads, and exit signs) when there is not a fire or any reason to believe that one exists will result in disciplinary action, civil penalties and possible eviction.

Fire Safety Regulations

All residents are expected to observe the following fire safety regulations.

• No candles, incense, or open flame are allowed in the residence communities.
• Appliances with an open coil or that can bring oil to a boil are not allowed in the residence halls.
• Smoke detectors are to be connected and operational at all times.
• Light fixtures, outlets and switches are not to be altered or have items hung from their surfaces (e.g. can top rings or foil which may conduct electricity).
• Motorbikes or other motorized vehicles are not allowed in the residence communities.
• Access to windows, smoke detectors, and doorways is to be unobstructed.
• Excessive use of flammable substances on walls is not permitted.
• Residents are encouraged to use metal or flame-retardant wastebaskets.
• Items posted on room doors may cover only 20 percent of a door’s surface.
• Residents are not to leave cooking food unattended.
• Decorative lights are not permitted on metal surfaces.

Fire Safety Tips

• Make a fire escape plan and practice it. Locate two fire exits close to your room and count the number of doors between your room and each exit.
• Make a plan to assist others who are unable to evacuate on their own. Even if it is a temporary disability, plan ahead for fire emergencies.
• Test your smoke detector the first Monday of every month. Contact your front desk to report a malfunctioning smoke detector.
• Turn off all appliances when leaving a room and check any electrical equipment that is not working properly or smells odd.
• Do not overload electrical circuits.
• Keep all areas clear of trash.
• Use fire equipment for fire prevention only. Participate in fire drills.

Fire Drills

Fire drills are used to familiarize residents with a building’s fire alarm system, emergency exits, and procedures for contacting the fire department. Residents must evacuate during a fire drill. 

Fire Evacuation Procedures

At the first indication of a fire, whether it is persistent smoke, flame, or a fire alarm; follow the procedure outlined below. If You See a Fire
• Leave the area immediately.
• Contact the fire department (911). When the Fire Alarm Sounds
• Always assume there is a fire. Don’t ignore it.
• If time permits, take a jacket and shoes. Take a towel to cover your face.
• Stay low and crawl to your door. Smoke fills a room from the ceiling down.
• Test the door with the back of your hand.
• If the door is hot, keep the door closed and stay in the room.
• If the door is cool, open it slowly. Walk quickly and calmly to the ground level, closing all doors behind you. Do not use an elevator. An elevator may open at a floor on fire or stop working, trapping you inside.
• If there is smoke in the hallway, crawl to the stairs. Count the doors as you go so you do not get lost. If the smoke and heat are too great, try an alternate escape route. If both escape routes are blocked, return to your room.

If You Are Trapped Inside Your Room
• Close the door between you and the fire.
• Stop up cracks and vents to keep smoke and toxic gases out.
• Put a wet cloth over your nose and wait at a window.
• Open the window a few inches for fresh air. DO NOT break the glass.
• Hang a sheet or some other article out your window to signal the fire department.
• DO NOT panic. DO NOT jump. Wait for help. Once You Have Evacuated the Area
• Notify civil authorities of anyone that may not be able to physically respond to the fire alarm or use sound judgment to evacuate the area (e.g. wheelchair users or someone under the influence of alcohol or drugs). Do not reenter the building until you are told to do so by civil authorities.

If Your Clothes Catch Fire
• STOP. DO NOT RUN. DROP to the ground or floor immediately and cover your face with your hands. ROLL over back and forth to smother the flames.