The start of autumn sees falling leaves, amber skies and pumpkin pies. But the end of summer also signals, for students across the country, the beginning of fall semester. While trying to navigate living in their new dorms and off-campus apartment, there are a lot of students who set off the fire alarm. And with an estimated average of 3,810 structure fires in college housing between 2007 and 2011, September and October are essentially peak months for fires in college housing.
The Center for Campus Safety, with the intention of educating incoming students on fire safety, has marked September of every year as Campus Fire Safety Month.
The following are fire safety tips from the NFPA that can help college students living on their own:
- Try to find a fully sprinklered house when looking for a dorm or off-campus housing
- Double check that the building has interconnected smoke alarms inside and outside each bedroom, and on every floor.
- Learn your building’s evacuation plan and practice all fire drills
The NFPA has published a report, “Structure Fires in Dormitories, Fraternities, Sororities and Barracks” that essentially says that 70 percent of fires begin in the cooking area and that fires are most common in the evening between 5 p.m. and 11 p.m...
A significant number of fires usually happen when a hot stove is left unattended. Students are advised to stay in the kitchen and be alert while preparing meals and to remember to test their smoke alarms every month.
Speaking of which, “Working Smoke Alarms Save Lives: Test Yours Every Month!” is the theme for NFPA’s Fire Prevention Week 2014! The annual awareness campaign will be held this year on October 5-11. So information and resources that can help students learn about fire safety can be found of the Fire Prevention Week website.