Workplace Preparedness

FIRE, VISIBLE SMOKE, SPRINKLER ACTIVATION

Whenever a fire alarm is activated on your floor, immediately evacuate the building by the nearest emergency exit.

Actions

Use the R-A-C-E method:
  • REMOVE/ALARM: If an alarm or other notification is heard, alert others in your area to evacuate using the nearest safe stairwell or exit - activate the nearest building alarm if not already present (use the manual pull station, or if not functioning, shout). Call 9-1-1 from a safe location.
  • CONTAIN: Confine the fire, if possible (i.e., close as many doors as possible as you leave the area, but DO NOT LOCK or prop doors open).
  • EXTINGUISH or EVACUATE:
    • If the fire is small, attempt to put it out with a fire extinguisher ONLY if you have been trained and can do so safely.
    • Proceed to the nearest safe exit.
      NOTE: Never use the elevator!
  • If smoke is present, stay low.
    Check doors for heat before opening (use back of your hand, start at bottom of door); if the door is hot or if smoke is visible under the door, do not open and seek another exit path; if cool, exit carefully.
    NOTE: Heat and toxic products of combustion (smoke) are the primary dangers of a fire - Smoke and hot gases will accumulate near the ceiling.
  • If people refuse to evacuate, move on and report them to your Warden.
  • Exit the building and go to the identified Assembly Area listed on the posted building Emergency Evacuation Plan and STAY with your group - DO NOT leave the area unless instructed to do so by your Warden or emergency response personnel.
  • Check in with your Warden.
  • Wait for instructions at the Assembly Area from your Warden - DO NOT GO BACK INTO THE BUILDING UNTIL INSTRUCTED TO DO SO BY YOUR FLOOR/AREA WARDEN OR EMERGENCY RESPONSE PERSONNEL.
Precautions and Guidance
  • Actions taken on an employee's part to use a fire extinguisher should be done so only after local notification has been given, evacuation has begun, and 9-1-1 has been notified. If you use a fire extinguisher, remember to always leave a "safe exit" - never exit through a fire. Never allow the fire to come between you and an exit path. Use the P-A-S-S method (pull-aim-squeeze-sweep) to extinguish small fires. If you are unable to put the fire out, evacuate by the nearest safe emergency exit.
  • If the fire involves electrical equipment that is active, attempt to unplug the device if safe to do so.
  • Be prepared to provide information to emergency response personnel as to the location of the fire and possible location of occupants.
  • If your clothes catch on fire, STOP where you are, DROP to the ground and ROLL over and over to smother the flames.
  • Evacuate down stairs, or as a last resort, if no other exit is available, evacuate to the roof. If you are trapped inside a room or area:
    • Confine the fire or smoke by closing as many doors as possible between you and the fire - stay or move to a safe location.
    • If smoke is present, stay low. Wedge a wet towel or cloth material along the bottom of the door to keep out smoke from entering the area.
    • If windows are operable and you must have air, open the window; break the window as a last resort, as it will become impossible to close it if necessary.
    • Leave a signal, such as a towel out the window, to get the Fire Department's attention - if there is a phone dial 9-1-1.
  • High-rise buildings (greater than 75 feet): Certain buildings are not intended to have a total evacuation of building occupants upon alarm unless necessary. Horizontal or vertical partial building evacuations may be permitted:
    • Horizontal: Occupants move to a pre-designated area on the same floor away from the fire.
    • Vertical: Occupants on the fire floor and floor immediately above and below are evacuated.