September is Campus Fire Safety Month. The Tennessee Fire Chiefs Association (TFCA) in cooperation with (Rutherford County Fire-Rescue) would like to remind both parents and college students to make sure that both on- and off-campus housing is fire safe.
While heading off to college is always an exciting time for the entire family, ensuring students are aware of the level of fire safety in their living quarters should not be overlooked.
Per the Center for Campus Fire Safety, since 2000, 91 fatal fires have been documented that occurred on a college campus, in Greek housing or in off-campus housing within 3-miles of the campus - claiming a total of 128 victims:
- 78 fires have occurred in off-campus housing claiming 109 victims
- 7 fires have occurred in on-campus building or residence halls claiming 9 victims
- 6 fires have occurred in Greek housing claiming 10 victims
The National Fire Protection Association offers the following tips for keeping College Housing Fire Safe:
- Look for fully sprinklered housing when choosing a dorm or off-campus housing.
- Make sure your dormitory or apartment has smoke alarms inside each bedroom, outside every sleeping area and on each level. For the best protection, all smoke alarms should be interconnected so that when one sounds they all sound.
- Test all smoke alarms at least monthly.
- Never remove batteries or disable the alarm.
- Learn your building's evacuation plan and practice all drills as if they were the real thing.
- If you live off campus, have a fire escape plan with two ways out of every room.
- When the smoke alarm or fire alarm sounds, get out of the building quickly and stay out.
- During a power outage, use a flashlight.
- Cook only where it is permitted.
- Stay in the kitchen when cooking.
- Cook only when you are alert, not sleepy or drowsy from medicine or alcohol.
- Check with your local fire department for any restrictions before using a barbeque grill, fire pit, or chimenea.
- Check your school's rules before using electrical appliances in your room.
- Use a surge protector for your computer and plug the protector directly into an outlet.
For more information on campus fire safety, visit http://www.campusfiresafety.org/.
Volunteers Needed Rutherford County Fire-Rescue relies on brave men and women to volunteer their time to serve as volunteer firefighters to ensure that every call for help is answered. Besides the men and women who respond to emergencies, other types of volunteers are also needed.