ESCAPING A HIGH-RISE BUILDING FIRE
What do you do if you are on the 20th floor of a high-rise building and a fire breaks out? Most high-rise buildings have fire and life safety systems designed to control a fire and lessen the need to evacuate all occupants. High-rise building fire alarm systems are required to have emergency voice communication capability. This allows specific instructions to be given to the occupants in the greatest danger. Normally, this would include the floors above and below the fire. Here’s what to do if you are told to evacuate.
- Don’t ignore the alarm. If a fire alarm sounds don’t assume it is a false alarm or wait to see what happens.
- Check to see if it is safe to leave. Check for heat before opening the door. If the door and door handle are cool, slowly open the door. If you notice smoke, close the door and stay inside. Call 911 and tell them your location and put a colored cloth in the window as a signal to firefighters. Use duct tape, towels, or clothing to seal vents and cracks under doors.
- Take the stairs. Use the stairwell to exit if there’s no smoke, or light smoke you can crawl underneath. Do not use the elevator because it can malfunction and trap people between floors.
- Go to a designated refuge place. If you are sick, disabled, elderly or unable to evacuate, move to the place of refuge and wait for help from firefighters. If that isn’t possible, call 911 and report your location immediately.
- Don’t go to the roof. Rooftop rescues are difficult and rare. It is very dangerous due to the thermal currents generated by the fire which can cause the helicopter to be buffeted up or down, making it hard to control.
Call Fire Control Systems today for your high-rise building fire safety needs.