EMERGENCY SHELTER FIRE & SAFETY CHECKLIST Many shelter facilities are not normally used for mass lodging and care. We encourage all shelter managers and local fire chiefs to coordinate the development of a fire safety plan. The following items are suggested for inclusion in an overall shelter facility safety plan: EXITS: Keep egress routes or travel areas leading to an exit free from all obstructions. This includes items of furniture, trash, boxes, or anything that may hinder anyone from exiting the building during an emergency. Exit doors should not be covered by drapery, mirrors, or anything that would disguise the door. If burglar bars or similar devices are used, they must be easily opened from within, without the use of a key or special knowledge. Exit signs should be in place and easily visible. Emergency lighting should be provided. REMEMBER: Exits shall be unlocked, identified with an exit sign, and remain unobstructed. SMOKE DETECTORS: An operational smoke detector should be mounted on the ceiling or high on the wall of sleeping areas and in other areas as needed. The detectors should be checked at least once a month and replaced as needed. Insure that children know what the detector sounds like and know what to do when it sounds! NEVER disable or remove or remove smoke alarm batteries. ESCAPE PLAN: Make sure there are at least two escape routes from every room if possible and have an escape plan in place and practice it. Draw a map of the building showing all rooms and escape routes marked in red. Post the escape plan near all exits. PORTABLE FIRE EXTINGUISHERS: Place fire extinguishers in appropriate places and insure that personnel know to use them should they be needed. STORAGE OF FLAMMABLE/COMBUSTIBLE LIQUIDS: Use common sense with these products. They should not be stored near ignition sources such as open flames, smoking, cutting, welding, electrical rooms, mechanical rooms, etc. In general, no gasoline storage allowed in a public place. Flammable liquids should be stored in safety cans where practical. Flammable and Combustible liquids should be stored in metal cabinets and marked as such. These products should not be stored so as to limit the use of exits. HOUSEKEEPING:
Trash in buildings should be stored in approved containers or rooms of non-combustible construction. No storage is allowed in any hallway or stairwell or under a stairway that is an exit from an upper floor. Watch for trash in exit halls, especially back exit halls that are not regularly traveled. Oily rags should be in metal containers with lids. All housekeeping should be neat and orderly as appropriate.
ELECTRICAL: All junction boxes should have proper covers. This includes all receptacles and switch boxes or other boxes where wiring may be expected. All electrical panel boxes shall have approved covers and doors. All openings in the boxes shall be filled either with a breaker or an approved plug. Keep electrical panels clear of all combustibles for at least thirty (30) inches, or approximately three (3) feet. EXTENSION CORDS: Extension cords shall not be used as permanent wiring. They may be used with portable appliances such as calculators, small radios, small fans, etc. Make sure the cord is capable of carrying the load being required of it. Extension cords need to carry twice the load they are plugged into. Extension cords are NOT ALLOWED to run under carpet, through doors, or to be overloaded. Where little children are expected to be present, all receptacles are required to be of the safety type or have plastic plugs in all unused receptacles to prevent children from sticking objects in them. Never overload electrical sockets. GENERAL: Keep clothes, blankets, curtains and other combustibles at least three feet from space heaters, candles and other ignition sources. If needed, place space heaters where they will not tip over, where children and pets cannot reach them and use only the type with a tip-over switch that will shut them off should they accidently be tipped over. Battery operated flashlights are preferred, but should you need candles for emergency lighting, use candle holders that are sturdy, won’t tip over easily, are made from material that can’t burn and are large enough to collect dripping wax. Don’t place lit candles in windows where blinds and curtains can close over them. Keep candles and all open flames away from flammable liquids. Try to avoid carrying a lit candle and keep candles up high out of the reach of children and pets. IN CASE OF FIRE: Sound the alarm in the facility. Get out and stay out. Contact the local fire department at ______________. Crawl low under smoke. Feel closed doors, if hot, use another exit.
If your clothes catch on fire STOP, DROP, and ROLL!! Cover your face with your hands to protect it. Install smoke alarms. Develop a fire escape plan. Familiarize children with the sound of the smoke alarm. Have at least two ways out of each room. Get out and Stay out!!!! Contact your local Fire Department for more information.