Article

Dormitory fire safety checklist

A fire in a dormitory can have consequences beyond injury, loss of life or property damage. The trauma of a fire may cause some students to drop out. Future enrollments may also be impacted, especially because of the negative image created by a fatal fire. In addition to reduced revenue associated with enrollment decreases, some students may demand tuition reimbursements to compensate for the disruption to their studies because of the fire.

Cooking equipment

Yes

No

N/A

Are cooking appliances installed with adequate clearance to prevent overheating of adjacent surfaces?      
Are deep fat fryers installed with at least a 16 in. (4.1 cm) space between the fryer and adjacent cooking equipment and equipped with automatic fuel cutoff valves?      
Are kitchen appliances equipped with easily accessible and removable non-combustible grease filters?      
Are kitchen equipment, exhaust hoods and grease removal devices inspected and maintained according to the manufacturer's recommendations?      
Are kitchen appliances inspected on a regular (at least annually) basis?      
Are cooking appliances, such as electric toaster ovens, broilers, skillets, hot plates, immersion coils, etc., prohibited in dormitory rooms?      

Electrical systems

Yes

No

N/A

Are electrical conductors securely fastened in place, in good condition and not frayed or loose?      
Are outlet and junction boxes properly secured, covered and without evidence of overheating?      
Is there an adequate number of electrical outlets/circuits to prevent overloading of circuits?      
Is the use of extension cords prohibited?      
Are electrical panels and branch circuit disconnects freely accessible at all times?      
Is electrical equipment inspected and maintained according to manufacturer’s instructions?      
Is electrical equipment in wet areas, such as laundry rooms, kitchens and bathrooms, as well as outdoor areas, provided with ground fault protection?      

Decorations and furnishings

Yes

No

N/A

Is seasonal, holiday, and other decorations or displays configured to maintain at least 36 in. (91.4 cm) clearance from ignition sources?      
Is the use of high intensity lamps, such as halogen or quartz lights, restricted or prohibited?      
Is the use of candles restricted to dining areas and other public settings and only when a person will be present for at least 30 minutes after candles have been extinguished?      
Are draperies, curtains, and other similar loosely hanging furnishings and decorations flame-resistant, in accordance with NFPA 701, Standard Methods of Fire Tests for Flame-Resistant Textiles and Films?      
Do mattresses meet the char length requirements of Title 16, CFR, Part 1632, Standard for the Flammability of Mattresses and Mattress Pads, published by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC)?      

Is upholstered furniture resistant to a cigarette ignition (i.e., smoldering) in accordance with NFPA 260, Standard Methods of Tests and Classification System for Cigarette Ignition Resistance of Components of Upholstered Furniture?

     

Heating and air conditioning

Yes

No

N/A

Are air circulation systems designed to automatically shut down in the event of a fire?      
Are heating systems (e.g., furnaces, boilers, etc.) located in a separate area with a minimum fire-resistance rating of two hours?      
Are there no openings within 10 ft. (3 m) of the heating system room and flammable liquid storage areas, such as garages and workshops?      
Is the return duct for forced-air heating systems at least 18 in. (45.7 cm) above the floor?      
Are return air supplies NOT drawn from areas, such as garages, janitor rooms or boiler rooms, where flammable liquids may be spilled?      

Is gas- or oil-fired equipment provided with a manually operated, emergency shutoff valve for the fuel supply?

     

Are heating appliances, such as space heaters, prohibited in dormitory rooms?

     

If space heaters are permitted, are they:

  • Placed on a level, hard, and nonflammable surface (such as a ceramic tile floor)?
  • Kept at least three feet (0.91 m) from bedding, drapes, furniture and other flammable materials?
     

Maintenance operations

Yes

No

N/A

Are flammable and combustible liquids kept in covered containers when not in use?      
Is a hot work permitting system used for all cutting, welding and soldering operations?      
Is the inside storage of flammable or combustible liquids limited so that not more than 120 gal. (454 L) are stored in any one storage cabinet?      
Are liquid-soaked rags and paper from cleaning operations placed in covered metal containers and disposed of on a daily basis?      

Laundries

Yes

No

N/A

Are dryer exhaust systems routed away from combustible materials and access provided for routine cleaning?      
Is the lint from clothes dryers removed on a regular basis?      
Are dryers and exhaust ducts installed with a minimum of 6 in. (150 mm) clearance between the equipment and all other combustible materials?      

Fire protection

Yes

No

N/A

Is the premises protected by an automatic fire sprinkler system meeting the requirements of NFPA 13, Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems, or NFPA 13R, Standard for the Installation of Sprinkler Systems in Residential Occupancies Up to and Including Four Stories in Height, published by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA)?      
Is the premises protected by a fire alarm system that is designed, installed, and maintained in accordance with the requirements of NFPA 72, National Fire Alarm Code?      
Is the fire alarm system monitored by a central station alarm company, with automatic retransmission of fire alarm signals to the fire department?      
Are smoke detection and fire alarm systems provided for each enclosed room or area?      
Are fire suppression and alarm systems covered by maintenance and service contracts?      
Are fire extinguishers located throughout the facility, in compliance with local codes and as required by NFPA 10, Standard for Portable Fire Extinguishers?      
Are kitchens or cooking areas provided with portable fire extinguishers listed/approved for the area?      

Occupant education and practices

Yes

No

N/A

If smoking is permitted, are designated smoking areas established and “No Smoking” signs posted in all other areas of the facility?      
Are non-combustible receptacles for smoking materials provided and routinely emptied by the staff?      
Are occupants provided with information and education on preventing fires, emergency escape, and the procedures for reporting emergencies?      
Are occupants familiar with the fire alarm system, including how to activate it, how it sounds, and if it automatically notifies the fire department?      
Does the institution take steps to discourage false alarms, including pursuing criminal charges?      

 


Copyright ©2018, ISO Services, Inc.

This material is provided for informational purposes only and does not provide any coverage or guarantee loss prevention. The examples in this material are provided as hypothetical and for illustration purposes only. The Hanover Insurance Company and its affiliates and subsidiaries (“The Hanover”) specifically disclaim any warranty or representation that acceptance of any recommendations contained herein will make any premises, or operation safe or in compliance with any law or regulation. By providing this information to you, The Hanover does not assume (and specifically disclaims) any duty, undertaking or responsibility to you. The decision to accept or implement any recommendation(s) or advice contained in this material must be made by you.

LC DEC 2018-461
171-10027 (11/18)