Fire Safety Information

Rules and regulations regarding fire safety at New College.

New College has a responsibility to provide a safe environment for students, faculty, and staff. Fire safety in the residence halls is one of the most important aspects of this effort. State fire regulations provide the prescription for maintenance of safe residence halls, but cooperation from student staff and residents is the most important factor in reducing risk.

Fire safety regulations in force at New College are legal standards of the State of Florida. Everyone in the community is subject to fire code provisions. Everyone who lives in a New College Residence hall is personally accountable for the observance of all fire safety regulations, which are enforced by the State Fire Marshall, Campus Police, and the Office of Residence Life. In order to achieve compliance, and thereby provide a reasonably safe, hazard-free living environment, the College requires each student to observe the following basic safety rules.

Student Rooms

Air Quality

Smoking of any kind is not permitted inside or within 15 feet of any buildings on campus. This includes, but is not limited to, residence hall rooms, lounges, hallways, elevators and restrooms. Students who disagree with smoking or exposure to smoke should make a reasonable effort to resolve the matter among themselves. Keep in mind, however, that students have a right to be free of exposure from smoke and the hazards associated with fire that may be caused by smoke. This right takes precedence over the right to smoke. No tobacco products may be used, or left out in the open, in any common areas. Evidence of use may result in a $100 fine.

Furnishings

  • Posters, banners, wall hangings, curtains, and tapestries should be kept to a minimum. Curtains should be flame-resistant/retardant. Such hangings should not exceed 25 percent of the total wall area of the room.
  • Carpet is to be laid on the floor only. It is not to be installed on walls, doors, cabinets, etc.
  • Combustible wall paneling is prohibited.
  • Papers, streamers, holiday decorations, and ribbons must be flameproof or made of noncombustible materials.
  • Open flame burning of any kind (including, but not limited to, candles, incense burners, sparklers, etc.) is prohibited anywhere within the residence halls.
  • Use or storage of flammable fluids, chemicals, explosives, primers, powder, firecrackers, or fireworks is strictly forbidden.
  • Compressed gasses, with the exception of household aerosols, are not allowed within the residential facilities.
  • Furniture, decorations, alterations, or arrangements !bat violate fire or building codes, or hinder entry or quick exit from rooms or hallways are not allowed.
  • Decorations, arrangements, or housekeeping practices that contribute to an excessive fire load, or allow combustibles to be located near sources of ignition are not allowed.
  • Halogen lamps operate at very high temperatures, well above those of regular lamps, and pose a greater potential for fires. Consequently, all lamps, including floor and desk lamps, must be incandescent or fluorescent. Lamps must have bulbs of 300 watts or less. The following guidelines must be followed to ensure proper, safe operation:
  • Never place the lamp near curtains or other cloth window treatments.
  • Never drape anything over the lamp.
  • Keep the lamp away from bedding.

Appliances

Cooking equipment not installed by the College is not allowed within student rooms, with the following exceptions:

  • Microwave ovens are allowed when used according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • Hot pots and coffeepots must have a timed or thermostatically controlled automatic shut-off-switch.
  • Appliances with open elements (such as toasters, toaster ovens, etc) are only allowed in areas designated by the College as cooking areas (such as lounges, kitchen areas in Dort/Goldstein Residence Halls).
  • Only portable heaters authorized or distributed by the College are authorized for use in the Residence Halls.
  • Heat producing devices such as lamps, grow lights, and sun lamps may not to be used in confined spaces or in close proximity to combustible material

Electrical Outlets

  • Only one high-wattage appliance such as a hair dryer should be connected at one time to a single outlet.
  • Electrical devices must be maintained in good repair, with no breaks in the wiring or wiring insulation.
  • Extension cords are not to be used in lieu of permanent wiring for lighting, televisions, radios, stereos, etc.
  • Multiple outlet devices that plug directly to a wall outlet are not allowed.
  • Heavy duty, multiple outlet devices equipped with internal breaker protection (i.e., power strips) are authorized for limited use. All such devices must utilize minimum 16-gauge, 3-wire, grounded three-prong cord.

Building Safety

Corridors and Stairwells

  • All corridor and stairwell fire doors must remain closed at all times, unless equipped with automatic, electromagnetic door releases. Fire doors retard the travel of smoke, heat and toxic gases produced by fires, and help to contain the fire in the area of origin. This is important because it allows occupants additional time to evacuate.
  • No combustible material such as paper, cloth, nylon, or burlap may be added to or mounted on the fire doors.
  • Hallways, stairwells, and exit passages must remain clear and unobstructed at all times. Storage, decorations, displays, furniture, or other obstructions are not be allowed.
  • Dort and Goldstein Residence Hall residents may have noncombustible (i.e. plastic or metal) furniture and plants/containers in the alcove space outside their doorways. No cloth, wood, or padded furniture/containers of any kind are allowed. Bicycles may be placed within these alcoves; otherwise, bicycles are not allowed in hallways at any time. Exit identification signs and lights are not to be blocked, altered, or bidden at any time. They must remain unobstructed and visible.
    • Once notified students will be charged the removal and disposal cost and may be fined $200 for any items left outside the suite area.
    • No grills, lighter fluid or charcoal are permitted within the residence halls.
  • Air-conditioning closets in Dort and Goldstein Residence Halls are for maintenance use only. They are not to be used as storage of any kind and must remain empty at all times.

Lounges

• All regulations stated above apply to lounge areas.

Building Equipment

Alarms

Each student room in the Pei and Viking Residence Halls is equipped with a single station smoke alarm.

This alarm is intended for room occupant notification only. It will not alert the rest of the building of a fire situation. The detector should be kept in an operable condition and tested regularly. If it is found to be inoperable, notify Housing Maintenance immediately for repair or replacement.

Dort, Goldstein, and B-Dorm Residence Halls are equipped with a building fire alarm system that senses fire and/or smoke. The system can also be activated manually when there is a fire. The alarm stations are located within the hallways at points of exit such as stairwells. Residents should familiarize themselves with the manual pull station locations within their residence. THE BUILDING FIRE ALARMS ALERT THE FIRE DEPARTMENT. They will respond automatically when an alarm sounds.

Vandalism or tampering with life safety equipment is against the law; all violators will be prosecuted.

Fire drills will take pace. Students who do not cooperate will face serious medical charges.

Violation of this policy may result in a $200 fine for each violation.

Fire extinguishers

Fire extinguishers are located in hallways/common areas for use ONLY in case of fire (and only after first initiating the building fire alarm). Students should not attempt to fight afire that cannot be immediately extinguished with the fire extinguisher. If the fire cannot be put out quickly, leave the area. Report all damaged, depleted, or missing fire extinguishers to your RA as soon as possible.

Fire sprinklers

Dort and Goldstein Residence Halls have fire sprinkler systems installed in the living room area. Do not cover them with any material. Do not hang plants, decorations, etc., from sprinklers. Water damage to the residence could result from damage to sprinkler heads. Sprinkler heads must not be tampered with, altered, covered or blocked in any way.

Fire Evacuation Procedures

Moving in

  • Residents should read and understand the fire safety information on the Department of Residence Life website, as well as any information posted in the residence halls. Do not obstruct or damage these instructions in any way.
  • Residents should locate all exits from their floor, and familiarize themselves with landmarks that would aid evacuation if visibility were reduced by smoke.
  • Students should locate all fire alarm pull stations on their floor and familiarize themselves with their correct operation.

RA role in case of fire:

All residents and visitors are required to evacuate the building immediately when a building fire alarm sounds or when an RA or staff member requests an evacuation.

Evacuation

  • Know where your residence hall’s evacuation area is.
    • Dort and Goldstein residents should gather on the softball court.
    • B-Dorm residents should gather in front of the Westside Student Center.
    • Pei residents should gather in front of Hamilton Center, NOT in Palm Court.
    • Viking Residents should gather in the parking lot of the Viking Office Building across the street from the residence hall.

Letter Dorms (VWXYz)

If you (the RA) are in your area when a fire alarm sounds, go to the appropriate evacuation and encourage your residents to do the same. Do what you can to keep residents in those locations, and cooperate with any campus and local police, housing staff, and fire department personnel who respond to the alarm. Check in with them and follow any instructions they give. Do not return to your room until fire department or police personnel determine that it is safe to do so.