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Fire Safety Learning Center

Articles and other information related to fire safety equipment and procedures in Illinois.

What to do in case of a building fire

condo building on fire

  Despite condominium and apartment managers’ best efforts to prevent and protect their buildings against fires, often times they still occur. Condominium and apartment fires are usually caused by faulty electrics, human error, and general negligence and are likely to occur throughout all times and seasons of a year. The NFPA reports that fire departments across the United States responded to an average of 358,300 home structure fires each year throughout 2010 – 2014. The NFPA also reports that individuals can expect an average of 5 fires to occur during their lifetime. Since the likelihood of being in a building fire...

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Things to Remember During a Fire Evacuation

The alarm is sounded. You smell smoke. This is not a drill. What do you do next? Most commercial and residential complexes have a proper evacuation plan in place in the event of a fire. These plans typically detail the designated fire exits and meeting places outside of the building. Some associations and companies in high-occupancy buildings periodically conduct fire drills. However, there are a few supplementary tips that you should keep in mind during the evacuation process: 1. Don't panic. The worst thing you can do is make irrational decisions based on fear. When an alarm is sounded, find your...

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Emergency Lighting and Your Safety

Power outages may seem like a rare occurance; something that happens so infrequently that it would be foolish to dwell on their possibility. But are you prepared for the lights to go out? Any building that hosts a large amount of people, whether residential or commercial, is required by law to have emergency lights installed in the event of a crisis. Sometimes, a loss of power can be the result of a fire, caused by electrical malfunction (short circuits, improper wiring, etc.). In this case, a lack of lighting can be deadly. The chief responsibility of an emergency lighting system is...

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Fire Extinguishers: Types and Uses

It is not uncommon to see fire extinguishers in homes, businesses and public places. The (typically) red, cylindrical device is ubiquitous in our world, sometimes encased behind safety glass. But how much do we actually know about them? If faced with a fire, would you know how to correctly operate a fire extinguisher under duress? The reality is that there are many different types of fire extinguishers with different uses. Utilizing the wrong type of extinguisher in a fire situation can be deadly.  Water-based extinguishers are usually expelled in the form of foam or mist. They should only be used on...

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What is the NFPA?

NFPA Fire Diamond

  The NFPA, or National Fire Protection Agency has been informing homeowners about fire safety and prevention since 1896. The non-profit organization has written and implemented many well-known safety codes in the last century, including the Fire Code, which sets standards for safety and protection in buildings, and the Life Safety code, which requires developers and managers to enact measures to protect building occupants from fires and their related dangers. The NFPA has also set standards for fuel gas and electrical installations, as well as proposing a code that led to the creation of the Fire Diamond (see Figure 1 below)....

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